The Juans back on Billboard with recent hits

The Juans back on Billboard with recent hits

The Juans are back on Billboard Magazine. Now, Billboard is considered the Bible of the music industry. It covers music going-ons all over the world including sales and listening action. That means radio airplay, streaming and live performances. Last February, the Juans made it to No. 9 in the Next Big Sound chart, thanks to their recent hits Pangalawang Bitaw and Sirang Plaka.

This time around, the band’s Sirang Plaka bagged the No. 1 slot in the LyricFind Global chart last week. That means that the words of Sirang Plaka were the most-searched lyrics of the week globally. And that is a notch over the current pop sensation Olivia Rodrigo’s new single Wondering, which made No. 2.

A lot of people have probably been wondering what the title Sirang Plaka means. It translates into Broken Record in English, the kind that keeps repeating as it plays in a rut. So they went online and searched and searched and searched to find out. As a result, the Juans got their first Billboard No. 1.

By the way, Sirang Plaka is not only doing great in the lyric search department. The song has been streamed over two million times on Spotify while the video has been seen over 340,000 times on YouTube. An acoustic version which dropped last week already has a million streams on Spotify.

Hindi Tayo Puwede, Istorya, Sirang Plaka and Pangalawang Bitaw are all big sellers for the Juans. Great job guys. Keep the hits coming. You are almost there with the greats.

Rachel Alejandro is back. She has returned to recording after being away for 10 years. Her new single is Takipsilim, which is now available on all digital platforms. It is a composition by 19-year-old Rain Santana and is just the sort of song that can bring Rachel back to the studio.

Takipsilim likens a dark moment to twilight or eventide when a day nears its end. It is full of regrets, full of pain but like the fading sun, it is still trying to hang on to a sliver of hope. Produced by her cousin, the singer and songwriter Nino Alejandro for his Rebel Records and released by Warner Music, Takipsilim now has the distinction of being the song that ended Rachel’s absence from music.

That she recorded no new song in a decade was indeed unusual because Rachel, being Hajji Alejandro’s daughter was born to the music business and is on her own, a known hitmaker. She had been one from the start. That was when she was a 15-year-old singing Mr. Kupido, KSP or Kay Tagal in her hit first album Just a Minute. With uncanny maturity for her age, she later moved on to memorable, emotional ballads like Nakapagtataka, May Minamahal and Paalam Na.

It was probably no conscious decision on her part to ditch recording but something that just happened. Maybe it was because there were other more important things to attend to. Note that most of that time was spent living in New York being wife to Spanish journalist Carlos Santamaria.

Maybe she found no new song interesting enough. Better yet, the acting assignments that Rachel, an accomplished actress of theater and screen, was offered, were too challenging to pass up. She gave stellar performances in Xanadu and Avenue Q on stage and in films like the musical Larawan and the historical Quezon Game.

But then the pandemic happened. Suddenly, her scheduled tours and live performances were cancelled. So were the TV appearances. And saddest of all, shooting of Song of the Fireflies, a movie about the famous Loboc Children’s Choir from Bohol Province, was postponed indefinitely. Rachel, the singer, needed to sing and that was how this pandemic brought her back to recording.

Record again, Nino suggested. And Rachel thought, why not. Maybe a hit can still happen. To find the right song, they reached out to composers via social media. Send in your songs for Rachel. And they did. And that was how they found Takipsilim.

You know what they say about good singers? Most of the time, they are also good actresses. Rachel is one of those who is innately gifted in both departments. And it feels so nice to see her put her talents to excellent use in the affecting video of Takipsilim. It is great to have her back.

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