The band behind the day’s biggest hit
There is currently an OPM song that has been all over the radio stations, be it mainstream pop or the so-called “masa stations.” It is that sentimental song with the lyrics “Walang sagot sa tanong kung bakit ka mahalaga,” which most people hum or sing nowadays. As the day’s biggest hit, the track was even used in the just concluded season of ABS-CBN’s Pinoy Big Brother and climbing up Spotify Philippines’s Top 50 chart.
In case you are wondering what the title of the song is, it’s called “Sila.” And just in case, did you also know that it is sung by an independent alternative band named Sud?
Comprised of Sud Ballecer (vocals and guitars), Jimbo Cuenco (drums), Marc Reyes (bass), Kohl Aguilar (keyboards), and Carlos de la Fuente (sax), the band came to be in 2011 when they were all students of UST Music.
“We started out just a bunch of kids, trying to make music. Six years ago, we had gigs where the only person in the audience would be my mom, but we never stopped playing. I just loved playing with my friends that each gig was an opportunity for me to let loose, and just make some noise in this world where we are constantly drenched with insecurities, stress and anxiety,” bassist Reyes said.
Meet the men behind the breakout hit “Sila” as Music Geek chats with them about their music, the band name, and their plans for the future.
What can you say that your single “Sila” has been all over the radio stations and even charting on Spotify?
Sud: It’s been great for us. We never expected the song to be this popular.
Jimbo: It’s a blessing.
Marc: It’s very surreal and I still can’t believe that we have a lot of plays.
Carlos: It’s a humbling experience. Jimbo wrote this song for someone he was seeing at the time, and I think that was what it was – an expression. But to see how people have connected to the song is something that I feel proud to have been a part of. Senti talaga ang mga Pinoy.
Kohl: It’s amazing how the only Tagalog song of our band paved the way for us to reach listeners who dig that kind of music. We’re truly grateful to each and every one of them who made it viral as well as to the radio stations who keep on playing it on their shows.
For those who don’t know about your band, how was it formed?
Sud: We were classmates back in UST Music. 2011 was the year we met and started playing gigs around Manila.
Marc: Sud and I, along with previous band members wanted to make a band just for fun. Our first jam was at my grandparents’ basement with members, and without enough instruments to go around. We were all just figuring out how to start this band.
Why was Sud chosen as the name of the band?
Sud: Our good friend told us that we should name our band Sud because it sounds weird and it’s my name. We were covering songs from Bamboo, and Franco back then.
Marc: We decided to name the band Sud after our vocalist. It’s easy to remember and it’s catchy.
How would you describe your music?
Sud: It’s a melting pot of our different musical influences. A bit of jazz, RnB, soul, blues, rock, pop.
Jimbo: Alternative soul.
Marc: We always end up as an alternative rock kind of genre.
Kohl: We consider our music as an Alternative Soul but couldn’t really box it in one genre because our band plays whatever kind of sound or progression we happily end up creating.
Who are your musical influences?
Sud: John Mayer, Kendrick Lamar, Jeff Buckley, and Sugarfree.
Jimbo: Anything that sounds good to our ears.
Marc: Too many to mention. When I was a kid, my parents introduced me to classic artists like Clapton, Steely Dan, Pink Floyd, The Who, Bee gees, Hall and Oates, Little River Band. I grew up loving these kinds of music–soulful, groovy, tunes.
Carlos: First would be jazz: Miles Davis, John Coltrane and Ornette Coleman and so much more. I’m big on ‘70s progressive rock, King Crimson and Mike Oldfield being big favorites of mine. Metal, rock and classical are also very important to me especially composers like Satie, Debussy and Chopin.
Kohl: Foreign: Miguel, Honne, Chet Faker. Local: Eraserheads, Typecast, Urbandub.
Can you tell us about the single “Sila”? Who composed it and what is it all about?
Jimbo: I wrote it. It’s about my ex. I wrote that for her when I was still courting her. The song speaks for itself.
Kohl: It’s basically his story on loving someone significant to him.
What’s next for Sud?
Sud: We’re going to release new songs within the year and hopefully by next year, a new album.
Marc: Hopefully a new album with a new sound.
Carlos: Personally, I see ourselves moving towards different themes and topics. The previous year, in as much as it was a banner year for us, we learned a lot of lessons both as individuals and as a group. I see ourselves tapping into those experiences. Hopefully the public can connect to these experiences as well.
Kohl: Currently we are working on our next album. It’s going to have Tagalog songs in it and it then it drifts to a less sexy feel and more of a catchy tune and melody that people could relate to and enjoy singing. Hopefully we’ll be able to release it this year.
What is your message to fans and those who want to get to know your band?
Jimbo: Come to every local gig and support local.