The Filipino music scene in Winnipeg continues, albeit slowly, to develop and flourish since the first local Filipino Alternative Rock bands began to emerge in the 2000s–such as Studio 69, Magnet, FourSight, haLf man haLf eLf, and Aftertouch.
Now, the surge of younger bands continues, with the likes of The 12/21, Basement 315, Velvet Blitz, Humous, and Armed & Loaded.
Speaking of, Armed & Loaded was formed in 2022 by Jaimee Roldan (manager), Maeiou Roldan (drums), Justine Barawid (vocals), (Ren Bonifacio (bass, second vocals), Makaryo Signo (rhythm guitar), Reinell Runez (lead guitar), and Jett Panganiban (keyboards). In its young existence, the band whose name is short for “Armed with music and loaded with talent” had already performed at these notable gigs: Kazeefest Tour 2022, Octoberfest 2022, Humous EP launch DosMilBeinteDos, and Kaskasan 2022. The music of Armed & Loaded is a good mix of Rock, Indie, and Metal.
So far, Armed & Loaded has three originals on their sleeves–“Músika,” “Welcome Home,” and “Prayer”; and, according to bandleader Maeiou Roldan, “We are working on our fourth and fifth songs for our debut EP. We have also managed to book our EP Launch at The Osbourne Taphouse on June 9, 2023.”
In the meantime, you can catch these group of young and talented musicians at the following events:
Sound of Unity 1.0 – Feb 25th (Kanto @Jenmuel’s Bar & Lounge)
Allmost Music – March 4th (pending confirmation)
Mayonnaise x Nobita – April 29th (Exchange District)
Armed & Loaded’s leader and drummer
Maeiou Roldan is also the founder of the new production outfit Waterfront Collective Creators (WCC), in partnership with Jhay Doon and Vonrezza Miranda. WCC is a group of creative content creators formed to highlight the music scene in Winnipeg by coming up with high-quality contents, productions, and events. It hopes, too, to unify the local Filipino artists in Winnipeg and to give them a literal platform to express their music via gigs and other events. The coming gig Unity 1.0 is WCC’s first offering. WCC is also one of the official media partners in the upcoming concert Moira Live in Winnipeg, to be held on March 25 at the Canada Life Centre.