Apl.de.ap’s inspiring success story

After a long absence, the Filipino-American rapper-singer and record producer, also best known as a member of the Grammy award-winning hip hop group The Black Eyed Peas, Apl.de.ap is back on The Voice of the Philippines for its Teens edition.

Apl joined the reality talent show on ABS-CBN as a mentor in its first season for the regulars in 2013 and 2014, respectively. His bets were Janice Javier and Alisah Bonaobra. He would then set-up his independent record label BMBX Entertainment (the name refers to 'boombox') in 2014.

In a previous article on ABS-CBN News, Apl admitted that it was will.i.am (also a coach on The Voice UK), his friend and co-member in The Black Eyed Peas, who encouraged him to accept the coaching stint in The Voice of the Philippines. He also appeared as a guest mentor for will.i.am on the third series of The Voice Australia.

Prior to coming back onboard the show, he collaborated with Filipino composer Ryan Cayabyab for his performance in the opening ceremony of the 2019 Southeast Asian Games in the Philippines. He and the rest of The Black Eyed Peas also performed in the sports’ competition closing ceremony.

In his desire to help improve the education situation in the Philippines, as an act of paying-it-forward, in 2011, he established his foundation in partnership with the Ninoy and Cory Aquino Foundation (NCAF). Its aim is to create the "We Can Be Anything" advocacy campaign where Apl and NCAF plan to build 10,000 classrooms in two years' time or less through it.

His dream of helping new Asian talents came into reality with his independent record label BMBX Entertainment.

The label sources its talent from the Philippines, Singapore, and Malaysia. The current roster of talent includes Slapshock, Kevin Lester, and The Voice Philippines Season 1 semi-finalist Jessica Reynoso.  Reynoso has been the vocalist of The Black Eyed Peas since 2018.

In 2003, 2005, and 2006, his group Black Eyed Peas won the American Music Awards as Favorite Pop/ Rock Band as well as Rap and Hip-Hop Band Group. While in two consecutive years in 2009 till 2010, they won the Favorite Soul/R&B Band and Pop/Rock Band Group Awards.

The group’s biggest hit, “Where is the Love” won the Billboard Music Awards' Mainstream Top 40 Track of the Year in 2003. It also got a nomination at the Grammys in 2004. While another track, “Let's Get it Started” won the Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group. “My Humps” also won at the Grammys in 2007.

Apl’s life is one success story.

He is Allan Pineda Lindo in real life and was born in Angeles City, Pampanga. His African-American father, an airman stationed at Clark Air Base, left the family shortly after his birth. His Filipino mother, Cristina Pineda, raised him and his six younger siblings as a single mother.

The Pearl S. Buck Foundation, an organization that finds healthier living environments for young abandoned or orphaned American children, matched him with a sponsor named Joe Ben Hudgens, a lawyer, through a dollar-a-day program. He initially came to the United States at the age of 14 for treatment of nystagmus, an involuntary movement of the eyes. After a trip to Disneyland, Pineda expressed interest in staying in the US. It took three years for Hudgens to officially adopt him.

In Los Angeles, Pineda attended John Marshall High School, where he met and became friends with William Adams (stage name will.i.am), the nephew of Hudgens' roommate.

The Voice Teens starts airing on Saturday, February 8 after Home Sweetie Home and Sunday, February 9, after Rated K. Apl.de.ap is going to reunite with his three other fellow mentors, Popstar Royalty Sarah Geronimo, rock icon Bamboo Mañalac, and the Broadway Diva Lea Salonga.