ABS-CBN’s Star Music launched August 20 a new single titled “Mama Ko,” a heart-wrenching song by Poppert Bernadas about a son expressing his longingness for his mother who passed away.

Singer and theater actor Poppert Bernadas wrote the lyrics and performed the song, with music composed by National Artist Ryan Cayabyab and arrangement by Marlon Barnuevo.

“‘Mama Ko’ is the first love letter I wrote for my beloved Mama who passed away three years ago,” said Bernadas. “‘Payakap, Inay’ is the second one, which I released almost three months ago for Mother’s Day,” he added.

As a member of the Ryan Cayabyab Singers, it was not hard for the former The Voice of the Philippines contestant to consider Mr. C for the music of “Mama Ko.” Cayabyab mentored Bernadas for 14 years.

Despite his relationship with Cayabyab, Bernadas said he was nervous when he asked the renowned musician to write the melody for the song.

Bernadas had to wait for a month and thought that Cayabyab did not like his lyrics.

A month after, however, Cayabyab suddenly texted to tell him to check his email. “When I opened the file, narinig ko ang boses ni Mr. C na kinakanta ang sinulat ko para kay Mama and I cried for almost 30 minutes (When I opened the file, I heard the voice of Mr. C singing the song that I wrote for Mama and I cried for almost 30 minutes),” said Bernadas.

Cayabyab also bid Bernadas good luck, hoping that he could sing the song despite its emotional gravity. The former “Rak of Aegis” actor then realized that the song was really hard to sing after passing through Mr. C.

Bernadas added that his relationship with the national artist goes beyond music. During the wake of the singer’s mother, Cayabyab and his wife even flew to Davao to express their sympathy.

Prior to the launch of “Mama Ko,” some friends of Bernadas in the media industry were lucky to have an advanced sampling of the song. “Oh, Pop! This just made me cry and made me want to fly home to Davao to see my mom,” one commenter said.

“So beautiful. It is like an aria in a stage musical. Gorgeous song and transcendent singing. I have to say it is worth waiting for everybody who loves OPM and great music. The complexity of the music would have been difficult to pull off for a singer who is not gifted,” the commenter added.

“Mama Ko” lyric video and official music video will be out very soon but it is now streaming on Spotify and Apple Music.

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