The Story Behind The Jerks’ “Kun’ Di Man,” Chickoy Pura’s Love Letter to Monet

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Hailed as one of the pioneers of the Pinoy punk movement, The Jerks is known for its hard-hitting, politically-charged songs such as “Sayaw sa Bubog,” “Rage,” and “Reklamo ng Reklamo.” But its most beloved and sought-after tune is an enchanting love song titled “Kun’ Di Man.”

With its catchy melody and kundiman-esque lyrics (“kundiman” refers to traditional Filipino love songs often characterized by unrequited love or longing for romantic connection), the song has achieved a cult-like status in the Philippine music scene despite not being a mainstream hit. It was, in fact, one of the most requested local songs on the now-defunct NU107 during Remote Control Weekends. Like a fine wine, it has aged well over the years, becoming a favorite among Pinoy music loversโ€”activists and non-activists alike. Most of all, it never fails to please the crowd when the band or Chickoy Pura performs it live.

Kun’ Di Man’s influence goes beyond music. Phyllis Grande’s award-winning short film of the same title drew inspiration from it. It tells the story of two blind musicians, David and Cindy, who try to make ends meet while working as singers at public transit stations. When circumstances forced them to work separately, they longed for each other despite their inability to see.

The song’s composer and Jerks’ founder, Chickoy Pura, was kind enough to share the story behind the heartfelt serenade.

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โ€œWe were in the middle of recording for the album when I noticed that most of the tracks are serious, be it love songs or songs that tackle social issues. My wife, Monet, and I talked about the lack of a song that is light yet gentle and close to the heart.โ€

โ€œAt 3am, I just woke up for no reason and found myself writing the song with my guitar. I wrote, Di mo man ako ibigin, paulit-ulit kong sasabihin mahal na mahal na mahal kita, and continued until I finished it at 3:30am!โ€

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โ€˜I feel the song wrote itself. It came out naturally. This is probably the fastest song I have ever written. Perhaps because I was glancing at my sleeping wife and sometimes couldnโ€™t help but smile; Kunโ€™ Di Man is really for her.โ€

Listen to โ€œKunโ€™ Di Manโ€ by The Jerks on Spotify.

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