Thomasian band shines in local indie scene

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Photo by Deejae S. Dumlao

FORMED through friendship and a profound passion for music, a soul-fusion band from the UST Conservatory of Music is ready to take the local music scene by storm.

The six-piece band went from underdogs to superstars after bagging the most-coveted “Chosen One” title in the 2nd Jack Daniel’s On Stage Philippines Indie Music Awards in 2015.

“It’s overwhelming. Sometimes, we get shocked when people know about us,” vocalist Mic Manalo told the Varsitarian.

The band includes keyboardist Isagani Palabyab, lead guitarist Kim Hue Jin, bassist Ethan Muriel and sound engineer Leng Guerrero.

Drummer Mark Villena is the only non-Thomasian member, coming from the University of the Philippines.

As of writing, Farewell Fair Weather has a following of more than 8,000 on Facebook.

They have performed in numerous local and international music festivals. These include Fete de la Musique, a French music festival celebrated in Manila,and Music Matters, a premier independent music festival in Singapore.

This year, the band is set to release a 16-track album but refused to disclose further details.

“There are pieces of ourselves in it. If you want to know my story, you just listen to it,” said Manalo. “Sometimes, we record songs and keep it to ourselves first like a secret because we think it’s too personal. But in the end, we share them and realize it’s okay.”

The band’s genre, “soul-fusion,” is a mix between a variety of other genres and styles with soul at its core.

Among their influences are American music icon Bob Dylan, British jazz band Incognito and English dream pop singer Imogen Heap.

Humility, passion

Amid their achievements, Manalo admitted that the band remains grounded on the values they picked up from their stay in the University.

“The most important thing we learned in our stay at UST is the sense of family as a band and the respect for those in the industry and of course, within ourselves,”said Manalo.

Manalo bared that Farewell Fair Weather, which was founded in 2012, started as a hobby among the members.

“It was our break from school,” she said. “Being an independent band was nice [because] sometimes, it gets hard when people expect from you when you just really want to do what you’re most passionate about.”

These days, the members are preoccupied with their album production and individual jobs. Despite this, Palabyab said they make sure to find time for each other.

“Sometimes, we would call up each other and say ‘Uy, meeting tayo,’ to plan for our future projects, but then it would just end up in a jamming session,” he said.

The band aims to finish their album before Hue Jin goes back to South Korea for his mandatory enlistment in the military.

In his absence, the band faces the possibility of a hiatus until Kim’s return.

“We will still be exploring sounds and continuecomposing and recording songs,” said Palabyab.

“But we would also be venturing individually into other things like getting into arts, video gaming and helping other acts produce their music in the industry,” said Manalo.

Listen to “Rough Skies” by Farewell Fair Weather:

 

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