When not busy working on new tracks to push the envelope for the P-Pop section of the overall OPM genre, boy band SB19 has been doing their own share of product endorsing and brand ambassadorship. Last month they were among the faces promoting online shopping app Lazada here in the Philippines. But after all that, SB19 is still a music group, developed and trained by a South Korean agency to boot. They soon had a new single ready entitled “What?” which released this past Tuesday. There was even supposed to be a virtual launch for it. Unfortunately, the pandemic interfered.

The Philippine Star just broke some bad news for fans of SB19, regarding the postponement of their Virtual Music Launch even for their new song “What?” that was supposed to be held on March 9. As it turns out, the boy band had unwittingly been in close contact with an unidentified person who had tested positive for COVID-19, and so the group announced on their official Twitter page that they have all undergone quarantine as a precaution. The launch event will therefore have to wait until an unspecified future date, according to SB19’s management, which also apologized for the inconvenience.

Even though the boy band cannot usher in their latest single themselves, the song “What?” is not going to wait until they finish their quarantine period. The release, which is in digital format, will become available for online release as planned. The same goes for the premiere of the music video and the associated merchandise. “SB19’s ‘What?’ Digital Single, Music Video and Merchandise will still be released as scheduled,” the statement continued. “The health and safety of our artist, staff and production team is our priority and we are thankful for your support and understanding.”

While concerned comments from fans on the SB19 Twitter post are pretty much expected, what happened to the P-Pop group can also be seen as indicative of the increasingly relaxed attitude of Filipinos with following health and safety protocols, likely due to “quarantine fatigue.” This has led to a new rise of COVID cases in Metro Manila and other areas, ironic considering vaccines have started arriving and many medical front-liners have already gotten their injections.

Image: GMA News