6 OPM Artists Who Have Appeared on a Billboard in New York's Times Square

It's a very elite club.
by Esquire Philippines for Esquiremag.ph   |  Jul 24, 2021
Image: (LEFT TO RIGHT) INSTAGRAM/JAMES, INSTAGRAM/UNIVERSAL RECORDS, INSTAGRAM/JULIE ANNE SAN JOSE
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There was a time when it was easy to tell if you’ve made it as a musical performer. Sell a bunch of records, make it to the top of the charts, sell-out arenas, that sort of thing. But now the metrics aren’t so clear cut. Physical album sales and charts have given way to streaming data, and the pandemic has effectively shut down live events and touring in many places around the world.

So how else can you tell if you’re doing something right as an artist? Well, having a billboard on Times Square is certainly something. Over the years, a few Filipino artists have had their mugs splashed across one of the most famous and most photographed city squares in the world. Most of them were being promoted through global streaming platform Spotify.

Here are some of them:

1| Julie Anne San Jose

The singer and actress is the latest Filipino artist to be featured on a billboard in New York’s Times Square. She is part of Spotify’s Equal campaign “which aims to empower women all around the world.”

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San Jose is also a featured artist in Spotify’s Equal Global playlist with her song “Free,” alongside Doja Cat, Ariana Grande, David Guetta, and other big-name international artists.

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2| Nadine Lustre

In April this year, singer and actress Nadine Lustre posted her own Times Square digital billboard. She, too, was included in Spotify’s Equal Philippines campaign playlist.

“We made it to NYC,” she said.

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3| James Reid

A month after his girlfriend Nadine Lustre’s appearance on the Times Square billboard, it was James Reid’s turn. This time, the billboard was to promote Amazon Music’s “Mixtape Asia” playlist, where Reid’s song “Crazy” is included.

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4| Reese Lansangan

In June this year, indie singer-songwriter Reese Lansangan posted her Times Square billboard moment on Twitter. It was yet again, to promote the Equal Philippines playlist on Spotify.

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Reese released her second album, Time Well Spent, earlier this year.

5| Beabadoobee

Filipino-British singer and songwriter beabadoobee (aka Beatrice Kristi Laus) posted that she, too, made it to a billboard on Times Square last October. The promotion was for her second album Fake it Flowers. The Iloilo-born artist first made it to the mainstream with her massive hit single “Coffee.”

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6| Red Tan

Red Tan may not yet be a household name, but she’s definitely on her way up. Born in Manila, the singer competed and won at the World Championships of Performing Arts in the U.S. in 2018 and eventually pursued musical theater in London. She has several songs on Spotify and other streaming platforms. In December last year, Tan posted on her Instagram about her appearance on several digital billboards in Times Square.

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Extras:

They may not be recording artists, but check out these other Filipinos whose faces have towered over the tourists in NYC’s Times Square:

Heart Evangelista

Actress, fashionista, and philanthropist Heart Evangelista is part of the elite club of Filipino entertainers whose faces have graced a Times Square billboard. Hers was for an ad campaign for fashion brand Ia’s Threads by Ia Faroni, which was beamed in the Big Apple in January this year.

“Waking up with my face in Times Square is so surreal,” she wrote on Twitter.

Leren Mae Bautista

Leren Mae Bautista is a beauty queen who was second runner-up in the Miss Globe beauty pageant in 2019. In June this year, she posted a video on her Instagram showing her face on the cover of Filipina magazine, which was, in turn, featured on a billboard in NYC’s Times Square.

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This story originally appeared on Esquiremag.ph.

* Minor edits have been made by the Candymag.com editors.

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