The Middle East teems with talented Filipino musicians, but every once in a while, an act rises above the crop and proves to be of a different, more transcendent and audacious sort of mettle. Case in point: WYWY. Take it from this quick profile, penned by lead vocalist “X.”
The band name is inspired by The Beatles song ‘Within You Without You’ from the album Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. The lyrics of the song inspire us to continuously create special things in our lives. “Special” just happened to be music.
X Alvarez –vocalist, samples and xylophone. I also sing lead forVisqueen from TseTse Fly Middle East, a sound art & noise experimental community in the UAE. I am a mentor of Rock Camp for Girls UAE.By day, I work as a Marketing Coordinator in an oil & gas company.
Mckie Alvarez – guitars and synths. He is also known as Madd Star Sounds (Reggae dub producer & DJ)
Our music is classified as ethereal wave, shoegaze and trip hop.
Before the two of us met, Mckie was the bassist of one of the well-known reggae band in the Philippines, ‘Collieherb,’ and I was a bedroom musician. I called myself ‘Bedroom Musician’ because I had a lot of compositions at home that I kept only for my hearing pleasure.
When we became a couple in 2006, we started creating music together and posting videos on Youtube and Soundcloud just for fun. We got married in 2010, and up to this day we continue to do what we love. We even got our son involved in a music video. Music has become a family hobby.
In 2013, we started an electronic dream pop trio band called Parallel Sound System. It was my first ever band in Dubai. Through this venture, we had the chance to travel and perform in some parts of the Middle East. It helped us gain more experience and connected us to the right people in the music scene. WYWY started in 2015. In the same year, we released our first original song ‘That Changes Everything.’ We didn’t expect good feedback from listeners, but to our surprise, it was featured in different international music blogs and aired on radio stations. We were also invited to perform as front act forinternational artiststhat visited Dubai.
We are very grateful for how far our work has come.The support that we get from the international music industry inspires us to continue and get even better at what we are doing. Our tracks are played in radio stations here in Dubai, Singapore, Philippines and Poland. Hopefully, our music reaches more countries soon. Recently, we were invited to play at the Fete delaMusique in Manila, which is a big music event in the Philippines. We played on 2 different stages in one night. It was one of the best gigs we ever had.
All the songs from our upcoming album are based on real life experiences. You may call it “hugot” songs. Most often, we are struck by inspiration in very random situations – like when we get stuck in traffic in the Dubai- Sharjah road or in Al Khail Road. Sometimes, even the most plain instances can give you the most visceral flashback of the events that hurt you, or made you happy – and then you just have to give in to the moment. For us, bad traffic is a great catalyst. We come up with the lyrics and melodies inside the car, record it in a cellphone and then arrange it in our home studio. That’s how we do it.
OUR WAY FORWARD
We are working on our first album ‘You’re Blessed.’ It was supposed to be just an EP but we decided to make it a full album, as we were able to come up with the requisite numbers of songs. We want to make itworth listening to and give the audience eargarms.We are planning to launch our album this year in a small venue with an intimate crowd. Let’s see where the wind brings us. We hope it will take us to different places – not only in the Middle East,but across the universe.
TO OUR FELLOW ARTISTS
Be yourself. Don’t mind what other people say about you. Just do what you love and what makes you happy. When someone tries to pull you down, you pull them up!
Connect with WYWY!