02 October 2018

Sam Concepcion x Ben&Ben: We Are Family

Whatever the genre, whatever the era, good music will contain the seeds of universal truths.  While most songs are understandably about romantic love, it still is notable that there are few songs about the love that can be found in the family.  Ben X Ben are especially qualified to be part of a song about family because they are literally related as well as a family that was formed by love for music.  And song writer and guitarist Paolo Benjamin Guico shares, “Sam (Concepcion) became part of our band!”  So bonded are Ben and Ben that for their interview, they refused to begin until all nine members were present and ready to begin.  The band was started by twins Paolo Miguel Guico and Miguel Benjamin Guico, hence their band name; and has now grown to include Poch Barretto on lead guitar, Jam Villanueva on drums, Agnes Resona on bass, Patricia Lasaten on keyboards, Ton Muñoz on percussion, and backing vocals and Kiefer Cabugao on vocals.  For all of them to bond so strongly and effortlessly with Sam Concepcion, not just on the songwriting but on the performing and recording as well, is proof positive that music can truly unite people.  “We just connected as a family, sakto lang talaga” Sam insists.

“Talking about the family can be so cheesy, too cheesy!  And sometimes, the emotions can also be too close to home,” admits Paolo.  “Maybe it’s just easier to talk about love in general, than to say that its about a family,” Sam supposes when asked about the rarity of songs that delve into the dynamics of a family.  Very early on in the process, they all honed in on that aspect of going back to your roots.  “Just go back, go back , that was very clear.  To what family is and what a beautiful story that can be,” Sam reveals.  It was a good parallel to their process.  “Yes, it could have been difficult, we’re all very different people but what made us gel is that we all felt the same about the family.”  The Ben and Ben family all admit that while their songs might be smooth and easy to listen to, there are some deep and potentially heartbreaking aspects to their lyrics as well.  “We’re nine so that’s nine different experiences from nine different families, so we find what can cross the all that,” Agnes observes.  But even with all that, Paolo says it was easy to find their groove.  “It really just happened.”  Miguel then adds, “Even if we had to build the song slowly, everyone just understood the feeling we wanted.”  Paolo then says, “And once we started jamming , there was just that magic of playing together.” 

Taste the sounds of Pinoy music as Sam Concepcion and Ben&Ben collaborate for Coke Studio Season 2. Catch them on October 7, at 11:15 a.m. before ASAP on ABS-CBN or on www.youtube.com/CokeStudioPH

XO, Mish


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