Gian Dakay, the Man Behind Operation Melody

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Good day, everyone. In light of the crisis our world is facing today, I send you well-wishes and remind you to safeguard your health. Let us all hope that this pandemic will end soon.

Meanwhile, I’m sure many of you have started working from home. Now is the best time to discover new music. This week on Of Melophiles and Melomaniacs, we’re doing a spin on the category as I’m featuring a musician to share a playlist of his own songs and how he came to love music and create his own.

The Pop Blog: Please introduce yourself.

Gian: I’m Gian Dakay, I’m the singer-songwriter of Operation Melody. Basically, I work online: I have my own podcast and I’m a gamer.

The Pop Blog: What do you do / what keeps you busy?

Gian: I write songs, I perform them myself. I actually have my own mini-studio here at home. My work is online-based, so I rarely have to meet clients outside, and sometimes I have a few gigs here and there, clubs, different events, small events. Recently, I was a wedding singer.

The Pop Blog: How did you come to love music, and who are your biggest influences as an artist?

Gian: Basically, I was already influenced in music way back when I was a kid, and that was more on the “Gaming music,” like Final Fantasy. If you’re not familiar, the composer of that was Mr. Nobuo Uematsu. He creates some amazing music for games, and I fell in love with his style.

When I got to high school, I had a friend who had an iPod (the retro style) and we would listen to music. I grew up with Simple Plan, Blink 182, and other Punk-Pop bands from way back. After a while, I started watching this show, Drake and Josh. Drake Bell who plays Drake is a guitarist and he writes his own music. I got into his music a little bit until it became one of my inspirations. I started to play guitar because of Drake.

After a while, my dad mentioned that he sounds like The Beatles and that’s when I started taking music a little more seriously. I started looking into The Beatles, The Beach Boys, Bee Gees, and other the 60s and 70s bands, but The Beatles became one of my major influences. When Jason Mraz hit the scene, I really loved his style and I also adapted it.

The Pop Blog: How would you consider yourself, a melophile (music lover) or a melomaniac (music addict that’s hyperbolically abnormal haha)?

Gian: I think it’s an in-between thing. I can’t handle silence actually and I constantly have a background OST in my life. When I’m traveling, when I’m working, even when I’m just thinking, there’s always some sort of music in my mind. Although, it’s more of the instrumental kind. The classical type of music that comes to mind when I think.

The Pop Blog: What’s your most favorite genre and why? Sorry, but you can only choose one.

Gian: Mostly Pop Punk, Alternative rock. The kind of music that’s somewhere in between the mainstream and underground scene where you’re still free to make your own sound and people listen to it, unlike the mainstream where there are a pattern and formula to create the best selling songs. Maybe somewhere in between alternative rock. Rock in general, and pop. Maybe a bit of rap music. More like the Jason Mraz style: storytelling rap

The Pop Blog: Geez, you mentioned a lot. Haha Now, who’s your most favorite artist in the world and why? You may choose two. This time, I’ll be strict.

Gian: Drake Bell and Jason Mraz are two of my biggest influences. One made me start to play an instrument, and one made me start to make music.

The Pop Blog: What’s your most favorite song in the world and why? You may choose up to three.

Gian: I only have 1 fave song in the world. It’s my own song, it’s called “Blinded.” It’s the first song I ever wrote. It was a story and a song for my wife.

The Pop Blog: How sweet. Now, please tell us about your playlist and EP.

Gian: I bring to you my own band’s EP for the playlist, and here’s what song each means:

Blinded – This was the first song I wrote. I wrote it in college. I was already courting my soon-to-be-wife at that time and I wanted to give her the epic-est gift, so I wrote her a song. In the past, I write verses and some lines but never a song. Anyway, it was a song heavily based on our story. The style behind it was Jason Mraz. I was listening to him a lot during that time and I wanted to fit as much of our story in the song, so I thought it would be a great fit to write the song in that style–semi pop, rap-ish.

You’re The One I Love – Despite Blinded being my first song, right now, this one is my favorite actually. This one is special–it was a song my dad wrote for my mom. So I saw it appropriate to have this alongside Blinded. My dad wrote a lot of songs and actually submitted them to Universal Records Philippines in the past. Only one was commercially successful, I think, and the rest were put in the “freezer.” You’re The One I Love was a song he didn’t submit but it was never really published/released. We talked about the music I was making and I was planning to actually release a full-length album but because of time constraints, I had to release it in the EP instead. So there. Blinded, my song to my wife, You’re The One I Love, my Dad’s song to my Mom.

Where The Heart Goes Back To – This one is actually a weird mix. I was thinking about Melt With You, the Jason Mraz one while watching some anime. After a few episodes, the song just came to me just like that. One song. Around 30 minutes I think. I put a melody on it, adjusted the lyrics a bit so it would fit better and that’s how this song was born. I admit though, it was more like a filler song but for some reason, a lot of people liked this one better than the other two. Not sure why. Maybe the influence?

Art by Jim Morada

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