Behind every masterpiece is an artist who puts so much passion into it. That’s the first thing I learned with Jashael or Abigail Jashael Bagabaldo in real life, an independent artist from Quezon City. She is a poet, a novelist, a painter, and a singer-composer.
Jashael started singing at the age of three. She remembered doing special numbers in church until she reached fourteen and began to make some covers in her YouTube Channel. Her parents learned about the covers through her uncle who accidentally watched one of her videos. She wrote her first song, “I’ll Miss You”, at the age of eleven. It was dedicated for her younger brother and their childhood memories. After four years, she composed almost a hundred Original Pilipino Music. Some of them are “Emily (Dickinson)”, “Tamang Pag-ibig”, and “If I were a DC writer”.
She always experiments with her music. She loves to try different genres and mix those in one song. So far, she already tried blues, jazz, country, rap, punk, theatrical, pop rock and a mixture of everything else. But she always find herself going back to acoustic ballad. It is like her home in music.
As our conversation continues, I learned that music is in her bloodline. Her mom was a former vocalist just like her. She considered her mom as one of many singers who influenced her music alongside with Hayley Williams, Demi Lovato, Samantha Barks and Tori Kelly.
When I asked, “What are your biggest achievements in singing?” she humbly answered that one of her greatest achievements is making people cry. “Having someone you hardly know tell you that your creation helps them get through something is a weird experience, but also one of the best,” she added.
In 2014, Jashael signed into a foreign label which released some of her singles. She also had a solo concert, “Journey Thus Far”, last year in the West (Washington). She considered it as one of her memorable experiences in her career because she got the chance to meet her foreign fans. It was simulcast live via Facebook, for her Filipino fans to experience the concert. She performed twelve of her original compositions, each representing a year to her journey as a songwriter.
Her latest music video “Pagtapat” was based on her story “The Breakdown” published under PSICOM. It is basically about a girl who’s about to get married to a guy she knows that has not gotten over an ex-girlfriend. As opposed to the short story, she wanted the video to end in a happy note. The characters didn’t end up together, and the girl regains her freedom and hope to find someone who can actually love her back.
The music video was shot in Marikina City and it took three months to get finished. They had a lot of epic memories with the music video, like turning a living room into a walk-in closet, using phone torches to make it seem as if the vehicle was actually moving in the car scene (because the leading man couldn’t drive an automatic) and making homemade icing. But the most epic moment for her was when she needed to walk to a mall wearing an evening gown.
Jashael’s passion for music is undeniably great. Many believe that she can be a great asset to OPM if she really got the chance to cater her music in a larger audience.
Sharing her two cents worth for aspiring indie artists, she has this to say, “Never set fame as your goal. Doing so will ruin you. Create and perform because you love to.”
“Pagtapat” by Jashael
Music Video for her promotional song “Pagtapat”
“Pagtapat” is the very first Filipino song Jashael have written on her own. It’s about deeply loving someone who claims to love you back; but with every embrace, with every stare, with every kiss, you can tell that someone else is on his mind.