Pure soul, pure smile: a love letter to June Marieezy

I was, once again, late to where I planned on going, thanks to my love for sleep and the stereotype turned proven fact of “Filipino time”. This time I was headed to a day party in Hackney by Juicebox and Suitcase Magazine, with food, drinks and music from KAASI, Joe Hertz and a live set performance from June Marieezy.

I ended up thanking fate and TfL later for I came to the party in the middle of her set, with my first personal impression of June Marieezy was her lost between the lyrics of Fly, the sun shining itself on her in the vein of a spotlight.

I shyly approached her twice, once with a few of the audience members and a second one just by myself, and despite my awkward hellos I was greeted by possibly one of the warmest smiles I have ever received. Jet black tresses flowing free; her skin richly coloured by South-East Asian sunlight; freckles, gold and silver streaks ever so slightly accented around her face, I had to take a few milliseconds to tell myself that I’m actually in front of June Marieezy, talking to the genius who wrote such poetic lyrics like:

My three sixty dollars on the shelf
What’s my wealth
I’m the best at bein’ myself
I can tell you American dreams
nice things from the shop
But I really think that Asia’s bout to pop

Lyrics that not only guided me to the right path but also questioned the one I was on, not so much turn against it, but see it in a clearer light, from another pair of eyes so that I’m aware of my surroundings.

After introducing myself, I got extra fan boy feels when she ended up remembering who I was through Twitter, reminding me that she is, too, human.

Despite her growing knowledge of the world, she displayed an innocence genuine and very much needed in today’s times, which I saw when she randomly told someone she was talking to that their eyes were beautiful. She spoke of missing the Philippines, the sun’s erratic nature in London while I spoke of life here and my gratitude for her creating such amazing music, to which her face responded by becoming a painting of glee, content and artistic satisfaction.

Never will I forget her holding both of my hands as a form of thank you for coming, simultaneously letting  pure, good energy pass from her hands and into mine. Immediately I felt a huge surge of positivity, creativity and love, vibrations which linger within my system up to this second.

After separating, a few drinks and finding out that I’d rather be out exploring that side of east London (she turned out to be the only person I knew in that party haha), I turned my heels to say good bye to her. I later found her in the middle of the crowd, swaying and bobbing her head to the music just as she did to the music in her set. I stammer and wonder what to do. I didn’t want to disturb her.

I then recall lyrics to her song Faces, her voice whispering that she won’t “forget you” and that she will “pass you by”, giving her music the kind of depth, ground and spirit that I never heard it have before.

We’ve made a connection, thanked her for being her; here’s hoping we see each other again in another time.

An angel in solid form, a nomad who carries vibes and a crystal ball with her, she is an artist forever growing.

Maraming salamat, June Marieezy. You are one of a kind.

Web Map:

SoundCloud: http://www.soundcloud.com/junemarieezy

Bandcamp: http://www.junemarieezy.bandcamp.com

Instagram: @junemarieezy

Twitter: @junemarieezy

– Troy

Published by troycabida

Troy Cabida (he/him) is a Filipino poet and producer based in south west London. His recent poems have appeared in TAYO Literary Magazine, harana poetry, MacMillan and bath magg. He is a producer for London open mic night Poetry and Shaah and co-founder of Liwayway Kolektibo, an arts and culture network providing space for UK-based Filipino/a/x creatives. His debut pamphlet, War Dove, was published by Bad Betty Press in 2020. Photo taken by Ray Roberts.

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