AUDIO JUNKIE: A tale of two Paralumans

Published March 6, 2021, 7:21 AM

by Punch Liwanag

Raven (left) and Kyle Raphael

Two different singer-songwriters are singing about their muses. And by a stroke of coincidence, both happen to call the beguiling figures in their songs, Paraluman.

There’s good reason for that. the name, according to the inter-webs mean “goddess, in the sense of being a very beautiful woman.” It is a Tagalog word that means ‘my muse,’ and ‘ang pinaka maganda sa lahat.’  

Just in case you don’t know, Paraluman is also the screen name of one Sigrid Sophia Agatha von Giese (1923-2009). A FAMAS-awarded actress who has over sixty plus films to her credit. And yes, she was a looker. Think Gloria Romero-type level of attractiveness.  She is the ‘Paraluman’  name-checked in the Erasherheads hit “Ang Huling El Bimbo.”

Now two new acts, Kyle Raphael and Raven, are doing the same.

Paraluman cover art

Singer-songwriter Kyle Raphael’s brand of lo-fi chill is almost harana-style. In his just released original  “Paraluman,” he sings ‘parang panaginip ang makita ang isang katulad mo / at ang kislap ng iyong mata at ang ligaya na iyong dala ay ibang-iba.’  Enthralled at the beauty of his muse, he seems to move as if inside a dream. ‘Parang panaginip ang makita ang isang katulad mo / at ang kislap ng iyong mata at ang ligaya na iyong dala ay ibang-iba.’

But he snaps out of it eventually, but remains hopeful as he croons ‘pero sa liwanag ng umaga ay ikaw ay nawala di man lang nasabi na aalis ka na / pero hangga’t may bituin sa langit ay ‘di ako nag-iisa / maalala pa rin kita kahit saan mapunta.’ Kyle Raphael’s bedroom pop and neo R&B-tinged style first the dreamy vibe of the song. A hopeful song about love, Kyle has advice for his listeners: “the right people will come at the right time.”

Kyle won the 2018 Himig Handog song competition and that line ‘pero hangga’t may bituin sa langit’ was lifted off his winning song.  Kyle also got an Awit award for Best new Male Performer (2020).  Kyle Raphael’s path seem a promising one. All the more if he keeps writing cool-sounding tunes like this one. Kyle Raphael and South-based “Dvoeña” singer-songwriter Pao Lofranco produced the track.

Meanwhile, rising new act Raven has his own take on “Paraluman.” On his just released debut, he is all admiration as he sings the couplet ‘o aking Paraluman laman ka ng imahinasyon / ‘di ko maiwasan ika’y gawin inspirasyon / Sa mundong ito na magulo at punong-puno ng drama ang mga tao at iba-iba pa ang gusto / pero ikaw pa rin ang laman ng puso ko.’

Paraluman e-card

Raven mixes ukuleles, echoing pianos, dreamy music box sounds and beats to come up with a simple yet catchy tune. Raven throws in some sing-rap verses in there and mixes it up as he “spit poetry with a renewed sense of passion and excitement, hopping from one metaphorical reference to another in a bid to put his creative inspiration on a pedestal.”

He’s smitten. And it inspired Raven, of Rico Blanco’s Balcony Entertainment and Sony Music Phils., to come up with this sonic potpourri, or pop refresher if you will, to clear the air out of the usual, stuff that we hear.

His song is said to be “a tribute to the muse that inspired his music journey.” What beauty it must be to move a young man to take up the arts.

A ‘Paraluman’ for sure.