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Iyaz back in Manila to lead New Year’s Eve party

Reggae-hiphop act Iyaz is spending the final evening of the year here in Manila as he leads a star-filled set of performers at the Countdown to 2013 show at the Eastwood Mall Open Park later tonight.

The singer-songwriter behind the hit songs "Replay" and "Solo" chatted with the Philippine press Saturday afternoon at Richmonde Hotel in Ortigas and said he was thrilled to be part of the celebrations.

[More: New Year's wishes for the stars]

"I promise to bring energy and lots of interaction with you guys while doing what I do best. That is, entertaining people," said the international act who collaborated with the country's very own Charice for the latter's hit single "Pyramid."

All-star gathering

The Eastwood New Year Countdown, to start at 6 pm, will also feature some of the country’s biggest musical acts like Ely Buendia, Up Dharma Down, General Luna and Urbanation.

Iyaz, real name Keidran Jones, says fame hasn’t changed him. "For me I appreciate fame and find it very positive. I can say that I have remained down-to-earth and grounded and fame has given me the opportunity to show the value of being that."

He also has high praises for Charice, describing her as "awesome." He said, "We just clicked, like as if she's my little sister. I'm amazed with how her voice handled the song."

[More: Charice admits she's in love]

Iyaz was in Manila in March 2012 as a guest of Charice in her Infinity Tour conert held at the Araneta Coliseum.

New album about growth

Iyaz’s appearance at the New Year’s Countdown is seen as the brightest yet to happen at Eastwood City where the so-called Dazzling Star Drop goes in full display for the second year.

"We are inviting everyone to be amazed by the glittering fireworks display and our very own New Year Tradition now known as the Star Drop," urged Megaworld's Commercial Division Head Kevin Tan.

Iyaz himself sees his involvement in the countdown festivities as a good omen for the current album he’s working on and his career. He called 2012 a “learning experience” and hopes “to apply what I have learned in 2013.”

As for his new album, Iyaz said it’s all about his growth. “It's something you're gonna love," he promised.

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