Fil-am Kenneth Laurente’s single ‘Sayo Na’ featured on New York’s Times Square billboard

US-based Filipino singers Kenneth Laurente and Klarrence are featured on a billboard on New York Times Square for their joint single “Sayo Na.”

Fil-Am balladeer Kenneth Laurente’s latest single “Sayo Na,” which he sings with lady act Klarrence, had been featured on a billboard in New York Times Square. 

The track’s official music video came out last February 14. 

The single is the first Tagalog track for Kenneth after previously dropping five English singles, a statement of sorts for the baby-faced act dubbed as Master Balladeer by the Filipino-American community. 

The Los Angeles resident recorded “Sayo Na” in equal billing with rising singer Klarrence. The cut, penned by Ryan Radaza and produced by Rasec Marc, is the theme song for “Tahanan,” a film that was awarded grand prize in Culver City Film Festival last year.  

The said track is now available in digital stores. His first five were “If You Only Knew,” “L.O.V.E,” “Why,” “Worth It,” which features Neitodesu, and “Unsteady.”   

Kenneth Laurente, dubbed the Master Balladeer by the Fil-Am community, released a Tagalog song, “Sayo Na,” for the first time in his rising recording career. 

The balladeer shared, “’Sayo Na’ is the foundation of the main characters’ relationship in the movie, which led to it being a conversation between two singers. I’ve been a fan of Klarrence since her debut single so when I met her in the recording studio to record this song, I was so enthusiastic about it.”

The young man who describes himself as one who has always been singing even prior to facing the real world recently performed at Garth Garcia’s birthday shows featuring Queen of Soul Jaya and the singer behind the hit “Kaba” Tootsie Guevara. He has performed with the likes of luminaries Nonoy Zuniga, Lani Misalucha, and Jed Madela. He intends to release more singles with Filipino lyrics in line with his goal “to focus on representing the Filipino culture in Los Angeles.”

“Sayo Na” is blessed with a heartfelt tune anchored on empowering the Filipino expression through language. It stresses the longing for something or someone, and points to a sense of both uncertainty and wonder usually felt when in a new environment still finding a spot. 

Kenneth added, “Our song ‘Sayo Na’ also emphasizes the fight for love, whatever the obstacles that may arise. It serves as an emotional anchor for the beautiful film ‘Tahanan,’ providing the audience with a deeper understanding of the main character’s emotions.”

“Sayo Na” was written specifically for the said film by writer-director Nicholas Barber, writer Juan Raymundo Ramos, and director of photography-producer Nichole Ruiz. Produced by Howling Gale Entertainment, it is a movie about a Filipino family man forced to move to the United States due to financial woes. It’s a relatable tale for many Filipinos working and living in foreign lands and dealing with considerable human drama. 

Kenneth Laurente’s own story is likewise not a leisure walk, rather a walk with a purpose.  His career in L.A began in 2019 after his service in the US military. He used to be a choir member, most notably in the Saint John Bosco Chorale of SJB Parish in Makati City back in the Philippines. This membership led to a tour of Canada and Singapore in 2008 and 2010, respectively. 

While excelling as solo, Kenneth is also in a group as a member of Fil-Trio, a Fil-Am classical-crossover act also featuring Cristiani Rebada and Lyndon Apostol. They just performed at the February 25 concert of Jose Mari Chan and The Company, entitled “Love In Other Words.”

For his key influences, Kenneth named Martin Nievera, Josh Groban and Andrea Bocelli. 

Kenneth Laurente explained, “Being a performer here in Los Angeles is difficult. It is necessary to have a stable job and income to finance your passion.”

He further noted, “I have my own home music studio where I perfect my craft and a 9 to 5 job so I can buy my gears. On weekdays I have about two hours to do music, and then I reserve the weekends for live performances. It takes time, but the results are definitely worth it.”

Having said that, Kenneth Laurente’s new single “Sayo Na” is a musical piece reflecting that kind of burning passion. (Photo credits to Katie Ortiz and Tony Garcia) 


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