Shouts of joy, rock signs, mosh pits and fists over the air; Cebu’s very own hard hitting Twinkle Dudu is no stranger to the punk rock scene. It is undeniable that the four piece collective of Wax Rosales (vocals/guitars), G-box Deiparine (drums), Oking Janulgue (guitar/back-up vocals), and Pahpee Mesa (bass) have left their mark in each and every Cebuano punk. Through their heartfelt lyrics, unique playing, and mind blowing live performances, they have left their audience rooting and wanting more.
032: First of all, how did Twinkle Dudu form? What is the history of Cebu’s punk rock heavyweights?
TD: Originally formed early 2000, the founding members were Pahpee, G-box and Jb Bolaron. We were supposed to be a 3 piece punk band; the formula was three-chords + boring riffs + absurd lyrics = fast annoying kick ass music. In the early going, Twinkle Dudu had members come and go. Brett (of Barang) shared his inputs and played bass for the band (Pahpee had been absent). This is when we asked Oking (Mea Culpa and The Ambassadors) to play guitars and harmonize with Jb’s unorthodox style. After the launch of the 2nd EP, sadly, Jb had to leave the country in search of greener pastures. Due to his absence, we tried out different frontmen like Bai (The Ambassadors) and Daryl (Onemandown). But they both had their other bands; they couldn’t work fulltime with us. Fast forward to 2007, we decided to contact Wax (Fizzles, Tarantula and Borderline); he had the perfect resume as singer/songwriter and was the missing piece. With him along, we released the 3rd EP. The band had a series of line-up changes but these are the most significant ones.
TD: Before we played our first gig, the band had a tough brainstorming session; the agenda was to name the band. We agreed on one thing, “Ganahan ang tanan na far out ang pangan.” Jb then found a photo album that had a picture of four mice that coincidentally reflected the personality of each band member. The photo album was called DUDU or Mouse. Jb wasn’t contented so he decided to take a break, walked out, lit a cigarette, and stared silently into the summer night sky. The stars were out. That’s when he thought, Twinkle Dudu. Everyone agreed on the name and the band was born.
032: Everybody knows that your lyrics are mostly about love, relationships, heartaches and heartbreaks, what inspires you to write the songs?
TD: The melodrama in the music has served as a watermark ever since the beginning. Inspiration comes from everything we see, touch, feel, and experience. But most of the time, words and melodies come easy when you’re down. It’s easier to write when you’re being honest. “Ingun-ana man pud siguro musuwat ang mga ‘tinoud’” You know who they are! The bigger guns! Seriously, I cannot write when I don’t feel a thing. It just won’t come out… “Emo?? Bahala mo dha! Hehe!”
032: How did the songwriting evolve from your 1st album to the latest 3-track E.P?
TD: We don’t know. We don’t feel any change. It depends on how you guys interpret it. But we agreed to go slower and less technical these days. We can no longer catch up with kids today. “Daghan jud kaayo maayo. Pa simplehay na lang jud.” We quit the fancy acts. “Di Mada.”
032: When you got started, could you imagine that Twinkle Dudu would help shape the Cebu Punk Rock Underground Scene as it is today?
TD: Nope, we didn’t care about getting recognized or whatever, we just wanted to play and be heard. Actually, it’s the other way around, punk rock shaped us. They influenced us. We may sound punk, but we’re not punks. We just love music.
TD: I can’t imagine Twinkle Dudu with a different drummer. There are so many good drummers out there, but he’s different. The guy plays from his heart.
Regarding rituals, G-box and I puke together before a show. Seriously, we puke. It’s how we control the jitters, especially when we are lined up with bigger bands. Lastly, we pray before we play.
032: On a lighter side, a Twinkle Dudu show would not be complete without “Fiona.” Can we talk more about her and how she has affected the band?
TD: Fiona is actually our official means of transportation to practices, gigs and, of course, romantic dates. Its magic always drives us to safety even from places we consider a danger zone. Carrying the weight of our gadgets, guitars, drum stuff and our un-heavenly bodies is not easy, but Fiona manages.
It only takes relaxing music and a good ride to amend our disappointments and frustrations from a bad stage performance.
All Fiona needs is enough gas, appreciation and much love on the ride.
P.S. She’s not a car. She’s a VOLKSWAGEN!
TD: Kids today are more aware. They have a deeper understanding for music. They have all the resources and groups – like clothing lines setting the trends for them, spoon feeding them with gigs, apparel, music, events, and everything – it’s a good thing. Years before, it was so hard to get your band to play in a music production. Also genre is no longer an issue these days. Different genres play in the same gig, before it was total war.
032: What can you say about the bands that have been sprouting in the city? Any particular band that you enjoy watching?
TD: “Grabeh! Daghan kaayo mayo.” We also noticed plenty of chicks are now entering the scene. They even join the moshpit. Lots of new bands with sexy female vocalists are coming in (pabati-ay man toh ug nawng amo sauna haha). Short56 is fun to watch, they remind us of old Blink182 (they were perverts haha!).
032: When will the new album come out? What can we expect from Twinkle Dudu in the years to come?
TD: We’re really sorry the album got delayed. We were planning on changing our sound, but all we have are plans, and we’re not acting on it. We’re trying to make a few more tracks so we could leave something decent this year or next.
Sad to say, but the band is dying. We have our own lives to live now.
BUT we’ll be there.
032: What can you say to the thousands of fans (not only in Cebu but worldwide) that have been very supportive all these years?
TD: Salamat kaayo ninyo tanan diha! Sa mga napul-an og mga wa mapul-e ug ni padayon gihapon sa pagsuporta: Salamat! To all the bands we have shared the stage with: Salamat! Sa mga bag.o ug karaan: Salamat! To everyone who is trying to keep the scene alive: Salamat!
Peace + Love + Punkrock!