Heavy Rotation Live brought out the reggae vibes this week with Hawaiian singer, songwriter Hirie. She was born in Makati, Philippines, then moved to Italy when she was still young and finally settled in Hawaii where she found the reggae scene. She shares stories about how her unique childhood and how it shaped both her as a person and her music plus what’s been keeping her busy during quarantine.
Check out the Top 10 things we learned about Hirie:
- Her dad worked for the UN and her mom is an engineer
Hirie moved around a lot because of her dad’s UN position, but that also meant she met a lot of people which influenced her musical taste. She said, “There was so much energy at home because of the people I met through my dad’s job.”
- She learned a lot about different cultures at a young age
Living abroad made her really open to different people and backgrounds. Hirie said it’s made her less judgmental about others and “accept people the way they are and they’re a product of their upbringing.”
- She started writing songs because of her poems
Her intricate songwriting skills began when she was young, making her a hopeless romantic and talking about heartbreak. Lyrics to her first song were so deep, "He tells me he'll make me smile, twice more he made me cry. He tells me he'll grow a rose three times, he made them die." In Hawaii, students are required to learn how to play the ukulele. After writing lot of poems then mixing in the ukulele chords, it led to a natural progression to songwriting.
- Last time she visited the Philippines she was still a teen
She tells Heavy Rotation that her last trip was around 17 or 18 years old, so it’s been her dream for a while to visit again. Her top destinations on her list include Manila, Sorsogon in Bicol, and just exploring different islands.
- Her Filipino nickname was “pasaway”
We were all called pasaway by our lolas at one point or another as kid and Hirie was no different. The Filipino phrase that her lola always told her was “gusto mo palo?” Most of us know the feeling.
- She’s been keeping busy during quarantine
Unlike most of us who’s been binging Netflix and going down the rabbit hole of Twitch, Hirie’s been keeping herself occupied by cooking, writing, and creating on Patreon. She shares that her new smoker is a game changer and taking her meals to a whole new level.
- She’s always thinking about what should be happening next and what else she can do
While she misses performing on stage and having the band with her, she still thinks of creative ways to keep the music going. Her Birthday Bash Live Concert back in May aimed to help the arts. We definitely wish we were just as determined as Hirie.
- “Bonfire” is just a taste of the upcoming album
The song is a feel-good track that aims to release the negative energy. She wanted to create an easy listening sound that listeners can enjoy and wonder off into the riffs, “When I sing, I want to put people to sleep.”
- The name of the new album will start with the letter “M”
Hirie didn’t go into it much, but the name comes from a dream she had. If all the songs continue along the theme she has in mind, then she’s sticking with the name. Anyone have any guesses? All we know is that the new album showcases her different expressions and moods. We can expect to hear more songs that will get us up and dancing.
- DJ Marlino challenged her to write a Tagalog reggae song
Her immediate answer, "Oo (yes) let's try!" Hirie was intrigued to hear about the booming island reggae music scene in Boracay and can't wait to experience it for herself.
Find Hirie on social media (@hiriemusic) and yes, she confirms that it’s actually her responding. Ending the interview, she leaves myxers with a message of love. “Find love for one another. We need to show each other more kindness than anything. Be who you want to see in the world.”