Light up, Liwanag: Ben&Ben in 'season of creating' new music

Monique Lachica, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Apr 10 2023 06:36 PM

Ben&Ben members Miguel Benjamin and Paolo Benjamin Guico, Agnes Reoma, and Pat Lasaten. Michael Bagtas, ABS-CBN News
Ben&Ben members Miguel Benjamin and Paolo Benjamin Guico, Agnes Reoma, and Pat Lasaten. Michael Bagtas, ABS-CBN News

MANILA — Ben&Ben is back to doing what they do best: making music.

The 9-member folk-pop band has begun the creative process of writing that new epic single or hopefully, an album.

“We are in that season right now. We’re in the season of creating,” shared Miguel Benjamin, half of the Guico twins and vocalist/guitarist of the band.

“Kami mismo, we don’t know what it would sound like. Of course, there are a lot of things that were inspired by what we are listening to. In the coming months, we’ll definitely put that into music, into song, hopefully, an album someday.”

But there’s no timetable yet for when that song or album will be finished. After all, you can't put a schedule on creativity.

“You’ll only know when you start doing it. Sometimes, like “Pagtingin”, it happened in 20 minutes and just a day of recording. But sometimes, like “Araw-Araw” it takes like months or even a year,” Miguel added. 

Aside from working in the studio, we’ll be seeing more live performances from Ben&Ben this summer. The band is headlining Day 1 of the Clark Aurora Music Festival at the Clark Global City on April 15 and will be part of the music line-up of Zark’s Fest 2023 on May 13 at Circuit Makati. But it seems there’s no audience too small for them,

“Now, we’re happy to be doing all these festivals alongside mga friends namin, mga colleagues namin sa industry,” Miguel said. “We also do a lot of shows sa mga schools, sa mga festivals sa iba-ibang provinces.”

“And weddings and debut,“ Pat Lasaten, keyboardist, chimed in.

And most likely, another major concert. 

“Probably in the future, but not yet soon. We’d love to do another show na self-produced just like the one last year,” Miguel added.

Also in their plans for the year, to give more back to the community. Something they started during the pandemic.

“We want to acknowledge the privileges that were given to us,” Paolo said, the other lead vocalist and guitarist of the band. “ We’re firm believers na success is a mix of really working so hard. But also, at some time, there’s also luck and privilege.”

“We discovered and realized, specially with the pandemic, the power of music really extends beyond just entertainment. This year we’re working towards setting up our own foundation to really make this proactive step to helping more people.”

In between creating music and performing, the band members also have their own personal goals.

For Miguel, who tied the knot in February, it’s adjusting to married life.

“Honestly, it changed a lot. Personally. I wake up very early these days. Today, I woke up at 5 am. It's a daily thing. And I love it. Because I am able to love my wife more, “ he said.

“There’s a lot of good change that comes with more responsibilities. It’s nice to balance out that part of my life with work.”

For Pat and Agnes Reoma, the band’s bassist, it’s waiting for the right time to tie the knot.

The two recently announced their engagement.

“The plan is there,” Pat said. “We know we’re ready but we’re just waiting for the right time.”

“Kung sinabi ng universe sa amin na pwede sa November something ganyan, then maybe sa November something ganyan.”

For Paolo, it’s focusing on his other, newly-discovered passion, running. And perhaps joining another marathon. With the end goal of keeping himself fit, physically and mentally.

“Since I am trying to train for long-distance running, probably like 3 to 4 times a week,” Paolo said.

“It’s really the realization that we have a responsibility to give it our best and for me, part of giving my best is this. I am able to serve my bandmates, with my music, serve Liwanag, serve my friends, family and my loved ones more if I take care of myself.”

Watch Miguel, Paolo, Pat, and Agnes talk more about their music, their relationships, and what they think they would have ended up doing if they didn’t become Ben&Ben at LSS: The Martin Nievera show. Catch the 2-part episode on April 14 and April 21 at 6pm on ANC, the ABS-CBN News Channel.

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