Mimiyuuuh’s DYWB is a textbook example of making music happen during the quarantine
As far as hydration is concerned, there hasn’t been a reminder quite as effective as Mimiyuuuh’s viral track, DYWB (Drink Your Water Bitch). Packed with a total of 24 reminders to drink water and the occasional “skrrt!” and “rawr rawr rawr” for good measure, the track is two minutes and 44 seconds of harmless fun. It doesn’t take itself too seriously—but somehow managed to rake in over 261 thousand Spotify listens and close to a million YouTube views.
Behind the bass-heavy trap track, however, is a rather interesting origin story between Mimiyuuuh and OC Records.
OC Records CEO and Callalily frontman, Kean Cipriano, let us in on the story during the recent OC Records digital press conference. “Nagkasama kami sa isang event sa Lazada, tapos nag-usap kami. Sinabi ko, ‘Gusto mo ba mag-release ng kanta?' (We were together at one event for Lazada and ended up talking. I asked, ‘Do you want to release a track?')”
Mimiyuuuh’s response was a hesitant yes. According to Kean, the YouTube star answered, “Oo, gusto ko—pero nahihiya ako kasi rinerespeto ko yung OPM masyado. (I want to, but I respect original Filipino music too much to do so.)”
Despite her reservations, Mimiyuuuh’s very first single came into fruition through remote recordings and back-and-forth exchanges. Mimiyuuuh started with the idea of a repetitive hook (in case you aren’t a subscriber, “drink your water bitch” is one of Mimi’s signature vlogging catchphrases) and Kean got to work on a demo. However, the singer-to-be immediately tore apart the first draft.
Kean recalls, “I was thinking Mimiyuuuh is an internet sensation and on the mainstream side of things. ‘Yung ginawa kong demo (the demo I made) was very pop.” His wife, Chynna Ortaleza, with whom he co-runs the company, doesn’t hesitate to chime in, “Oh my god, binaril niya. (Mimiyuuuh shot him down.)”
Despite Mimiyuuuh’s mainstream appeal, he remained steadfast in his desire to create a track true to his roots: hiphop and rap. That meant rebuilding the track, holding back on the pop influence and adding plenty more bass.
Mimiyuuuh was highly involved in every aspect of the production process—something both Cipriano and Ortaleza take pride in. Mimiyuuuh provided the peg for the song’s sound, penned the lyrics and took part in its arrangement. The YouTube creator-turned-artist recorded vocals completely alone, as well, in a scorching hot room with a mic borrowed from the company CEO. Mimiyuuuh expresses, “Feeling ko mas napabilis pa po yung paggagawa namin [ng kanta], kasi parang hinayaan lang nila ako. Sobrang collaborative, I love it. (I feel like the production of the track was sped up because they just let me be. [It was] super collaborative, I love it.)”
The result? As Mimiyuuuh himself proclaims: it’s a bop.
What’s next for Mimiyuuuh and OC Records? “Gusto ko pa po gumawa ng mga tracks na ma-e-enjoy ng mga tao (I want to continue making tracks that people will enjoy),” says Mimi. Among Mimiyuuuh's dream collaborators are local hiphop mainstays Shanti Dope and Gloc9, as well as international superstars Ariana Grande and BLACKPINK.
“We’ll never know!” says Kean. For now, Mimiyuuuh continues to dream too big while reminding us to drink our tubig.
Art Matthew Ian Fetalver