MANILA -- On the heels of the phenomenal success of EZ Mils’ “Panalo," more music creators are coming out to push Pinoy hip-hop, rap and pop into mainstream and online production.
The latest are Wilde Quimson aka Naki and Emmanuel Salen aka NEXXFRiday, who partnered with Viva Records through their new music company WAYBTTR, to churn out more Filipino sound-inspired songs.
Similar to EZ Mil’s infusion of cariñosa music beat in “Panalo,” Quimson is targetting the innovative use of classic Filipino songs in their new music collection.
“I'm really proud of EZ Mil’s 'Panalo.' Sobrang diverse ng music niya,” Quimson told ABS-CBN News, citing the impact of the Nevada-based artist.
“The first time I heard it, I thought he was here in the Philippines. He sounded like he was one of us. It shows there’s no one way to do, there’s a lot more production and melody.”
Quimson, who recently penned Diego Gutierrez’s debut recording, aims to echo that distinct Filipino sound.
“Definitely maraming Pinoy elements that we can do inspired by classic OPM songs we grew up with, and adding a new twist to it," he said. “And though most of our influences are western, we can make a sound, hip-hop and rap our own and create something uniquely and recognizably Filipino.”
Quimson composed with Gutierrez the latter’s song “On A Dream,” which tackles love feels amid the pandemic. They collaborated with Erick Walls and Mark Feist, arranger of various songs of Beyonce, Celine Dion, Little Mix and Mary J. Blige.
Salen, who has produced several hits of several acts such as “Pakinabang” by Ex Battalion and “Sandali” by Because, also wants to break more ground for hip-hop and rap music.
“Sobrang laki na ng market... We want WAYBTTR to be there to help the younger generation of artists in producing music lalo na ang expensive ng production ngayon. We’re aspiring that the quality will be on the same quality as the sound of K-pop songs," Salen said.
The pipe dream is to achieve job security in the industry, he added.
Salen and Quimson’s best bet for stardom this 2021 is Deny, a sultry singer-songwriter and dance artist who started as a session musician for the band Because in 2019. She will drop her new single called “Gusto With Ya” next week on all digital streaming platforms.
Quimson said their label is looking for more “hungry and open-minded” musicians in their march towards digital hip-hop music and the formation of an artists-creators collective.
"Ito na 'yung music ngayon, nag-iiba na. Look at the Top 40 on the leading streaming platforms, it’s either pop or hip-hop,” he said.
"Even Ariana Grande and other artists have shifted, borrowing elements from hip-hop. Music consumption is also becoming
increasingly digital. We want to move it forward!”