5 OPM songs in the words of ABS-CBN employees

If your playlists have been feeling barren lately and you need fresh music to jam to as the rainy season pours in, these OPM songs by ABS-CBN employees (you read that right!) might be just the refresher you need. 

The top five entries in ABS-CBN’s employee contest “Kapamilya Himig Handog” have finally been released and are available for streaming on Amazon Music, Apple Music, Deezer, Spotify, and YouTube under the EP “OPM Fresh Songwriters Series Vol.1.” The contest was done in partnership with Star Music to provide a platform for ABS-CBN employees to showcase their songwriting skills.  

Discover the inspiration behind each track, which have been brought to life by OPM singers, and see if you can relate to any of them:   

 

1. “Kaya Pala” composed by Jane Abaday and Winset Jacot and performed by Jona 

 

 

“This serves like an anthem for all the girls out there who actually [happen] to have a crush on gay people. Through this song, they can sing, cry, and laugh their hearts out!,” said Jane Abaday, now known as MJ of MORe’s online show “Good Time ‘To,”  who poured heart-wrenching desperation into the lyrics of “Kaya Pala” that turned out to be the competition’s grand winner. 

Himig Handog OPM Fresh Kaya Pala

The poetic track features Jona’s silky vocals which flow through each promise the song’s persona makes to herself. Especially heart-rending is “Pilitin mang limutin / Ayoko nang isipin / Oh aking bituin, ang puso kong ito'y bitin na bitin.” Make sure to watch out for the twist—it definitely pays off! 

 

2. “Sleep Tonight” composed by Mark Marcos and performed by Trisha Denise 

 

 

"It was about my wife. It’s me telling her that it’s okay. If we have a problem today, tomorrow it will be gone," explained Mark Marcos, who represented the Kapamilya network’s Digital Media Division with his entry “Sleep Tonight.”

Himig Handog OPM Fresh Sleep Tonight

This lullaby is a fitting rest stop; an acoustic ballad that you can sway and breathe to, with Trisha Denise singing you to sleep and reassuring you that life keeps going on. She croons, “When the sunrise comes, I promise everything’s okay / We will face this new tomorrow with smiles on our face.” Doesn’t that just feel like a warm hug at the end of the day? 

 

3. “Mahiwaga” composed by Michelle Saubon and Michael Obregoso and performed by Bugoy Drilon and Liezel Garcia 

 

 

Michelle Saubon, formerly of ABS-CBN's Integrated Marketing division, composed the conversational duet “Mahiwaga” that speaks about unexpected love. "The song is a celebration of love. We want to dedicate this song to people who already experienced the magic of falling in love with someone you did not expect,” she said.

Himig Handog OPM Fresh Mahiwaga

Bugoy Drilon and Liezel Garcia highlight the back-and-forth process of catching feelings for someone else. The chorus goes, “Bakit nga ba (tinago pa itong nadarama)/ Maniwala (ka sana na mahal kang talaga) / Maliwanag (pa sa sikat ng araw na) / Mahiwaga (ang pag-ibig nating dalawa),” which perfectly captures the steep fall that happens when you find someone that just works. Much like that sensation, the energetic duet plunges you right into the honesty of this song.

 

4. “Ikaw Na Lang ang Kulang” composed by Kitte Estabillo and Paul Armesin and performed by Kyla

 

 

"At some point, we may feel incomplete, and we think that love, money, dreams, kids, or achievements could complete us. This is for everyone who thinks that there is something missing in their lives and for those who continue to work hard to complete their lives," said Kitte Estabillio, formerly of ABS-CBN’s Creative Communications Management division, who has clearly achieved something great with the diva-worthy ballad “Ikaw Na Lang ang Kulang.”

Himig Handog OPM Fresh Ikaw Na Lang Ang Kulang

The diva who belts out this song is none other than Kyla, whose runs and riffs bring a genuine dimension to the table. The songs contemplate an incomplete narrative, “Paano ba makukumpleto ang kulang-kulang na kwento? / Paano ba mabubuo at paano makukuntento?” Well, the story is completed by none other than an inspiration in one’s life.

 

5. “Stop Missing You” composed by Mycah Borja and performed by Maris Racal 

 

 

ABS-CBN Global’s representative, Mycah Borja, described “Stop Missing You” as an anthem about positively moving forward. She shared, "I wrote a song about moving on to express that it is actually a positive thing. We will remember the good times not always the bad."

Himig Handog OPM Fresh Stop Missing You

Maris Racal performs the acoustic track with a hint of laughter, reminiscent of other uplifting break-up tunes a la Taylor Swift. Even if the song reminisces a supposed relationship, it concludes with “I know I've got to try / I'll stop missing you tonight.” If you were looking for a sign to get over a pesky ex, this is it! 

Check out the songs of Kapamilya employees under the EP “OPM Fresh Songwriters Series Vol.1” here