Around eight years ago, then-newcomer Jaco Benin had just released his first, wittily titled album Ako Naman. He already had the talent department and Taylor Lautneresque good looks and bod part covered. He would have easily marked his arrival in the local music scene, following in the footsteps of dad and Side A’s former guitarist Joey Benin. Some more gigs here and a few bit roles on TV soon after, Jaco took a sudden detour and went home to his native Bacolod. He was starting a family.
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“I was 20 when I learned I was going to be a father. I was happy and of course scared at the same time,” he tells ABS-CBN Lifestyle. “(I thought) t was gonna be hard. But I didn't expect the joy i had that came with it.”
Jaco has since been married to wife Janelle, now living the picture-perfect family life with their three kids Nathan, Savannah, and Lexie in their SIlay home. “Picture-perfect,” we say, as Jaco hasn’t been too shy to post the Benins’ misadventures on Instagram. A stroll in the mall, a dip in a nearby beach, frequent posts of them hanging at the breathtaking Punong Gary’s Place (Jaco’s mom Bing is part of the renowned Ledesmas who own the expanse)—Jaco has always been trigger-happy documenting the fulfilled dad life on Instagram.
“I try to post a lot on my Instagram stories,” he specifies, mentioning all his kids even have their own Instagram accounts. “But I don't let (social media) affect my parenting. I know the advantages and disadvantages of technology and social media. So we are very careful when we talk to our kids about it.”
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Jaco now keeps busy as a fitness coach—and his gymfies and workout posts online would clue anyone in on it. He keeps a gym at home, and does coaching only online as to not cut his family time back.
“My priorities have changed a lot. Before, I worked out to look good. Now it’s really to stay fit and healthy for my family. I wanna be able to run and play with them and do activities with them when they are bigger!”
You see, he says, “The best part about being a father is getting to enjoy my kids and having that special bond with them. It’s pretty amazing!”
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Jaco has now fully solidified his commitment as a father—not mentioning plans to return to music or showbiz in general anytime soon.
“My relationship with my children is one of the most important things in my life,” he says.
“I think most of my children got my character. They can laugh at anything and they love to entertain. Like me, they also love music! They're also smart and they love to read! They got that from their mother!” he laughs.
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Photos from Jaco Benin's Instagram account