How did Manny invite American R&B star to sing for his Bout?
Manny Pacquiao had just thanked Grammy Award-winning R&B singer Ashanti as she accepted his invitation to sing for his April rematch against Timothy Bradley.
Ashanti will be singing the American national anthem Star Spangled Banner. Manny tweeted:
Social media is buzzing with news of the ‘collaboration.’ But what were the circumstances which led to it?
Manny and Ashanti first met last 5 February courtside at an NBA game in New York. Ashanti was the one who approached Manny to ask a photo with him. Ashanti then told Manny she was a big fan of his, a compliment Manny repaid by saying he was also a fan of hers. He then invited the R&B star to sing the American National Anthem at his fight with Bradley.
Ashanti said in an interview ‘I was so excited when he asked me to sing the National Anthem at his upcoming fight and I can’t wait.
‘I actually love boxing! Manny’s such a champion and I can’t wait to cheer him on!’
Ashanti rose to prominence in 2002–03 for hits like ‘Foolish’ and ‘Rock Wit U (Aww Baby)’ and for her collaborations with R&B singer Jennifer Lopez and rapper Ja Rule. Ashanti has just released her fifth album entitled ‘BraveHeart.’
Meanwhile, the slot for the Philippine National Anthem is still open, and no names are being touted so far. With news that Ashanti is coming on board, many fans in Twitter asked Manny to consider Jessica Sanchez to sing ‘Lupang Hinirang’ again. Jessica had already sung in two Pacquiao fights: the first time was in 2012, where she sang the American anthem in his fight against Bradley. The second was in 2013 against Rios where she sang both American and Philippine national anthems.
Choice for who will sing the Lupang Hinirang varied through the years that saw a mixing of popular artists with newcomers and other names. Some of the most popular Filipino singers who have sang the anthem before Pacquiao’s fight are Jessica Sanchez (versus Rios, 2013), Charice (vs Mosley, 2011), Arnel Pineda (Clottey, 2010), Martin Nievera (Hatton, 2009), Karylle (De La Hoya, 2008), Kyla (Barrera, 2007), Geneva Cruz (Solis, 2007), Sarah Geronimo (Morales, 2006), Bituin Escalante (Larios, 2006) and Lani Misalucha (Morales, 2005).
Who do you want to sing Lupang Hinirang in Pacquiao’s April fight against Bradley? Share us your favourite below!