Folk Rock Music in the Philippines

This article is a collaborative effort, crafted and edited by a team of dedicated professionals.

Contributors: Andranick Tanguiane, Fred Lerdahl,


Discover the vibrant and unique sound of folk rock music in the Philippines, where a mix of traditional and modern influences create a truly original genre.

What is Folk Rock?

Folk rock is a musical genre that combines elements of folk music and rock music. In its earliest and narrowest sense, the term referred to a genre that arose in the United States and the United Kingdom around the mid-1960s. The style was influenced by folk music, but with added electric instruments and a heavier, often rock-oriented sound.

The History of Folk Rock in the Philippines

Folk rock is a type of music that combines elements of folk music and rock music. It originated in the United Kingdom and the United States in the 1960s. Folk rock songs typically have acoustic guitars and electric guitars. The Philippines has a long history of folk rock music.

The Early Days

The earliest folk rock in the Philippines dates back to the 1960s, when a absorption of Western pop and rock music led to the formation of bands like The Dawn and Hotdog. These bands would go on to have major impact on the development of Filipino rock, with The Dawn in particular being cited as one of the most important Filipino bands of all time.

Hotdog, meanwhile, would score a number of hits in the 1970s with their brand of quirky, humor-laden folk rock, which often led to them being compared to American band Grateful Dead. Other important early folk rock bands in the Philippines include Asin, who were active throughout the 1970s and 1980s and helped to pioneer the use of traditional Philippine instruments in folk rock.

The Golden Age

The Golden Age of folk rock in the Philippines is generally considered to be from the late 1960s to the early 1970s. This was a time when various Filipino musicians began to experiment with incorporating elements of rock music into their traditional folk music. Many of these musicians were part of the so-called “Manila Sound” scene, which was centered around the city of Manila and featured a mixture of pop, rock, and disco music. Some of the most popular folk rock bands and artists from this period include Asin, Freddie Aguilar, Jose Mari Chan, and Hotdog.

The Modern Era

The modern era of folk rock in the Philippines began in the mid-1990s with the emergence of bands like Hilera, FrancisM, and Pinwheel. These bands fused traditional folk music with modern rock, creating a unique sound that appeals to both older and younger audiences.

In the late 1990s and early 2000s, folk rock began to gain popularity in the Philippines, with bands like Hale, NoyPi, and Orange & Lemons becoming household names. Folk rock quickly became one of the most popular genres in the country, and continues to be so today.

The Future of Folk Rock in the Philippines

Folk Rock music has been around in the Philippines for a long time, starting from the 60s. The 70s saw a huge increase in the popularity of the genre with a lot of bands releasing albums and going on tours. The 80s were a bit of a lull for Folk Rock but the 90s saw a resurgence in the genre.

The New Generation

The Philippines has a long history of folk rock music, dating back to the 1970s when bands like Hotdog and Asin began fusing traditional Filipino folk music with Western rock. In the intervening decades, folk rock has undergone something of a renaissance in the Philippines, with a new generation of bands taking up the torch and carrying it forward into the 21st century.

One of the most promising young folk rock bands in the Philippines today is Kulay-diwa, who blend traditional acoustic instrumentation with modern electric guitars and drum kits. Their sound is both fresh and familiar, rooted in the rich tradition of Filipino folk music but updated for a new generation of listeners.

Kulay-diwa are just one example of the exciting new wave of folk rock bands making their mark on the Philippine music scene. With their unique sound and inventive approach to blending traditional and modern influences, these bands are helping to ensure that folk rock will have a bright future in the Philippines for years to come.

The Global Scene

The internationalfolk rock scene is blossoming with new sounds and exciting fusion genres. The Philippines has always had a rich musical tradition and is now at the forefront of this global acoustic music movement.

Folk rock combines the traditional sounds of folk music with the energy and attitude of rock n roll. It’s a perfect blend of old and new, and it’s quickly gaining popularity around the world.

There are many reasons why folk rock is such a hit in the Philippines. For one, the country has a long history of folk music. This cultural touchstone provides a rich source of material for Filipino musicians to draw from. Additionally, Filipino musicians have always been quick to embrace new styles and trends. This willingness to experiment has led to the development of some truly unique fusion genres. Manila Sound, for example, is a popular style that blends disco and folk music.

The Philippines is also home to some of the best acoustic musicians in the world. These virtuosos are able to skillfully combine traditional folk instruments with modern rock styles. This unique combination creates a sound that is both familiar and new, an exciting blend that is captivating audiences around the globe.

If you’re looking for something new and exciting, check out the Folk Rock scene in the Philippines. You’re sure to be impressed by the creativity and talent on display.

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