Kaktooz at China Tiger Translate 2012

During the recent months from July to September, Kaktooz has been busy with the China Tiger Translate 2012 Battle of the Bands, a nationwide open band competition. The bands competed with the criteria of best original song and performance.

The preliminary round for the series of events started 14th of July at Xtasea Sports Bar in Shekou of which Kaktooz won the 1st place Champion title against 30 bands. The next round was the Shenzhen City Final held at the Musibase Concert Hall also in Shenzhen on August 3. Again, Kaktooz won 1st place. The last round for Shenzhen was the Finals for Guangdong Province also held at Musibase on August 17, and again Kaktooz won first place which entitled them to compete for the China National Semi-Finals. The outdoor tarmac of the old Kunming Airport in Yunnan was the chosen venue for the national semi-finals, a massive set-up attended by the thousands. That time, unlike the previous rounds, Kaktooz competed with China's best as the bands were all champions from different areas all over China filtered to reach the semi-finals. The date was September 15 and Kaktooz had to fly a day before to Yunnan for the event. Kaktooz prevailed once more and won 1st place as Champion.

The China National Semi-Finals was held at a massive concert hall venue in Beijing called Tango. The date was set at September 22 and like Yunnan, Kaktooz flew to Beijing a day earlier for sound-check and preparations. This time a local Chinese band won the Champion title which gave them the title to represent China for Tiger Translate International engagements. Although it was a sad day for Kaktooz, there were no regrets and in reality, it might be awkward for a non-Chinese band to represent China if ever they won. A grand slam of 4 rounds as Champion but unfortunately, Beijing, the city which the band was so anxious to see was their Waterloo. Kaktooz put out one of the best rock n roll shows Beijing has seen and although they did not bring home the bacon, getting that far within China for a national band competition was well worth it.

Photo courtesy of Yereth Jansen Photography

Photo courtesy of Yereth Jansen Photography

Bayani Ng Lahi (OFW Song) by Kaktooz Now Online

Kaktooz, whose been playing around countries in Asia for several years and recentlty based in China just launched an original song online via You Tube and Facebook. Shared to the world online just February 7, 2012, the song entitled "Bayani Ng Lahi (OFW Song)" which is dedicated to OFWs (Overseas Filipino Workers) all over the world had a good day's start with OFWs from all over checking out the song and saying that it is something they could relate to.

Kaktooz, started with the Philippine music circuit way back 2001 and engaged in a few recording projects. The band then traveled to Bahrain as OFWs for a four year contract stint at three different venues. After that, they spent a few months in the Philippines touring the provinces and islands and but was quickly hired to perform in Hong Kong, after a tedious audition process (around 25 bands auditioned), a gig which lasted another two years. June of 2011, they transferred  to Shekou, Shenzhen, China and there, the band recorded Bayani Ng Lahi (OFW Song), a song which was written in Wan Chai, Hong Kong in 2010.

The song Bayani Ng Lahi (OFW Song) is an honest account of what life a typical OFW has. The sacrifices, hardships, pain, triumphs and hope that all dwell within an OFW's spirit and mind. Bayani Ng Lahi (OFW Song) is a song "for the OFW by an OFW". It is written by Dennis R. Briones, the band's drummer-vocalist who recorded the acoustic guitars and sang it together with Patricia v. Silang on lead vocals and Sonny the bassman on back-up vocals. Jephthah laid down the electric guitar and that slide guitar which added depth and emotion. Carlo put in the keyboard bed which tied everything up together.

Bayani Ng Lahi (OFW Song) could be viewed on You Tube and is slowly gaining popularity amongst OFWs. Most OFWs who have watched and listened to it connected and said, "It's true, that's the life we live". The song is shared online to the world for free as long as it is not used for commercial purposes. as of now, it could only be accessed via YouTube and not downloadable.

Kaktooz is presently in Shenzhen at Xtasea Sports Bar, Minghua Ship, Sea World, Shekou attending to their daily OFW duties to perform to an audience of mixed races while trying to put in their extra time off to make Original Filipino Music.

Listen and watch Bayani Ng Lahi (OFW Song) on YouTube below.

Kaktooz in Shenzhen, China

After a 2 year stint at Bar Amazonia in Wanchai, Hong Kong, the band has decided to move to Sea World, Shekou, Shenzhen in China at a bar called X-Ta-Sea Sports Bar which is Shenzhen's Best Sports Bar 3 years in a row. Kaktooz officially started at X-Ta-Sea June 1st and has been steadily accumulating a good following within the area.

Kaktooz still plays cover songs within the genres of rock, reggae and classics which is has become a trademark for the band not only in Bahrain, Philippines and Hong Kong but now also in Shenzhen, China. Such genre of music has proven itself many times over to attract a good share of audience market at any area or country. Since most of the songs you can hear from Kaktooz cannot be heard in other bands, the choice of repertoire proved effective in reeling in the crowd who not only want a drink or two and entertainment, but also quality music which takes them back in time remembering how it was.

The historic Minghua Ship, Sea World
Shekou, Shezhen, China