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Manila, Philippines

Rhythm and Drip talks about “yearning desire for a loved one this Christmas” in latest single “Sana"

Photo courtesy of O/C Records

Rising Filipino power collective, Rhythm and Drip just dropped their Christmas track, “Sana,” last December 10th — a yuletide jam that captures the breeze of a melancholic holiday nostalgia.

Inspired by the current state of the world where the traditional Christmas festivities with family and friends are halted because of the pandemic, Sana touches on the “yearning desire for a loved one this Christmas.” And while it carols an aching narrative, its sublime reverberating tune brings a comforting vibe fitting for the season.

The 8-piece R&B/Hip-Hop group is comprised of Cean Jr., Nexxt777, Khryss Arañas, Marc Arroyo, JP Bacallan, GFAB, Max Impurtante, and Kiddo Chris, who indeed roars a promising act as they were recently nominated for Best Performance by a New Group Recording Artist at the 34th Awit Awards.

In a chat with the power dynamic, Rhythm and Drip shared more about the track's backstory, what musical influences inspired the overall structure and tone of Sana, what collaboration styles were applied in figuring out the artistic approach for this single, and more.

TNH: How do you guys feel about the release of “Sana,” and what can the fans expect from this new track?

Marc Arroyo: We feel excited and extremely nervous at the same time. Probably because our previous releases set the standards and have reached a lot of milestones for us. Better vibes, I guess.

Khryss Arañas: With these in mind, I think our audience could expect the same dynamics that we’ve had as a group on our songs. Working constantly with the boys, I think we’ve mastered adapting our styles to our very dynamic group.

TNH: You mentioned that “Sana” is inspired by the story of families who can’t come together this holiday season because of the restrictions posed by the pandemic. Is this also inspired by any of the member's personal experiences?

Khryss Arañas: I think so. But “Sana” is not entirely about a single experience. We aimed to express, or at least recognize, the struggles in maintaining relationships of all kinds amid the pandemic. We tried not to limit ourselves to romantic relationships, hence trying to use neutral pronouns or terms in addressing someone in the song. We tried to, at least. Haha!

TNH: “Sana” seems to hold a hopeful narrative molded into a cheerful tune, which is absolutely fitting for the Christmas season. What musical inspirations/influences did you guys have for “Sana” in terms of its sonic arrangement?

Marc Arroyo: A lot of R&B and a bit of jazz tones influenced the instrumental but also adding a lot of hip-hop elements to make it fit in today’s heat and add that familiar sound that this generation loves.

Khryss Arañas: Personally, I am a fan of how Filipino songwriters write and sing about the Christmas season. Always full of love, longingness, and sincerity, always had this feeling of warm embrace. My favorite OPM Christmas song is “Sana Ngayong Pasko” by Ariel Rivera. I think that influenced how I contributed a lot to Sana’s hook/chorus. Oh! And also, Parokya ni Edgar’s “Hosanna Ngayong Pasko,” a Christmas song I will never forget because I remembered telling my mom when I was in grade school to list it together with other songs and burn it on a CD. Classic!

TNH: Is there a part in “Sana” that really highlights the message of the record?

Marc Arroyo: The chorus/hook says it all.

Khryss Arañas: I guess the hook’s the highlight of the song. It contains the general idea of the song that we, as a group, want to convey.

TNH: As a band consisting of members with various creative ideas, how did you guys collaborate in terms of deciding what artistic approach would best tell the story of “Sana”?

Marc Arroyo: First, we all agreed to make the song shorter than the last one. We also had melodic guides to make all the artists' parts glue together and make the song sound as one, but we trashed the guides and instead did it how we usually do it, and it came out better.

Khryss Arañas: “Sana” started as an attempt to try writing it collectively, together, unlike how we wrote our previous songs where we established a main idea and everyone would surprise the others with one’s unique approach to the song, capitalizing on our versatility. This was supposed to be released in 2020, but every R&D has their own thing to deal with. So, we settled on doing it the way we’re used to doing things. I guess it sounded better. After all, our versatility is our greatest strength. Though, I think it would be nice to finally make a song the original way we tried making “Sana.”

TNH: After crafting this record, what something new did you guys discover as a band? Is there some kind of musical evolution that you hope to bring into the next coming releases of Rhythm and Drip?

Kiddo Chris: Yes. Each of us kinda unlocked a new sound. For sure, there’s something new in every R&D song.

Marc Arroyo: It's still a challenge making songs when we're a "long-distance" group, but we're kinda learning about our strengths, especially on who’s doing a part of the song and who’s best for it. And we always apply our personal improvements to make new songs sound better.

Sana (Cover Art)

The group’s previously released tracks include their debut single, Mawana, and their most popular track, Pero. Published under O/C Records, their latest single, Sana, denotes an ultimate soundtrack of a wistful tale.

Keep streaming Sana on leading digital music platforms, including Spotify, Apple Music, and YouTube.


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