I just recently found out that one of the original members of the Black Eyed Peas, apl.de.ap, is half-Filipino through the song s The Apl Song and Bebot. Both these songs are about his life and he sings them in Taglog Born as Allan Pineda Lindo to a U.S. airman who abandoned his family right after birth and to a Filipino woman, Allan is the eldest of 7 and lived in a small barrio in the Phillipines. He would ride jeepneys to school an hour away and farmed crops to make money for the family. He was sponsored by the Pearl S. buck Foundation which is an organization that finds healthier living environments for young abandoned and orphaned Amerasian kids He was sponsored through a dollar-a-day program and brought to the U.S. at 11 to be treated for nystagmus, an involuntary movement of the eyes. He was officially adopted by his sponsor a few years later. He met will-i-am through his sponsor and formed the group Black Eye Peas.
I find Apl’s life story really interesting. I wonder about his unique case of being one of the few mainstream popular Asian artists in the U.S. It seems that not many people know him or that he is Asian and this along with the fact that he is in a group with a hot white woman singer and famous rapper will.i.am may be how he got to the top.
The Apl Song( in the album Elephunk)
[Chorus in Tagalog]
Lapit mga kaibigan at makinig kayo
Ako'y may dala-dalang, balita galing sa bayan ko
Nais kong ipamahagi ang mga kwento
Ang mga pangyayaring nagaganap
Sa lupang pinangako
(Come closer my friends and everyone listen
I brought news from my homeland
I'll tell you how we live and what goes on
From my beloved homeland.)
[Verse one, Apl.De.Ap]
Every place got a ghetto this is my version
Check it out...
Listen closely yo, I got a story to tell
A version of my ghetto where life felt for real
Some would call it hell but to me it was heaven
God gave me the grace, amazin' ways of living
How would you feel if you had to catch your meal?
Build a hut to live and to eat and chill in.
Having to pump the water outta the ground
The way we put it down utilizing what is around
Like land for farming, river for fishing
Everyone helpin' each other whenever they can
We makin' it happen, from nothin' to somethin'
That's how we be survivin' back in my homeland
[Verse two, Apl.De.Ap]
Yo, its been a while but...
I been back home to my homeland, (check it out) to see what's going on
Man it feels good to be back at home
And it's been a decade, on the journey all alone
I was fourteen when I first left Philippines
I've been away half my life, but it felt like a day
To be next to my mom with her home cooked meal
Meant I felt complete, my emotions I feel!
Now life has changed for me in the U.S
But back at home man, life was a mess...
I guess sometimes life's stresses gets you down
On your knees, oh brother I wish I could have helped you out...