Mga Paborito Kong Kanta sa Taong 2021

A few months ago, I was listening to some of Zild Benitez’s songs on YouTube. On the second or third song, I wondered, these songs don’t sound the same as I remember. Only then did I realize that I was actually listening to a different set of songs, from a different album, Zild’s second album. I thought they were from Homework Machine. That’s how vaguely I remember the songs/sounds from Zild’s solo debut, which still has a lot of patutsada/pasaring to that “othered” member of the band — something that seems missing on his second outing.

Huminga is figuratively what it is; a breath of fresh air from cabin fever pareidolia, the patterns outside the window finally in sensation. Disclaimer: Hindi ako ang nagsulat n’yan. Nakita ko lang sa web. Maybe Huminga is a breath of fresh air. Maybe it’s a masterpiece. For sure, some would include it in their 2021 best-of list. My thoughts on the album? Um, di ko pa rin napapakinggan ‘yung buong album, kaya wala akong opinyon ukol dito.

I thought “Kyusi” is fine, “Huminga” better. I didn’t like the line ‘di mo kailangang baguhin ang iyong anyo.’ Because you don’t really say ‘anyo’ when referring to your date’s looks, do you? Tatagalugin ko na lang para hindi tunog conyo. Di mo kailangan baguhin ang porma mo, ang pananamit mo. Pag sinabi kong nagbago ka ng anyo, ibig sabihin nun, ano, parang aswang ka. Galing sa anyong-tao nag anyong-hayop ka, ganern.

Siya nga pala, hindi talaga ito tungkol sa Huminga, o kung bakit magaling na album s’ya. Hindi rin ito tungkol sa “Kyusi” at “Huminga.” Tungkol ito sa mga paborito kong kanta ngayong 2021. At dahil wala akong maisulat para sa intro, ginawa ko na lang ‘bakit hindi kasama ang mga kanta ni Zild sa mga paborito kong kanta’ ang intro. Bakit nga ba hindi? Kasi ‘di ko sila trip, ganun lang ka-simple. At mas trip ko ang mga sumusunod:

I Love You So, The Walters. Only one of them is named Walter and no, they’re not brothers. Misleading band name aside, you should definitely see Luke Olson dance on stage while performing this song, because it’s a diaper-changing experience, like changing life in the middle of the night.

Binibini, Zack Tabudlo. Discovered this song first via some parody on Facebook (“Binubuni”). Then, I searched for it on YouTube and I liked it — played more than any recent Zild, Unique, IVOS, or Oh, Flamingo! Thought the chorus sounds like something else, but couldn’t put a finger on. Sometimes that’s a good thing.

Pelikula, Janine Tenoso. Di ko alam kung saang lupalop o kung paano, kailan, bakit, at wala akong planong alamin pa pero OK itong kantang ‘to ni Janine at Arthur Nery. Magkahawig sila ng mood/feels ng “Binibini.”

Tu, Maye. Alam ko na ang Tu ay You, pero wala akong naintindihan sa kantang ‘to. Pero OK s’ya.

Lagi, Aina Juarez (Skusta Clee cover). Found it used in one video on FB about EMI a.k.a the Zigzag Road in Atimonan, Quezon. Didn’t watch the whole thing but found the song interesting. So I decided that I’ll watch it later but it turns out, tracking your watched history on FB isn’t as easy as I thought. So, I spent maybe around an hour just searching, watching, re-watching anything Zigzag Road on FB until I found it.

Over You, Velvet Underground. Slightly modified version na nasa YouTube, dinagdagan ng keyboards, at mas OK kesa original.

Kinikilig, Hazel Faith. Found this in one of those short videos/memes on FB and I thought more songs should be like this — catchy, dance-y, refreshing bubble gum without trying so much to break-out of the usual pop song mold.

Popcorn, Hot Butter. There are more than a few dance hits of the past that I wanted to revisit from time to time. There’s only one problem: most of them, I don’t know the title. While there are songs like “Macarena”, “Dayang-Dayang”, “Shalala Lala”, there are also songs like “Get Get Down”, “Dragostea Don Tei”, and “Popcorn.” I first heard this song in a Chiquito movie (Prinsipe Abante) I saw on PBO few years ago. And my endless search for it ended this year when I finally found what it’s called. Turns out to be one of the most covered dance hit ever. Hinanap ko muna ‘yung taon na ginawa ang Prinsipe Abante, tapos hinanap ko pabalik ‘yung mga dance hits kada taon.

Butterfly, Kacey Musgraves. Kacey Musgraves performed nude on SNL and the internet was like ‘she was really nude’ like her doing it nude was such a big deal. Or maybe because people online hardly even care nowadays. Well, really nude or not, I like this one song of hers.

1999, Charli XCX. I just wanna go back, back to Natin99 — ito lang ang ’90s reference na di alam ng mga western media. Akalain mo, fan din pala ng Eheads si Charli XCX.

Coles Corner, Richard Hawley. This song makes me feel nostalgic for things I’ve never experienced—either a past imagined or only seen in movies. This one’s from one Richard Hawley, the guitarist (and singer-songwriter) who auditioned for but got rejected by Morrissey.

Dirty Work, Steely Dan. Sounds like 60s/70s song about workers withholding labor and destroying corporations. Like, y’know, Fuck the Man, I’m not gonna do your dirty work for free! Until I read the lyrics. And I was amazed how they sang this song so straight without any hint of irony, given what the song is really about.

Mango Love, Shawn Wasabi. Pinakinggan ko ‘yung ibang songs n’ya sa YouTube (Pinoy pala si Shawn Wasabi), pero ‘yung Mango Love lang ang nagustuhan ko.

Send in the Clowns, Judy Collins. Months ago, I was looking for old songs to cure my insomnia when I discovered this song. It was written by Stephen Sondheim. I’m not really into theatre nor movie adaptations of musicals, the recent Andrew Garfield movie (which is not Spider-Man) and Spielberg’s West Side Story notwithstanding. Nor do I have any plan to get into it. But I remember watching Tim Burton’s Sweeney Todd in theatre holding my breath during the scene where Johnny Depp was giving Alan Rickman a shave while both of them were singing.

Black Sheep, Metric (feat. Brie Larson). Did you know? Before Brie Larson became Alt-Right’s most hated actor/character in the MCU, she had singing career and she starred in Spectacular Now, Room, Free Fire and Kong: Skull Island? She was also in Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, one of the best comic-book movies ever.

Sol at Luna, Geiko. TT

Friend of Mine, Odette Quesada. I’ve known for so long that this was such a good song, about being ‘friendzoned’ way before it was called that. I didn’t know then that it was Quesada who wrote and sang it. Maybe because the version I knew and heard the most from the radio, wasn’t her version, but by Lea Salonga. And MYMP also did their own version. Did you know that she also wrote “Growing Up” and “Farewell” for the movie Bagets? Disclaimer: I didn’t grow up in the ’80s. I only found out about all this just recently. Did you know that Bodjie Dasig, Quesada’s late husband, wrote “Sana Dalawa Ang Puso Ko” when he couldn’t choose between two car brands? Who would’ve thought there was something “Ballardian” about that song? When we were kids, this song automatically gets an alternate version — naughty kids that we were, we’d sing the chorus differently. Since puso (heart) rhymes with the Bicol word for penis, we’d sing it with slightly different lyrics.

Alcoholiday, Teenage Fanclub. As of this writing, it’s been 344 days without alcohol. And Liver couldn’t wait any longer.

Hakbang, Cheats. Didn’t like the title. I don’t know who started this trend (if it can considered a trend), but using everyday words for song titles e.g. UDD (Sigurado), Ang Bandang Shirley (Iyong, Wala Lang), kind of defeats the purpose of writing a catchy pop song. The song is good. Thought the title could have been catchier, more memorable.

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