The newest Wanderbattle winner is bringing back Saturday night fever

Photos by Charles Villaruz

Hassle-free weekends: a concept.

These days, it’s all about taking every chance we get to stay in for the weekend. Some take it as a sign of adulting, but in Manila it’s mostly about not wanting to deal with all that traffic. Lucky for us, the winner of Wanderbattle 2018 has made it its mission to keep the spirit of the Saturday night alive — regardless of where you are, who you’re with, and what day of the week it is.  

Young STAR caught up with Migie Croon, Faisal Tabusalla, Junoy Manalo, Jairus Paul, and Arvin Dale of Basically Saturday Night a few minutes after their Wanderband 2018 win last November 24 at STKD Zeppelin. Having seen a solid chunk of the crowd cheer them on during their performance all the way to the announcement, it becomes clear why they’re a favorite. While there’s no doubt that their music brings the good vibes to any occasion, the secret to their contagious high-energy performance is really their solid friendship.

Saturday night fever: Migie Croon, Faisal Tabusalla, Jairus Paul, Junoy Manalo, and Arvin Dale of Basically Saturday Night

Young STAR: You guys seem to be really close. How do you know one another?

Basically Saturday Night: We’ve been playing music for a while now. (Some of us) have been playing since high school, but we used to play in a metal band. It’s a long way from that. We split up, but we all stayed with music and we got back together. As Basically Saturday Night, we just started around February this year. It’s a very new organic thing. We all like the sound. We’re very excited about it.


And you would describe your sound as…?

Groovy. If it makes you boogie even the slightest bit then that means we’re doing our job.


Since you guys are still fairly new, how do you go about figuring things out as a band?

We didn’t want to rush into anything, but it just so happened that things are coming together a bit quick. We threw our own mini (version of) Malasimbo (Music Festival) and we called it Boogie In The Jungle. That was actually our first gig as a band. It was around May this year. From there, I can still count with my two hands how many gigs we’ve had. The progress is amazing, we’re still overwhelmed by it. It feels almost cosmic.  

We used to see each other every Saturday night — hence, the name of the band. Basically Saturday Night is not just us, it’s a very big team. We wouldn’t be here, playing our music, without being influenced by our friends who are DJs and other musicians. It’s a big collaboration.


Cool. So performing in front of an audience is something you guys really look forward to?

Performing for any festival is a big deal. Although it’s something we’ve done it, it’s still very new to us. It is something we have yet to experience in a larger scale.

Fan favorite: A solid chunk of the crowd was out to support Basically Saturday Night at this year’s Wanderbattle.

… Which will be Wanderland 2018!

We actually used to do school fairs as a metal band. (Laughs) We once did a cover of Teenage Dream but it was a really strange metal cover. That was another time, but that was all necessary for our chemistry. However we were playing back in the day, it translates (to our dynamics) now. That’s why it’s so natural because we have history.


What are you gonna do to prepare for your Wanderland debut?

It’s all about continuing what we’ve already done. Maybe we’ll make new material, but it’s more on being consistent in practicing as a team.


Anyone in particular that you’re looking forward to seeing perform?

FKJ. We met him in Malasimbo and Lio festival. He’s a big influence. One of us even dressed up as FKJ for Halloween. (Laughs) June Marieezy even took a picture and sent it to FKJ.


You’re such a fun bunch. What’s a typical Saturday night for the band?

We all hang out in someone’s house and we invite a couple of friends to watch and critique (our music and performance). We’ll probably practice from 4 in the afternoon ’til midnight on a Saturday. That has been going on throughout this year. You see it’s something that we really love to do, and to see people dance to the things that we write, it’s amazing. F*ck the club.


Wanderland 2018 Music & Arts Festival is happening on March 10, 2018 at the Filinvest City Events Grounds. Visit for more information.



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