Mary, the 9 Ideas released their debut CD on January 25 at the 70s Bistro Bar in Anonas, Quezon City. Hey June!, Banda ni Kleggy, Gracenote, and Sandwich played all nine songs from their self-titled album alongside Soupstar Music artists Hey June!, Banda ni Kleggy, Gracenote, and Sandwich.
Mary, The 9 Ideas, or M9i, is a lyricist and musician collective who works at the ideas firm GIGIL Philippines. Their name is derived from a famous advertising industry phrase: ‘Marry the concepts.’ Based on this legendary sentence, the group created a character: a person with nine heads, as if numerous personalities combined into one body, but with literal heads colliding into one figure – a musician with a lot to say. The album comprises nine artists whose faces appear on the character’s head.
The organization was founded as part of GIGIL Philippines’ #PursueYourGIGIL campaign. Their creative agency believes that all work and no play can dull one’s spark. And if there’s one thing creatives despise, it’s boredom. This is why, through #PursueYourGIGIL, they encourage their staff to pursue their goals, interests, and creative endeavors outside of work.
GIGIL held a songwriting workshop for its musically inclined staff in September 2022. It was held at 70s Bistro, the same venue where they released their record. Raymund Marasigan, the famous drummer of Eraserheads and frontman of Sandwich, facilitated this session. He inspired and advised GIGIL staff on how to write songs and make music. Following this presentation, staff could make and submit demos for the first-ever GIGIL Album… As a result, Mary, The Nine Ideas was conceived.
Listening to their music and reading the lyrics is like reading the memoirs of an advertising creative. ‘Pagkawala,’ their lead single, plays on the word’s two meanings: to vanish and to be free. It was created during the lockdown when everyone wanted the pandemic to end so they could be free. It also denotes the end of a relationship and the necessity to move on. ‘Pagkawala’ is a mantra turned into a song to transform a painful ending into a hopeful beginning. ‘Simula. Dulo,’ the second track and single, deals with the literal beginning and end of a relationship. It discusses how some people may click right immediately, as if they’ve known each other for a lifetime, yet are often divided by their conceptions of ‘the end.’ According to ‘Simula. Dulo.,’ some endings are happily ever afters, while others are heavily closed chapters.
In November 2022, Soupstar Music worked in the Velvet Playground studio to make and record the album. Eunice Jorge of Gracenote was the producer and arranger, and Berns Cuevas and Raffy Bonifacio of Banda ni Kleggy joined the GIGIL Philippines artists as studio musicians.
Mary, the 9 Ideas is now streaming on Spotify.