This is not a post Mother’s day message, this is about Make Your Momma Proud or simply MYMP’s attempt to resurface on the local music circuit.
After being in low profile for the last three years, the music act known to cover famous selections, is back with a new album and a new vocalist. MYMP has just released a CD that compiles the most recognizable hits of the ‘90s and formally introduced its new member, Juliet Bahala. At the same time, the group is repackaged and would like to be known as a five-member music act.
“Even before with Juris [Fernandez], we perform with a band because during big concerts, we can’t last the whole set by being just an acoustic act, with a singer and a guitarist onstage, that will bore the audience,” guitarist Chin Alcantara says.
In 2009, Juris Fernandez left the group in the middle of speculations that she and guitarist Chin was having some issues. In the same year in November, official statement was released saying that Juris is leaving MYMP because of irreconcilable professional differences. She is now a solo act and part of Asap Sessionistas.
Left with no choice but to look for her replacement, Chin announced that the band is looking for a new vocalist and several months later, Juliet was handpicked from a number of singers that auditioned.
Classically trained Juliet is a singing champion back in Davao (the same hometown of Juris). She lists Alicia Keys and Beyoncé as her musical influences. But this 20-year-old newbie is faced by a big challenged when she assumed the vacated slot of Juris. MYMP has established a sound familiar to the band’s followers and they are not ready to hear a different voice.
“I know that people will compare me to the band’s former vocalist. There’s nothing I can do about it, but of course I’m not here to be just another Juris, I can bring a new flavor to the band,” Juliet affirms.
Chin supports Juliet’s aim to change the face of MYMP. In fact, the guitarist believes that with Juliet around the band can do better as she does not have any vocal limitation.
“Juliet is versatile, she can do RnB, pop, ballad, you name it. With Juris, we were limited to acoustic songs. Now we can freely experiment with different genres,” Chin reveals.
MYMP’s new album lists 14 cover songs that its fans requested. According to Chin, they got inspired to make their own rendition of the songs like “Sway,” “Think of Laura,” “Power of Two,” and “Breakout,” to name a few, because of the demand from the fans. The group has been performing the songs in its gigs and tours hence the title The Unreleased Acoustic Collections. Yet again, the album relegates MYMP as just a cover band.
“We know that fact, but that’s how people knew us. I remember, I read an interview of Ely Buendia, he said that when they covered songs of famous artists they got booed. In our case, it’s the complete opposite,” Chin relates.
Even though, the band still hopes that one day it could come up with something original. But with the path it’s traversing at the moment it seems their original materials will still have to take the back seat. If only they took this new opportunity to finally realize that dream, then they no longer have to hope for that dream to happen. You see, ask anyone if they can name one song originally by MYMP, that person will just give you a blank face, unless he or she an avid fan that knows the history of the band that was launched in 2003.
Borrowing what Ryan Cayabyab told the author in a previous interview: “Local artists need to sell that’s why they do covers, but if they want to be known even after 10 years, they need to come up with original material because that’s the only way.”
So there, if MYMP really wants to remembered, might as well make the initial step now and get out of its comfort zone. People can only grow when they push themselves to the limit and maximize all their resources at hand.
The new CD is released under PolyEast Records. The band will have a mall tour that kicks off on May 13 at Robinsons Sta. Rosa Laguna.