Month of Birthdays…

December is a special month for my family. At least six of us celebrate our birthdays and for two of us, our wedding anniversaries. The best part is that my daughter has the honour of kicking the month off on the 1st while her father ends it off today, the last day of the year, to go along with my wedding anniversary. We’ve had a few mini celebrations so I’m just gonna upload them for your viewing pleasure beginning with Syahindah Adawiyah‘s.

My two princesses…

Syahindah posing with her gift given to her by Uncle Ezaad & Aunty Julie. Thank you both for the lovely present. The couple celebrated their 4th wedding anniversary on 3rd December

My firstborn is now three years of age and will be attending nursery school next week…

Then we had a celebration for my nephew Eshaan at his home on 12th December. The theme of the party was Thomas & Friends. The food was simply awesome. A pity I had to check my calorie intake.

The two cousins born just 8 days apart…

My younger sister, Nurul, celebrated her 21st birthday (7th December) by holidaying in Dubai with my elder sister, Farah. Below is a somewhat embarrassing situation for the latter when we celebrated her 34th birthday (18th December) at F.I.S.H on 20th December 2009. The mastermind was of course the one seated to her left. But it was all in good-natured fun.

We did not get to celebrate my dad’s birthday on Christmas Day and the weekend that followed due to a wedding that he needed to help out and Hari Asyura. I dunno what’s in store for mine today, but I don’t care if we celebrate or not cos it’s just another day to remind me that I’m a step closer to my grave. Every living day is a blessing on its own as I love and cherish every family member, friend or colleague that I have. Material stuff are bonuses, if any. At least we have the fireworks at Marina Bay to look forward to and the “Bagaikan Sakti” concert on Friday at the Esplanade. I thank you Allah for 31 years of my life and I hope you would continue to grant me more good health, wealth and sustenance plus your blessings for the family, Insya Allah

I would also like to take this opportunity to thank my wife for 4 wonderful years of marriage. We’re not perfect and we do quarrel from time to time but without patience and tolerance from one another, I don’t think this would ever work. I love you lots sweetheart and with each passing year, it grows even more…

2009 has been a relatively good year for me, even though I spent the last quarter living like a single parent, no thanks to wifey’s never-ending work commitments and of course my dear uncle’s heart condition which put a lot of things in perspective. I’m pleased to announce that as of yesterday, he is now discharged from the hospital and recovering at home. On behalf of Uncle Dollah‘s family, we thank you for all your endless support, words of encouragement and prayers rendered.

Still on the topic of football, the highlight of the year for me had to be meeting my favourite team in the flesh during their pre-season trip to Kuala Lumpur in July, staying at the same hotel as them and bumping into some of the players in the lifts and at the gym. Best of all, I’ve got to take a photograph with the grand daddy of them all, who shares the same birthday as me. Happy 68th Birthday to you Sir Alex Ferguson!!! May you continue to guide the team in good health and spirit. I will never forget my meeting with you and how nice you were even when your minders were not. By wishing me well and calling me “son”, that was definitely the highlight of my trip…

Viva Muzik Singapura Day 3…

(Graphics courtesy of Mediacorp Suria)

It’s almost a week since the third and last day of the recording of this programme ended. The delay in uploading the photographs was deliberately intended so I could space out my entries and at least give the accolade that our newly-crowned Singapore Idol so deserved. Like Day 1, I won’t do any reviews and just upload the photographs for you to enjoy cos less is more, so here they are without further ado:

Where the event was held…

Tengku Adil being interviewed by Fauzie Laily before his set…

Tengku Adil crooning to his hit “Itu Yang Pasti“…

Fauzie added a different feel to his first hit single “Selalu“…

My favourite Anugerah Skrin judge, Rafaat Hamzah, watching proceedings from the back… I hope he returns again as judge for the second season next year…

Trisno of Urban Xchange / Parking Lot Pimp fame adding a touch of pizzazz to Bloco Singapura‘s performance…

Bloco Singapura doing what they do best. An excellent display that makes one want to dance along to their beats…

Local singer Ard lent his support to the show by sitting amongst the audience…

So did Tengku Nur Lela

Zaibaktian‘s set had the best atmosphere, with the audience singing at the top of their voices and waving their hands in the air.

Our Anugerah 2009 winner, Sarah Aqilah hurt her back and was in great pain prior to appearing on stage, but she should be applauded for being professional and going through with the recording…

Imran Ajmain never fails to sing differently from his last performance / from the album and with every difference, it sounds even better…

Kunjung sang”Ke Awangan“, a catchy ditty that had me nodding my head to the beats…

I waited a long time to catch The Sallys in action and I wasn’t disappointed when they sang my favourite song “Gadis Marmalade“… This is Shafiq, the frontman of the group…

Kunjung & Shafiq joined Imran for the finale of their programme, singing the latter’s current single on the airwaves, “Radio“…

The programmes recorded on Day 3 will be televised on Monday 15 February 2010 at 9.30pm on Suria. Below is the full schedule of the programme:

Telecast Details
Title Genre Episodes Telecast Day/Date Time
 Viva Muzik Singapura    Variety  1 – 5

6 – 8

   Tue, 5 Jan 2010 – 2 Feb 2010

Mon, 15 Feb 2010 – 1 Mar 2010

   8.30pm

9.30pm

Congratulations Sezairi Sezali!!!

(Photo courtesy of PureVolume.com

Last night’s unexpected win for this 22-year old young man was a huge lesson that for all the talk of image-selling and marketability factor, what Singaporeans in general look for in a winning Idol are the factors of humility and likeability, two traits that best describe our newly-crowned champion. I thought this season’s Singapore Idol competition was closer and tougher than the previous two, with Sylvia Ratonel being the favourite coming into last night’s Grand Finale, especially since she had the strong backing of the three judges.

Sezairi might not be as good-looking or suave as his predecessors, but in his own right, he is a talented musician, a soulful crooner, a picture of calm and serenity in the face of adversity week in and week out. But above all that, he has never let down the audience with his confident performances and moreso last night when he delivered three knock-out punches when it mattered. Sylvia I have to admit, was my favourite from the beginning of the competition, but somehow when the crunch time came, she was a bundle of nerves and looked as though she was overawed by the occasion. Sezairi took control right from the start and listening to him sing “Touched By An Angel“, one could feel his emotions and soul being put forth with more sincerity and feel than Sylvia. Which was why for the first time this season, I was inclined to finally cast my votes and to the person I felt deserved it more.

Yes, Sezairi‘s win is another feather in the cap for our community and I’m very proud of him, as much as I was proud of Taufik Batisah and Hady Mirza winning in the past. But I’m not looking at it as a win for the community, but a win for Singaporeans in general because I believe the votes were cast without prejudice nor biasness, without having to see the colour of one’s skin to sway the voter’s decision. All the racist talks being bandied around yet again over a Malay winning this competition I believe, came from people who did not do their part by voting or voting enough. It doesn’t matter if we were to have a Malay representing us or a half-Filipino. The fact is they are Singaporeans and I’m sure they are proud to carry the flag no matter where they go.

Sezairi‘s win I would like to add, brings a little ray of sunshine to the community which has been portrayed a bit negatively by our media scribes of late. I guess I don’t have to list down one by one what they are. I also don’t wish to be the wet blanket or party pooper, taking the limelight away from Sezairi, as alleged by a few snide remarks I got last night when I Twitted that we can do better academically as well. Yes we are good at football and singing, that’s a given fact and reflected by yesterday’s Berita Minggu article, but what I meant was actually we can do better in other aspects to add on to these two fields cos I’m sure we have gifted and unpolished diamonds waiting to make a name for themselves in many others. I was accused of killing the moment for the boy when people should actually look at things in the bigger picture. We can be happy and celebrate this win, but do not forget that with every success, we always have to remain grounded and spare a thought for those who might be lacking in our midst.

To Sezairi, you are very much worthy of being an Idol winner, of representing Singapore as a singing ambassador, and above all, of being able to be a positive role model to the community and nation. I look forward to you gracing our music industry, stamping your mark as a performer and spreading your wings as a talented composer and musician. Enjoy the moment, embrace the win, cos you deserve it for not only being one hell of a singer with soul, but for remaining true to yourself by staying humble, likeable and sincere. No one should begrudge you for that nor take it away from you. I certainly don’t… Congratulations Champ!!! Your journey has just begun…

Viva Muzik Singapura Day 2…

(Graphics courtesy of Mediacorp Suria)

This entry will be short and sharp. I was at Dhoby Ghaut Green earlier to watch the recording of Viva Muzik Singapura again. I was looking forward to seeing AhliFiqir in action especially since their name was second on the list of performers scheduled to perform today. Though it was not stated what time they were performing, I assumed that their set was in the afternoon along with Syed Azmir, whose name was first on the list.

However to my dismay, I found out that they were only performing at 7.30pm. I had to leave by 6pm as I have my own prior engagements later on. What pissed me off was how late the show started. On the list, they said that the show was to start at 4:00pm but when I left at 5.15pm, it had not even started, to the point that Syed Azmir who was supposed to helm the set, had to come out and sheepishly apologise that it won’t start till another twenty minutes, resulting in groans all around. By then it would have been about 5:30pm, a good 90 minutes gone from the original time slated to start.

I can understand if the delay was due to the rain since it is afterall an open-air event, but the skies were clear as day and the reason that was used to describe the long wait was “the musicians are resting at the back…” Really??? Just because this event is free, doesn’t mean that people have so much time to wait and spare. We’re about a week away from 2010 and for us who just celebrated and welcomed 1431 Hijriah, I think it’s high time we get away from this old mentality of giving empty promises with regards to timings & start respecting punctuality. Time waits for no man and time is freaking precious. I hope tomorrow’s sets won’t be as disappointing as this one. For the record, I’m not holding Mediacorp Suria accountable for this as this project is mainly done by another party…

Viva Muzik Singapura Day 1…

(Graphics courtesy of Mediacorp Suria)

Day One of the abovementioned programme / event went well over at Dhoby Ghaut Green earlier tonight, a mini amphitheatre built on the open space above Dhoby Ghaut MRT station, between Park Mall and CapitalMall Trust buildings. Though the weather was fickle the whole day, by evening, it was good and there was a good breeze to accompany the event, a first of its own away from the usual studio settings. This programme and its approach in honouring local acts, also reminds me of the successful “Singapura Live!” series that was aired a couple of years ago.

Today, there were two sets of recording done. The first one that will be televised on Tuesday, 5th January 2010 at 8:30pm will most likely consist the one that had Hyrul Anuar as host along with hip-hop duo Sleeq and the newly-formed girl group EVE, consisting of Anugerah 2009 alumni Yanie Hassan, Asilah Osmera & Nora Baharom. The second set had soul crooner Hazrul Nizam helming the show, along with Anugerah 2007 runner-up Maiya Rahman and Anugerah Band winner Rancour completing the line-up.

I will not be reviewing the performances as I don’t see the need to. I was there to enjoy the good music dished out by our local acts. Maybe the downside of the night were the constant retakes, mostly due to the dead crowd (even though the turnout was decent), but other than that, I enjoyed all the performances by the artistes involved tonight. I will not act as the spoiler by uploading video clips of the event cos I did not take any and I would prefer if you catch it yourself when they are finally televised. Instead, I will just upload the nicer photos taken at the event.

Hyrul Anuar kicked off his performance with his current hit singlePopular“…

Sleeq kicked off their set with “Cun Saja“…

EVE introducing themselves before singing Anita Sarawak‘s “Seksis“…

Hyrul Anuar thanking the audience for coming at the end of their programme…

Hazrul Nizam kicked off his set by singing a mixture of Gnarls Barkley‘s “Crazy” and Gloria Gaynor‘s “I Will Survive“…

Maiya was a bit subdued when she performed “Nongkrong”. Maybe she was feeling unwell…

I like Rancour‘s first hit single “Biarlah“. Though it’s supposed to be a sad song, but it’s quite edgy…

The finale of the second recording, with the artistes taking turns thanking the audience…

Hyrul Anuar‘s loyal fans “Hyrulites” out in full force in support of the man himself…

Actress / host Azzah Fariha was also present at the recording in support of our local acts. Singapore Idol 2009 contestant Malaque Mahdaly was also seen amongst the crowd along with the official Singapore Idol Blogger, Iskandar. No they are not an item, in case you’re wondering…

Later today, there will be three sets of recording of the programme at the same venue and the first one is scheduled to start at 4:oopm, barring any cock-ups during soundchecks and the issue of the monsoon season rearing its head. There will definitely be a short break out of respect for Maghrib and the second set should start between 7:30pm-8:00pm. So if you are free after work, do come down and support our local acts at the said venue… 

Viva Muzik Singapura

(Graphics courtesy of Mediacorp Suria)

VIVA MUZIK SINGAPURA

A free outdoor concert for all, featuring the best of local acts!

Date Tuesday, 22 Dec – Thursday, 24 December 2009
Venue Dhoby Ghaut Green (next to Dhoby Ghaut MRT)
Dress Code Smart Casual

 

Recording Schedule
Local Acts Recording Day/Date Time
 

Hyrul Anuar, Maiya Rahman, Rancour, EVE & Sleeq

 

 

 Tuesday, 22 December 2009

 

 6.30pm

 Syed Azmir, Hazrul Nizam, Ahli Fiqir, Fuad Rahman, Chirul, Wawan, Stoned Revival, Eka Mairina, Merah & Nana  Wednesday, 23 December 2009  4pm
 

 Sarah Aqilah, Fauzie Laily, Kunjung, Imran Ajmain, Tengku Adil, Zaibaktian, The Marilyns, The Sallys & Bloco Singapura

 

 Thursday, 24 December 2009

 

4pm

*************************************************************************************************************

Viva Muzik Singapura will be recorded into an 8-episode variety programme.

The show will debut on 5 January 2010 at 8.30pm on Suria.

Telecast Details
Title Genre Episodes Telecast Day/Date Time
 

Viva Muzik Singapura

 

Variety

 

1 – 5

6 – 8

 

Tue, 5 Jan 2010 – 2 Feb 2010

Mon, 15 Feb 2010 – 1 Mar 2010

 

8.30pm

9.30pm

Disappearing Act…

I’ve not been actively blogging since Anugerah 2009 ended. And I only had one entry before this to show for, that I have not retired. I really have to apologise to each and everyone of you who come in and see the same header and entry greeting you. But the time away from blogging, I just feel as though I have inadvertently retired. Well at least it kinda feels that way. I seemed to have lost the zest in airing my commentaries. I wonder if age has caught up on me. Or whether I’ve lost interest due to happenings in my life over the past four months. Or because Twitter has now taken over in voicing my views albeit in its shorter format. I just can’t find any joy or interest in blogging at the moment. This blog, arguably renowned for its take on happenings in the local Malay music industry is now officially “a white elephant“. I’ve not attended a music event since Anugerah ended and that goes to show how detached I am from something I have loved doing all these years. And surprisingly, I don’t miss it all. Strange isn’t it coming from me???

Speaking of happenings, I had ended the last entry by hoping to share good news with everyone. Sadly, my uncle is still in a comatose whereas as we all know by now from the media scribes, Sarah Aqilah lost her younger sister. It’s just ironical that I had posted the last entry about an hour before she passed on. May Almighty Allah bless her soul and place her amongst the dwellers of Jannah

The last third of 2009 hasn’t been that good for me, in all aspects of my life. And I don’t wish to pour my thoughts out and rant about it, something which I did on quite a regular basis in this blog. Even when I’m unhappy with someone, I choose to let it slide rather than bang my head on the wall. I guess in life you can’t expect people to like or accept you for what you believe in. I’m too old for petty fights now even when I see people hitting out at me via their Tweets, blogs or Facebook statuses. It’s a low blow which I prefer having them come straight up to me and telling it like real men and gracious ladies. And to think one of them said 11-a-side football is for real men. Obviously those who play street soccer and futsal are sissies then??? Seems to me there are people who think only from their own deluded perspectives.

But in the grander scheme of things, I guess everyone’s entitled to their own opinions and if they are negative, I’ll just take them into consideration and do a bit of self-reflection cos there could possibly be some elements of truth if we were to put ourselves in their shoes and think the way they do. Sometimes, it’s best to keep your enemies closer to you cos they are the ones that keep you in check when you get all complacent. Heck, I’ve even been less critical of the team I hate most in world football given their current predicament, not to mention being less chuffed about my beloved team even when they are still a decent bet for title honours come the end of the season. Again that just shows how detached I am from a lot of things lately that I found so much profound joy in doing before. Or maybe the joy and responsibilities of parenthood make you couldn’t care less about the trivial and mundane stuff…

I hope to fill this blog more before the year is out. And not make this title header a continued legacy…