The Truth About SB19

If you love listening to K-pop bands like BTS and Seventeen (and how can you not?), then there's a pretty good chance you've heard SB19, too. The Philippines-formed boy band is made up of members Justin, Sejun, Ken, Josh, Stell, according to Cosmopolitan Philippines, and per the outlet, they're the first Filipino group to be signed under a Korean entertainment company. That would be ShowBT, per Forbes. Indeed, K-Pop is expanding in more ways than just listenership! 

"When I first visited the Philippines for market research five years ago, I noticed the Filipino fans' enthusiasm and energy for K-pop," Seong Han Geong, founder of ShowBT, told Forbes. "That, plus the advantage of them being fluent in English, opened an opportunity and possibility for overcoming K-pop's weaknesses." He added, "Although the K-pop model is already well established, I wanted to create a new culture mixed with P-pop." He went on to call SB19 a "group with a unique style that is a result of localization." 

SB19 has only grown in popularity since they released their first single, "Tilaluha," in 2018. They dropped "Ikako" in 2020, and have kept the momentum going in 2021 with more catchy tunes and (at least somewhat) viral music videos. Keep reading for everything you need to know about this up-and-coming group!

SB19 is not K-Pop and they want you to know it

Watch out BTS, there's a new boy band in town! With 1.53 million subscribers on their YouTube channel, SB19 is definitely poised for a global pop takeover. But while the group draws on K-pop influences (and are K-pop signed), SB19 wants fans to embrace them differently. "People have misunderstood us as a K-pop band, not a P-pop band," member Josh told Forbes. "But I think what's more important is how our soul gets into our music ... how we express our music into the P-pop industry. There are a lot of Filipino talents that are under the radar, not just us, but there are a lot of Filipinos who deserve recognition. Maybe we can be one of the stepping stones where we can present Filipino talent to the entire world." Amen! 

Member Sejun emphasized that while SB19 is different in its ways, they are still similar to K-pop in their relentless pursuit of perfection. "We have a sense of universality and we take something and utilize it to make something better out of it. What they have been doing in Korea, the K-pop idols there, they have this intensive training where you have to make your moves synchronized, you're singing while you're dancing and it's really hard," he said.

Well, the group "trained for three years," per Forbes, before releasing their first single in 2018. So they've put in the work, and we can't wait to see what's next!