New Obsession Alert: Get to Know Rising P-pop Boy Group ALAMAT
Mar 25, 2021   •   Kyzia Maramara
8List.ph is published by ID8, Inc.
Mar 25, 2021   •   Kyzia Maramara
Looking for new boy groups to obsess over? It’s about time you met the 9-member P-pop boy group ALAMAT. Make no mistake, these aren’t just young boys clad in bright streetwear, dancing and singing on your screens. Their goal? Make Filipino culture mainstream. Get to know ALAMAT better!
Viva Entertainment first introduced the all-Pinoy group ALAMAT on Nov. 5, 2020. They debuted three months later on Feb. 14 simultaneously releasing their first single. The boys successfully bested other auditionees from Viva and Ninuno Media’s National Boyband Search “PWEDE!”
What immediately sets ALAMAT apart from the rest is how they sing and rap in multiple Philippine languages. Their members come from all over the country, strangers put together to form a group, and they make sure their culture is reflected in the songs they make. For example, have you listened to their first single?
The group launched the official music video for their first single “kbye” on Feb. 14, 2021. It was a bright and colorful showcase of their talent and included various Philippine elements. You’ll see the boys singing inside a jeepney, even holding placards with names of Philippine provinces. At one point, they put on maglalatik coconut shell halves and danced to a traditional tune.
Their flashy costumes were designed by Pinoy fashion designer Bang Pineda. It “[merged] the Pinoy cultural heritage and modern pop music.”
Aside from the aesthetic, the song in itself was something new. It’s sung in seven Philippine languages — Tagalog, Ilocano, Kapampangan, Bicolano, Waray-Waray, Hiligaynon, and Bisaya. It even featured instruments in the track like kulintang, bandurria, and even tinikling music.
Here are the 9 members, their positions in the group, and where they hail from:
Taneo: Brylle Jordan Sebastian Uyam | 19 years old | Kalinga/Ilocano | leader, main dancer, sub-vocalist, and visual
Mo: Aaron Joshua Baldos Mitchell | 19 years old | Half-Black, Half-Filipino | leader, main vocalist, rapper
Tomas: Thomas Franco Torre Rodriguez | 22 years old | Bicolano | main vocalist, lead dancer, center, and “panganay”
R-ji: Ralph Joseph Baleña Lim | 21 years old | Waray-Waray | lead vocalist and visual
Kin: Jose Joaquin Sta. Maria Canlas | 20 years old | Tagalog | lead vocalist and visual
Valfer: Valfer Javellana Alo | 20 years old | Hiligaynon | lead rapper and sub-vocalist
Alas: Joshua Magsilong Alvarez | 20 years old | Mindanawon/Bisaya | lead rapper
Gami: Martin II Lusica Gambuta | 19 years old | Bisaya | main vocalist
Jao: Justin Paolo Paras Canlas | 18 years old | Kapampangan |main dancer, sub-vocalist, visual, and “bunso”
ALAMAT showing us the beauty of Philippine languages
When P-pop boy group ALAMAT debuted, they featured a logo written in Baybayin, a pre-Hispanic Philippine script. Their name translates to “legend,” “myth,” or “folklore” in English. Leader Mo actually compared the group to Filipino folk tales. In an interview, he said that ALAMAT could “stimulate the imagination of its listeners.” Viva themselves said that, just like ALAMAT’s name, the boys “will be boyband legends in their own right.”
Ninuno Media said P-pop boy group ALAMAT was formed specifically “to put Filipino culture into the mainstream.” Jason Paul Laxamana (100 Tula Para Kay Stella), the group’s creative director, made sure that each of the members was proficient in their native tongue. That is on top of being awesome singers and dancers.
“From the very beginning, Alamat was envisioned to be a multilingual boy group that would aim to normalize the use of regional languages in mainstream music,” Laxamana told ABS-CBN News.
Even the clothes they wear are carefully planned to showcase local culture!
Magiliw na gabi, mga Magiliw! 🤎 pic.twitter.com/bJFL5L7HjJ
— ALAMAT ᜀᜎᜋᜆ᜔ (@Official_ALAMAT) February 26, 2021
Are you ready to stan this refreshing P-pop boy group? Be part of their fandom which they lovingly call Magiliw. In Tagalog, that could translate to a few things like ‘friendly, ‘affectionate,’ or ‘gentle.’ In any case, ALAMAT fans are certainly magiliw, they speak of nothing but the best of these boys in social media comment sections.
These boys weren’t just picked for their physique or pretty faces. They were already singers, rappers, dancers, and even songwriters before they auditioned. Before releasing “kbye” they made song covers that featured vocals and pure talent. They put spins on it by singing it in different Filipino languages and called it “Archipelago ver.”
Kyzia spends most of her time capturing the world around her through photos, paragraphs, and playlists. She is constantly on the hunt for the perfect chocolate chip cookie, and a great paperback thriller to pair with it.
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