Recording star Kiana Valenciano can’t imagine a life without her dad, Gary. That is why even with her busy schedule, she stays connected with him in whatever means.
“I think it helps that I can really be open with him about frustrations, whether it be love life or career, even with school. At that time I remember just being able to like hug him and think it’s gonna’ be fine. He always has the right things to say,” Kiana said.
Being in an industry that demands no less than the best from an artist, Kiana, who has won three Awit Awards and released an EP with Tarsier Records called “Grey,” has always turned to her dad for advice.
“I used to write songs when I was high school and stuff that really did not go anywhere because I was so shy. But I do ask him if this melody is ok, is it in the right direction and if it made sense or is it cohesive. Obviously someone like him who has experience and expertise, you cannot not ask for help from him,” Kiana said.
And although she has become her own person—having moved out of her parents’ home, carving her own path by making her own music—it is Gary’s wisdom she always turns to. It may be her words or lyrics because they come from deep inside, but Kiana says she still needs a little advice from her dad.
Dad Gary, likewise, has never been remiss in terms of motivation and encouragement. He himself would message her each time she has a gig. “Usually if I have a big gig, I will still get a message from him before getting on stage. He says do your best, don’t just be mediocre. Push yourself to be the best that you could possibly do,” she said.
The connection is also evident in their family’s way of way of life. Technology has made reaching out through distances and barriers possible especially with dad Gary now enjoying the comforts of home to recover after getting medical attention.
Her family has chat groups. “We message each other sometimes on Viber, but most of the time in What’s App and Face Time,” she revealed.
These days, the smallest of moments, no matter how seemingly insignificant, form part of bonding opportunities. And it is this way in the Valenciano family. “I think almost every day, at least someone messages something,” Kiana said, adding “with Leia right now, my brother’s baby, we always ask for videos and photos of her.”
For Kiana, having a bond with family is indispensable. “It’s nice that we can be open that way but just to share I’m really thankful that I have a dad that is there. Like in every way, he is just there. He is there to listen, he is there to advise, he is there for hugs and I think if I haven’t had him in my life, I would be a completely different person,” Kiana said.