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Agsunta band offers more than the cover songs that have made their videos go viral

There may be a rock band stereotype but Agsunta band doesn’t fit that mold.

Agsunta Band (Photo by Manny Llanes/Manila Bulletin)

They told Bulletin Entertainment that for one, they’d choose food over beer anytime during gigs.

“Food is life!” vocalist Jireh Singson said, laughing.

Turning serious, Jireh said that for them, music is not about the “extra stuff” at all.

“Passion namin ’yung music talaga, so ’yun ang focus namin.”

Agsunta wants to be known as guys who aren’t just cool but with “pusong Pinoy.”

“At masayahin. Dahil ang mga Pinoy, masayahin ’yan eh,” Mikel Arevalo, the lead guitarist said.

Looking at them, you can tell Agsunta isn’t just a band but a brotherhood. There are real-life brothers in the group, Mikel and Stephen (drummer) and the other band members are so close they’re practically family.

“’Pag may isang nawala sa amin o kahit may idagdag, hindi na kami Agsunta,” was how they put it.

Like other bands, they have their ups and downs. They usually argue over song arrangement.

“Bilang apat kami sa grupo, ang daming opinion so nagkakagulo-gulo kami du’n,” Jireh explained.

So how do they handle it?

“Nag-uusap naman kami tapos nagsa-swak na lang sa ideas. After all, para naman sa ikagaganda nu’ng kanta namin ’yung diskusyon.”

Background

The band was named after their teacher in De La Salle College of Saint Benilde: Agnes Agsunta.

“Sipsip po kami eh!” they said, laughing.

The band members all took up Music Production. Asked how they started, they said “nagkataon lang.”

“Same school kasi kami. So jamming jamming lahat. Tapos nu’ng una, babae ang vocalist namin pero kinailangan niyang umalis eh,” Jireh shared.

Then they saw Josh Planas at a café.

“Nalaman ko na nagbe-bass (guitar) pala siya. So sabi ko saluhin ko na ’yung pagkanta. Tinary namin once na mag-jam, ayun nag-swak kaya tinuloy-tuloy na namin,” he added.

Agsunta reached a point when they just wanted to stop pursuing their dream of becoming professional musicians. They stopped seeing each other for a month but their love for music prevailed.

“Si Josh and ’yung father niya, Pastor. So pinag-pray nila kami, kasi parang nawalan kami ng gana lahat. Pero after nu’ng prayers, bumalik ’yung gana namin sa music,” the vocalist shared.

The band started making a name for themselves in the local music scene through YouTube using the hashtag #AgsuntaSongRequests, doing covers netizens have come to enjoy.

At the time of interview, the band’s cover of “#Magbalik” by Callalily has gained 1.2 million hits.

“Naninibago pa din kami, na ayun, kilala na pala kami. Siyempre nu’ng nag-upload kami ng videos, ang goal talaga is mapansin ng mga networks. So thankfully, napansin naman kami,” Jireh shared.

Early this year, Agsunta joined PPL Entertainment’s roster of artists. They also signed a contract with Star Music.
Though busy with several projects, the band intends to continue their song covers on social media.

“Medyo mahirap lang din sa schedule, dati kasi weekly namin ginagawa pero ngayon medyo sinisingit na lang namin,” Jireh said. “Pero tuloy pa rin, kasi ’yun ’yung stepping stone namin kung nasaan man kami ngayon.”

Watch out

Despite their popularity in doing covers, Agsunta also wants to be known for their original tracks. They aim to write more songs next year.

What’s the “real” Agsunta sound? A touch of ’90s highly influenced by bands as Kamikazee, Parokya ni Edgar and Eraserheads.

“Actually matagal na kaming may mga original songs kaya lang hindi naman siya agad nailabas pa. Kasi ginamit naming pampa-ingay ’yung mga cover songs na ginawa namin,” Mikel explained.

Agsunta aims to release an album by next month.

“Sana tangkilikin ng mga tao ’yung album kasi pinaghirapan din naman talaga namin siya,” Jireh said. “Sana ma-achieve namin ’yung katulad ng na-achieve na success ng mga idol namin. Tignan na lang natin, basta kami, nag-e-enjoy kami kasi mahal talaga namin ang music.”

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