Inspired by SB19, members of new P-pop group G22 make their debut

The Filipino girl band want to replicate the international success of the boy group, who recently made their UAE debut at Expo 2020 Dubai

G22, the Filipino female quartet, was created after more than a year of rigorous training and workshops. Photo: Instagram / g22official_
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Much like the global K-pop wave in the early 2000s that originated in South Korea, another musical genre is gaining momentum, this time from the Philippines. P-pop or Pinoy pop is not new, especially in a country already known for its powerhouse musical talents. But in that very category, a deluge of polished boy bands and perfect pop princesses are riding the current wave of Filipino musical success globally.

Take SB19, the all-boy group who made their debut in 2018 after a three-year bootcamp. Members Josh, Pablo, Stell, Ken and Justin, who were picked following an extensive talent search, have already tasted international success with a place in the Billboard Charts as well an MTV Europe Music Awards nomination last year.

The five-piece performed at Expo 2020 Dubai last week much to the delight of their Middle Eastern fan base, which led to the hashtag #MarhabaSB19inDubai trending on Twitter.

Scroll through the gallery below for pictures from SB19's performance at Expo 2020 Dubai:

It's no surprise that SB19 were created by a newly formed Philippines branch of Korean entertainment agency ShowBT, from a country already adept at churning out K-pop stars such as BTS, currently one of the world's biggest groups.

Waiting in the wings to replicate SB19's growing clout is G22, a newly formed girl group launched in February. Created by Filipino talent agency CS Entertainment, the group, made up of four young singers, debuted their first single Bang! on February 25, followed by a music video a day later.

Who are G22?

Announced on February 18 as "P-pop's newest calibre" by their agency, the gun-themed G22, named after the Glock 22 pistol, is comprised of AJ (leader and main rapper), Jaz (main vocal), Bianca (main Dancer and sub-rapper) and Alfea (visual and lead vocal).

According to The Philippine Star, the quartet's debut followed more than a year of rigorous training and workshops. Leader AJ is the oldest of the foursome at 19, having tasted show business as a contestant on reality show The Voice of the Philippines, before she was scouted by CS Entertainment.

Jaz, the youngest member at 17, and Alfea, 18, were already managed by CS Entertainment before being groomed for the group, while Bianca, 18, was discovered on TikTok.

Each member brings a different vocal prowess to the group and have assigned identities: Jaz, is “sultry and elegant” while Bianca is “sexy swag”, AJ is “extreme swag” and Alfea is the “sweet cutie” of the gang, according to The Philippine Star newspaper.

All of them count SB19 as their "idols" in the music scene.

All things associated with the group are gun-themed — their fans are called "Bullets" and their debut song is Bang!.

Their name doesn't signify violence. Rather, it refers to their power and confidence as women, they said.

CS Entertainment vice president Jeff Vadillo called G22 "exciting and cutting edge".

"We want to be part of that wave which will push P-pop to the world stage," he said.

G22's debut follows the launch of another boy band VXON, pronounced Vision, also by CS Entertainment. The four-member group released their debut single, The Beast, in January. Their official music video has been viewed more than a million times on YouTube.

Updated: March 22, 2022, 2:22 PM