Meet the Filipino artist who co-wrote iKON's latest single

Rose Carmelle Lacuata, ABS-CBN News

Posted at May 22 2022 09:14 PM | Updated as of May 23 2022 02:07 PM

Maribelle Añes, who performs as Vetta Borne, is a Filipino artist based in Australia. Handout photo
Maribelle Añes, who performs as Vetta Borne, is a Filipino artist based in Australia. Handout photo

South Korean boy group iKON returned earlier this month with their fourth mini album, "Flashback", their first release in 14 months.

Filipino fans, however, were also quick to notice that their title track "But You" was co-written by Australia-based Filipino artist Maribelle Añes, who also considered the track as the start of her K-pop songwriting career.

Añes, who goes by the stage name Vetta Borne, said it took between 3 to 4 months from the time she sent the first demo for "But You" until the final version was recorded.

"The beat was so good already, that the melody and the first line “I’m in love again” poured out of me. I wrote and recorded the initial demo in a day, and then we went back and forth arranging and trying alternate versions," she told ABS-CBN News in an email interview.

She also said her publishers in Australia connected her with their South Korean office, who then sent them tracks to try and write for YG Entertainment.

"I sent some ideas back and they liked my ideas, so they kept sending me beats, and I kept writing until something landed, and lucky for me, the first song that got placed was “But You”, and they said that iKON would be recording it," she said.

"I had been to South Korea a few years ago to try and write for another label, but I had no experience at the time. I didn’t realise how different the world of K-Pop would be to the Pop music I am used to writing," Añes added.

Although she considers "But You" as her debut in K-pop songwriting, Añes is also included in the writing credit for Red Velvet Irene and Seulgi's "Feel Good", a track from their extended play "Monster". 

Aside from writing music for other people, Añes also releases her own music. She has released two EPs so far, "Violeta" in 2020 and "Emelia" in 2021.

"I’ve been making music since I was around 13 years old. I started uploading videos to YouTube as “Maribelle Anes”, I would cover, remix, and make my own original songs. I haven’t stopped creating music since then. My biggest inspirations musically are Ne-Yo, The Neptunes, Janet Jackson and Britney Spears," she said.

Añes admitted that writing songs for K-pop groups is a big challenge for her, since she is more used to writing songs for only one person.

The most difficult part of writing K-pop? The raps.

"K-pop is unlike anything I’ve ever written. I’ve also never really tried to write raps before which was/is a big challenge for me in writing K-pop. Keeping in mind that I am writing for groups, and thinking about how I can make each melody feel special for each member of the group is also a challenge, since I’m used to writing for only one person," Añes said.

Añes said there are too many artists she wants to collaborate with, but she would love to work with Lisa and the other members of Blackpink.

She even took to Twitter to express her excitement upon seeing Lisa dancing to "But You" with iKON's DK. 

"There are way too many artists I dream of collaborating with! If we’re talking K-pop, I’d love to write a song with LISA, or any of the girls from BLACKPINK," she said.

But honestly, I’d love to write with everybody and anybody who is serious and passionate about their music," Añes added.

You can check out Vetta Borne's "Kissing Strangers" below.

Watch more News on iWantTFC