‘Yukbo’ concert back after 19-year hiatus

‘Yukbo’ concert back after 19-year hiatus
Screenshot from Cebu City PIO video

AFTER a 19-year hiatus, the renowned “Yukbo alang sa Pilipino,” later known as “Yukbo: Ang Kunsiyerto,” a concert featuring original Cebuano compositions, will once again grace the stage on February 25, 2024, under the title “Yukbo: Ang Konsiyerto the Revival.”

Sometime in 1986, following the Edsa People Power Revolution that overthrew the Marcos dictatorship, Cebu celebrated with local music with the People’s Feast in Fuente Osmeña. It was the time when musicians, led by Mel B. Libre, organized “Yukbo alang sa Pilipino,” a free concert featuring both popular and up-and-coming artists at the time, including Salome Oro and Sharon Magdayao.

In a press conference on Monday, February 12, Yukbo executive director Lemuel Felisario said the revival of the concert will take place at the Plaza sa Katawhan along Cebu South Coastal Road near Compania Maritima.

In February 2005, Yukbo took place at what was then the Abellana Sports Complex, now known as the Cebu City Sports Center.

Numerous students from various universities in Cebu witnessed various music performances, earning the crowd the nickname "Dibutaw" or "Dibuho sa Tawo" due to university students under the National Service Training Program forming meaningful symbols.

Yukbo was never staged again after Libre migrated to New Zealand, leaving no one to take over the task in putting together various bands and artist.

Felisario said for this year's concert, they will showcase 22 local bands and artists, each performing five songs consecutively in a spontaneous manner, one after another, starting 4 p.m.

He added that the concert is free of charge, but they have to regulate the crowd through coupons and it will be a first come, first served basis.

The concert will align with Cebu City's 87th charter day celebration since Yukbo is more than just a music festival. It is also a way of honoring Filipinos who struggled during the Edsa revolution.

Libre, who attended the conference through an online platform, said the message they want to convey, especially to the new generation, is the importance of commemorating the People Power Revolution, which many people were proud of and which inspired other countries.

Asked how far they are in promoting Cebuano music, Libre said Cebu music has already been recognized nationwide.

He said some Manila-based artists are now recording music in Cebuano such as Juan Carlos Labajo, Morissette Amon, and Ferdinand Aragon.

“We should no longer be ashamed of singing Cebuano music because it is now accepted nationwide,” Libre said.

He added that artists like Urbandub, Sheila and the Insects, and Fastpitch are well respected in Luzon.

“I think what was planted way back in the 80s, in new Cebu music and Yukbo, have already started to make fruit in the nation,” Libre said.

He said Cebuanos do not need to go to Manila to become famous. (AML)

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