Ian Penn is a singer-songwriter from Mt. Arayat, Philippines. His songwriting was nurtured in the quiet of the countryside and on wide open highways. Raised by a family of music lovers, he started writing songs at 16 inspired by Leonard Cohen and Bob Dylan. His onstage charisma and undeniable musicality captivated audiences, rapidly gaining him a following of fans in Metro Manila.
A travelogue of songs written inspired during his travels on a nationwide tour in 2015 became his debut alt folk album “Water from the Creek”. It was released to critical acclaim, being hailed for wistfully nostalgic songs and lush instrumentation, evoking memories of youth and freedom. The album was crowdfunded by overwhelming support, with the campaign earning 128% of its goal. His songs are proof that the art of crafting melodic songs with richly-constructed narratives are truly timeless, resonating across generations.
With the heart of a wanderer at the young age of 24, the itch to travel has led him to play shows nationwide from small, intimate venues to headlining shows at Teatrino, Greenhills. He embarked on his first solo Philippine tour in support of “Water from the Creek” playing in 30 cities from Luzon to Mindanao. The tour ended and He launched his debut poetry book ‘What Happens to a Dream? Volume One’ in the August of the same year. He went to do a Philippine book tour playing in independent bookshops, wine cellar doors and medium sized auditoriums all across the country.
“No matter which mountain or city his folk music takes him, Ian Penn never loses his old soul and youthful curiosity.” – Rogue Magazine, June 2017
“The modest Ian Penn has got really strong things going for him: the endorsement of artisté, Lilystars Records boss, and occasional tastemaker Clem Castro (…) It is a magnificent slow-burn of a tune, and is less tied to the period angle his few listeners have pegged the Pampanga-bred musician for.” — Aldus Santos, Pinoytuner review of “Wild Abandon”
“…heart-tugging lyrics over lush folk and alt-country instrumentation, taking a step back toward simpler times. A deep, resigned intimacy runs through the songs, as if Ian developed a richer tapestry of experiences to draw from. It’s good to hear his lyrical exploration grow over time, working on a smaller scale yet filling the center with the gift of sophistication and earnestness.” — FHM. July 2017
Shot in Hassleblad 500 c/m by Miguel De Quiros