Anugerah Planet Muzik 2018 Media Conference


Graphics poster courtesy of MediaCorp Suria and designed by Budi Iskandar Sa’ad

We’re just a few days away from my annual favourite regional awards event, Anugerah Planet Muzik (APM 2018), and I finally got the time to share what transpired during the media conference which was held on 31st July 2018. I could have posted this entry much earlier but Elit Suria which was more concurrent back then took precedence and I didn’t want to hype this event too early as we were still a good two months away. Anyway, this year marks APM‘s seventeenth edition with the unveiling of notable nominees from Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and Brunei Darussalam. Once again organised by Mediacorp Suria, Warna 94.2FM and RIA 89.7FM, the 2018 nominees were announced at Orchard Hotel‘s Grand Ballroom with performances by local artistes Farhan Shah, Izat Ibrahim, Liwani Izzati, Firwan Johan, Jagad Edge and Miiko the 13th. An estimated attendance of about a hundred local singers, musicians, producers and songwriters attended the event.

The APM trophies, which go through several revised changes in design and sizes over the years, again up for grabs this year…

What was intriguing about the media conference that day for me was the presence of Mimifly of One Nation Emcees fame, who is now a solo artiste. Seldom do we get a regional artiste attending an APM media conference here in Singapore in years past. Seeing her presence from a distance as I was going up the escalator, was an early indicator of her coming involvement in this year’s instalment. The moment I stepped off from the escalator, I met Ryan Sufiyan who let slipped that he is scheduled to perform with her at this year’s awards show. Instantly I knew that their song “Gila” would be up for nomination for one of the Best Collaboration categories. I guess years of following the event has more or less got me tuned in to the link between performing on the actual night and being nominated. Eventually when the nominations were officially announced, I was proven correct. Speaking of nominations, leading the list is Malaysian-based rapper-songwriter Alif Abdullah of former pop duo, SleeQ, with six nominations. This is followed closely by our local acts Aisyah Aziz and Sufi Rashid, Malaysia’s up-and-coming pop star As’ad Motawh, as well as Indonesia’s pop princess, Isyana Sarasvati with five nominations each.

DJs KC and Dzar Ismail returned once again as hosts for this year’s media conference. They were seen here with Farhan Shah right after his performance…

It is nice to see amongst the list of nominees a mix of young and the more experienced. Who would expect to see a legendary group like Search still churning out quality music in this current age of 90s revival music and social media sensations??? Or Brunei affirming their continued presence in the list with Jaz Hayat once again being nominated since his previous in 2016??? Indeed with the proclivity of social media as a daily staple for most of us, music has found a way for us to appreciate regional talents and for music producers to scout for budding talents. In the case of Bruneians like Aziz Harun and Jaz Hayat, they were fortunate to have Malaysian and Indonesian producers who saw the talent they possess, and now they are reaping the benefits of such collaboration. Which is what the Anugerah Planet Muzik brand is also about, getting to know talents from all four regional Southeast Asian countries, exchanging ideas, networking and eventually collaborating to make more good music for us to savour. As what former Lead of Mediacorp Malay Community, Ms. Zakiah Halim said, “As the only regional Malay music awards event, Anugerah Planet Muzik has always created meaningful opportunities and collaborations between artistes and musicians to raise their profiles in the region. We are proud that the APM 2018 nominees are trendsetters who are pushing the boundaries of creativity in their music.”

Ms. Zakiah Halim and Dr. Edmund Lam, CEO of COMPASS, addressing the attendees of the media conference…

Viewers can expect the hottest music acts and buzzworthy pop culture moments in this year’s APM that will be held at MES Theatre at MediaCorp Campus this coming Friday, 28 September 2018 from 9.00pm. The awards show will be hosted by RIA 89.7FM‘s Fiza O, Malaysia‘s Nabil Ahmad and Indonesia‘s Daniel Mananta. Another highlight of the media conference was the announcement of the performers for this year’s event, where usually they do not announce till much later due to confirmation of artistes availability. This time round, the organisers managed to secure the acts by the time the media conference came about. For the record, Anugerah Planet Muzik 2018 will feature hit performances by Dato’ Sri Siti Nurhaliza who is making a comeback to the event after a three-year break, Dato’ Rossa, Judika, Isyana Sarasvati, Ryan Sufiyan, MimiFly, Khai Bahar, Ayda Jebat, Sara Fajira, DJ Kenny Gabriel, Adrian Khalif, Farhan Shah, Jaz Hayat, G.A.C. (Gamaliel Audrey Cantika) as well as local band The Pinholes. I for one am very much looking forward to seeing the trio of Gamaliel, Audrey and Cantika (G.A.C.) for the first time live as I have been quite a big fan of some of their hits over the past year or so like “Satu“, “Cinta“, “Never Leave Ya” and their debut single, “Bahagia“. I will not be surprised if they are slated to open or end the show with their catchy songs “Satu” and “Never Leave Ya“.

The local artistes, as well as Mimifly herself (front row eighth from right), with a group photograph for memories sake…

Music fans and enthusiasts are also given the opportunity to vote for their favourite songs and artistes in fan-based categories from 31 July to 25 September 2018, 11.59pm on 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. The theme for this year’s Anugerah Planet Muzik 2018 is Tropics / Tropical with the hashtag #TropicLikeItsHot expected to trend on social media platforms like Twitter, Instagram and Facebook, alongside #APM2018 and the returning #GilerTakGerek hashtags which caught on at last year’s event. Suffice to say, the next few days cannot come soon enough and I cannot wait to share with you photographs I will be snapping on Friday itself. Just so you know the usual drill, I will break down my posts and post them in instalment entries so you just have to come here every few days to check them out.

*Best APM Song and Special APM Awards will be announced on 28th September 2018

 

Snapshots of APM2018 Media Conference

 

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)

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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)

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Hannah Delisha

Artis Singapura Paling Popular / Most Popular Singapore Artiste

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Ayda Jebat

Ikon Media Sosial / Social Media Icon

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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

APM2016 Snapshots

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Artistes from Paranormal TalentsAyda Jebat, Haikal Ali, Aisyaah Aziz and the company’s chief Melakaboy

Back with my second instalment. I actually wanted to post this entry up this past Wednesday but got caught up with some personal matters, hence the delay in publishing this entry. For those who are in my Facebook contact list or linked to those whom I had tagged, you’re probably the more fortunate ones cos you get to view these photographs much earlier when I uploaded them early this past week. Anyway these photographs are just a selected few and not everything that I had shared on Facebook. Personally I feel that I did not snap that many photographs during the Red Carpet event, the Pre-Event Cocktail Reception and the Post-Event Reception, as my attention that night was taken up by chatting with some of the artistes and people in the industry. I only realised how few my photographs were when I uploaded all of them onto my PC, hence why I combined them all into one entry. Hope it will suffice for now as I continue to edit and select the 3000-odd photographs I snapped that night and of course come up with my review of Anugerah Planet Muzik 2016

Anugerah Planet Muzik 2016 Roll of Honour

apm2016promoposter

(Graphics poster courtesy of Mediacorp Suria)

Just like that in the blink of an eye, the fifteenth edition of Anugerah Planet Muzik (APM2016) whizzed by this past Friday 30 September 2016 and held for the very first time at the newly-opened MES Theatre @ Mediacorp. On a more personal note, this was one of the more memorable editions for me, no matter what many online commentators might have said about the awards show that night and post-show. I’ll save more of my comments in my review soon, but as usual, I’ll kickstart my annual APM entry series by honouring the best and most popular that night. Congratulations to all the deserving winners of Anugerah Planet Muzik 2016!!!

 

Ayda Jebat

Artis Paling Popular APM / (APM Most Popular Artiste)

Lagu Paling Popular APM / (APM Most Popular Song) – Pencuri Hati

Ikon Media Sosial / (Social Media Icon)

apm2016-2579

 

Sufi Rashid

Artis Singapura Paling Popular / (Most Popular Singapore Artiste)

Lagu Singapura Paling Popular / (Most Popular Singapore Song) – Kisah Dua Muka

apm2016-2449

 

Hanya Namamu – Caliph Buskers

(Composer & Lyricist: Edry Abdul Halim)

Lagu Terbaik (Malaysia) / (Best Malaysian Song)

Lagu Terbaik APM / (Best APM Song)

apm2016-3382

 

Musikimia – Dan Bernyanyilah

(Composers & Lyricists: Fadly, Yoyo, Stephan, Rindra &  Iksan Skuter)

Band Terbaik / (Best Band)

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

apm2016-3418

 

Rizky Febian – Kesempurnaan Cinta

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

apm2016-1491

 

Glenn Fredly – Perempuanku

Artis Terbaik (Lelaki) / (Best Male Artiste)

glennfredly-perempuanku(Graphics picture courtesy of Mediacorp Suria)

 

Raisa – Kali Kedua

Artis Wanita Terbaik / (Best Female Artiste)

apm2016-3586

 

Yuka Kharisma – Hati Berbisik

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

apm2016-1609

 

Afgan & Raisa – Percayalah

Duo / Kumpulan Terbaik (Best Duo / Group)

afganraisa

 

Awi Rafael & Ayai Illusi – Manusia Sempurna

Kolaborasi Terbaik (Artis) / (Best Artiste Collaboration)

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Beautiful – Aziz Harun

Composers: Faizal Tahir, Mike Chan, Omar K & Aziz Harun
Lyricists: Faizal Tahir & Mike Chan

Kolaborasi Terbaik (Lagu) / (Best Song Collaboration)

apm2016-522

 

Haikal Ali – Bertemu Kembali

Composers: Haramain Osman & Judah Lyne (The Lion Story)

Lyricist: Haramain Osman (The Lion Story)

Lagu Terbaik Singapura / (Best Singapore Song)

apm2016-3340

 

Yuna

Anugerah Rentas Planet / International Breakthrough Artiste

yuna-apm2016(Graphics picture courtesy of Mediacorp Suria)

 

S. Atan

Anugerah Khas Planet Muzik / (Special Music Planet Award)

apm2016-3494

Anugerah Planet Muzik 2016 Media Conference…

apm2016promoposter

(Graphics poster courtesy of Mediacorp Suria)

Due to my heavy work commitments last year, Anugerah Planet Muzik 2015 (APM2015) did not get a proper coverage be it in terms of my customary annual review as well as the usual promo leading up to the event in this domain of mine, even though I did share photographs of the Walk of the Stars and Red Carpet segments during the actual event night. I also did not attend the media conference held at Orchard Hotel when the organisers released the list of nominees back then. Hence I would like to apologise if any of you had waited for me to post them up but ended up not seeing any on this blogsite. I’ll try to make it up this year, which is why this particular post takes precedence, less than a fortnight before the event makes its long-awaited return. This year, Anugerah Planet Muzik 2016 (APM2016), debuts at the newly-opened Theatre @ Mediacorp at Stars Avenue on 30 September 2016.

apm2016-media-conference-040

Fiza O and A B Shaik were the hosts of the media conference..

As with previous years, before the event proper, there will always be the traditional media conference to announce the nominees of the upcoming awards show. This year, the media conference was again held at the premises of Orchard Hotel on 20 July 2016 and was hosted by RIA 89.7FM‘s Fiza O and Warna 94.2FM‘s A B Shaik. Guests who mostly made up of local artistes, came to the event with high hopes of being nominated or at the very least, to soak in the atmosphere. For those still new to the scene, it was an eye-opening experience for them to just be in the same room as other household names, an opportunity for them to get to know one another and have mini networking sessions amongst themselves. Guests that day were also treated to performances by newbies Haikal Ali, Din Ilango and The Chapters, as well as Kalysa Aziz. All four displayed their worth on stage and personally, yours truly thoroughly enjoyed their respective performances.

apm2016-media-conference-055The panel consisting of Mr. Hassan Salleh, Assistant Vice-President (Malay Broadcast Division) & Manja Editor, Ms. Zakiah Halim, Chief of Malay Broadcast Division and Dr. Edmund Lam, Chief Executive Officer of COMPASS, addressing the audience on the experience of selecting the nominees as well as giving nuggets on what to expect in this year’s awards show.

Looking at the final list of nominees this year, I personally feel the local pool of talents were unfortunate not to receive more nominations especially in the regional categories. Last year, Iman’s League made the all-important breakthrough for the Singapore acts and won the Best Band (Regional) award over more established names like Noah, Sheila On 7, Akim & The Magistret and Bunkface. Many netizens especially those in Singapore wondered who they were and cried foul over their win. Personally I was disgusted by the reaction as I thought national pride would at least overcome any emotions over their own personal favourites. Iman’s League though they are quite under the radar here, they have since made inroads in other Asian countries like Korea and even Malaysia, albeit in the underground scene. Their win gave so much hope and inspiration for other acts to follow suit that anything is possible if the quality of song is on par with the other established regional acts.

apm2016-media-conference-012Strong support and attendance by our local pool of talents and representatives at the media conference…

This year, the organisers of APM2016 (Mediacorp Suria, Warna 94.2FM, RIA 89.7FM and Manja Magazine) received 420 nominations from the various music distributors and record labels from Malaysia, Indonesia and Singapore. Nominees are not just solely from the three countries mentioned. Last year, the awards show received their very first nominees from Brunei (Aziz Harun) and Philippines (Mark Adam). This year, Shunpei Nakagawa became the very first Japanese to be nominated through his collaboration with Malaysia‘s Indah Ruhaila with their song “Aishiteru Selamanya” amongst the five nominees in the Best Collaboration (Artiste) category. Hark back to 2012 and you will note Cassidy Anderson from Australia as another nominee from outside the Nusantara region. As the name “Planet Muzik” implies, nominees from other countries are much welcomed. Speaking of Aziz Harun, he will be the third Bruneian after Faiz Nawi (2005) and Jazz Hayat (2013) to make a performance on the APM stage this coming 30th September 2016 (APM Wikipedia page admin please take note!!!).

apm2016-media-conference-074Haikal Ali‘s “Bertemu Kembali” is such a haunting hit, I will not be surprised if he bags either Best New Artiste (Male) or Best Singapore Song awards or even both. His appearances at all three media conferences for APM2016 (including in Kuala Lumpur and Jakarta) showed the organiser’s confidence in his potential…

I had a small chat with Ms. Zakiah Halim during the reception afterwards on what we can expect during the show as well as voicing out some of my doubts over the choice of venue for this year’s event. I had attended three shows already at the new venue earlier this year (“Anda Mahu Rok?“, Sinar Lebaran 2016 and Raya Oh Yeah!) and somehow the place does not give me good vibes in terms of seating arrangement and how much the stage and auditorium as a whole resembles a school hall setting. Without giving much away except for a coy smile and a twinkle in her eyes, Ms. Zakiah Halim only let on that they will do what they can to make the stage more accomodating both to the performers as well as audience. She did elaborate however, on the choice of performers this year. As you will note from the promotional poster, a bulk of the performers are not the same faces you see year in and out. In that respect, it is a refreshing change of line-up. And as always, amongst the performers, there will be deserving winners in their respective categories.

apm2016-media-conference-104Sufie Rashid, together with Taufik Batisah, are the two who got the most nominations amongst the local acts with six each…

Anyway, with less than a week to go before voting your favourites in the popular categories (local and regional) ends, let me just remind you to do the yeoman service for them and log on to Toggle.SG and vote before 23rd September 2016 23:59hrs. Every year you’ll get the sour grapes complaining about undeserving winners, but if you don’t vote, or expect others to do it for you, then you just have to suck it in when the final results are announced on the actual awards night. I did receive several invites via my personal inbox / private messages in my social media accounts from artistes who were nominated in the popular categories to either vote for them or help pitch in for them. I have to apologise that being a media outlet, I must be fair and neutral without showing any personal favours to anyone. What I just did was remind those reading this entry to go out and cast your votes for your respective favourites. I can only afford sufficient enough gesture like this as my way of helping.

apm2016-media-conference-024A group photograph with all the local artistes, representatives of record labels and artiste managements, sponsors and organisers of APM2016

Anugerah Planet Muzik 2016 is presented to you once again by One Drop Perfumes. Main sponsors are Pos T.K.I. and Sensuous By Shannz (Red Carpet event), Co-sponsors – House of Dre and Official Transportation by Uncle Sam Auto Trading Pte. Ltd. Official broadcasters as in previous years are Astro Ria and NET Mediatama Indonesia (NET TV). The awards show is supported by Media Development Authority (MDA) and Composers & Authors Society of Singapore (COMPASS) and is brought to you by Mediacorp Suria, Warna 94.2FM, RIA 89.7FM and Manja Magazine. The awards show will be telecast live via Mediacorp Suria on 30th September 2016 at 9:00pm. You can also catch the livestreaming of the show via Toggle.SG, which includes the Red Carpet event at 8:30pm, and will not be televised on Suria, or the simulcast via the two radio stations Warna 94.2FM and RIA 89.7FM.

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apm-2016-final-nominees-list-page-005(List of nominees courtesy of Mediacorp Suria)

Anugerah Planet Muzik 2015 Roll of Honour

APM 2015 - Media Release

(Graphics poster courtesy of Mediacorp Malay Broadcast Division)

Anugerah Planet Muzik 2015 was, for the third year running, held at Suntec City Convention Centre this past Friday 9 October 2015. The annual music awards show that celebrates the best in the local Malay and regional Nusantara music industry saw 19 awards up for grabs. As usual, I will kickoff my series of APM entries in bits and pieces, beginning with this entry which honours the winners of this year’s edition, the fourteenth since its inception in 2001. So if you would want to view photographs of the event and some of the snapshots I took which might not have been covered by the other media sources, mine will complement theirs. Without further ado, my heartiest congratulations to all the winners of APM2015

Taufik Batisah

Ikon Media Sosial / (Social Media Icon)

Artis Singapura Paling Popular / (Most Popular Singapore Artiste)

Lagu Singapura Paling Popular / (Most Popular Singapore Song) – #Awakkatmane

Lagu Paling Popular APM / (APM Most Popular Song) – #Awakkatmane

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Assalammualaikum – Faizal Tahir

Lagu Terbaik (Malaysia) / (Best Malaysian Song)

Lagu Terbaik APM / (Best APM Song)

(Composers & Lyricists: Omar K, Ezra Kong, Audi Mok, Mike Chan & Faizal Tahir)

faizaltahir(Photo courtesy of budiey.com)

Iman’s League

Band Terbaik / (Best Band)

Lagu Terbaik (Singapura) / (Best Song – Singapore) – Lisa Feat. The Lion Story

(Composers: Haramain Osman, Judah Lyne, Ishyam Lal, Khairul Anhar & Iman; Lyricist: Haramain Osman)

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Kunto Aji – Terlalu Lama Sendiri

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

Lagu Terbaik (Indonesia) / (Best Indonesian Song) – Terlalu Lama Sendiri

(Composer & Lyricist: Kunto Aji)

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Judika – Apakah Ini Cinta

Artis Terbaik (Lelaki) / (Best Male Artiste)

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Raisa – Jatuh Hati

Artis Wanita Terbaik / (Best Female Artiste)

raisa-1(Photo courtesy of kingkangkung.com)

 

Elizabeth Tan – Knock Knock

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

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Afgan & Dato’ Rossa – Kamu Yang Ku Tunggu

Duo / Kumpulan Terbaik (Best Duo / Group)

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Fatin Shidqia Lubis

Artis Paling Popular APM / (APM Most Popular Artiste)

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Dato’ Siti Nurhaliza & Cakra Khan – Seluruh Cinta

Kolaborasi Terbaik (Artis) / (Best Artiste Collaboration)

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Jangan Coba Berlari – Sezairi, Composer & Lyricist: Tulus

Kolaborasi Terbaik (Lagu) / (Best Song Collaboration)

SezairiTulus

Anggun Cipta Sasmi

Anugerah Rentas Planet / International Breakthrough Artiste

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A. Ramlie & The Rhythm Boys

Anugerah Khas Planet Muzik / (Special Music Planet Award)

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Anugerah Planet Muzik 2014 Media Conference

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It’s been too long that I have been away. But I am trying to make a concerted effort to be more pro-active, especially since my favourite annual event is around the corner. Which probably explains why you are reading this post after seeing such a long hiatus in this domain of mine. Anyway, to all the SleeQ fans or those who are curious to view photographs of the recent wedding event of Alyph SleeQ and Azzah Fariha, I apologise that you have stumbled into this blog only to be disappointed. Yours truly was not invited to the wedding, hence I am unable to share the joyous moments with you. But am sure you could view them elsewhere, such is the power of social media these days. Anyway my heartiest congratulations go out to the newlyweds. May Allah bless this union till eternity and beyond. 🙂

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Simple but lovely set-up of the stage…

Right, back to my favourite event. I was invited to attend the media conference which was held at Grand Mercure Roxy Singapore on 2 September 2014. The last time the organisers (Mediacorp Malay Broadcast Division) did it outside of the Caldecott Broadcast Centre to announce the list of nominees for the upcoming event was two years ago at Rendezvous Hotel. This time they managed to secure a bigger space as compared to the last time they held it outdoors and I loved the place as it was conducive to move around as compared to two years ago. This year, Anugerah Planet Muzik 2014 (APM2014) will once again return to my favourite venue, Suntec Convention Centre on 17 October 2014, exactly a year from the last event. For a start, the official logo has been given a fresh revamp from the ones we’ve seen over the past twelve editions.

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The trophies up for grabs on 17 October 2014

Into its thirteenth year, APM2014 once again will be honouring the best and most popular of today’s hottest talents in the region’s Malay music industry. The two and a half hours show will be telecast live on Mediacorp Suria (Singapore), Astro Ria (Malaysia and Brunei) and Net. (Indonesia) as well as Mediacorp radio stations, RIA 89.7FM and Warna 94.2FM, on 17 October 2014 at 9pm (GMT +8) and 8pm (Western Indonesian Time GMT +7). The event is ably supported by Media Development Authority of Singapore (MDA), Composers and Authors Society of Singapore (COMPASS) and Indonesian Music Awards (Anugerah Musik IndonesiaAMI). A total of 19 awards will be presented this year, an increase of one category from last year.

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Hosts for the day – Aura Shai and A. B. Shaik

As is the norm of previous APM media conferences, this year’s event was once again graced by Dr. Edmund Lam, Chief Executive Officer of COMPASS, Ms. Zakiah Halim, Senior Vice-President, Mediacorp Malay Broadcast Division and Mr. Hassan Salleh, Assistant Vice-President of Mediacorp Malay Broadcast Division. Before the event started in earnest, the guests, which mostly made up of our own local acts, were treated to performances by Idi Hakim, of Dinodi fame, and his wife Erma Maulood with their current radio hit “Setia Cinta” as well as Haqym Mokhtar with his current single “Semuanya Alright“, which has already risen up the local radio charts. For those not in the know, Haqym is a former member of trio SupaMusiq, which has so far been disbanded due to the group members having different personal commitments. Ironically, the last time I watched them perform as a group, was the media conference back in 2012 at Rendezvous Hotel.

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The husband and wife pair, Idi Hakim and Erma Maulood performed their hit single, “Setia Cinta“…

The organisers received about 639 song submissions this year, almost doubled from the previous year, but it has to be said that the qualifying period for songs produced to be submitted in this year’s event has been extended by an additional six months, so as to make it more concurrent with the times. As mentioned earlier, there is an additional category for this year’s awards event. The Best Collaboration category has now been segmented into two categories – Best Collaboration (Artiste) and Best Collaboration (SongArtiste, Lyricist, Composer). As highly expected from my review last year, “Kalau Aku Kaya” has been nominated for the Best Duo / Group and Best Collaboration (Artiste) categories, a testament to what a smart song it is and the equally panache delivery by both Awi Rafael and Altimet.

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Haqym Mokhtar didn’t disappoint when he performed “Semuanya Alright“…

But amongst the regional categories, it heartens me to see a number of our local acts making inroads when in the past, we wonder if our artistes or songs would ever make it along with their counterparts from the other two countries. Granted, the Best Male and Best Female categories still have a long way to go for our acts to challenge and be amongst the best five, but they are definitely bridging the gaps in other categories as seen by the nominations of Tujuhband, Aryan Band, Ryan Sufiyan, Sufie Rashid, Aisyah Aziz and Reyza Hamizan in their respective categories. Am actually pleased with Ryan Sufiyan‘s nomination. Here is an example of a guy who never gives up. I remember him being a serial reality show contestant, Anugerah, Singapore Idol and God knows what else, he has joined them all only to falter in the earlier stages. Even if he doesn’t win, it is a signal that hard work and patience will eventually pay off in due time. So for those wannabes out there, do not lose hope when you do not make it. There will always be other avenues for you to prove your worth.

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Dr. Edmund Lam addressing the guests during the media conference. Seated next to him were Mr. Hassan Salleh (left) and Ms. Zakiah Halim (centre)…

Speaking of wannabes, and even established artistes, Ms. Zakiah Halim made a very clear point that day. She urged all local artistes to maintain a degree of professionalism whether it is for rehearsals or during actual shows. Always give off your best, all the time and do not hold back, even if it’s a mere soundcheck or rehearsal. Of course, I would like to add about punctuality and respect as well. Respect for those interviewing you or those watching you. I did mention in my review back in 2011 for artistes to refrain from chewing gum before / during a performance or when accepting awards onstage and I believe the same reminder could be applied after attending the recent media conference event. Maybe those who attended the media conference and reading this will agree with me and understand what I am trying to convey.

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Group photo with all the local acts who attended the media conference event…

So who is performing on 17 October 2014??? As of now, I understand the likes of Sufie Rashid, Aisyah Aziz, Dato’ Siti Nurhaliza, Hazama, NOAH, Tulus, Judika, Maria Calista and Cakra Khan have been confirmed and unconfirmed news that Malaysia‘s Raja Lawak second season winner, Nabil, will be one of the hosts for the night. More names will be confirmed in due time but just looking at the amount of star names on display is enough to whet my appetite as all of them are guaranteed to leave you astounded with their vocal capabilities and showmanship. Tickets priced at $28, $48, $68 and $88 (including GST) can be purchased now at all SISTIC outlets and online at www.sistic.com.sg. This year, the $28 tickets have been introduced to entice more students as well as full-time National Servicemen to attend the event. So what are you waiting for??? Grab your tickets now!!!

APM2014 List of Nominations

List of nominations graphic photos courtesy of Mediacorp Malay Broadcast Division

Snapshots of APM2014 Media Conference

Anugerah Planet Muzik 2012 Review…

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As promised, I am back with my review on the recently-held Anugerah Planet Muzik event held at Max Pavilion Singapore Expo on 15 December 2012. Unlike previous years, I did not scour through internet forums and social media as much to read through the thoughts of viewers and the media from our neighbouring countries. I only skimmed through Twitter (#APM2012) after I came back from the event and spent a good two hours just reading what people had to say. Not surprisingly, the show was slated by our neighbours (what’s new???) but generally the local viewers were the more happier lot, especially when our local heart-throbs walked away with the popular category awards. Of course I saw the word “boring” being bandied about, but it’s subjective from person to person. Even the recent awards shows in Malaysia like Anugerah Industri Muzik and Anugerah Blokbuster were not spared by the so-called “armchair critics”, but these criticisms are difficult to be taken seriously as most of these comments were made by people who know nuts about the industry nor what goes on behind the scenes.

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The hosts – TG, Sophie Navita and Dato’ AC Mizal

Of course, not every production or show is bound to be perfect, but in terms of entertainment value, I feel that this was one of the better editions of Anugerah Planet Muzik we have had in years, much better even than last year. It has to be noted that this was the first time that Mediacorp Radio stations Warna 94.2FM and RIA 89.7FM were holding this event without the support of Beyond DDB Events Sdn. Bhd. after the passing of its late Managing Director, Mr. Amin Hussen. In the past ten editions of Anugerah Planet Muzik, the company, along with the two local Malay radio stations had worked hand in hand and had been a great supporter of this prestigious awards show. At the first time of asking and doing this on their own, I think the two local Malay radio stations can hold their heads up high, and that the previous ten editions have given them good experience and know-how to stage the event better, bar all the internet talks and complaints.

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Awi Rafael, Anji and Aliff Aziz performed “Aishiteru“, made popular by Zivilia

What the social media critics constantly fail to see is the intention of what Anugerah Planet Muzik stands for and why it is held. Unlike our neighbours (both in the industry as well as those watching on the sidelines) who still think based on nationalistic lines / boundaries and still comparing whose artistes / entertainment industries are better (Shame on you Julia Perez & Zed Zaidi!!!), music and entertainment are probably a few things that unite people of different cultures, background and interests. There is a reason why Dato’ Sheila Majid ended her thank-you speech that night with “May music keep us together” and Gigi‘s frontman Armand Maulana had said “Keep the peace, love and respect for music” in his winning speeches at the 2006 and 2008 editions of Anugerah Planet Muzik. The event is all about our regional acts converging and coming together, build networks, share ideas, plan future collaborations and at the same time introduce / reacquaint themselves to the viewers in the region. Sadly, we are still seeing sourgrape comments and slating our neighbouring artistes, especially on the subject of the popularity awards.

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Taufik Batisah and Shila Amzah performing “Aku Bersahaja“…

The most common gripes I heard were the awards won by both Taufik Batisah (Most Popular Regional Artiste) and Hady Mirza (Most Popular Regional Song). I believe when the organisers held media conferences at both Kuala Lumpur and Jakarta to announce the nominees and details of the awards show, the media over there would have reported as well how viewers could vote for their respective favourites via the official Anugerah Planet Muzik page. No matter where you are in the world, you were given the opportunity to vote for your favourites from 5th November 2012 till voting ended on 5th December 2012. You guys had a whole month to vote for your favourites, but when the winners were announced, you claimed that the artistes are not popular in your countries and you have not heard of “Ku Tetap Kan Menunggu” on your respective airwaves. Well suck it up guys, time to start learning who your regional acts are and what songs are popular in Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia. YouTube always helps, it is a question of whether you have the initiative to look up on your own or not. Stop living in your coconut shells and start seeing the quality acts around you, not just where you are based at.

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Aweera of MOJO showing his vocal finesse performing “Andai Ku Bercinta Lagi“…

I admit before this I knew nuts about Ridho Rhoma, Maria Calista, Anji, Soo Wincci, and a few others, but thanks to Anugerah Planet Muzik, I now appreciate their talents and understand how they came to be household names in their respective countries. Likewise I hope our regional neighbours would also feel the same way towards our local acts like Awi Rafael, Audionauts, Siti Zahidah, Aliff Aziz, SleeQ and our two idols Taufik Batisah and Hady Mirza. I thought our local brigade who performed that night were excellent and did not let themselves down at all. They definitely stood tall with their counterparts. My only complaint is that Zahidah should have been granted more minutes than she was given when performing “Malam Ini“, cos Najwa Latif was given a slightly longer time to sing her hit “Kosong” (which by the way, she went flat and admitted to it on the entertainment magazine show “MeleTOP” on Astro Ria) and her massive hit single with SleeQ, “Untuk Dia“.

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Maria Calista – A name that needs to be remembered from now on…

Speaking of Maria Calista, I unashamedly say I am a big fan of her voice now. Every time I watch reruns of her singing Kotak‘s “Apa Bisa” during the Best Song nominees segment, my hairs will stand on its end. It was even better watching her singing it live. That night when she performed the song, I could see she was making constant eye contact towards Kotak, her eyes and facial expressions were seen as though they were asking the group for their approval. As I was seated on the floor next to the group, I could see all three members of Kotak (Tantri, Chua and Cella) nodding their heads in approval and when she broke into chorus, the group just stood and whooped. In fact the Indonesian contingent gave her a standing ovation. Such is the spirit and camaraderie being shown for their countrymen that I secretly hope could be replicated here as well. Ridho Rhoma‘s “Let’s Have Fun Together” is also now stuck in my head, yes yours truly who does not have a liking for Dangdut initially.

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Following in his father’s footsteps – Ridho Rhoma

It was a no-brainer when I heard Dato’ Sheila Majid‘s name being added to the list of performers that night, that she would be the rightful recipient of this edition’s Anugerah Khas Planet Muzik. A deserving recipient for her achievements for the past twenty-seven years and a legend in her own right, she is still the same humble, intelligent, articulate and immaculate person that she is. And it seems that she is quite ageless. Her skin is flawless and looks like she is still in her late 30s. Her songs will always be evergreen in our hearts and the tribute that Hady Mirza and Shila Amzah gave her was commendable, if not an excellent one. Of course the diva herself did not disappoint, as always, lapping up the accolades that came her way but still retaining that sense of humility, which all up-and-coming artistes should emulate if they dream of longevity in the scene. And her speech was sharp, concise and brought so much deep meaning to what it means to love music.

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Style and Elegance personified – Dato’ Sheila Majid

The hosts, all first-timers at this awards show, did their best to liven up the crowd, though I felt the energy dropped slightly when it was Tahar Ghalib (TG)’s turn to speak. Don’t get me wrong, I simply love the tone of his voice and still feel he is the best person to helm a show with a love / sombre theme but when the three of them were together onstage, I could sense a certain energy imbalance between him and Dato’ AC Mizal. I dunno, I could be wrong with my assessment, but I did feel that way that night. However, I could definitely see that TG was determined not to let his two counterparts, Sophie Navita and the wacky Dato’ AC Mizal upstage him, by dishing back some punchlines of his own. Maybe it is the difference in the personalities of the hosts, with Dato’ AC being more extrovert and zany, naturally providing more spark to the proceedings. I do however have a little grievance with the hosting script when it came to the part on Dato’ Siti Nurhaliza. I felt that at a time when she is going through a personal family problem, any jokes on her or her husband is a bit insensitive. Not too sure if they knew what had happened to Dato’ Khalid Mohd Jiwa during or before the event, but for the benefit of doubt, my guess is they did not know till much later.

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APM is all about friendships, collaboration and cooperation between artistes of the three neighbouring countries…

Unlike previous editions of Anugerah Planet Muzik, this one ended much earlier than expected, a sign that showed the organisers have learned from their past experiences of over-running the show. Performances and segments were generally compact and enjoyable and these I felt contributed to a very enjoyable show as a whole. Of course there will always be grievances about repeat / recycled performances by the same artistes year in and out, but I think this is what Anugerah Planet Muzik has come to be known for, as they try to showcase artistes from the three countries coming together and sharing the stage, but as always, more artistes could have been featured. I’m sure more of our local acts would love to display their talents onstage. If I were to make some noise about what I find kinda odd about the performances is that maybe Kotak should not have performed a slow number to open the show and “Beraksi” to introduce the hosts afterwards, as they had already performed the same song during the 2009 edition, which was held in Jakarta. Also, we could have had a different closing to the show, rather than a repeat performance of “Let’s Have Fun Together” by Ridho Rhoma. Unsurprisingly, those seated in the first few rows got up and left for the post-event reception before the show ended proper.

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Another enjoyable performance that night between Teacher’s Pet and Judika

We can all complain and vent our frustrations till the cows come home but it has all been done and dusted, the awards audited and given away to their rightful recipients. I sometimes do not understand why our neighbouring counterparts can sound so vengeful when it comes to competition of any kind, be it in sports or even music. I mean let’s face it, they won most of the Best category awards but still made snide remarks over who is more popular. Can’t we just live and let live and share the awards all around??? This is afterall not Anugerah Planet Malaysia or Indonesia. And for those who are saying that the organisers are making a profit out of this event, me being the biggest critic of this event since I first started blogging on our entertainment scene, will say that they are not. Economic conditions and circumstances in our entertainment industry do not allow us to hold our own awards show for our acts, which is why we have separate award categories during the show to honour our Singapore artistes. Singapore does not have the privilege of having mega sponsorships from big companies as what is being enjoyed by our regional counterparts.

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The finale…

I hope that after all is being said by the critics out there, the know-it-alls to the fellow professionals in the industry, the organisers can take stock and continue the good momentum that they have done and even lift the standards further for future Anugerah Planet Muzik events. I for one would love it if Max Pavilion, as a venue, is scrapped once and for all if the show is to be held here again. This was the third time that the event was held there and all three times, the sound system was a major letdown. I have heard and experienced myself how bad it was and am not too sure if it is the sound system or the acoustics of the venue which hinders quality acts from being heard and enjoyed by the audience. Aliff Aziz‘s performance when he sang “Jangan Ganggu Pacarku” was the one most glaringly heard from the speakers, with the crackling sounds being emitted, a major distraction. The Red Carpet event, though slightly better this time, still had the audience coming into the area meant for media and artistes to sit and I don’t think it was a comfortable affair for them with the audience clamouring and jostling forward to snap photographs of the artistes. Some jokes made by the award presenters also went a bit flat and did not resonate with the audience (the panda jokes come to mind, even though it was meant to be an educational / tourist promotion thing) so perhaps something that the region can relate to would be welcomed the next time. Still, it does not take away the fact that this was a much better event than last year, and for that I commend the organisers and thank them for kindly inviting me to the grand occasion…