((( O ))) is coming to hold her first sundrop gathering this weekend.
Having lived off-grid since 2012, the neo-soul singer will be returning to the city as she shares the stories behind her 12-track record ((( 1 ))). Her offerings, individually called "moondrops," follows the artist's journey with every full moon. She then brings them together at the end of 12 cycles to form a full-length album or a "sundrop."
Bandwagon caught up with ((( O ))) to talk about life as she returned to nature, the energies that surround us, and advice she'd like to share for those who'd want to embrace a more sustainable lifestyle.
How did you come up with this idea to release new singles along with the moon?
My honest answer might sound crazy, but I followed a series of numbers I realised were communicating with me since I was a child, and led me to the rhythms of nature as my guide to planning and manifesting everything that is considered art.
What is the overall theme that surrounds your first sundrop?
((( 1 ))) - Returning back to nature.
How does living far from the city and having an artist name that’s difficult to search online benefit an artist such as yourself in this digital age?
It is the perfect unpronounceable symbol that brings me the perfect insights and challenges that will always remind me of my deeper intentions to remain true and humble, that it's all—me and yu—are just energy.
((( O ))) to hold sundrop gathering for debut album ((( 1 ))) this November
How did you come up with the idea to trade seeds and plants at your upcoming gathering? Are there other initiatives like this you plan on holding soon?
((( O ))) is inspired by insights from growing a seed into a plant and into the entire orchestration of all that surrounds that seed, which already comes with a blueprint of intentions to be what it was meant to be. I apply all these aspects into my entire lifestyle—from basic needs of food, clothing, shelter, to the gift of creating visual and musical art.
Do feel any pressure with the thought of having to come up with a full-length album every year for the duration of this project?
Yes, (laughs). It will force me to share with others and grow, instead of keeping my art to myself for too long getting caught up in perfectionism.
How did you get your start in living sustainably? What were the struggles you faced?
Coming from Central America, where it is almost impossible to get any fresh food pre-packaged, the raw abundant land and resources of the Philippines taught me that the concept of "development" is actually destructive.
The struggles I faced were dealing with thoughts and ideas that were not commonly shared. It was difficult to relate to people, so I spent a lot of time being alone with my thoughts in writing, or in books, or expressing through music, just so I could figure out why I felt differently from what the external world was presenting to me.
I made the actual jump into off-grid living when my family and I thought there was a chance my mother had cancer. I wanted to sacrifice everything, including a music career, to figure out the truth for myself.
What kind of advice would you give a person who’d like to live a more sustainable life?
My ideal advice would be to go the extreme route like I did, and plan ahead so there is less destruction and distractions on the way there. The more realistic advice would be to go on your own pace and have no fear because there are more and more conscious communities supporting each other with living life better, and for the benefit of everyone.
In what other ways would you help the Earth besides releasing music for the benefit of Philippine forests?
Gathering people with music and art, and connecting local people of that gathering location to their own local communities advocating sustainability of basic needs and mixed-industries, their own biodiversity, and their own native plants! etc.
((( O )))'s sundrop gathering is slated to take place at The Eye in Green Sun, Makati on November 10 (Sunday).
Tickets are available for PHP 1,500 (Early Bird), PHP 1,800 (Regular), PHP 2,000 (Door), PHP 3,000 (with meet and greet). A 20% discount will be given to attendees who bring one Philippine native plant and/or seeds for the event's plant swap. Get tickets here.
((( 1 ))) is available on vinyl. Order yours here.