If mainstream recognition is the barometer of success in the field of music, then songwriter and record producer Rox Santos is one of the professionals out there to tell you how it’s done. He has the hits and the big projects to show.
It’s likely you’ve heard a song he’s involved with, whether as a tunesmith or the guy making important decisions for a record – either it’s the theme to a favorite drama series or a lyric video of a viral song.
Recently, while I was watching singer Jaya perform as a guest in a concert held in Los Angeles, the Queen of Soul herself shared a cute story about an obscure track she recorded that suddenly became a hit when it was used for a Koreanovela. That song, “Hanggang Dito Na Lang,” is penned by Rox.
Rox has always been on a roll as the creator behind numerous records. His colorful career has reached its 15th-year glory.
As a label head, he spearheaded the StarPop PH to various awards and citations, like at the Awit Awards 2022 where Maymay Entrata won Favorite Female Artist and Belle Mariano chosen as Breakthrough Artist for her song “Sigurado,” which in turn won Favorite Song.
This year, the 10 million YouTube views of “Amakabogera” earned Entrata the Bronze Wishclusive Elite Circle award, as the song also bagged the Viral Tiktok Music Video of the Year at the VP Choice Awards.
Three of Rox’s latest releases, or hits, which he wrote with perennial collaborator Mr. Music Jonathan Manalo and a third party (either Jeremy G or Edmund Perlas), are linked to three TV series you’re definitely aware of unless you’re living under the rock.
“Di Maghihiwalay,” performed by LA Santos, and released in October last year, was used as the sub-theme song for Darna. There’s Khimo’s “Sino Ka Ba?,” dropped last December and played as the main theme song for The Iron Heart. And two months ago, “Simulan,” interpreted by Kice, came out and scored the main theme song spot for Dirty Linen.
On March 24, Rox and friends delivered the single “BINI” on digital stores as the latest single of Jeremy G.
“So happy to see the industry fully recovering from the slump caused by the pandemic,” Rox expressed.
He and the blessed few working in the hit factory have no doubt resurrected with a bang. Well, the kind of lay low he felt at the height of the pandemic is, truth be told, equivalent to a death knell for others, in particular, musicians who resorted to selling whatever online, or walked away dejected after essentially throwing in the towel.
I asked Rox to provide a glimpse of his upcoming projects and his reply reflects how busy he is achieving further. He is set to work on Maymay’s next single and album, Belle Mariano’s album, a single for Vice Ganda, an EP for Klarisse De Guzman, and more.
Looking at Rox’s track record, it’s surprisingly easy to see some determining factors that have made him consistently successful. There’s the ABS-CBN magic, his affiliation as a label executive to such a household name, and the teleseryes capturing the imagination and sentiments of a society embracing the drama of all sorts. Credit goes, too, to the artists with eye-popping numbers of followers giving face and voice to the songs.
But above all, it’s the ear for what’s current and truly catchy that Rox and individuals like him should be proud about. It’s acknowledging that the edge they’re given must be compensated with good recording, effective lyrics, and unforgettable hooks.
Rox Santos’s triumph is and should be a source of inspiration. It’s fitting that he himself is feeling pumped up by the scene that has given him all the reasons to celebrate his career. He said, “It’s so inspiring to see a lot of great new local artists and exciting new music coming from all fronts. The live event scene is now more alive than ever.”
These are words to live by from someone who has the talent, the breaks, and the vibrance to keep triumphing.