I’ve never been a fan of live bands performing at weddings cos more often than not, they will be performing 60s hits, Hindi songs and worse, Dangdut!!! Even if you have bands singing contemporary hits, their vocalists sound so bad you wished the hosts could have engaged a wedding deejay instead to play cd or mp3 tracks. That was one of the reasons why I did not engage in any live bands during my wedding as I felt at ease with having a deejay for my wedding. Plus I also banned Dangdut from being played at my wedding and to keep Hindi songs at a minimum level possible.
However, my stance towards live bands changed when I heard a particular group playing at a wedding the weekend before last. Currently I am staying at my in-laws in Sengkang and staying at a lower level, the sound that we hear would definitely be quite loud if there was a wedding, a Chinese funeral or a party being held at the multi-purpose hall downstairs. But the sounds and melodious tunes that emanated were music to the ears from morning till night. The group mostly played current hits from Indonesian bands like Ungu‘s “Demi Waktu” and Ratu‘s “Teman Tapi Mesra” and they also played older hits like Lovehunter‘s “Angel In The Night” and Eagles‘ “Hotel California“. But what blew me away was they even played Gigi‘s single “Kepastian Yang Ku Tunggu”, which is relatively new on the airwaves. It shows they have been doing their homework and doing lots of practice.
With that I thank Acoustika Inc. for changing my perceptions on live bands. They are truly professional and excellent. I strongly recommend anyone who would want to have live performances for corporate functions, weddings and parties to engage these guys and experience what I’m talking about. I was so impressed that I went down personally and asked for their name card in case I want to engage them in future. I certainly would if there is that opportunity. If I’m not wrong, this was the same group that played back up to one of RIA‘s outdoor shows a few years ago, but back then they were just ordinary to me. I guess over the years, through constant experiences, exposures and perfecting themselves through endless practices, they’ve come good.
Last Friday was Nisfu Sya’ban in our Muslim calendar, the 15th day of the 8th month. When I was younger, I was taught to recite Surah Yasin three times on the night of Nisfu Sya’ban and fast during the day. Better still if I could fast on the 13th, 14th and 15th days of Sya’ban. I have to admit that I did it with the belief that it was something that could bring me closer to HIM. Even the mosques here conduct sessions on reciting the Yasin three times on the night of Nisfu Sya’ban.
However, when I did a bit of research on how auspicious it is in our Islamic context, I found out that a lot of scholars actually frowned upon the way it is being celebrated, like the fasts and the Yasin recitals. I’m not here to preach but it would be best if you were to read for yourself by clicking on this link.
However, just to present to you my findings in a nutshell,
1) Nisfu Sya’ban signifies a special day in the month of Sya’ban.
Truth: There is no credible Hadith concerning the night of the 15th of Sya’ban (Laylat al-Nusf min Sya’ban). All the Hadith that have been narrated concerning that are Mawdoo’ (fabricated) and Da’eef (weak), and have no basis.
2) Muslims are encouraged to perform their Ibadahs as much as possible. This does not necessary mean reciting Yasin 3 times or even having to carry out any exclusive prayers.
Truth: There is nothing special about this night, and no recitation of the Holy Qur’an or prayer, whether alone or in congregation, is specified for this night.
3) Those recitations and prayers are said to be of a Muslim tradition.
Truth: The time of older generations in which knowledge did not come to them. The tradition or the acts of our Salafs, the pious predecessors, or the Prophet‘s companions and Tabi’een did not do these acts.
4) All types of Ibadahs are inferred by scholars in general term.
Truth: What some of the scholars have said about it being special is a weak opinion.
5) This just proves that Islam is very flexible in implementing its religion.
Truth: This just proves that Bid’ah is living and the Sunnah is dying..
6) As for fasting, I did not came across any Hadith saying of its distinguishing proposition to fast on Nisfu Sya’ban.
Truth: What is narrated concerning the virtue of praying, fasting and worshipping on the 15th of Sya’ban (al-nusf min Sya’ban) does not come under the heading of Da’eef (weak), rather it comes under the heading of Mawdoo’ (fabricated) and Baatil (false). So it is not permissible to follow it or to act upon it, whether that is in doing righteous deeds or otherwise.
I’m amazed really at how the Malay mentality works at times. Cos we like to be in groups, to destress and enjoy ourselves in the company of friends and like-minded individuals. But when things go wrong somewhere, there seem to be some bad blood going on and in turn certain individuals leave the group and join others. I’ve seen such things happening to the RIA listeners ever since we had the first batch of hardcore listeners. That very first batch is now history and not heard of since.
As for the current batch, we used to be one big family before some wisecracks decided to form THAT group and in turn spawning smaller factions amongst the listeners. I for one, did not ride on the bandwagon as I had seen what happened to the first batch before and I knew it was a matter of time before factions start to bicker amongst one another. And if any individuals were not happy with the other in the same group, they would defect to another.
Last year, when THAT group imploded with more than half their members leaving, I took great satisfaction in seeing justice being served. However, when I got to know that a few of the founding members left a few days ago, I wondered what was wrong somewhere. I heard one of the reasons one of the members left was due to finance, about not being paid after helping out at events. Well, I don’t want to say much except “I TOLD YOU SO!!!“
I remembered in one of my previous entries, I had brought this up, foreseeing something like this to happen, like how long can they go on with helping out at events??? I went through it before in my life so I know the pain this guy went through. What did he expect out of all these volunteer work??? Free glamour??? Easy road to stardom??? There’s no such thing in the entertainment industry, especially in Singapore. To me, no one should be pointed at for mistakes except to point the fingers at themselves for not thinking further on repercussions and circumstances. As much as I dislike some of the people left in the group, I still have a begrudging respect towards their mission and I hope those who remain would support the mission sincerely…
Reasons like these make me thankful that I am still my own person, I don’t belong to any groups, I am free to do what I like, when I want and I have time all to myself. Anyway, as I get older, enjoyment is slowly moving away from my life and the only enjoyment I get is when I’m in the company of family and close friends. We should stop all these sensitivities and work towards building a better community, not get pent up over trivial matters and splitting the community further through factions. Cos factions are supposed to unite and create a betterment for society not to divide them…