Some of the world’s biggest hit songs sometimes are a product of spontaneity, while some have a long origin. “Gusto Ko Nang Bumitaw” is an example of the latter. Sheryn Regis wanted a song about her own traumatic personal experiences during her lengthy hiatus in the US, and some of her own career insecurities.

Certified hitmaker and songwriter-producer Jonathan Manalo started the idea of this song when he was tasked to produce Sheryn’s comeback album with ABS-CBN Star Music last year. Knowing the vocal prowess she possesses, he really wanted to create a pasabog birit song that people will still be able to sing along and relate to. 

“I knew that I wanted a song na hindi lang basta makabirit. I call it ‘purposeful birit’,” Jonathan shared. “Yung justified and contextualized why you’re singing at the top of your lungs, ‘di lang basta birit.”

“I started with the title ‘Gusto Ko Nang Bumitaw’ and I’ve created a melody that would have the feeling of releasing all your angst, anger & frustration. I want the experience of singing that line to be a cathartic emotional release,” Manalo related. “When the chorus was fully done, I’ve decided to talk to Sheryn to make the song more personal to her. Sheryn together with her manager, Michiko shared with me personal things and poems they wrote that became the inspiration for the verses that I’ve composed for the song.”

In an interview Sheryn did previously with One Music PH, she confessed the high level of anxiety and depression she experienced. “It’s a song about a toxic relationship, pero hindi lang siya tungkol doon or sa domestic violence. It’s about the toxicity in your mind, the depression and anxiety. Yes, masasabi ko na na-experience ko ang too much depression,” she said. “Too much yung anxiety na na-feel ko na at one point gusto ko nang tapusin lahat. Gusto ko nang bumitaw sa buhay ko. I felt I compared myself too much to other people, other artists, and mas madalas kong kinulong ang sarili ko sa madilim. Kinulong ko ang sarili ko na parang ayoko na, gagapangin ko pa kung gusto ko pang gawin, pero para ngang kahit gapangin ko, ayoko, yung ganung level. There was just too much toxicity sa mind ko.”

“Kinakausap ko ang Diyos, as in literally, kasi I felt alone. Parang iniisip ko na lang ‘Andiyan ka, let me feel you…’ Alam ko, naisip ko na hindi naman ako lonely, meron naman akong pamilya, but why do I feel this way? Why? So andami kong baket. Gusto  ko nang bumitaw, ayoko na kasi ang feeling ko wala na kong worth, wala akong purpose. Pagod na ko, parang feeling ko tatalunin ako ng battle na ‘to, too much. So kinausap ko, I just consoled myself with prayer hanggang naisip ko na yes, babangon ako para sa sarili ko, iisipin ko ang sarili ko.”

In a pre-prod sitdown with experienced songwriter-producer Jonathan Manalo, Sheryn and manager Michiko Unso bore pieces of the story Sheryn wanted to narrate and the words that they had in mind. Manalo harnessed these stories into a lyrical structure framed in a gorgeous, emotional music he composed that accentuates the song’s narrative arc from the struggles to the powerful individual resolve the song’s protagonist was able to muster by song’s end. 

When Dreamscape Entertainment commissioned the original soundtrack for The Broken Marriage Vow starring Jodi Sta. Maria, the Filipino adaptation of the British drama series Doctor Foster, “Gusto Ko Nang Bumitaw” emerged as a no-brainer choice for theme song as it perfectly captured the whole narrative arc that Sta. Maria’s character Dr. Jill Ilustre went through.

For the TBMV version, the perfect choice to reinterpret the song is vocal powerhouse and Asia’s Phoenix Morissette. While Sheryn’s version captured the raw emotional story, Morissette’s rendition gave the song a theatrical climax.

Since then Morissette’s version has over 5.1 million streams on Spotify, and a whopping 88.5 million views on Tiktok. Both versions of the song has approximately generated more than 50 million views on YouTube. Morissette recently had an iconic live performance of the song on ASAP Natin ‘To with none other than Asia’s Songbird Regine Velasquez-Alcasid. To date, the performance has amassed over 707,000 views on YouTube in less than a week.

When asked about the song’s rise to the top, Jonathan Manalo said, “I’m so happy that the song has exploded into the phenomenon that it has become on social media, because I’d like for the message of the song to really come across, that choosing to ultimately take care of yourself and letting go of anyone or anything  that’s causing your anxiety and stress, is not a sign of weakness, it’s actually a road to recovery and strength.”

Both Sheryn Regis and Morissette will be part of Mr. Music: The Hits of Jonathan Manalo, Manalo’s 20th Anniversary Concert happening this October 15, 2022 at the Newport Performing Arts Theater presented by ABS-CBN Events. Will this be the first time the two versions collide?