Through raw and blunt lyricism, a young hip-hop artist from the Cavite underground takes on a controversial message.
Aaron Alcoran a.k.a “Rookie” is an independent rap artist born and raised in Dasmarinas City, Cavite. He performs as part of the rap trio, Natural Lifestyle.
Having an affinity for rap and hip-hop since childhood, Rookie started his journey by creating original rhymes and beats during his teenage years. His exposure to musical poetry began when he first listened to local rap legends Loonie and Gloc-9 — a discovery that compelled him to explore the various styles and genres of rap at an early age. This exploration eventually led him to Ingay Likha, a huge community of independent artists and enthusiasts that sprung from the visceral underground scene of Cavite. He now releases solo tracks and collaborations with other homegrown artists, garnering a great deal of local attention and critical acclaim.
Rookie explains that rap is his catharsis. It allows him to express himself and air out his thoughts on social and political issues. To him, rap should be able to bend perceptions, question beliefs, and challenge what man thinks is right or wrong, a sentiment that he speaks loud and clear in his latest single, “Nila Lang”.
A play on the word “nilalang” (creature) and the phrase “nila lang” (only them), this song is an allegorical take on human nature, selfishness, supremacism, and the botched morality of animal consumption.
In March of 2021, the music video for “Nila Lang” was dropped under the Urban Ronin Youtube channel. Urban Ronin, a production laboratory for some of the most talented homegrown rap artists from Cavite, helmed the vision for Rookie’s very first music video — a trippy visual vignette depicting the madness behind consumerism and human greed, in the backdrop of a seemingly sentient natural landscape.
As an uprising artist, Rookie believes that every aspiring rapper should strive for greatness and never settle for mediocrity. He also believes that rap should not only be an avenue for self-expression, but a platform for advocacies and raising awareness on relevant issues. To him, an artist’s goal is not to gain money or fame, but to be exceptionally good in their craft and leave a legacy that people will remember for years to come.
Watch the full music video for “Nila Lang” here: