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SB19 Reveals Quarantine Hobbies, Recording In Korea, and Their Growth As Artists

The P-pop phenom spills it all in this MYXclusive interview!

There’s no denying that P-pop boy group SB19 continues to soar higher in their career—and their recent sweep wins in MYX Awards 2020 proved that no one should sleep on these talented artists.

The five-member act, composed of Sejun, Josh, Stell, Ken, and Justin, are all trained by a Korean entertainment company—the first Filipino artists who debuted in the local entertainment industry to do so. With hit singles such as ‘Tilaluha,’ ‘Alab,’ and the well-received ‘Go Up’ that made the group the talk of town, SB19 goes all out with the release of their debut album ‘Get in the Zone’ last July.

MYX Philippines had a chat with these pop phenoms in an episode of MYXclusive, where the boys shared details on how they’re spending their free time during quarantine, what it’s like recording in South Korea, and more importantly, how they grew as artists since their debut—and so much more.

Off the Spotlight

As an act who was trained like the idols in Korea, rigorous training is part of SB19’s current lifestyle. The world may have come to a temporary halt, but the hustle continues for these boys. If anything, the quarantine inspired them to maximize the time they have in their hands, even in the comforts of their respective homes. “Mas productive kami, and mas marami kaming time makipag-interact with A’Tins [SB19’s fans club],” Justin tells host VJ Samm. All five members have been busy with virtual events, serving fans their dose of SB19’s cool sound on a regular. There were also talks of resuming ‘Show Break,’ the group’s web series, where the members showcase activities outside the spotlight.

But it’s not all work for these boys. Of course, moments of play are essential as well. They’re not immune to quarantine trends, being members of the Millennial and Gen Z crowd themselves! 

When not in front of the camera, 25-year-old Stell is busy in the kitchen, finding the next cake recipe to bake! He’s planning to experiment on making the popular Basque Burnt Cheesecake, watching several YouTube videos for research during his free time. Meanwhile, leader Sejun gets into confectionery, too—but as a taste tester for his sister’s baked creations!

Ken and Josh, on the other hand, bury their heads in mobile games, which earned jests from other SB19 members during the interview. The oldest member, a veteran in the gaming world, alternates this routine with at-home workouts, while the younger one just began his gamer adventure.

And finally, ‘maknae’ Justin rides the ‘plantito’ bandwagon—revealing his new-found passion for growing plants like everyone else at quarantine right now. “Nung birthday ko, maraming nag-regalo ng halaman,” he spills on his beginnings as a plant parent. 

Yes. Just like you, they’re all trying to squeeze in new hobbies, when they’re off the spotlight.

The Making of ‘Get in the Zone’

When the boys of SB19 ‘get in the zone,’ they go all out.

“As artists, gusto talaga namin na as much as possible, ‘yung ideas namin and everything that we think about, maipasok do’n sa creation ng album namin. Para maging legit ‘yung feeling na, ‘ah, alam namin na ito ‘yung experiences namin. From choreography to the lyrics and melody, dinadagdag namin para masabi talaga namin na ito yung tunog ng SB19,” Sejun explains when asked about the makings of ‘Get in the Zone.’

The record is a compilation of their previous releases, with two additional tracks titled ‘Hanggang Sa Huli’ and ‘Love Goes,’ the EDM version. The album, Sejun relates, is a sort of a memento of the P-pop band’s journey and growth—with each track giving you a taste of what and who SB19 truly is. As Stell puts it, “Tatak SB19—sa amin talaga ‘yun.”

But putting their tape out for the whole world to hear wasn’t without its roadblocks. Theirs, however, is a unique journey that flings perseverance, passion, and hard work on the table. 

Recording in Korea, with its cold climates and language barriers, has been a challenging experience for all five members. From Ken’s struggle to maintain his vocal range to the individual pressures they feel working with Korean producers, they opened up about striving to make their dreams come true.

Noong umalis kami ng Pinas, ready na kami,” Stell narrates. “Pero once na pumasok kami sa recording room, nadagdagan ‘yung kaba namin. Nakakakaba yung comments ng producers.”

Sobrang pressure katrabaho ng Korean producers,” Sejun adds. “May instructions na hindi namin maintindihan, tapos yung pagkanta namin, dapat ma-match sa emosyon at kailangan, agad-agad, maibigay mo.” Add the almost never-ending revisions in voice recording and choreography—which entails numerous approvals before getting to the final version that we get to see them perform today.

But in the end, all their worries have vanished, and the album was successfully finished—the reward that they all dreamed of. That, and healthy servings of Korean food which they enjoyed during their stay in the country!

‘Going Up’ 

The P-pop group’s hit ‘Go Up’ is a testament to reaching one’s dreams, a telling of how the journey is as important as the destination itself. That during the process, there are takeaways that one brings along that make the travel all worth it.

For SB19, the wisdom they acquired will always be worn on their sleeve as they traverse the industry to higher grounds. When VJ Samm asked for the biggest learning from their career, Sejun, Josh, Stell, Ken, and Justin gamely shared their answers.

Maging proud ka sa craft mo at sa kakayahan mo. ‘Wag kang mahiya,” the leader says.

Dapat wala kang pagsisihan sa mga ginawa mo sa buhay at pinili mong choices. Minsan, okay lang naman mag-hesitate; normal ‘yun. Pero ibigay mo na lahat para wala kang pagsisihan sa dulo. We only live once,” Josh shares.

Natutunan ko maging ako at maging confident sa mga desisyon ko sa buhay,” Stell offers.

Maging pasensyoso. Kasi may times na kung hindi kami naging pasensyoso, wala kami ngayon dito. Kapag nag-endure ka, makakamit mo talaga [ang pangarap mo. May right time lahat ng bagay,” Ken muses.

And finally, “There's more to explore. Sobrang dami pang pwedeng gawin,” was Justin's brief but well-thought answer.

Watch SB19’s full MYXclusive interview here: