The Beat Manila’s Up-and-Coming Artist: Blues Rock Band YUN
May 03, 2023
The Beat Manila’s Up and Coming is a bi-weekly series where we feature rising talented artists from the Philippines, giving them a platform to share what they’re passionate about and to promote the music they (and us too!) would love for the world to hear. Do you want or know someone who wants to be featured? Email us at [email protected] or slide through our DMs on Facebook or Instagram!
While the Philippines doesn’t lack amazing talent, it can be challenging to stand out and make a great first impression in front of a crowd. So, if you see a female vocal wearing wings and holding a retro microphone step up on the stage, you’ll know that sila na YUN.
But there’s more to this up-and-coming blues rock band than their confident frontwoman. Having performed at Showtime Online U, UNTV Cup’s Halftime Break, Wish 107.5 Bus, and several gig bars in and around the metro, the four-piece act managed by Handpicked World is creating music worth keeping our eyes (and ears) on.
Composed of Erika David (vocalist), P.K. Luengo (guitarist), Eugene Tapalla (bassist), and James Oliveros (drummer), YUN shares with The Beat Asia how they came up with their name, what pushed the members to pursue music, and how their latest single “Doobie sa Baguio,” which is exclusively distributed by Warner Music Philippines, came to be.
Hello, YUN! Can you give our readers a short introduction to your band?
We are a four-piece blues rock band, and we are all from different places in Metro Manila.
How did you come up with and finalize your band's name?
Our name YUN is coined from the Filipino expression “yun oh!,” which kind of translates to “That's it!” or “Alright!”
The story behind it is actually really funny because at first, we wanted to state the obvious that we are a blues band and have our name be “Blue Job.” But, of course, since we are a female-fronted band, we didn't want to give people the invitation to disrespect us or have that kind of image to our future fans and followers. So, we stuck to YUN. Besides, it's easier to remember.
How did the band members meet?
All four of us used to play in different bands before YUN. Erika and PK played in an alternative pop band, while James and Eugene used to play in a metal band. Since our previous bands played in one stage before, it's easy to cross paths and build connections.
What pushed each of you to pursue music?
We blame movies and documentaries about rock bands! Kidding aside, though, once you get into the euphoric side of playing music, it's like an addiction you're not willing to give up. This is something we don't usually share publicly, [but] we've been on the brink of giving up many times, especially on the days when we experience creative blocks, or when the frustration kicks in.
Playing in a band is not as fun as movies and documentaries show us! Drinking and endless friendships, yes, but after the fun, when we need to sit down and think of new materials, it really kicks us right in our balls. But we're still here. Ask us this question again in 10 years, let's see if we have changed our minds. (laughs)
Did anything change in your lives significantly since you all started making and releasing music?
When we put ourselves out there through our music and performance, we consider the people who support and listen to us as our responsibility. We are not only in this industry for ourselves, but also for the people who continue to be with us on this journey. So, it's safe to say we [have become] more responsible and considerate. Because these people put a lot of effort and time into showing love and support for the band.
What piece of advice can you all give to someone who wants to make music?
Stay true to yourself, follow your heart, and always be ready and strong because it's going to be a bumpy ride. Trust us, you'll experience a lot of rejections and heartaches, but then again you experience these things as a challenge from the universe if this is what you really want.
If you could collaborate with or open a show for a specific artist (local or international), who would it be and why?
Of course, it would easily be Juan Dela Cruz, Maria Cafra, and Sampaguita. These rock legends are our inspiration for forming this band.
We noticed that Erika often wears a pair of wings during your gigs. Is there a significance to it?
I saw this influencer on TikTok once wearing wings to the grocery store with her dainty dress and colorful makeup and thought I wish I had the confidence to do so, too. On my birthday, PK gifted me a butterfly wings costume.
I want to inspire others to be creative and to stay ethereal by wearing colorful makeup, costumes, and different hair colors. Because in reality, our bodies get old, but you determine whether your heart becomes old, too. I guess, I want to embody being young at heart.
“Doobie sa Baguio” is such a catchy song! Can you tell us how it came to be, and why Baguio specifically?
It was originally written in English and the lyrics go something like “Roll, roller coaster,” but it didn't feel right. So, we let it sit on the shelf for a while. Then, one time when we were in Baguio, just walking on Session Road, the lyrics came to PK and said he wants a song that will be a reminder of our happy nights in Baguio.
What's next for YUN? Any future projects or gigs you're participating in soon?
We are in the process of recording our next single and adding a new member to the band to give our music a little more kick! For more gig information, you can follow us on our social media.
Catch YUN live at Marikina’s Pit88 Restobar this Friday, May 5, as they perform with other awesome local acts courtesy of Bongskie Productions.
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