When Malaysian singer Min Yasmin launched her “Pangarap” album recently at the Manila Polo Club, she showed all the attendees that she loves everything Pinoy – from teleseryes to Pinoy dishes and Filipino performers.
Before the interview, she performed a few numbers in Tagalog with ease. “Pangarap” has tracks as “Sabihin Mo Na,” “Bakit Pa” first done by Jessa Zaragoza, “Kahit Konting Awa” by Nora Aunor, “Pag-Ibig Kong Ligaw” and “Sigaw Ng Damdamin.”
Min is no stranger to the Philippines as she has been in and out of the country since 2015.
“It’s not tiring. I am enjoying it. It’s my passion,” she said about shuttling back and forth the two countries.
By this time, Min already knows the similarities and differences between Pinoys and Malaysians.
“Malaysians and Filipinos are almost the same,” she declared. “They are almost similar. But I found Filipino crowd more fun because they like to really express their feelings. If they like the song they really shout. No matter what situation they can express their feelings. I like that.”
“Our style in Malaysia is a little bit different. We’re more, like, polite. Filipinos, they’re very energetic, super galing. I found Filipino food nice even though they’re not so spicy.”
Min related how she learned to sing in Tagalog.
“I started to learn Tagalog since 2015. I told my composer, ‘Sir, can I have another language in Filipino?’ Kasi, I want to upgrade myself. And I did. I did Tausug, Samal, and very, very soon, it would be in Visayan and Yakan. I really want to learn (more languages).”
She gushed before enumerating the Pinoy teleseryes she follows.
“I always watch Pinoy movies, teleseryes like ‘Pangako sa ‘Yo’ and ‘Marimar.’ From there, I fell in love with Tagalog language. I want to sing and do Tagalog songs also like ‘Be Careful With My Heart.’”
She knows several Filipino singers including Lani Misalucha, Regine Velasquez, Jessa Zaragoza, Gary V and Martin Nievera.
“I look forward to working with them, hopefully in the future,” Min said.
Asked to do an impromptu impersonation of Jessa and Lani, The Malaysian politely declined, saying, “I’m shy. She’s a diva. I think both of us have our own style so no need to impersonate na.”
Composer Vehnee Saturno described Min as “a little Adelle and Toni Braxton.”
“I told Julfekar (Min’s discoverer and composer), ‘Let’s write big songs for her. Who knows she can be a hit,’” he said.
Min hopes to perform live in Manila one day.
“I’ve already done a Mindanao concert. I’ve performed in Zamboanga, Tawi-Tawi and Jolo. I’m looking forward to have a solo concert ni Manila. To have an album with not only Tagalog but also Tausug, Malay and English, I really want to share my song, my love, my composition.”
She started singing at nine years old.
“Julfekar saw my talent on one TV show in Malaysia, ‘Mentor.’ It’s a reality show, a music show. From there I started my career in music. He found my talent and he said he wants to manage me.”
An accomplished singer, she put out a solo album in 2015 then eight compilation albums. Her “Pangarap” album is her third for the Philippines. The first one was with Nikki Bacolod and the second one was for Mindanao.
Seeing Min perform, one can’t help but notice the beautiful hijab she wears. She actually has a wide collection of the head gear.
“This is my style, this is my passion. I want to be bold and different from other singers because if we talk about talent, every singer has talent. “So how to be different?’ This is my style and strategy so that people will recognize me. ‘That’s Min Yasmin.’”