Filipino-American rapper Ez Mil is currently under fire for his hit single “Panalo (Trap Cariñosa)” after some noticed historical inaccuracy in one of the lines.
“Panalo,” which has gone viral online since Ez Mill launched his two albums “Act 1” and “Resonances” in 2020, contained the lyric “pinugutan si Lapu sa Mactan (Lapu-Lapu was beheaded in Mactan)” which had irked some people.
“That whole why I chose the term, ‘pinugutan si Lapu sa Mactan,’ it’s like — because, in terms of the rhyming pattern, I always go to this dilemma or doubt in my head in terms of when I’m closing out a song. Am I gonna close it out with absolute truth or am I gonna make people talk about it? That’s like me weighing the options,” he said in an ABS-CBN News report.
He clarified that he knew Lapu-Lapu was actually not beheaded during the Battle of Mactan in 1521 but wrote that lyric anyway so that he could gain the attention of Filipinos.
“That’s me putting an exaggerated term in a ploy to drive traffic and talk. It’s inaccurate but he still died. He’s dead right now. It’s not overall factual in a way,” he explained.
“The thing that is factual about that is that whenever he did die from back then, people were still saddened. The original Filipinos were still saddened. That’s just me twisting how things were.”
He did, however, apologize for inadvertently offending people.
“I’m sorry to anybody who was offended with the fact that me putting inaccurate sources in our history as Filipinos. That’s why the song is what it is right now,” he said. “The way I wrote that got people talking. I got people agreeing to it. I got people disagreeing. I got people in the in-betweens. I had to check that all out. The way it is now, people are talking about it. I got to be smart about it.”
Ez Mil grew up in the Philippines and moved to the US where he has now been staying for four years. It was last December 29, 2020, when he performed “Panalo” at the Wish Bus USA.
“The idea of using ‘Cariñosa’, the Philippine folk song, was an idea by my mom,” he told the Wish Bus USA interviewer at the time. “It has nostalgic memories to me in high school, when I would dance it. My teacher back then would actually praise me because I got the steps right.”
“It was more like a savage patriotism, where empowerment is the main focus,” he added.
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