Anuar Zain “Cinta Takkan Berakhir” Live in Singapore 2018 Promo!!!


 

Graphics poster courtesy of Hype Records

Three years on from his last solo concert outing at Singapore‘s very own The Star Theatre, Malaysia’s singing sensation Anuar Zain returns with a brand new concert this 26th October 2018, specially for Singapore fans, at the same venue!!!

Most recently awarded Best Male Artiste at the regional Anugerah Planet Muzik Awards 2017 for his haunting hit “Andainya Takdir“, Anuar Zain is best known for his charismatic performances and soulful renditions of emotional ballads. It is not a surprise that he is widely touted as the “King of Ballads” on both sides of the Causeway. An extraordinary performer in the region, his popularity and creative standing in the music scene remains undisputed since breaking out at the tender age of 13 years old with his then-duet partner Ellina. Their massive evergreen hit “Kain Pelikat” is still remembered till today and their popular Hari Raya song, “Suasana Hari Raya“, is still a must-listen staple annually during the festive period.

Conferred with countless music accolades at various awards shows in Malaysia like Anugerah Industri Muzik, Anugerah Juara Lagu and the regional Anugerah Planet Muzik, Anuar Zain’s remarkable vocals and music talents have placed him in a league above the rest and cemented his status as one of the region’s most sought-after artistes. The royalty of the regional Malay music scene, whose illustrious music career spans over more than three decades, has also long established a strong and loyal fan base from all over the region.

Following the overwhelming response and turnout to his previous concert in 2015, the multi-award winning crooner is back to impress Singapore fans with new music materials from his self-titled album produced in 2016 like “Andainya Takdir” and “Cinta Takkan Berakhir“. The upcoming concert will also feature the continuation of the storyline to the previous two aforementioned songs, with the audience the first to watch the latest music video. As to which song from the 2016 album that will be featured in the music video, it remains a mystery and will be answered that night.

Be enchanted as he presents a memorable night of astounding showmanship, as well as popular mega hits such as “Lelaki Ini”, “Sedetik Lebih”, “Sempurnakan Aku”, “Bila Resah”, “Andainya Takdir” and more in this highly anticipated concert!

ANUAR ZAIN CINTA TAKKAN BERAKHIR LIVE IN SINGAPORE 2018” will be held on 26 October 2018, 8.30pm at The Star Theatre @ The Star Performing Arts Centre.

Tickets priced at $228, $188, $158, $128 and $98, (excluding SISTIC Booking Fee) are available at all SISTIC outlets, via hotline 63485555 and www.sistic.com.sg.

This concert is proudly presented to you by Hype Records. Log on to www.hyperecords.com and https://www.facebook.com/HypeRecords for more updates.

 

An Evening with the Stars Media Conference & Promo

(Graphics promo poster courtesy of Impact Music Entertainment)

We are three days away from this Mothers’ Day event happening at Persada Johor International Convention Centre and I just realised that I have not had the time to make a proper promo entry for this showcase, even though I had attended its media conference on 2nd April 2018 at Ballroom @ East Coast by A B Shaik. I was kindly invited to the event by the good people at Impact Music Entertainment. Knowing me, I usually do not cover events pertaining to artistes from across the Causeway unless they are the ones I personally love and since Anuar Zain is one of them, it was a no-brainer for me. But the clincher for me to attend this media conference was ultimately seeing our very own Fauzie Laily on that poster, as this domain afterall prioritises featuring of local acts. It is a proud moment indeed to see him about to rub shoulders on the same stage as two legends in the regional music scene, Zamani SLAM being the other slated performer.

Anuar Zain and Fauzie Laily sharing a light-hearted moment with the media brigade in attendance…

Aptly dubbed “An Evening With The Stars“, this Mothers’ Day showcase organised by E & F Event Resources, is geared towards contributing to charity through the Dato’ Rokiah Lace Foundation. This foundation was set up to help the less fortunate, orphans, senior citizens and single mothers residing in Johor Bahru. The foundation is also known to have built schools for would-be Tahfiz and also mosques for the Muslim community in Johor Bahru. Hence if you might feel a little taken aback by the somewhat expensive ticket prices, just think how much you will stand to benefit the number of people through your kind deeds, besides getting the chance to enjoy a night of good quality entertainment by Anuar Zain, Zamani and Fauzie Laily. I understand from the media conference, each artiste will be performing a minimum of three songs each and I’m sure there will be segments where they will be singing together either as a pair or a combined trio, not seen anywhere before this.

The media conference panel (from left): Zell Sazalie (Impact Music Entertainment), Shaik Mohd (Ballroom @ East Coast by A B Shaik), Afendi Hassan (E & F Event Resources), Anuar Zain, Fauzie Laily, Mr. Yusnor Ef (President, PERKAMUS), Dato’ Paduka Hajjah Rokiah Omar (Chairman, Yayasan LACE Dato’ Rokiah), Joyce Yap (Director Sales, Persada International Centre, Johor Bahru)…

Something unique about this media conference was the presence of several local vloggers, a rising trend in this day and age of social media. Though I did not get the chance to interact with any of them, I am aware of their strong following on their respective social media platforms. Hopefully their respective on-the-spot live promos that day would help in the ticket sales for this showcase. I believe if this showcase were to be held in Singapore, they might also get a decent crowd in, given the attraction of the two Malaysian artistes, whom we Singapore fans never seemed to get enough of judging by their rousing receptions at their concerts or showcases before this. I will not bore you with the minute-by-minute detail of the media conference. Like any other, such events are meant to tease us for what is to come on the actual day itself and the two artistes who attended that day, Anuar Zain and Fauzie Laily, kept their cards close to their chest, probably not wanting to reveal much.

Both Anuar Zain and Fauzie Laily are raring to go for this showcase…

Tickets to “An Evening with the Stars” are already on sale via Ticketcharge Malaysia. Additional details can be found in the promotional poster at the beginning of this post or by logging onto the event’s official Facebook page.

Snapshots of An Evening with the Stars Media Conference

Anugerah Planet Muzik 2017 Review…

Graphics poster courtesy of Mediacorp Suria…

It’s been three long years since I last did a proper Anugerah Planet Muzik review entry. I personally did not expect not posting any review entries to be this long, given my previous penchant and eagerness to share my views and thoughts on the annual event. Personal commitments got in the way and time wasn’t kind enough for me to post them up. By the time I entered the second month after each event with photographs still not properly edited, I already lost that momentum and passion to type something out. Anyway, I had this feeling that I was recycling and rehashing my thoughts year in and out, to a point I felt like a broken record. I hope that the time I had been keeping my thoughts to myself would do me good, to evaluate the show with as much fairness and giving benefit of doubt where shortcomings are concerned. The question I have in my mind right now is, where do I even begin??? Hahahaha gosh it does feel a bit rusty after three years…

Ayda Jebat opened the show with “Nakal Nakal Nakal“…

I think for a start, let’s talk about the slogan for this year which came with the hashtag “#GilerTakGerek“. I tried to hark back to previous APMs before this, but I struggle to remember if they ever had a slogan or theme such as this. I believe this year was the first time they had an additional hashtag to go along with the usual “#APM“, followed by the event year (#APM2017 being the latest for this year). I think it was a fresh move to inject a bit of hipness to the event, in line with how much technology and social media have taken much of our attention on a daily basis. I initially didn’t like the usage of the word “Giler“, being the language Nazi that I am, moreso when they first announced it, we were still in the midst of our annual Malay Language Month. However, to put it into the context and lingo of today, the spelling reflected a fun factor rather than a serious element to being crazy. The usage of the word “Gerek“, even though we seldom hear people here using it now, is still synonymous with us Singaporeans as compared to our neighbours. I think generally this was a uniqueness of its own, to highlight a Singaporean flavour to the event.

The addition of Dzar Ismail and Nabila Huda to the line-up of hosts for this year, gave the show a certain freshness…

Since my last review in 2014, we’ve had a change of venues, from the rather spacious Suntec City Convention Centre, to the relatively spanking new MES Theatre @ Mediacorp. This year’s event was its second held at the new Mediacorp Campus at Stars Avenue. I do have a well-documented love-hate relationship with this new theatre, more hate than love actually, as my close circle of friends can testify. Well “hate” is actually too strong a word for me to use. I would probably use the word “dislike” to express my thoughts on this matter. For one, it is further away from previous locations like the earlier-mentioned Suntec City Convention Centre, Max Pavilion, Singapore Expo, and Singapore Indoor Stadium. North or east-siders like myself will find travelling here a bane, which is also partly a contributing factor why I have slowed down my commitments to cover events and answering invitations to attend a particular programme or show by Mediacorp Suria.

One of my favourite performances of the night, Gloria Jessica teaming up with Aisyah Aziz and Haikal Ali

My main gripe with the theatre is that it resembles a lot like a typical school hall setting, and I know I am not alone in having these same thoughts. The stage also looks smaller and limited than previous venues. The opening performance that featured Ayda Jebat and her dancers, as well as Maher Zain and his accompanying vocal group, felt a bit overcrowded. I observed the dancers especially, had to hold back some of their moves so as not to bump into one another. The one thing I dislike the most about this theatre is that I am no longer able to sit on the floor in front of the first row to capture close-up shots, just like in past APMs or even the times I covered shows at the old Mediacorp Theatre at the now-vacant Caldecott Broadcast Centre at Andrew Road. At this new place, photographers now either have to stand behind the sound engineers somewhere in the middle section or sit on the floor along the aisles by the side.

I know for one, the audience enjoyed this particular segment featuring Hael Husaini, Virgoun and Sufi Rashid

The positive thing I can say about this theatre is that it boasts a sound system which is very good. The acoustics and clarity is as good as the Esplanade, if not better. Well it is certainly much better than the one at Star Vista Theatre, a stone’s throw away. I also observed with this new place, the organisers save quite a bit on their budget, not to mention having the autonomy to dictate how the additional segments like the Red Carpet segment would pan out without having to splurge more than they should. I noticed that even with a venue as good as Suntec City Convention Centre, there were trade-offs, in that certain things had to be compromised or made do without altogether. The ones that come to mind were the “Walk of the Stars” segment, where the nominees / award presenters / performers were introduced to the audience by walking to the stage from the back and to their seats, which I personally felt was a poor man’s version of the Red Carpet segment and the lack of a post-event reception afterwards, which had a number of local and overseas guests / performers grumbling quietly afterwards, as they were famished after a long night. With the event held at the MES Theatre, these factors were taken care of and the event looked to be proper as it should be.

Award presenters Hannah Delisha and Izzue Islam

Speaking of the Red Carpet segment, there was a notable difference between last year and this year. Last year, we saw the nominated artistes as well as the performers and award presenters arriving via limousines with both sides of the fences teeming with screaming fans like any typical Red Carpet segments you see around the world. This year, they did away with the limos but made the concourse level a long and winding stretch going into the MES Theatre. The Red Carpet segment literally began when the nominated artistes, performers and award presenters appeared from the lift just next to the escalator on the third floor. From there they had to pass by the specially-erected stage for the fans to see them clearly, as they were interviewed by newly-minted radio presenter, Kyrul Ashrie and Nity Baizura. After that it was stop after stop as they were greeted by a horde of waiting media brigade, eager to interview or photograph them, yours truly included.

Malaysian heartthrob Farid Kamil and Singapore‘s up-and-coming Sofia Dendroff

I must say I was surprised by the number of media people that attended this time around, not only from Singapore, but Malaysia and Indonesia as well. I basically had to jostle for a comfortable position so as not to block their view when they were filming, taking photographs or recording short clips. Previously this Red Carpet segment or a lack thereof, was one of my main complaint agendas whenever I do up any reviews of Anugerah Planet Muzik. Not anymore. The organisers have done very well to make this a much-hyped affair with live Facebook updates and online screenings via Toggle. For that they deserved much of the accolades for the effort to make the show as colourful as it should be. I saw the improvement being made since 2015 when the show was still at Suntec City Convention Centre, but I think with the venue of the event being at their homeground, more improvements and upgrade in outlook were able to be executed without running foul of the venue management, if any. They even have what I call a “battle command centre” for all the live social media updates as the show went on.

Actress-singer Kilafairy and another newbie to the local Malay entertainment scene, Zachary Ibrahim

Looking at the list of performers that night, I was surprised that this time round, there was a distinct lack of star names, save for those whom we know from our own respective countries or maybe the few established ones known to the three countries like Afgan, Ella and Maher Zain. For the very first time in the history of Anugerah Planet Muzik, there were no performing bands featured. Hard to believe but it was the reality. Up till the last moment, I had expected the organisers to pull a last-minute surprise and have at least one band performing, but that was not to be. Even though we were devoid of distinct star names, the ones who were onstage did not disappoint at all, at least to yours truly. The surprising thing was, even with a lack of stellar names, it was a sold-out event!!! The last we had a sold-out APM was back in 2014, when the event was at Suntec City Convention Centre, of which the main draw were legendary group Wings and Noah, plus a bevy of household names like Cakra Khan, Judika, Dato’ Rossa, Taufik Batisah, Dato’ Siti Nurhaliza, Joe Flizzow, Sezairi and more.

My personal favourite pairing of the night, the gorgeous Janna Nick and my “twin”, Fakkah Fuzz

I am not sure about those at home cos last year, I observed comments made online that the show was boring. I think there is a lot of difference watching at home and seeing it live. I do agree to some extent when I watched the repeat telecast much later, that visually it looked a bit plain. If I were to make a comparison with last year’s and this year’s editions, I think the latter was much better. Last year’s instalment had Caliph Buskers and Sufi Rashid to thank cos their respective performances individually and collectively together, were the highlights of the night, while the rest were forgotten in a hurry. Also the stage setup made it looked as though we were watching a variety show like Rapsodi or Muzika Extravaganza. However, I noted that the organisers had made visual improvements to the stage design, layout and backdrop for this year’s show. Maybe the show itself is meant to be appreciated by watching it live with our very own eyes and not via the television screens. We have to give the organisers a bit of leeway as it was their first time afterall doing it at the MES Theatre last year. I believe this year it was much better, as most online comments I monitored were kinder and more on the positive side.

Afgan doing what he knows best, making hearts flutter with his voice, smile and dimples…

I was surprised that Desta was called upon again to host this year’s APM. As I recalled his performance hosting last year, he was a bit lost and tried too hard to match up with the energy of his co-hosts Suhaimi Yusof and Sherry Alhadad. I was ok with the initial selection of the other hosts, Dzar Ismail and Nabila Huda, as I know both exude energy and fire. But lo!!! Desta proved me wrong on the night and emerged the “Man-of-the-match“, in the words of his co-host Dzar. He had the audience laughing to all his jokes and while those that were made at last year’s event looked a bit forced or unnatural at times, his punchlines this year were absolutely spot-on. He even had time to poke fun at several members of the audience unannounced. I was proud to see Dzar Ismail given the honours to co-host the awards show, representing Singapore. It gave the show a bit of freshness instead of the usual faces. He also has come a long way since being the raw and wide-eyed newbie in the scene. A word of advice to Dzar, he might want to slow down his talking pace, as at times he sounded a bit rushed and his words lost on our ears. At least no one tried to outdo the other like some of the previous editions and there was a nice balance of energy between the three. The best host so far for me in recent times, who gave their co-hosts equal limelight to shine was, and still is, Jihan Muse back in 2015. She’s adorable and I’m a big fan!!!

A beaming Ms. Zakiah Halim presenting the International Breakthrough Award

I would like to touch upon the award presenters. I assume, based on the reactions of the audience, the only ones they and probably those at home enjoyed watching were Janna Nick and Fakkah Fuzz and slightly later on, Afgan and Fiza O. With all due respect to the other presenters, I think generally the audience didn’t know who they were or there was hardly any chemistry or relevant banter between them. I remember there was one award presenter who presented twice in previous editions, but you could hear a pin drop when they were on stage with murmurings around me asking them to be quick with the award presentations. The same thing happened a few times on the night, and I don’t think the audience could tolerate the antics of some of the presenters, who tried to act cool but only served to turn them off judging by the silence or non-reaction. I also noticed a certain lopsidedness in the pairings which, save for the Afgan and Fiza O award presentation segment, were all from Malaysia and Singapore. There were other Indonesian acts seated amongst the audience, I doubt it would hurt to let them have a bit of the limelight as well. On a sidenote, I personally think Fakkah Fuzz just put his name into the hat to present either Pesta Perdana or future editions of APM. Twice he presented awards at both events this year, both times he had the audience in stitches and enjoyed his presentation style.

Maher Zain performed the Malay version of “For The Rest of My Life” right after his acceptance speech…

Winners-wise, I will not debate who was worthy and who was not, but there was one award which had me a little perplexed. In retrospect, I think all the winners and nominees are much deserving of their positions, lofty or otherwise. It has to be said that it is lost on many people’s minds, but we cannot take away the landmark achievement made by “Senyum Saja” at #APM2017. For the first time in its 16-year history, a Made-in-Singapore song finally managed to win the Best Regional Song award!!! This win was the fourth for The Lion Story in the space of seven years and their third in a row, cementing their status as prolific and respected songwriters our country has to offer. For the longest time, it has been something that we have come to accept, that the Malaysians and Indonesians are far superior than us. The glass ceiling has finally been broken. I hope this win will inspire more of our local songwriters to come up with more quality music because they definitely have the talent to match up with their regional counterparts. However, the Best Male and Female categories remain elusive till this day and I hope some day one of our acts can finally reach that pinnacle and recognised by the jury from the three countries.

I just realised when I looked at this photo, the last time Dato’ Adi Putra presented awards at APM2011, his partner was also Nity Baizura

I don’t care what the online brickbats might say till this day or have questioned ever since, if they had not listened to the song or never heard of it before, and there are many of them out there, the ones commenting and criticising for the sake of it. The beauty of awards shows is that you look at the nominees and you try to do your own research by listening to them on YouTube, iTunes, Spotify and what-have-you. The best is not necessarily the most popular. Likewise the most popular might not necessarily be the best. You only see the regional dissenters up in arms when a Singaporean comes on stage to win the regional awards. I observed some sour grapes who are definitely not from these shores, commenting this was a “Shiok Sendiri” show by the organisers when the Best Song category was announced. If it was, I think Singapore would have won more than they had expected to. It has always been that way but the best awards are judged by a panel of jury from the three countries. So it is definitely sweet when you see your own local product be recognised by not only your own, but from others. And for that we can only “Senyum Saja” at the haters.

Isyana Sarasvati showed her prowess at playing the piano prior to getting off and dancing along with her accompanying dancers when she performed “Kau Adalah“…

It was just one big award and suddenly the “My country’s song is better than yours” mentality reared its ugly heads. This village mentality obviously needs to go, but it will never be eradicated fully, not when online and social media is filled with irresponsible and brainless keyboard warriors. People keep on forgetting that this awards show is about forging friendship, extending ties and network amongst people in the entertainment and media industry between the three countries. It is never meant to be a competition per se, but a celebration of the best. Obviously people who were watching and commenting negatively afterwards, paid scant respect to some of the winning speeches calling for unity and ties to be strengthened. Sad to think that in this current day and age, people tend to form opinions and act upon what comes out from their nether regions rather than whatever rationale that is processed in their heads. It is difficult to educate these country bumpkins when they already have this mentality that theirs is better than others.

Another one of my favourite pairings of the night – Afgan and Fiza O, who showed off her multi-functional outfit created by celebrity designer Raffiey Nasir

I did say I will not debate who was worthy and who was not, but that I was a bit perplexed by the decision to award one of them. It did not take a rocket scientist to predict that Maher Zain would pick up the International Breakthrough Award when his name and photograph appeared on the promotional poster. I can accept the reasons given for him receiving the award when Ms. Zakiah Halim presented the award to him that night. However, I question his current relevance to the entertainment industry of the three countries. Don’t get me wrong, I love the guy, and I love his positive-infused songs, but his last sold-out concert here in Singapore was back in 2011 when his debut album hit killer heights. Since then his songs have seldom been played on our airwaves. Other than “Ramadhan” which is played during the annual fasting month, we do get the odd airing of songs like “For The Rest Of My Life” being played, either in its original version or the one in Malay / Bahasa Indonesia. I might be wrong, but I highly doubt his latter albums have been well received nor promoted extensively here as compared to his debut offering. If I remember correctly, he recently held a concert here last year and the attendance paled in comparison with his first one, which was quite regrettable, given his standing in the eyes of many.

A very proud moment for our local Malay music scene, finally clinching the biggest award at APM after 16 long years…

If he had been the first recipient when this award was introduced three years ago, then probably I would not be dedicating two paragraphs on this matter. Cos I sincerely thought this awards show is specifically to honour those from the three participating countries who have introduced our lingua franca to the rest of the world through their songs. I am not sure how his Malay or Indonesian song versions have made people from the other countries sit up and learn the Nusantara languages, cos I believe he also has different versions of some of his popular hits in other languages as well like Urdu and Turkish amongst others. I had expected someone like Shila Amzah, and to a lesser extent, Anita Sarawak, to be getting this particular award. I foresee this particular award will probably not be able to stand the test of time (I give it five more years), unless more acts from this part of the world spread their wings and fly abroad and create a name for themselves wherever they are. The organisers probably wanted to have a slight difference in handing out the awards this time round, but it does feel a bit odd, and gave the impression that we have forgotten our own people from this part of the world. Take nothing away from Maher Zain. He probably did not ask nor expected to be awarded the accolade. His acceptance speech at least soothed my aching heart for the rest of our Nusantara acts who might have felt slighted as a result. He has always been a very humble person with no airs and you could see and feel for yourself through the message that his words or lyrics bring.

Our zany hosts closing the show by giving props to legend and rock queen, Ella

In the past I would usually compare which editions were good, which ones were forgettable, which instalments were memorable. I think for this time I will not make any as I observed each single one brought with them different sets of challenges and obstacles, difficulties and hardships of their own, not to mention which ones left indelible impressions on the mind till I can remember to this day. Take for instance, the great number of no-shows from some of the award recipients. I know for one the likes of Anuar Zain, Dayang Nurfaizah and Khai Bahar were invited to perform but they could not make it as each already had their own prior singing commitments in Malaysia and Hong Kong (Khai Bahar). Probably no one seemed to have noticed this particular trivia, but this year the event was held on a Saturday evening, when usually it is held on a Friday evening. I think had the event been held on a Friday evening, we probably could have had those earlier-mentioned names in attendance and probably had more star names to the line-up. For the show itself to be a sell-out event a good two months before the actual date, spoke volumes of its reach and that we can have confidence that not having stellar names can also attract bums to seats. But for how long???

The question remains, how will the awards benefit the winners in getting known by the neighbouring countries??? For example, will winning the Best Song Award open more doors for the likes of Haikal Ali and The Lion Story to venture into unknown territory in Malaysia and Indonesia if they eventually choose to move in that direction??? How much collaboration and acceptance do artistes, songwriters, producers and such stand to gain from the exposure??? For one, they cannot rest on their laurels and to proactively churn out new works and release them, strike while the iron is hot and not sit on their laurels or just expecting our local radio stations to play their music. They also need to invest some time and money to go out and promote their music, to be heard on airwaves abroad. I really hope that our local acts who were nominated or those who have won, will continue the good work that they have, to always strive for perfection, to improve on shortcomings, to be better performers, songwriters, producers and what-have-you. We have seen good nominations from Singapore this year. Where there’s a need to complement one another, do so. Where there’s no need to compete to bring down the other, don’t bother. Your sincerity and passion will eventually reap its rewards, one way or another. This is my parting shot for my #APM2017 entry…

Snapshots of APM2017

Anugerah Planet Muzik 2017 Roll-of-Honour

(Graphics poster courtesy of Mediacorp Suria)

It’s been a good five days since Anugerah Planet Muzik 2017 ended, but the euphoria of seeing our home country finally winning the biggest regional award for Best Song, for the very first time in the 16-year history of this prestigious awards show is still fresh and unforgettable, at least not anytime soon. I have lots to say since I have not been doing a proper review on APM since 2014, but I guess I will keep it and snowball them in another entry and yes, this year I will finally post a review entry. It has been that long but it has to be done. Of course as always, my first entry after an awards show will be to honour the best and the most popular who were awarded on the night itself. So without further ado, here’s my Anugerah Planet Muzik 2017 roll-of-honour’s list…

P.S. Additional graphic posters of winners who did not attend the awards show are courtesy of Mediacorp Suria. Photograph of Sonaone courtesy of Glam Malaysia

 

Gloria Jessica – Dia Tak Cinta Kamu

Artis Baru Terbaik (Wanita) / (Best New Female Artiste)


Virgoun – Surat Cinta Untuk Starla

Artis Baru Terbaik (Lelaki) / (Best Male Artiste)

 

Faizal Tahir & Dato’ Siti Nurhaliza – Dirgahayu

Duo / Kumpulan Terbaik (Best Duo / Group)

 

Afgan Syah Reza Feat. Sonaone – X

Kolaborasi Terbaik (Artis) / (Best Artiste Collaboration)

 

Tanda Tanya – Aisyah Aziz

Composers: Omar K, Ezra Kong & Ishazee Ishak
Lyricists: O
mar K, Ezra Kong & Ishazee Ishak

Kolaborasi Terbaik (Lagu) / (Best Song Collaboration)

APM2017 708

 

Armada – Asal Kau Bahagia

Band Terbaik / (Best Band)

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Anuar Zain – Andainya Takdir

Artis Terbaik (Lelaki) / (Best Male Artiste)

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Dayang Nurfaizah – Lelaki Teragung

Composers: Natasyah
Lyricists: Iman Imran

Artis Wanita Terbaik / (Best Female Artiste)

Lagu Terbaik (Malaysia) / (Best Malaysian Song)

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Isyana Sarasvati & Raisa – Anganku Anganmu

Composers: Isyana Sarasvati & Raisa
Lyricists: Isyana Sarasvati & Raisa

Lagu Terbaik (Indonesia) / (Best Song – Indonesia)

IsyanaRaisa

 

Aisyah Aziz & Haikal Ali – Senyum Saja

Composers: Aisyah Aziz, Haikal Ali, Haramain Osman & Judah Lyne (The Lion Story)

Lyricist: Aisyah Aziz, Haikal Ali, Haramain Osman & Judah Lyne (The Lion Story)

Lagu Terbaik Singapura / (Best Singapore Song)

Lagu Terbaik APM / (Best APM Song)

 

Sufi Rashid – Aku Sanggup

Lagu Singapura Paling Popular / (Most Popular Singapore Song)

APM2017 2453

 

 

Hannah Delisha

Artis Singapura Paling Popular / Most Popular Singapore Artiste

APM2017 2125

 

 

Ayda Jebat

Ikon Media Sosial / Social Media Icon

APM2017 2228

 

Khai Bahar – Bayang

Artis Paling Popular APM / APM Most Popular Artiste

Lagu Paling Popular APM / APM Most Popular Song

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Maher Zain

Anugerah Rentas Planet / International Breakthrough Artiste

 

 

Ella

Anugerah Khas Planet Muzik / (Special Music Planet Award)

Anugerah Planet Muzik 2017 Media Conference

(Graphics poster courtesy of Mediacorp Suria)

I usually start off my entries after a long hiatus with an apology to my readers for making them wait so long for my return. Seeing how in the past I’ve been doing it, only to repeat the cycle again and again like a bad record, I have decided that I will not be doing any at all this time. Some of you will be extremely surprised to read this, but this entry almost became my final entry announcing my retirement from the scene. Yup you read that right!!! I was heavily toying at the idea of retiring as I had lost interest in doing write-ups and reviews, not to mention my time-consuming photo-editing process. In addition, this is a job that is not being paid but out of my passion for the local / regional Malay entertainment scene. There is only so much time and effort I can afford to put in at the expense of quality time with family. Why I decided to put the idea on the back-burner is because there is still that wee bit ounce of passion which I managed to coax out of me. For how long more??? That itself is a question to be answered. I feel jaded really to be honest.

Local artistes and representatives of the local Malay music scene who turned out in force for the media conference at Orchard Hotel

I wish there were more like me out there, the ones who write / type with sense and rationale, not too emotional when critical, who will give benefit of doubt as much as they can. I just feel that it is time for a new generation of writers to take over but sadly also, blogging seems to be passe these days. I will not promise anything, but I guess from now, any entries on this domain should be regarded as “Heaven-sent”. I will pick and choose what events I attend henceforth and will not be bogged down by having to put entries or photos up as soon as the events end. Well it has always been that way, hasn’t it??? Just that I cannot commit to attending events (mostly at Mediacorp) on a regular basis henceforth, with its current location a bit far for my liking being the North-Easterner that I am. It is also to be fair to those who have kindly invited me to cover their respective events. With that out of the way, let’s begin this entry in earnest.

KC and Dzar Ismail were the hosts of the media conference in Singapore

Anugerah Planet Muzik has always been THE event that I most look forward to annually since its inception on 20th January 2001, so much so I am willing to forgo watching my beloved football club Manchester United, when they face our sworn enemies Liverpool on the day of the event (14th October 2017). Part of the reason I’ve decided to continue blogging was also because of this event. It is afterall the Grammys of the regional music scene, whereby the four countries, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and Brunei come together to celebrate the best amongst them for the year. I know I have not been doing any reviews since the 2014 edition, but it also gave me some breathing space to observe changes that were made over the last two instalments. I noted a lot of improvements along the way which many at home do not have the benefit of knowing nor seeing, and there were also shortcomings, mostly because of a change in venue and having to adapt to new surroundings. I am hoping that with the event once again returning to the MES Theatre @ Mediacorp, the visual experience will improve, especially for those at home, because watching it live in the theatre and at home are two extremely stark contrasting experiences.

Nurul Isnina performed her debut hit single “Buaya“…

Just like the previous year, the media conference announcing the nominees for this year’s edition, was held at Orchard Hotel, albeit at the smaller Lavender Room a fortnight ago (22nd August 2017). Where A.B. Shaik, Aura Shai and Fiza O have always been the usual hosts at previous APM media conferences in Singapore, this year saw a somewhat refreshing change with Dzar Ismail and KC anchoring the proceedings. The media conference was also graced by the performances of eventual nominees Nurul Isnina, Iyaad Salleh, Arus Band & Sofia Arissa. Where previous media conferences were used to showcase upcoming young talents our local industry has to show for, there was a distinct upgrade of quality with those nominated being invited to perform and to show the audience why their names are up there along with the regional’s best. The event also saw the performance of Aidil Akmal and Dzar Ismail with their Malay rendition of the global hit “Despacito“, titled “Incognito“, which has since garnered their music video more than ten million views!!! I was telling Dzar afterwards, if only one view could be converted to a dollar, he could afford to retire by now. Such is the outreach of social media these days, that through creative works such as these, one can make it viral worldwide.

Arus Band, along with Sofia Arissa, were one of the few performers that day. Here, they’re seen singing their current hit song on the airwaves “Terlalu“…

A minor controversy emerged when I was viewing the live Facebook feed of the media conference at Hard Rock Cafe Kuala Lumpur on 24th August 2017. I noted that Dato’ Siti Nurhaliza who was initially nominated in the Best Female Artiste Category for her song “Menatap Dalam Mimpi” was missing as compared to the one announced in Singapore just two days before. I only got the answer after seeing reports that the organisers had indeed acknowledged and apologised for their error during the media conference in Kuala Lumpur itself and that all was fine between them as well as Dato’ Siti, and her management who were the ones who had alerted the organisers about it. I think this is a fine example of years of good working relationship between both sides as well as honesty and integrity being practised. The management could have kept quiet about it, but they did not. Thumbs up to Siti Nurhaliza Productions for the highlight and Mediacorp for acknowledging their error and apologising for it!!!

Ms. Zakiah Halim, Head of Mediacorp Malay Community addressing the floor along with CEO of COMPASS, Dr. Edmund Lam and Mr. Hassan Salleh, Senior Programming Director, Warna 94.2FM & RIA 89.7FM, Mediacorp

A special first concert road tour for this year’s Anugerah Planet Muzik was announced by Mr. Hassan Salleh towards the end of the media conference. For the first time in the history of the prestigious regional awards show, Mediacorp is partnering with the organisers of the Formula 1 Petronas Grand Prix Malaysia for a concert road tour to close the race in Sepang, which will see it hosting for the 19th and final time. The concert will be the penultimate show on the final day of the race (1st October 2017) and will feature some of the regional award nominees of Anugerah Planet Muzik 2017. At the time of typing this entry, I still do not know details of the concert and who exactly will be performing till perhaps closer to the date. My guess is that we will have big names from Malaysia, Indonesia and also Singapore to grace the concert. Will I be covering the concert??? That depends if some kind soul or organisation will be kind enough to sponsor my trip up north. Anyway I’m sure there will be some live streaming or at the very least, some live Facebook feed of the concert for us to view the proceedings if we are unable to physically watch it live.

The APM trophies are up for grabs again…

A total of 19 awards will be presented at this year’s event, the same as the previous year, with no tweaks nor changes made to any of the categories. Viewers and listeners can catch the ‘LIVE’ simulcast on TV channel Mediacorp Suria, radio stations RIA 89.7FM and Warna 94.2FM as well as online streaming via Toggle LIVE. APM 2017 will feature a new generation of artistes discovered largely from social media platforms and is set to entertain and dazzle with a stellar line-up such as Ayda Jebat, Aisyah Aziz, Isyana Sarasvati, Virgoun, Gloria Jessica, Aiman Tino, Hael Husaini, and many more. Music fans and enthusiasts are also given the opportunity to vote for their favourite songs and artistes in fan-driven categories from 22nd August until 14th October, 10.00pm on Toggle at toggle.sg/apm. The categories are Most Popular Artiste (Singapore), Most Popular Song (Singapore), APM Most Popular Artiste, APM Most Popular Song and Social Media Icon. Tickets are priced at SGD $28 and SGD $48 (including GST and excluding SISTIC fee) and can be purchased at all authorised SISTIC outlets and online at www.sistic.com.sg from 22nd August 2017 onwards. At the time of typing this entry, the $68 seats are already sold out!!! APM 2017 is supported by Info-communications Media Development Authority of Singapore (IMDA) and Composers and Authors Society of Singapore (COMPASS).

Snapshots of APM2017 Media Conference

PujanggaMalam.com – Ten Years On…

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I actually typed this entry way back in 2010 and left it in the Drafts section because I wanted to make a victory speech of sorts as a means to hit out at my haters and detractors who were undermining me for my entries, commentaries and analysis. This was initially meant to be an entry to silence and show them, “Hey, if the mainstream media has finally recognised my work for them to invite me to cover their events, then I must have been doing something right all along!!!” Also I did not realise I have reached this milestone till the recent Dato’ Siti Nurhaliza concert, which dawned on me that I have been blogging for the past ten years since February 2004. It has been a long journey, filled with ups and downs, joy, bliss, rejections, and for the first time at Dato Siti‘s concert, embarrassment and humiliation in the presence of my fellow media counterparts (more on that in my upcoming review of the concert).

Sinar Lebaran 2013 2013-07-05 1270The Mediacorp Suria staff (whom I share a good working relationship with) with the Ratu Suria contestants post-Sinar Lebaran 2013

I used to and still feel small whenever I am invited to cover any entertainment events, for the fact that I am mostly a one-man team. There is nothing spectacular about my blog either, as I do not have the expertise to create a more vibrant design, nor add adverts or frilly scripts to make it more pleasing to the eye, being the tech idiot that I am. I also do not have the luxury of a fellow writer, photographer or videographer tagging along with me. My wife helps me out from time to time with recording video snippets but even then, I find it tedious and time consuming having to edit and upload them afterwards. Already editing photographs take up a lot of my personal time. Through entertainment blogging, I find joy in attending live shows, getting to know people in the industry as well as learn and understand why certain things are what they are, especially when the general public demands to know why certain things cannot be done or impossible to execute, for instance.

Another set of people I enjoy working with, the radio fraternity…

Through such learning experiences over the years, I developed a more empathic approach towards producing a balanced entry. I now try to be more understanding why certain things transpire and even when things go wrong, I am able to forgive and give benefit of doubt. I am very sure those who have followed this blog for the longest time would note how much I have mellowed down since when I first started out with all guns blazing whenever I see something to my chagrin. Bombing away and forming seething (and sometimes wild) observations, used to be the hallmark of my entries, but I still maintained decorum and without the need to use vulgarities to get my points across. I believe this was partly why I was finally received by Mediacorp Suria to cover their events beginning with Anugerah 2009. I am also honoured to be the first Malay blogger back then to have broken barriers and opened the doors for more to join in covering entertainment events.

Covering one of my close friends’ wedding (DJ KC & Fiza O) was one of the highlights of the past ten years…

This blog has indeed come a long, long way since I first started out using Blogspot as my host. Not to sound calculative with what I had done to increase the stature and reputation of this blog, but this domain of mine has witnessed evolution from its humble beginnings. From grainy photographs taken from my Nokia handphone, to buying a high-end DSLR camera, complete with extended zoom lens as well as a video camera, these were my commitment to the cause of providing quality pictures and video snippets of events and shows I attended. Oh and how can I forget how my domain’s logo and watermark changing over the years to give it a more professional outlook??? Previously it was just a simple word on photographs before I realised they were ugly and spoiling them. That’s when I made trials and errors on the watermark logo before finalising what you see today.

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I did not get to blog on bro Hafeez Glamour‘s “Demi Adriana” book launch due to my busy schedule back then, but I did share photos I took that day in my Facebook account…

You can regard whatever evolution or small changes I’ve done to improve or increase the reputation and quality of my blog, or even whatever promos or reviews I’ve done all these years, as my community service to provide useful information on our local Malay entertainment scene, introducing new acts, reacquaint others with established ones, providing differing views from mainstream media and providing a useful resource in general. From time to time I have people working in the scene thanking me for what I have done, assisting them with valuable information in the process, and it fills me with pride that I have gone in someway to help others, even though I felt like I have done nothing much. It has been a joy so far covering events, helping out with promos and fundings, sharing joyous moments of celebrity weddings, attending concerts and awards shows, book / product / album / single / music video launches, behind-the-scenes filming etc., even if they sometimes come with pain and heartache which most are unaware.

Sri Warisan, very forthcoming and easy to work with when I helped to promo their Bendahara: The Musical event…

Like all those who dare to tread on whatever paths they deem as right or answering the call of passion / challenge, I have faced numerous obstacles and heartbreaks, some of which have affected my relationship with friends I once regarded as siblings. Like anyone who has dared to venture in this line or in this industry, I too have had my fair share of doubters, haters, brickbats and detractors over the years, from comments left in my entries to smses on radio segments, in blog posts right down to Twitter, Facebook, Youtube and the now defunct Multiply site. People questioned my credibility and qualifications in pouring forth my thoughts across, not to mention those that have bitched about my flawed interest in the entertainment scene and how I was just trying to fit in and make a name for myself. Cos truth be told, I’m not cut out to be a singer / actor / host / radio presenter – possible career paths which at some point of time in my life I had tried to be involved or had some interest in, but did not work out. But what did not kill me only made me stronger.

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Covering the whole edition of Ratu Suria was an unforgettable experience for the fact that I had to defend the contestants alot in the face of online criticisms, bombarding them from their looks down to their level of intellect…

Call me arrogant or conceited for dedicating an entry reminiscing my past ten years in entertainment blogging, but I believe I have come a long way to proving that what I have been doing for the past decade have always been genuine, sincere, honest, patient, responsible, having self-belief and having loads of passion for the media / entertainment line – seven important traits you need to possess to survive in this harsh industry. The good people who have kindly invited me to cover their events, other than the Malay Broadcast Division of Mediacorp (Suria, Warna 94.2FM and RIA 89.7FM), might have taken notice of those values and principles I so dearly hold on to, and for that I’m extremely thankful to them for acknowledging the work I had painstakingly put up all these while. Even though I am unable to attend all of these invites to launches or shows due to work and family commitments, I still appreciate the invitations and feel honoured that people do recognise my efforts.

I was honoured to have covered Rita Zahara‘s heritage cookbook launch back in January 2012

Unlike other famous entertainment bloggers across the Causeway, I’m not paid to do what I enjoy doing and even though I’m only doing it as a hobby during my recreational time, I try to give off my best, every single damn time. Most of the concerts I had reviewed so far in my domain, I paid with my hard-earned money and received no sponsorship whatsoever nor official accreditation from the respective organisers. Even when I try to get accreditation, most of the time, my requests were turned down or comes with certain limitations. Which is why till today I am a bit peeved with certain concert / show / event organisers, why they can invite foreign entertainment bloggers and even pay them to cover their events when a small fry like myself who is trying to help and promote new acts for free featured in their concerts, did not even receive any invite to cover and still had to pay to enter the concert venue.

And Fiza O‘s beauty product launch a month after, possibly the first Malay personality to lend her name to a beauty product…

There is something seriously wrong with the local Malay entertainment industry when foreign journalists / bloggers are being paid to cover events and shows, yet the local ones are not being considered or thought of. Also I find it perplexing till this day when I got to know some of our local acts had to sell tickets to one of their concerts to earn their rightful commissions, whereas the foreign acts featured together did not have to go through that form of treatment. While I appreciate the organisers wanting to instil a sense of business-minded tact in our local acts, it creates a form of quiet discontent, that there is a form of double standards being practised, especially when the foreign artistes were being paid and provided lodging without having to sell the concert tickets. And I do not blame them for feeling low and down as a result. Over the years, I’ve been like an Agony Aunt to some of the problems faced by our local acts, and from time to time, will highlight their plights in my entries.

Another momentous moment in 2012 was covering Siti Zahidah‘s album launch and showcase…

Another gripe I have with some local event organisers is their lack of gratitude. Back in 2012, I had planned to cover an event which showcased solely on upcoming local acts. It was a free concert held outside a community club. Out of respect, I just messaged the organisers to say I would like to cover their event and record video snippets of the performers. The plan was to introduce some of these acts on my domain, so people would be made aware of their talents. The reply I received was the event was not theirs per se, but the community club’s so they were unsure if they could allow me to record any video snippets. I was extremely fine with that till I came and saw so many in the audience recording away via their smartphones and iPads. In addition, I did not see any staff from the community club overseeing the whole event or anyone stopping these people from recording.

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Another event I covered but did not manage to blog about was the Te:RaSeh! Road Tour last May

Here I am trying to do a kind service for our local acts, yet my intentions got knocked back just because of a trivial reason and lack of responsibility. Suffice to say, I have refrained from attending any events or shows organised by this event organiser till today. I just cannot understand people turning down free promos online, when they have to fork out hundreds for a space on mainstream media. For the longest time, I have refrained from charging a fee to do promos and write-ups. Because I know our local industry does not pay as well as that across the Causeway with production houses and other organisations limited with fundings. I have been asked by people close to me, why have I not charged or earned anything out of what I enjoy doing??? There is simply no market for it over here, sad to say, or companies would be loathed to part their money for a simple promo.

Den Sabari and Huda Ali‘s wedding back in July 2010 was the first celebrity wedding I covered in this domain…

Speaking of promos, I’ve had over the years event /expo organisers taking my photographs on the Net without asking for my permission, even if my watermark is there for all to see. I will not go as far as saying they “stole” my photographs, even though the promotional photos used have clearly wiped them out, or just a cutout image of the artistes featured. I cannot blame the organisers fully, as from one classic example recently, I found out that the ones doing their promotional poster design was from an external department, a case of communication breakdown somewhere during their planning stages. Something they could have avoided doing when they agreed on what photos that could be used. But me being the ever-forgiving one, will always give others the benefit of doubt and accept people sometimes overlook these sort of things.

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Another one of those events I covered, but only shared in my Facebook account, Fiesta Suria 2013

If I want to be extremely anal about this, I could even bang on their doors and ask for a cut of their earnings, cos seriously expo events are a business windfall to some of these organisers and helping them promote via your photographs, you definitely feel that you deserve at least a little token of appreciation. For concerts and shows, it’s 50-50. One can earn a lot if your show is a sell-out, but what if only a handful turn out??? Even I won’t be so mean and damning as to want a certain cut from their earnings, cos I’ve heard some companies closing down after organising a big-scale sell-out concert in Singapore. Strange fact but true. Maybe I’m too nice or feel the legal route can be messy. But we are a small nation with an even smaller community. I don’t wish to kill or create ill feelings out of such matters, but sometimes people don’t realise that being the big fish, they forget simple ethics and courtesy. Sometimes I wonder, is it so difficult to seek permission or reward in kind???

A significant landmark for me was attending Hyrul Anuar‘s “Mata” music video launch back in September 2011, possibly the first of its kind in our local Malay entertainment scene…

I have to admit that I cannot be a journalist as I’m never able to meet datelines or type in a brief and concise manner. My entries are testament to how long-winded I can be. This entry is no different than the rest. I cringe and feel extremely uncomfortable when the term “celebrity blogger” is used on me, nor like to be called and considered one, cos to be one, you need to get thousands of hits daily and doing it on a full-time basis. My domain’s visitorship is not even 400 on most days. Being a celebrity blogger also means you have to share your private life or what you do on an almost daily basis. I am not prepared to be scrutinised, have my privacy exposed and subject my loved ones to be ridiculed or ogled at, especially since I have two young daughters. Some quarters have also labeled me as a “photographer”, but I am just comfortable being known as an “entertainment blogger”, thank you very much!!!

Thanks to Mini Monsters, I was able to cover the launch of their “Lagu-Lagu Kita CD”, aimed to preserve the heritage of songs we grew up with and to continue its legacy for the coming generations…

When this blog first started out in 2004, I did talk about my life just like any decent blogger out there. I think I also shared some of my photographs taken with famous personalities. I was also more vocal and critical when it came to reviewing and assessing shows / concerts I attended. But as my blog statistics rise over the years, I began to shy away from talking about my private life or putting up photos of myself, or with personalities, preferring instead to highlight the real stars themselves on this blog. With more eyes glued on this domain, building networks with people in the industry, gaining some form of respect through my brutal honesty, as well as being aware of the implications I might run into because of my often-harsh comments, I believe over the years, I have matured as a blogger and being more responsible and tactful with what I say or put across. I believe that nowadays I blog more with my head than my heart.

(Photograph courtesy of Mediacorp Suria)

I will forever be thankful to Mediacorp Suria for inviting me to keep goal for them in the tournament that honoured my late uncle, the legendary Dollah Kassim from 2010-2012

Which might explain why some people have wondered of late, how come I’ve gone soft and less scathing for the past three or four years. Perhaps fatherhood has changed me to be more understanding, to be more forgiving, to be more tolerant and of course to be more accepting of what is presented in front of me. I know I began as a gun-toting, trailblazing, devil-may-care writer (or typist), but it is only effective to a certain extent. People respect views when it comes from the heart, but at the same time, the head needs to balance the emotions so that one does not become too critical or damning. Anyway, my network has grown over the years. Any criticisms that I dish out henceforth, needs to be laced with a certain degree of empathy or at the very least, giving others that benefit of doubt. I don’t just look at things from my point of view but also from the points of those I am commenting on. This holistic approach might soften my style, but I am sure you know I will not mince my words when I experience the red mist.

Am glad to say I was physically there when Fiza O celebrated her 30th birthday and simultaneously announced she was getting married to her colleague, DJ KC

Being popular and mentioned in the same breath as artistes is not what I had intentionally set out to do. Unable to realise my dreams as a singer / actor / host / radio DJ were also not the main reasons why I became a blogger whose entries are focused on our local Malay entertainment scene, mostly on the musical side of it. I believe there is only so much we can rely on our print media as they have their own limitations and space constraints in terms of monthly / daily publication release, what they can talk about and how much they can feature. Personally, I would like to see more people doing what I’m doing, cos it would be nice to hear differing views and opinions on our local entertainment industry. It would also add more colour and vibrancy since our industry is slowly growing and expanding. I became a blogger who types on local Malay entertainment stuff because there was a dearth and general scarcity in people doing it. I hope more would be inspired to follow my path, given that blogging at one point of time, was quite in and spread across the generations.

Attending events like Sinaran Hati makes one appreciative of the efforts of the artistes who set aside time to give back to the community…

Hand on heart, I would rather remain in the background than be what my haters claimed me to be, and to quote one comment I stumbled upon years ago, that I am “feeling-feeling artis gitu“, probably due to the fact that I dressed to the nines on a number of occasions that I attended previous music award shows. I was merely respecting the occasion and since my weight was ballooning, I couldn’t fit into my old shirts and had to rely on my kind outfitters. If people have a big problem with that, then so be it. I might have uploaded some of my personal photographs in my Facebook account, which I apologise is only limited to those I know personally, but to share them in my blog is a bit too much to ask for. I do not understand where these people get the idea that I’m using the blogging medium as a means to prostitute myself and be famous. If people appreciate what I do as a yeoman service, then it gives me as much pleasure to provide them with news, promotions and reviews of events, concerts and shows which some of them did not manage to attend, or for those who did, to relive them all over again. What I wear to these events are very much secondary.

One of the events I enjoyed covering – the outdoor Festival Melayu Ada gigs, organised by Cokelat Events and Zaibaktian

This entry was typed not only to celebrate and reminisce this blog’s journey over the past ten years, but was typed both as a means of defiance to the brickbats as well as to give hope to aspiring writers / bloggers out there that if your intentions are genuine, sincere in your approach, passionate in what you do, honest in how you think, responsible in what you say, having faith in yourself and being patient in the face of adversity, one day your efforts will eventually be recognised, people will begin to respect your views, readers will learn to accept and trust you, knowing full well that you’re not merely running your mouth off for the sake of it. People will be able to discern whether you command respect or lack thereof. It took me five years to finally receive official credibility from a very distinguished national media, a long time frame that perhaps could break one’s resolve if your intentions are flawed or you are chasing after personal agendas, fame or glory.

If not for celebrity blogger, Diah Mastura, who could not make it to this event, I would not have been able to feature this exclusive showcase of Anuar Zain in my blog back in 2011

Even if I’m not invited again to cover future events after this entry is published and people think I’ve suddenly grown too big for my own shoes by harping about my personal achievements, I think I would be happy and assured to know that future Malay entertainment bloggers, if there are any others in the first place, could always hang on to the hope that anything is possible so long as they stick to the seven traits I stressed upon in the earlier paragraphs. I would love to have added an eighth trait which is humility. But I’m afraid some of you out there would gleefully point out that I am being hypocritical by talking about what I have achieved so far in this entry, which of course would undermine everything I’ve mentioned. However, I believe people who meet and get to know me personally would be better and wise judges of that. Cos words typed on screen have an eerie tendency of having double meanings or tones, which in turn can sometimes mislead into swaying one’s judgements of a person, since you do not know if he is being serious or joking.

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My very first album launch event I covered back in December 2006, Imran Ajmain‘s debut album “Dengan Secara Kebetulan“…

I’m more or less a grounded person, and I don’t believe in holding extravagant parties just to celebrate the anniversary of this blog or my existence in the scene. Heck I even forgot that I have reached this milestone till I was on the verge of covering Dato’ Siti Nurhaliza‘s concert last weekend. That’s how much I feel that such celebrations are unnecessary. Even if I can afford to do that, I will still not do it. I think the money is better off spent somewhere or donate to charity / welfare organisations. Anyway, am just considered a “Kucing Kurap” in the scene, which is why sometimes when I cover events, I get restricted privileges or am limited with the things I can share or feature in this blog. I don’t expect nor want anyone to do any celebrations for me either, cos every entry for me is a celebration to those that I feature, the real stars themselves.

The very first media conference I attended – Suria Elektra – in February 2010

I know too well that over the years, I have ruffled a lot of feathers with my honest-to-goodness comments, be it in my blog entries or even comments made on radio segments. I am naturally a very opinionated person and a non-conformist. I can be tactless sometimes and too brutal, to the point I do not mince my words when I am really pissed off. Which is why, it is best that sometimes I cool down before typing my coming entry with a clear head and with a better choice of vocabulary I can use to describe what I feel. To those who have been at the brunt or wrong end of my lambasting words, insinuations, points of reference, examples and felt small, angered or even disappointed, I am taking this opportunity to apologise for words that might have hurt you. I am only human, and I try all the time to improve on how I address things as they come. I cherish every friendship and acquaintanceship I make along the way.

Covering Anugerah Planet Muzik, an event very much close to my heart, is something I look forward to annually…

To all who believed and have placed your trust in me for the past ten years, and continue to be loyal and silent readers of this domain, words cannot describe how thankful and appreciative I am to you. I will continue striving to provide good reviews and better quality photographs of events, concerts and shows, launches, celebrity weddings etc. I attend in time to come, and I will always be thankful to those I had worked with and continue to be sharing a good working relationship like the Malay Broadcast Division of Mediacorp (Suria, Warna 94.2FM and RIA 89.7FM), Manggiz, Sri Warisan, Cokelat Events, Gridmedia Productions, ATeR | ReTA, Mini Monsters, WorkHeart, Gumbira, amongst many others I am unable to mention thanks to my ageing memory. Also, to all the lovely celebrity couples who have allowed me the privilege to cover your respective wedding events and shared the joyous moments with my readers. This blog is nothing without your kind support… 🙂

Anugerah Planet Muzik 2012 Predictions…

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Less than 24 hours to go before Anugerah Planet Muzik 2012 commences at Max Pavilion Singapore Expo. I know rehearsals are being done as I am typing this entry and slowly but surely, I am feeling the excitement of watching this annual music awards event. It is something that I look forward to since I ceased travelling across the Causeway to watch awards shows like Anugerah Industri Muzik and Anugerah Juara Lagu on an almost regular basis the past decade or so. And as is customary for me, here is something that I love to come up with a day or so before the event proper. No prizes for me if I get them right and hopefully no flaks either if I were to get them wrong. It is just something fun before the event descends upon us. I will be covering the event tomorrow, but please do not expect video snippets like last year, as my trusted videographer will not be attending this time round. For those in Singapore, the show will be telecast live on Mediacorp Suria at 8:30pm.

Predictions

BEST VOCAL PERFORMANCE IN A SONG (NEW MALE ARTISTE) PERSEMBAHAN VOKAL TERBAIK DALAM LAGU (ARTIS BARU LELAKI)

Anji – (Hatiku) Berhenti Di Kamu

BEST VOCAL PERFORMANCE IN A SONG (NEW FEMALE ARTISTE) PERSEMBAHAN VOKAL TERBAIK DALAM LAGU (ARTIS BARU WANITA)

Lala Karmela – Kamu, Aku, Cinta

BEST NEW DUO/GROUP DUO/KUMPULAN BARU TERBAIK

Audionauts – Maha Bisa Rahsia

BEST COLLABORATION KOLABORASI TERBAIK

Rossa & Taufik Batisah, Aku Bersahaja, Komposer: Taufik Batisah, Penulis Lirik: Taufik Batisah

BEST MALE ARTISTE ARTIS LELAKI TERBAIK

Sammy Simorangkir, Sedang Apa Dan Dimana

BEST FEMALE ARTISTE ARTIS WANITA TERBAIK

Yuna, Terukir Di Bintang

BEST DUO/GROUP DUO/KUMPULAN TERBAIK

Kotak, Tendangan Dari Langit

BEST SONG (SINGAPORE) LAGU TERBAIK SINGAPURA

Fatamorgana, Audionauts, Komposer: Malon, Ryzal, Sham & Zackey, Penulis Lirik: Malon, Ryzal, Sham & Zackey

BEST SONG LAGU TERBAIK

 Terukir di Bintang, Yuna, Komposer: Yuna, Penulis Lirik: Yuna

MOST POPULAR SINGAPORE ARTISTE ARTIS SINGAPURA PALING POPULAR

Taufik Batisah

MOST POPULAR SINGAPORE SONG LAGU SINGAPURA PALING POPULAR

Ku Tetap Kan Menunggu, Hady Mirza

MOST POPULAR REGIONAL ARTISTE ARTIS SERANTAU PALING POPULAR

Shila Amzah

MOST POPULAR REGIONAL SONG LAGU SERANTAU PALING POPULAR

Ombak Rindu, Hafiz & Adira

NEW MEDIA NOVA NOVA MEDIA BARU

Cassidy Anderson

NEW MEDIA ICON IKON MEDIA BARU

Shila Amzah

ANUGERAH KHAS PLANET MUZIK

Dato’ Sheila Majid

Anugerah Planet Muzik 2012 Media Conference

Anugerah Planet Muzik 2012, the prestigious regional music awards show that honours the best in the regional Malay music scene, makes its return once again on our shores!!! Now into its eleventh year, the show promises to inject new elements to the award categories and also up the ante of the show’s entertainment value. If you don’t already know by now, the awards show will be held at the Max Pavilion Singapore Expo hall this coming 15 December 2012 at 8:30pm. Tickets to the show have already gone on sale at all SISTIC outlets, and are priced at $48, $68 and $88. A media conference was held at the Rendezvous Grand Hotel last Monday 29 October 2012, to announce the various nominees in the respective award categories. Before I go on, I would like to take this opportunity to thank Mediacorp Radio Pte. Ltd. for the kind invitation to the media conference event.

The media conference kicked off with all the invited artistes from Singapore coming forward to take a group photo at the invitation of the two hosts A B Shaik and Aura Shai. Before the esteemed panel of industry bigwigs took the centrestage, the attendees were treated to two opening performances by up-and-coming acts Amni Musfirah as well as the teenage trio who call themselves SupamusiQ. Both set of artistes, under the astute management of S.Ria Productions, which also has local group Revalina under its wings, have been making their own waves in the scene, especially in the talent-spotting “Opening Act – Go Glam” segment helmed by RIA 89.7FM‘s Hafeez Glamour. Amni Musfirah performed Agnes Monica‘s haunting hit “Matahari“, whereas the boys from SupamusiQ performed “Cahaya“, their single taken off the recently-concluded “Kelas Detention” drama series.

The panel of industry bigwigs who then gave their respective speeches, comprised of Mr. Edmund Lam, Chief Executive Officer of Composers & Authors Society of Singapore (COMPASS), Ms. Zakiah Halim, Vice-President, Malay / Indian / Expat Radio Programming, Mediacorp Radio Pte. Ltd. and Mr. Hassan Salleh, Assistant Vice-President, RIA 89.7FM & X FM. In his speech, Mr. Edmund Lam raised hopes that with the existence of Anugerah Planet Muzik, more of our local acts will be able to leverage on the latest technology trends and attempt headway into the digital music market in the region. He noted that over the past ten years, the local Malay music scene has improved and this is in due part to the local stations providing our local acts the platform and stage to air their songs to the masses.

The mood took a solemn and sombre turn when Ms. Zakiah Halim took over the microphone. Before she spoke about the awards show per se, she paid a glowing and moving tribute to the late Allahyarham Amin Hussen, the former Managing Director of Beyond DDB Events Sdn. Bhd., who was instrumental in helping the two radio stations in seeing the birth of Anugerah Planet Muzik and seeing it come to fruition for ten years. Allahyarham Amin passed away on 26 October 2011 after a long battle with cancer. I have to admit, I felt a lump in my throat during the short tribute as I had met and interacted with the man himself several times and knew him when he was still the manager of my all-time favourite group KRU back in the late 90s. A well-mannered and kind gentleman, he always had positive words even in the face of adversity and I’m sure till today, many others would vouch for his kindness in different measures and capacity.

I will not ramble along on what else was mentioned by Ms. Zakiah Halim nor Mr. Hassan Salleh, as you will be able to view them from the short video highlights I have done up. The decision to drop the “Album Terbaik” (Best Album Category), due to the lack of full albums being produced of late, and advancement of digital music technology was a drastic but well-calculated one, in my opinion at least. And introducing the new categories namely “Media Nova Baru” (New Media Nova) and “Ikon Media Baru” (New Media Icon), aims to acknowledge the influence the social media platforms have on new / up-and-coming artistes who are not contracted to any music labels as well as the ones already established.

Looking at the nominees for the respective categories, I am extremely proud to see more local acts in the mix this year. What you might describe as under-rated acts like Audionauts, Awi Rafael, Hyrul Anuar and Siti Zahidah, have all gotten their justified dues through their nominations. One look at the “Lagu Singapura Terbaik” (Best Singapore Song) category, you will see how much quality and substance each nominee brings to the fore. What’s more, all the songs nominated in that category were composed, written and performed by the artistes themselves!!! It definitely was a tough choice for the judges to pick who should be nominated. I personally thought Diorama‘s “Hipokrasi” also deserved a nomination, but the nominations were made for works produced between 1st January 2011 to 31st December 2011, and the song was only produced this year. Either way, it just goes to show how stringent the selection was, and what you have there are the cream of the crop.

The various nominees for the “Media Nova Baru” (New Media Nova) category acknowledges and honours the up-and-coming, hidden talents who have received more than ten thousand views on their respective Youtube channels / clips of their individual performances. In a rather balanced mix, Malaysia and Singapore have four nominees each and Indonesia has three. For the very first time, one of the nominees, Cassidy Anderson, who is a sensation in her own right after making a cover video singing “Ombak Rindu“, hails from Australia, a country outside the Nusantara region. Who knows, perhaps in future, we would be able to see more participants around the world singing Malay songs. By the way, you can start voting for your favourite artistes in the popular categories beginning 5th November 2012 at midnight and voting closes on 5th December 2012. For more details, do visit http://xinmsn.com/apm.

Armchair critics in the past (and the present) might pan it as a “shiok sendiri” event, but I think given the circumstances and difficulties faced by the organisers, they should be applauded for making do with what is in front of them, allowing the local acts exposure to the region and honouring the best the Nusantara has to offer. This show is never about who’s best or popular in their respective countries being given a definitive shoo-in and if the watching audience are wondering who the hell are some of these artistes, then it is high time the couch potatoes start to make full use of technology, do their homework and learn to appreciate what is outside the “coconut shells” they are living in. Me??? I’m just looking forward to the performances of the likes of Alyah, Shila Amzah, Judika, SleeQ, Najwa Latif and more soon-to-be-confirmed acts when the day comes…

Anugerah Planet Muzik 2012 List of Nominees

BEST VOCAL PERFORMANCE IN A SONG (NEW MALE ARTISTE) PERSEMBAHAN VOKAL TERBAIK DALAM LAGU (ARTIS BARU LELAKI)

1. Anji – (Hatiku) Berhenti Di Kamu

2. Awi Rafael – Bila Aku Jatuh Cinta

3. Budi – DoReMi

4. Hazama – Cinta Teragung

5. Sandy Canester – Lelaki Dungu

BEST VOCAL PERFORMANCE IN A SONG (NEW FEMALE ARTISTE) PERSEMBAHAN VOKAL TERBAIK DALAM LAGU (ARTIS BARU WANITA)

1. Dhisa – Cintaku Kamu

2. Lala Karmela – Kamu, Aku, Cinta

3. Najwa Latif – Cinta Muka Buku

4. Raisa – Serba Salah

5. Zahidah – Malam Ini

BEST NEW DUO/GROUP DUO/KUMPULAN BARU TERBAIK

1. Armada – Mau Dibawa Ke Mana

2. Audionauts – Maha Bisa Rahsia

3. Hazama & Amy Search – Semitri

4. PULSE! – Tetap Berazam

5. Salam Musik & Altimet – Alamak!

BEST COLLABORATION KOLABORASI TERBAIK

1. Aliff Aziz & Hao Ren – Dilema Cinta, Komposer: Choo Hao Ren, Penulis Lirik: Sha Kalam

2. Dayang Nurfaizah & Tompi, Perlukan Cinta, Komposer: Audi Mok, Penulis Lirik: Ad Samad

3. Hyrul Anuar & Mimi Fly One Nation Emcees, Sudah Mengapa, Komposer: Andi A. Merican & Khairafik Khairudin, Penulis Lirik: Hyrul Anuar

4. Ramlah Ram & SleeQ, Sesaat Kau Datang, Komposer: ID Mifzal, Penulis Lirik: Zie Shafruddin

5. Rossa & Taufik Batisah, Aku Bersahaja, Komposer: Taufik Batisah, Penulis Lirik: Taufik Batisah

BEST MALE ARTISTE ARTIS LELAKI TERBAIK

1. Afgan, Panah Asmara

2. Anuar Zain, Ajari Aku

3. Hafiz, Ku Akui

4. Once Merkel, Hilang Naluri

5. Sammy Simorangkir, Sedang Apa Dan Dimana

BEST FEMALE ARTISTE ARTIS WANITA TERBAIK

1. Agnes Monica, Rindu

2. Alyah, Kisah Hati

3. Astrid, Tentang Rasa

4. Shila Amzah, Patah Seribu

5. Yuna, Terukir Di Bintang

BEST DUO/GROUP DUO/KUMPULAN TERBAIK

1. Geisha, Cinta dan Benci

2. Kesna, Pilihlah Diriku

3. Kotak, Tendangan Dari Langit

4. RAN, Mencuri Hati

5. Rausyanfikir, Rentak Hati

BEST SONG (SINGAPORE) LAGU TERBAIK SINGAPURA

1. Coba, Snowball, Komposer: Sid Isman, Penulis Lirik: Sid Isman

2. Fatamorgana, Audionauts, Komposer: Malon, Ryzal, Sham & Zackey, Penulis Lirik: Malon, Ryzal, Sham & Zackey

3. Maha Bisa Rahsia, Audionauts, Komposer: Malon, Ryzal & Sham, Penulis Lirik: Malon, Ryzal & Sham

4. Malam Ini, Zahidah, Komposer: Zahidah, Penulis Lirik: Zahidah

5. Pulanglah, Awi Rafael, Komposer: Awi Rafael, Penulis Lirik: Awi Rafael

BEST SONG LAGU TERBAIK

1. Apa Bisa, Kotak, Komposer: Pay, Dewiq & Kotak, Penulis Lirik: Pay, Dewiq & Kotak

2. Kisah Hati, Alyah, Komposer: Manusia Putih, Penulis Lirik: Manusia Putih

3. Ombak Rindu, Hafiz & Adira, Komposer: Nurzaidi Abd Rahman, Penulis Lirik: Sharad Sharan

4. Sedang Apa dan Dimana, Sammy Simorangkir, Komposer: Mario Ricardo, Penulis Lirik: Mario Ricardo

5. Terukir di Bintang, Yuna, Komposer: Yuna, Penulis Lirik: Yuna

MOST POPULAR SINGAPORE ARTISTE ARTIS SINGAPURA PALING POPULAR

SG1: Aliff Aziz

SG2: Aryan

SG3: Audionauts

SG4: Awi Rafael

SG5: Didicazli

SG6: Diorama

SG7: Fauzie Laily

SG8: Hady Mirza

SG9: Imran Ajmain

SG10: Sezairi Sezali

SG11:SleeQ

SG12: Taufik Batisah

MOST POPULAR SINGAPORE SONG LAGU SINGAPURA PALING POPULAR

LP1: Cinta Yang Lain, Arus

LP2: Gila, Tujuh

LP3: Ku Tetap Kan Menunggu, Hady Mirza

LP4: Maha Bisa Rahsia, Audionauts

LP5: Membenam Pagi Tanpamu, Diorama

LP6: Menanti Cintamu, Revalina

LP7: Mengapa Kau Harus Pergi, Farhan Shah

LP8: Pulanglah, Awi Rafael

LP9: Salahkan, Hyrul Anuar

LP10: Sally The Lion, The Lion Story & The Sallys

LP11: Terlalu Sayang, Didicazli

LP12: Yang Teristimewa, Sheikh Haikel feat. SleeQ

MOST POPULAR REGIONAL ARTISTE ARTIS SERANTAU PALING POPULAR

AS1: Afgan

AS2: Agnes Monica

AS3: Aliff Aziz

AS4: Alyah

AS5: Hady Mirza

AS6: Hafiz

AS7: Judika

AS8: Shila Amzah

AS9: SleeQ

AS10: Taufik Batisah

AS11: Ungu

AS12: Yuna

MOST POPULAR REGIONAL SONG LAGU SERANTAU PALING POPULAR

 LS1: Beribu Sesalan, 3 Suara

LS2: Bukan Dia Tapi Aku, Judika

LS3: Kalau Cinta, Aliff Aziz & Joanna

LS4: Kebahagiaan Dalam Perpisahan, Shahir

LS5: Kisah Hati, Alyah

LS6: Ku Pinang Kau Dengan Bismillah, Pasha Ungu & Rossa

LS7: Ku Tetap Kan Menunggu, Hady Mirza

LS8: Ombak Rindu, Hafiz & Adira

LS9: Paralyzed, Agnes Monica

LS10: Sedetik Lebih, Anuar Zain

LS11:Takkan Pernah Ada, Geisha

LS12: Tentang Rasa, Astrid

NEW MEDIA NOVA NOVA MEDIA BARU

MN1: Abdul Hamim Suleiman

MN2: Abdul Muttaleeb

MN3: Arien Nur Santi

MN4: Ayu Videlia

MN5: Cassidy Anderson

MN6: Fairuz Selamat

MN7: Muhamad Wazini Mohamed Taib

MN8: Muhamad Azri Syafiq Yusri

MN9: Muhammad Samsudian

MN10: Nurasya Abdul Rahim

MN11: Syazwiyanti Suparto

MN12: Yoseph Pradana

NEW MEDIA ICON IKON MEDIA BARU

MI1: Afgan

MI2: Alyah

MI3: Kotak

MI4: Najwa Latif

MI5: Sherina Munaf

MI6: Shila Amzah

MI7: SleeQ

MI8: Ungu

MI9: Vidi Aldiano

MI10: Yuna

Video Highlights of Anuar Zain’s Meet-&-Greet Fans Session…

This entry was supposed to be posted before 2011 was up, or at least the clip was supposed to be included at the end of the previous entry. But illness and other pressing matters took over, which prevented me from editing the video clips my wife had painstakingly helped to record during the aforementioned session. I’m sure for ladies out there who cannot get enough of the “King of Malay Ballads“, this video is probably heaven sent. I still have two entries up in store from recent events I attended (no, one of them does not include Countdown 2012 at The Float @ Marina Bay), but I’m going to stagger posting them up in the next few weeks. Work has started for the new year and blogging is just a passion I’m doing during my free time, so if any of you are impatiently waiting for the next entry to be up, you need to hold on to your horses. Nonetheless I present to you highlights of Anuar Zain’s Meet-&-Greet Fans Session to kickstart my 2012 entries. Enjoy!!!

Anuar Zain Meet-&-Greet Fans Session…

Nothing substantial has appeared on this blog since a month ago. I feel kinda detached somewhat from the scene and from blogging that I worried a bit for this particularly entry. Simply because, it’s been awhile and I feel oh-so-rusty. Coupled with the fact that I’m on holiday mood, you can say that I feel a bit lazy to type out my thoughts as well, but then again this entry does not need much elaboration as I feel that for the ladies out there reading this, the photographs are more important and worth the view, not to mention lulling you to a dreamy gaze and sigh. Before I move on, let me once again thank sis Diah Mastura from Studiofrost Online (they sell chic and trendy outfits for ladies, in case you don’t already know by now), for giving me this opportunity to attend this event held at Lagun Sari Restaurant on 27 December 2011.

Truth be told, if it wasn’t for the contest that sis Diah did via Twitter, I would not have gotten wind of this private meet-and-greet fans session with the “King of Malay Ballads” himself. It was only much later that details of his scheduled public appearances were highlighted in Berita Harian and contests were being held on RIA 89.7FM to promote his recently-released album, the fourth in his solo career dating back to 1998. As I had given away my Pesta Raya 2011 tickets, where Anuar teamed up with his sister Ziana in a sold-out concert at Esplanade Theatre, I thought it was an opportunity to see him up close and personal once again, since I had also missed out on the high-tea session at Hyatt Hotel‘s Grand Ballroom back in 2009. Some fan I am, even this latest album, I have not even bought it. That shows how detached I am from the scene, especially the one across the Causeway. Maybe as I age, I am slowly letting go of some things that used to interest me in the past.

What was scheduled to start at 8pm ended up beginning close to 9pm, no thanks to the man’s busy schedule on these shores. When the missus and myself reached the event venue at about 7:45pm, we were surprised to see a long queue had already formed on the staircase leading up to the Java Room of Lagun Sari Restaurant. We were made to wait for more than half an hour and it was not quite a pleasant experience, with very little ventilation. I pitied some of the ladies who were dressed to the nines, some using whatever paraphernalia on their hands to fan themselves. I personally thought it would have been nice if someone had gone down to inform us why there was a delay in waiting. At least, it would more or less appease us. Waiting for a long time and having to perspire due to the limited ventilation is not a good combination. Thankfully nobody kicked up a fuss about it.

The session was hosted by RIA 89.7FM‘s Aura Shai and one of the radio station’s new kids-on-the-block, Dzar Ismail. Some of you might remember him from the Anugerah Skrin competition held last year. Known in our local Dikir Barat scene as a member of Durbar Dua and currently teaching full-time, Dzar has joined RIA 89.7FM as one of their part-time recruits. Personally I’m very happy that he has made this step up. I remember very well that during last year’s competition, I had said back then, with his fluency speaking in our mother tongue and his confidence during conversing, he would do well to expand his horizons and repertoire and seek a career in radio. Look where he is now. A humble, charming and friendly chap, he has also done his fair share of acting stint on television. He was also part of the Mediacorp Suria team that won this year’s Piala Dollah Kassim 2011 tournament playing at rightback.

RIA 89.7FM‘s Aura Shai and Dzar Ismail hosted the session…

The hosts did well to kill time by playing a game and letting the attendees of the session fill their stomachs, while awaiting for Anuar Zain‘s arrival. The game that was played, required one of the fans to come forward and sing a song by Anuar. I thought of joining in as well, since my wedding anniversary is coming up in a few days, and it would have been nice to sing to the wife the song I sang during our wedding dinner, “Keabadian Cinta“, albeit just the chorus. But then again, the session was about the fans and for the fans. Me seated at the table along with the invited media brigade, meant going forward did not seem right and would have appeared as though the hosts and I were in cahoots, so it was best that someone else more deserving came forward and the guy who came forward did not disappoint, as he sang “Sedetik Lebih” to his partner.

The man himself soon appeared. All the waiting, the beads of perspiration trickling down our backs and the grumbling stomachs prior to sitting down at the event venue were soon forgotten by the majority of those who attended. Singing a total of six songs in an otherwise pre-planned three initially, the man himself was in his class and element, moving from table to table to croon and leave the ladies in a state of daze and stupor. It was amusing to see the dreamy looks and puppy eyes of the ladies when Anuar was at their tables, charming them with his soulful voice, looking into everyone’s eyes and holding the hands of a few lucky ones. Photographs and video recordings from their smart phones and iPads were taken. I am sure the exclusive event lived up to their expectations, as the 80-odd fans literally had Anuar to themselves.

A fan sharing a voicenote with Anuar when he went to her table… 

The event went smoothly and there was no wild jostling to get his signature or photograph until sometime towards the end. My only grumble about the fans was that even though Anuar had visited every table and taken photographs with quite a number of them, towards the end when he called for those who had not taken a photograph with him to come forward, many of those who already did, joined in as well. I think a sense of consideration needed to be exercised. Yes I know what it means to be a die-hard fan of a particular artiste, I have been there and done that before, but it would be nice if they had allowed others to have that opportunity as well. It’s not that literally they can cut him up and bring a piece of him home. How many photographs do they need to take as mementos anyway??? From initially queueing up to take a photograph with him, I ended up going back to my seat and just observing the proceedings, consoling myself with the fact that I’ve taken a photograph with him before in the past.

This event, along with two other public appearances (at Singapore Expo and City Square Mall) that Anuar Zain did on 26 December 2011, was something rare and never done before by him. All the three events he appeared in were not paid events. Regular goers to his previous showcases and concerts would know that seeing him in action live meant we had to pay, and this unprecedented change was quite a welcome one for a change. Some quarters might feel that it could drop his commercial and exclusive values somewhat, but he was afterall on a promotional tour of his album. A slight change in approach did not hurt a bit and as the newspaper article revealed in Berita Harian yesterday, he actually helped to rake in $11,000 in proceeds in aid for charity at the event held at Singapore Expo. A showcase next month is currently in the works, hopefully details will be announced soon. The event the other night felt more like a teaser of what’s to come very soon…

Highlights of the Meet-&-Greet Session