Filipino band Orange & Lemons’ chief songwriter and producer Clem Castro imagines intimate poetic moments with a fictional ex-lover in the group’s latest single, “You Bring Out My Best.”
The song, which was intended as a pitch for a product commercial, was later on released as a stand-alone single.
Castro said, “It’s the first time we sat down together working on a concept material, with no relevant inspiration for it. Just a play with words and melodic lines.”
“You Bring Out My Best” was written, arranged and demo-recorded last February.
The members though had to maximize the time between jamming and brainstorming for the new song. “The resulting production has that trademark O&L sound, and much, much more because of the contribution of our keyboard player, who after more than a year of being an official member, has immersed himself in indie-pop stylings,” Castro added.
Though it was shelved for some time, the band decided to resume recording, with proper observation of health and safety protocols, of course.
“You Bring Out My Best” was released on 11 September and is available on all digital platforms worldwide via Lilystars Records.
SuperM to collaborate with Marvel
After finally releasing its debut album Super One on 25 September, K-pop supergroup SuperM is off to a collaboration with Marvel.
SM Entertainment head Lee Soo-man revealed the good news in a speech at the 20th World Knowledge Forum held on Wednesday in South Korea.
“Starting with SuperM, we are slated to work on a collaboration with Marvel. I’m not sure how exactly that collaboration will work, but we will work on making a story with SuperM, and with the Marvel Story, (and) make a song that everyone can sing,” Lee was quoted as saying in Korean and reported by Maeil Business News.
In April, SM Entertainment worked in Marvel to release Marvel-themed merchandise for EXO-CBX, the sub-unit of popular group EXO that features members Chen, Baekhyun and Xiumin.
SuperM is often touted as the “Avengers of K-pop” with members that come from SM Entertainment’s popular boy groups EXO, Shinee, NCT 127 and WayV. The band was formed in 2019 by SM Entertainment and Capitol Music Group. It consists of Taemin from Shinee, Baekhyun and Kai from EXO, Taeyong and Mark from NCT 127 and Ten and Lucas from WayV.
They debuted with the hit single “Jopping,” which is among Billboard’s 25 Best K-pop Songs of the Year.
SuperM released its much-awaited debut album Super One on 25 September and features 15 tracks including “100,” “Tiger Inside” and “One” (Monster & Infinity).
PhilPop announces top 15 finalists
Touted as the premier songwriting competition in the country, the Philippine Pop Songwriting Festival continues its advocacy to nurture future hitmakers through its sustainable platform and world-class mentorship program.
Despite the challenges of the new normal, the songwriting institution continues to develop its pool of songwriters and composers from across the Philippines, and showcase a diverse selection of music that elicits cultural conversations and reflects contemporary narratives with substance.
From thousands of submissions, PhilPop has completed its roster of Top 15 finalists.
The last batch of finalists from North Luzon, South Luzon and Metro Manila clusters were announced during the livestream of PhilPop Q&A and Kuwentuhan Sessions on 23 September.
In no particular order, here are the final batch of finalists who made it to the PhilPop Songwriting Festival 2020:
Abegail Esteban and TJ Paeldon — “Agsardeng”
Lolito Go — “Balikan”
Angelic Mateo — “Paos”
Kulas Basilonia — “Para Kay Catriona”
Chochay Magno — “Lunod”
Princess Roselle C. Germina — “Bitaw”
Kian Dionisio — “Huling Sayaw”
Aikee — “Bestiny”
Aikee — “Mapa”
The nine finalists join contenders from the Visayas and Mindanao clusters, which include amateur and professional composers and songwriters such as Jerika Teodorico, Noah Alejandre and Reanne Borela; Michael Catarina, John Cadeliña Christian Chiu and Sherwin Fugoso.
The entries went through multiple rounds of adjudication headed by PhilPop chair and National Artist for Music Ryan Cayabyab, as well as foundation board members, adjudicators, partners and Warner Music Philippines executives.
In choosing the finalists for the South Luzon cluster, UP Jammers Club Alumnus’ resident producer and South Luzon Cluster partner Caio Cadiz handpicked songs that not only stand out in terms of melodic elements, but also entries that deliver quality and envelope-pushing lyrics.
“Songs with a unique way of presenting their topics and themes are highly preferred, as well as how they use their words to create an image of what they want to communicate. Also, the overall theme of their demo is a factor for me as a producer, but the team also recognizes that it is merely a glimpse of what the songwriter was going for, so the quality of the demo’s production is negligible. It’s really more of the quality and dynamics of the melody and, most importantly the lyrics,” he said.
A.M. Studios’ resident producer and North Luzon Cluster partner Melvin Moralles shared the sentiment, but pointed out the importance of choosing the best song that would represent his cluster.
“Personally, it’s all about the totality of the package, and how it would best resonate with a diverse but broader listening public — from students to adults, regional folks to international music fans.”
PhilPop Songwriting Festival 2020 is an initiative of the PhilPop Music Foundation, chaired by Mr. Manny V. Pangilinan. This year’s edition is co-presented by Smart, Meralco and Maynilad, with official partners Warner Music Philippines, Kadasig and MinPop.
Figurative language, or figure of speech, helps us visualize the imagery of the lyrics with the aural experience of music.
What would we do without figurative language?
Imagine it. Lackluster songs with no vivid, picturesque imagery to bring the tunes to life. Just nondescript words that don’t do justice to the music.
Without figurative language, songs would be lifeless and meaningless. Listeners can’t form the mental pictures the words should bring or create the emotional connection to a song.
Figurative language, or figures of speech, helps us visualize the imagery of the lyrics with the aural experience of music. Let’s take a look at how it plays a vital role in the songwriting process.
But first, what is figurative language?
Figurative language is the use of words that differs from conventional or literal language.
It is used to make a song convey a more complex meaning, a vibrant, expressive writing approach. It’s saying something but not exactly saying it in a literal sense.
There are types of figurative language.
A metaphor compares two things that are not alike. But wait, how can two different things be related if they are not the same?
A metaphor makes sense only when the listener understands the connection between the two things being compared. Here’s an example:
“But you put on quite a show, really had me goin’
But now it’s time to go, curtain’s finally closin’
That was quite a show, very entertaining
But it’s over now, go on and take a bow…”
Rihanna’s 2008 hit “Take a Bow” contains a perfect example of a metaphor. The writer likens a failed relationship to a stage show. That’s all it was, for show. It wasn’t real, it was a put on. A very effective metaphor, if we may say so.
Much like a metaphor, a simile is a figure of speech that compares two unlike things, but uses the word “like” or “as.” Some of the more obvious examples of similes in songs are Madonna’s “Like a Prayer,” Neil Young’s “Like a Hurricane” and even a song we discussed last week, Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit.”
Other songs that come to mind are Foreigner’s 1977 hit “Cold as Ice,” a song about a girl who’s not as ideal as the guy thinks she was.
Bob Dylan’s classic “Like a Rolling Stone” talks about someone who was once popular, but is now a “complete unknown.” No, it’s not a reference to one of Dylan’s contemporaries, the Rolling Stones.
A hyperbole is an exaggeration that emphasizes a point, sometimes in a humorous manner. At times, we unconsciously use hyperboles without noticing it.
It’s oftentimes so outrageous to the point of being unbelievable. But it’s merely to add depth and color to a statement.
Vanessa Carlton has used it (“Coz you know I’d walk a thousand miles if I could just see you… tonight”). So has Scottish duo The Proclaimers (“And I would walk 500 more, just to be the man who walks a thousand miles to fall down at your door…”). Romantic exaggerations both, but hey, we say some really crazy things when we’re in love, don’t we?
This type of figurative language cleverly uses one part to refer to the whole or vice versa. A good example would be T Rex’s “Ride My Wheels.” We know that wheels are only part of a vehicle, yet here, T Rex singer Marc Bolan refers to the vehicle as just his “wheels.”
Onomatopoeia is figurative language that names something or describes an action by imitating the sound associated with it. Utilizing this in song, especially in writing, adds more reality to the work. A great example of this would be the B-52’s late 80s hit “Love Shack,” with the multiple use of the word “bang” when knocking on the door of the Love Shack.
Without figurative language, songs would be boring. We’re certain they won’t be as popular as they became, had they not used figures of speech.
Mandy Moore expects first baby with Taylor Goldsmith
‘This is Us” star Mandy Moore is expecting a baby boy with his husband singer-songwriter Taylor Goldsmith.
The couple posted on their respective Instagram accounts a heartfelt photo of Goldsmith touching Moore’s baby bump.
“Baby Boy Goldsmith coming early 2021,” Moore wrote.
The two are evidently happily expecting their first child two years after they got married.
Despite being pregnant, Moore is still shooting for This is Us and still does sex scenes with on-screen partner Milo Ventimiglia.
In a photo tweeted by the series’ creator Dan Fogelman, Moore and Ventimiglia were distant from each other with the caption “A 2020 television sex scene. We’re back.”
K-Drama gains more viewers
The Korean romance drama television series Do You Like Brahms? has gained more viewers on its eighth episode, peaking in the national ratings at 6.3 percent — up from the previously recorded 5.8 percent.
Do You Like Brahms? stars Park Eun-bin as Song Ah, a young classical music student who experiences unrequited love, self-doubt, judgment from her younger peers and family opposition while pursuing her passion of playing the violin.
In her most trying moments, she meets elite pianist Joon Young, played by Kim Min-jae.
Meanwhile, the second batch of music artists in the series’ original soundtrack (OST) were revealed last 24 September by Nyam Nyam Entertainment.
They include EXO’s Baekhyun, K.Will, Gummy, Kim Na-young and Baek A Yeon, with Song Dong-woon as producer.
Song Dong-woon has also worked in the OST of the dramas Hotel del Luna, It’s Okay, That’s Love, Descendants of the Sun and Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart Ryeo.
Other music artists who have previously participated in the Do You Like Brahms? OST were EXO’s Chen, Girls Generation’s Taeyeon, 10CM, g.o.d, Punch and Heize, with I*ZONE’s Jo Yu-ri.
SKY Fiber and VIU subscribers can catch the latest episodes of Do You Like Brahms? every Tuesday and Wednesday on VIU.
Ongoing shows like Alice, The Zombie Detective and Lie after Lie are also available for streaming.
New and existing SKY Fiber subscribers can add VIU Premium to their plan at no added cost through SKY Fiber’s First 3-months On Us promo to enjoy the latest episodes every week, ad-free. Avail of the first three months of VIU Premium access by visiting vod.mysky.com for more details. Promo ends on 30 September.
Streaming soon: New films, TV series
The reopening of cinemas in the Philippines seems light years away, but thank goodness, new films and TV series are still coming to our homes through streaming services, providing an escape from our bleak, virus-conquered lives.
If I were you, invest beyond Netflix so you can add more variety to your entertainment buffet. Here are some of the exciting films and series coming this September and October on Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, HBO Go, and Apple TV+!
‘Welcome to the Blumhouse’ (horror anthology)
The month of October is upon us, which means we’re in for a slew of scary films. Amazon Prime Video is the best app to tap if you’re a fan of the horror genre.
Amazon Studios has teamed up with horror factory Blumhouse Productions to send chills down our spine with a series of anthology films all slated for next month.
Welcome to the Blumhouse promises four “unique” and “unsettling” flicks “under one roof” from internationally diverse casts and directors.
Prep yourself for a screamfest beginning 6 October with Black Box, about a single dad who undergoes experimental treatment for his memory loss, and The Lie, where two parents desperately attempt to cover up their teenage daughter’s morbid crime.
On 13 October, make sure you have a blanket nearby to cover your eyes (or a towel, in case you wet your pants) with the romance-turned-deadly-and-horrific Evil Eye, and a story about a sinister notebook in Nocturne.
‘Time’ (documentary feature)
Another reason to subscribe to Amazon Prime Video is Time, the critically acclaimed 2020 Sundance-winning documentary from Garrett Bradley, which will premiere globally on 23 October.
Fuel your passion for justice and human compassion as you follow abolitionist and entrepreneur Sibil Fox Richardson as she fights for the release of her husband Rob, who is serving a staggering 60-year prison sentence.
It scored a 92 percent on Rotten Tomatoes. And it’s shot in black and white. Critics around the world are calling it gripping, moving, vibrant and stunning. I’m sold.
‘The Forty-Year-Old Version’ (comedy film)
In these dark times, we need a hearty laugh more than ever. Dropping on 9 October on Netflix is Radha Blank’s 2020 Sundance-winning comedy The Forty-Year-Old Version, with a 95 percent score on Rotten Tomatoes. It’s also shot in black and white, set in New York City, with Blank herself playing a struggling playwright.
If you’re currently an anxiety ridden artist, or an aimless creative seeking relevance and motivation, or simply a fan of American indie, then this might be the movie for you. As the protagonist Radha nears her 40th birthday, she grapples to find her true artistic voice.
The film, which teeters between the worlds of theater and hip-hop, has been regarded as smart, hilarious and crowd-pleasing.
‘The Boys in the Band’
Missing Jim Parsons? Catch him in the 2020 remake of the LGBT tale The Boys in the Band, which will pop up on Netflix on 30 September. Both the 1970 original movie and this modern-day makeover are based on Matt Crowley’s 1968 Broadway play of the same title.
Joe Montello is at the helm, and Parsons is flanked by an all-star cast, which includes Zachary Quinto and Matt Bomer. The premise? A group of gay friends find themselves in a reunion at a birthday bash. When the host’s college roommate (and a closeted gay) crashes the party, the night takes a tumultuous turn. Sounds like a comedy because Parsons is in it, but the film is actually a drama.
‘On the Rocks’ (comedy film)
Apple-using cinephiles will have something to look forward to on 23 October on their Apple TV+ app. Celebrated director Sofia Coppola reunites with Bill Murray after 2003’s Lost in Translation for the “bittersweet comedy” On the Rocks. Murray plays a playboy dad who helps his distraught daughter (Rashida Jones) follow her husband (Marlon Wayans), because something doesn’t feel right in her marriage.
On the Rocks is a production of A24, the indie house that brought us American indie gems nominated in the Academy Awards, like Lady Bird, Moonlight, Uncut Gems and more. And given it’s a Coppola film, this should definitely be on your must-see list.
If espionage thrillers are your thing, then head on to Apple TV+ on 25 September and indulge yourself in the high-rated foreign-produced series. It’s not in English, which makes it more authentic, as the setting is in Iran. It follows an undercover Mossad agent on her first mission. Yes, a girl spy, which makes it more exciting.
There’s been a lot of applause for this dramatic spy thriller and we are lucky enough that Apple TV+ is bringing it to the international audience, including here in the Philippines. So, check it out later today — grab your iPhones and see what the fuss is all about.
‘The Undoing’ (miniseries)
Nicole Kidman will grace your devices on 25 October in a drama series based on Jean Hanff Korelitz’s 2014 novel You Should Have Known. So make sure you’re subscribed to HBO Go for this.
Kidman plays Grace, a therapist who will soon be releasing her first book. But weeks before her book is published, her life turns upside down (of course). Kidman is surrounded by an exciting cast that includes Hugh Grant, Noah Jupe and Donald Sutherland, which is enough to give this a look-see. It’s directed by Susanne Bier, the Danish director behind Bird Box and the hit TV series The Night Manager.
New online entertainment channel
In a groundbreaking move to further expand its digital footprint and engage shoppers, Puregold shall use Facebook and YouTube to house its own program offerings aimed at bringing entertainment that caters to a wide variety of interests.
Challenging and trying as the times may be, it is probably in our nature to try and find something to lift our spirits.
Whether it’s getting busy with newfound hobbies, reconnecting with friends or simply binge-watching movies, it’s about finding that pleasant diversion to hope that better days will come soon.
Puregold recognizes this sense of hope as it continues to look after the Filipino’s welfare amid these uncertain times. As online consumption grows due to the “stay home” lifestyle, Puregold wants to further reach out to the public.
It is going beyond being a retailer, as it explores bringing entertainment to Filipinos.
In a groundbreaking move to further expand its digital footprint and engage shoppers, Puregold will use Facebook and YouTube to offer its own entertainment programs to cater to a variety of interests.
It will also provide opportunities for branded messaging and segments, sale offers and an instant link to frictionless transactions.
Viewers will have access to content recurring in a weekly time slot — from a cooking show, to a comedy show, to a full-on game show.
Many people have recently tried their hand at cooking. Online instruction videos notwithstanding, The Puregold Channel introduces “Luto Mo, Negosyo Mo, Panalo!” as a unique way of presenting culinary lessons.
Hosted by TV personality Arra San Agustin, the show features easy-to-follow recipes. Done in a casual and light manner, even the “non-experts” should be able to relate and stay on track.
A part of the program is about how to get into the entrepreneurship side of food preparation, a growing trend these days.
It is often said that “laughter is the best medicine.” The Puregold Channel sees the value in looking at the lighter side of life with a show called “The Ha Ha Hour.”
The comedy show will feature popular stage comedian Alex Calleja.
But of course, who doesn’t want to win prizes? To make it more exciting, how about joining an actual game show contestant in the comfort of your own home?
The Puregold Channel will also feature Luis Manzano hosting “Playtime Panalo.” Online subscribers will have the chance to be chosen as home partners and live out their game show contestant dreams and play for exciting prizes.
Joining Luis are equally entertaining co-hosts — their hilarious banter alone will surely knock the socks off of even non-contestants.
Look for The Puregold Channel shows on Facebook and YouTube.
Ji Chang-wook, Kim Ji-won pair in new drama
KakaoTV is producing the original drama that tackles the reality of dating amid living busy lives in the city.
Two of Korea’s biggest names in K-Drama are teaming up in the first season of the multi-season series City Couple’s Way of Love: My Lovable Camera Thief.
Reports have confirmed that Ji Chang-wook is set to play opposite Kim Ji-won in the series’ first season.
KakaoTV is producing the original drama about couples dating while living busy lives in the city. The first season premieres later this year.
My Lovable Camera Thief runs for 30 minutes. It’s directed by Park Shin-woo (It’s Okay Not to Be Okay), and co-written by Jung Hyun-jung (I Need Romance).
City Couple’s Way of Love is Ji-won’s first drama this year after starring in Netflix’s Arthdal Chronicles. She rose to fame after starring in the hit drama Descendants of the Sun.
City Couple’s Way of Life also marks
Chang-wook’s new project after Melting Me Softly (2019) and Backstreet Rookie (2020).
DEAR DIARY DAY: 10 films about or based on diaries
Not only an escape, but diaries are among the greatest sources of stories.
It is where one gathers his deepest thoughts and feelings, translating them into words and phrases that describe his experiences. It is where reality and fantasy often divulged, and where secrets are whispered.
Writers, musicians, and artists have taken inspiration from this universal experience, giving birth to endless novels, films, and songs based on diaries.
In celebration of ‘Dear Diary Day’, we listed some of the best movies and novels straight from one character’s journal to another:
1. Diary of a Young Girl (Anne Frank)
History junkie or not, Anne Frank’s name surely resonates.
The young Jewish girl lived through the Holocaust and started writing in her diary when she was 13.
Addressed to her friend ‘Kitty’, Anne’s journal became her haven during the World War II and where she documented the story about her and her family’s life while in hiding.
It landed on the hands of Miep Gies after her death, who gave it to her father Otto — the only survivor in their family.
Entitled ‘The Diary of a Young Girl’ or ‘The Diary of Anne Frank’, her book of writings was published in 1947 and is now considered as one of the most popular books of all time. It is translated into 60 languages and has sold over 30-million copies worldwide.
It was also adapted into a movie in 1959 where Millie Perkins acted as the young Anne.
2. Memoirs of a Geisha (2005)
Based on the 1997 novel of the same name by Arthur Golden, Memoirs of the Geisha is about Chiyo Sakamoto, a young Japanese girl who was sold by her impoverished family to a geisha house in order to support them.
The film centers around the sacrifices and hardship faced by pre-World War II geisha, and the challenges posed by the war and a modernizing world to geisha society.
The movie stars Ziyi Zhang, Ken Watanabe, Gong Li, Michelle Yeoh, Youki Kudoh, Suzuka Ohgo, and Samantha Futerman.
3. The Diary of a Wimpy Kid
This is one relatable story about growing up, the book series from author Jeff Kinney tells the tale of middle-school student Greg Heffley.
Wanting to become popular at school, he wrote down his misadventures in his journals and shared the lessons he learned along the way.
First published in 2007, the ‘Diary of a Wimpy Kid’ book series remained on the New York Times bestseller lists since its publication.
It is currently available in 76 editions in 64 languages and was adapted into four films: Diary of A Wimpy Kid (2010), Diary of A Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rule (2011), Diary of A Wimpy Kid: Dog Days (2012), and Diary of A Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul (2017).
4. Diary ng Panget (2014)
The movie that launched JaDine or the loveteam of James Reid and Nadine Lustre into fame.
‘Diary ng Panget’ tells the story of the main character ‘Eya’ and how she met Cross Sandford– straight from her diary.
It was based on the romantic-comedy novel of the same title by ‘HaveYouSeenThisGirl’ or Denny R. in real life.
5. The Notebook (2004)
Based on the Nicholas Sparks-classic ‘The Notebook’, the 2004 film adaptation stars Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams as a young couple who fell in love in the 1940s.
Their story is read from a notebook in the present day by an elderly man (played by James Garner), telling the tale to a fellow nursing home resident (played by Gena Rowlands).
6. Mara Clara (1992-1995)
Talking about plot twists, the biggest revelation in the hit Filipino television series Mara Clara revolved around a diary.
Mara and Clara were switched at birth, and the details of this event were recorded by Kardo, a hospital staff, in his diary.
Mara (Judy Ann Santos) lived as the poor daughter of the couple Susan (Susan Africa) and Gary Davis (Eruel Tongco/William Martinez) while Clara (Gladys Reyes), their real daughter, was brought up by the rich couple Amanthe (Juan Rodrigo) and Almira Del Valle (Beverly Vergel).
This was reprised in 2010 by then teen stars Kathryn Bernardo ang Julia Montes.
Mara Clara is considered as one of the most popular television series in the country, with over 300 episodes airing for three years.
7. Vampire Diaries (2009)
The Vampire Diaries is a supernatural teen drama television series based on the popular novels of the same name by L. J. Smith.
It centers around the lives, loves, dangers and disasters in the fictional town of Mystic Falls in Virginia as told through the journal entries of Elena Gilbert (Nina Dobrev).
8. The Carrie Diaries (2013)
The prequel to the popular movie series “Sex and the City”, The Carrie Diaries foretold the adventures of 16-year-old Carrie Bradshaw after landing an internship in New York.
She recorded her internal musings in her diary and documented her growth both as a writer and as a person.
9. Princess Diaries (2001)
The coming-of-age film from Garry Marshall revolves around the life of Mia Thermopolis, who has just found out that she is the heir apparent to the throne of Genovia.
With her friends Lilly and Michael Moscovitz in tow, she tries to navigate through the rest of her sixteenth year.
10. Bridget Jones’ Diary (2001)
Bridget Jones (played by Renée Zellweger) wants to fall in love and her diary surely knows it.
The romantic-comedy film released in 2001 is about her entries and how she improved herself while she looking for love.