'11:59' is KZ's time to go global

Asia's Tech News Daily

It’s “11:59” and KZ Tandingan’s time to go global. The said time is the title of powerhouse artist’s newest single, and to be more precise, the “realization of the vision” of Asia’s Soul Supreme. That is, to bring her unique singing style and Original Pilipino Music to the worldwide stage.

“After my ‘X Factor’ 2012 stint, the dream was always to go international, to represent the country on the world stage. And now I get to release this and make my dream come true,” the singing spitfire remarked at the virtual launch of “11:59,” a few days before the song officially dropped on October 22.

The hard-hitting soul track, which takes listeners on a highly emotional journey of two lovers, is co-produced and co-written by Grammy-nominated producer Luigie “Lugo” Gonzalez. The Panama-born American was noted for work with the iconic Latin singer-songwriter Juan Gabriel. He has also worked with the likes of Ricky Martin, Barbara Streisand, Madonna and Donna Summer.

Besides Gonzalez, Tarsier Records’ Lorenzo and Idrise Ward-El co-produced Tandigan’s first single under the maverick label. Most importantly, “11:59” stands as ABS-CBN’s latest international music release as the media conglomerate goes full blast in showcasing OPM to the world.

'11:59' is KZ's time to go global
© The Manila Times KZ Tandingan steps out into — and sings for — the world.

At the launch, Gonzalez admitted he initially doubted whether Tandingan could pull off the very challenging single. Apparently, “11:59” is a decade-old piece he had written with three other friends, and none of them found the artist who could best deliver their song as their own.

“It’s a song that we really felt [and] knew was gonna be a classic. So we knew that whoever ended up performing it has to bring that [powerful] energy we had in the room when we wrote it,” said the American composer in a video message.

He recalled he had little to no expectation when he saw Tandingan in their studio for the first time, but when she started singing, he knew their search was over.

“So many artists had already performed the song, and they had their own styles, which were amazing as well. But KZ was able to capture the original idea and the sentiment of the song. She just went in and destroyed it,” Gonzalez gushed.

“From the moment she opened her mouth in the studio, my producer Idrise and me were astonished, and we were asking where’s this voice coming from?”

As for the petite Filipina who can outsing giants, she recalls feeling jittery on the fateful day. For not only was she singing for a Grammy-nominated producer, but she was also auditioning to record a song that is so dear and personal to its composer.

“Sobra akong kinakabahan kasi it was a new environment, new people. I-add mo pa his nomination, so I didn’t wanna disappoint him. [But] when I recorded the song, I just wanted it to be mine,” Tandingan expressed.

“You can just imagine how grateful I was to hear from him they saw what they were looking for in my performance.”

11:59’s accompanying music video — which is now available on Tarsier Records’ YouTube channel — is likewise produced by an international team. Dominic Bekaert of Zoopraxi Studios conceptualized and directed a stunning visual interpretation of the song that presents the idea of time using a circular backdrop.

A truly world-class piece from KZ Tandingan, “11:59” is now available for streaming and download on Spotify, Apple Music, Deezer, Amazon Music and other streaming platforms worldwide.

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