Jeremy Sarmiento: Playing for change

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By Stephanie Tujan


Tuesday, March 11, 2014

WHEN most musicians make an easy choice to either go abroad, change careers or try their luck in Manila for a better musical exposure, Jeremy Sarmiento choose what he think is best, staying in Davao, dominating the Davao music market and opening the doors of "Muzik'Skool" not just for the young, but for the more senior ones, all year round.

The school is located at Door #7, Damosa Bldg, and J.P. Laurel ave. It's a music school that offers special courses that not only enriches knowledge but make learning fun as well.

It was his passion for music that continually inspires him to make music, teach and create opportunities for other musicians, who gave rise to Muzik'Skool and Event Essentials (Talent Management).


Jeremy is the president, school director and part-owner of Muzicskool Inc.

Jeremy is a graduate of Bachelor of Science Major in Management Accounting and Bachelor of Science in Nursing. I have known Jeremy. I have seen how he works in a short time that I get acquainted with him and his lovely wife Katherine, a highly specialized event/wedding planner.

His remarkable achievements are far too many to mention but I'm pretty sure he had more than dozens of supporting evidence in his bag that I could even think of. He is a member of Elements Songwriter of the Philippines headed by Maestro Ryan Cayabyab and did sound engineering and music production sessions with Jimmy Antiporda.

And yes, he sometimes do feel jaded: "There are hard times. But I passed that certain phase, which I am pretty sure other musicians can relate to, when I had to choose between passion and security and as much as I wanted to devote my life to my passion, and music, I am also faced with the reality that I have to survive. And yes, music is not generally a stable profession especially here in Davao."

But at most part, he finds love and fun in what he does.

"Being able to exercise my creativity, music has no boundaries, and I am able to explore so many dimensions (different genres, different topics/subjects, etc) and it amazes me that people appreciate the music I create," he said.

And if that quote would quantify one from being a successful musician, Jeremy added: "Yes I can consider myself a successful musician. If I am able to monetize my skills and talents and able to help other musicians do the same."

The composer/music arranger/artist/singer/instructor/sound engineer/conductor is also popular for his ability at the piano, and whose first song ever sang was "Somewhere Out There" from the animated flick "The American Tail" at second grade said, "The piano enabled me to express my feelings. I listen to all types of music, and this is the reason that my songs (compositions) have different styles. I am a "no nonsense writer of lyrics. I am very particular about the lyrics of my songs."

He admitted that if there is one popular song he wishes he wrote, "Sara Bareilles\ 'Gravity', the lyrics perfectly connected with the melody."
Gary Valenciano continues to influence his work and his music. He thinks that Valenciano has a great impact on people and Jeremy added he wanted to have a piece of that familiarity to people, to make an impact and effect and to move people through his songs.

Suffice to say, he writes music for fun, some of his songs started as humorous and found a way to work around it and ended up with a good and meaningful song. One classic example of a song he penned was "Kungkai."

For those who didn't know, he also composed two songs for "The Voice of the Philippines" contestants -- "Coming Home" interpreted by Janice Javier and "Antay" by Thor.

He loves all types of music but he secretly pushed heavy-metal aside, not that he dislikes the genre but in a standpoint of a sound engineer, he is a bit worried that the music can cause ear fatigue.

Jeremy maybe many things to many people, yet central to his identity is his role as a music enthusiast, who continues to inspire, to use his God-given talent for others, to share selflessly and engage more people to make music. He is a singer/songwriter who has found his voice and his place and will take you there through his music.


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Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on March 12, 2014.


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