Roxanne Barcelo has reinvented her career so many times that many have already forgotten that she actually started as a singer—and a very good one at that.
Now she has decided to pursue that path again, starting with a hip-shaking collaboration with the New York-based hip-hop production duo Q-York and, yes, another change of name.
While she will be continue to be known as Roxanne Barcelo in her acting projects, she will now be known as Roxee B for recordings and other musical engagements. Why the name Roxee B?
“The name is sexy, classy and never trashy,” quipped her new manager, former radio DJ Jerome B. Smooth during Roxanne’s recent appearance on Radio Republic’s “Celebrity Spin” program.
It can be recalled that Roxanne had previously released an album under the name Roxie and was also known as Ate Anne in “Batang Bibo”, the children’s show that she hosted. Roxanne’s career odyssey did not just consist of several name changes but also an equally good number of detours along the way.
Born in Fairfax, Virginia, she was only 8 years old when she won in the “Best of the Best” singing competition in the United States. When she arrived in the country at the age of 13, Roxanne became a contestant in GMA’s “Metropop Search” before becoming a regular at the now defunct “S.O.P.”.
But despite scoring a smash hit with the song “Kung Alam Mo Lang”, a Tagalog adaptation of the Korean love song “Because I’m A Girl” by Kiss, Roxanne was not able to sustain a recording career mainly because she also pursued acting and had success as one of the original cast members of the hit teen series “Click” as well as memorable turns in teleseryes like “Kahit Kailan” and the original “Sana Ay Ikaw Na Nga” also for GMA.
Her acting mettle was also not to be scoffed at as proven by noteworthy performances in such indie films like “Mudraks” and “Haruo” as well as in series like “Darna”, “Amaya” and, most recently, “Cielo De Angelina”.
Roxanne’s determination to explore the other facets of her talent can also be reflected in her participation in several reality competition series, including the MTV Philippines VJ Search, TV5’s “Hollywood Dream” and “Pinoy Big Brother: Celebrity Edition”.
Her new song “Wow!”, of which she wrote the lyrics herself, is all about the lessons she learned from these episodes that continued to inspire her to constantly improve on her craft.
“The song is about the women of the world. Whatever you experienced in the past, good or bad, you just have to accept what happened and know how to move forward,” she pointed out. “In a way, you could say it’s all about girl power, as the Spice Girls used to say. You really have to believe in yourself as a woman and do what God wants you to do.”
Roxanne revealed that she’s actually been writing songs in between film and TV projects for the last five years, getting some help and pointers from the likes of Drip, Mike Madriaga (aka Evo Evolver) and Malik Lopez while becoming more partial to the hip-hop and R&B genres. After the upcoming release of “Wow!” as a single, she hopes to release a full album within the year.
“Timing is everything, I guess,” she said when asked why she has decided to pursue singing again at this point of her career. “My stint in ‘PBB’ and all the other reality shows has only made me stronger in my resolve.”
That doesn’t mean that acting will now take a backseat. In fact, Roxanne is now more open to exploring new things including posing for men’s magazines and accepting sexy roles.
“Years ago, I would’ve said absolutely no. Roles are roles. It just depends on how I attack them. As long as the project is really good. The photography is beautiful. It has to be very artistic for me to consider,” she said. “Although as dream roles, I would like to play something like the role of Nicole Kidman in ‘Moulin Rouge’. That would be great.”
As for settling down, Roxanne, now 28, said she is once again single as of the moment and is actually enjoying it. Now that she’s actually looking but Roxanne admitted that back in 2009, she actually wrote a letter to her future husband—whom she still has not met.
“Now that I’m really looking for one right now but I do hope my future husband is someone I can truly connect with, someone who loves God, someone who can take of himself and someone who knows how to have a good time.”
Having had showbiz and non-showbiz boyfriends, would she prefer one over the other?
“There was a time when I would have preferred someone who’s not from showbiz but I guess you never say never. It really doesn’t matter as he has all the things I’m looking for in a man.”