Friday, November 28, 2008
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Khadijah Ibrahim’s The Pearl Anniversary Concert at Dewan Filharmonik Petronas had the audience mesmerised.
SHUIB TAIB was one of them.
THIRTY years of a glittering showbiz career sallied forth in a remarkable show by Khadijah Ibrahim billed “The Pearl Anniversary Concert” at Dewan Filharmonik Petronas, Kuala Lumpur.
Khadijah took her audience back to the days when her hits like Ku Sangka Siang Kiranya Malam, Ku Pendam Sebuah Duka, Tangisan Hati Yang Derita and Janji Mu dominated the airwaves.
She began the show by singing a line from Leaving on a Jetplane, the first song she sang in public. Kathy, as she was known when she started her career, also entertained the audience with anecdotes.
“To finally make it here is just great. It’s tough competing with all the new stars like Mawi, er, who is he?, she joked. When I first started touring, I went to places like Jengka, Machang, Tasik Cini... not Los Angeles, mind you!
“With my looks, height, a name like Kathy and the fact that I could speak a little English, kampung folk thought I was a mat salleh. So it was all right for me to sing in English. They found it surprising though that I could sing in Malay as well.”
Back in 1979, this writer attended a RM5 concert on a school football field in Kampung Manjoi, Ipoh.
Artistes included Khadijah’s brother Latiff and comedians A.R Badul and the late Yusni Jaafar but Khadijah was the main draw with a 40-minute slot.
Those days, anyone worth her salt would be compared to the dynamic Anita Sarawak who was already well-known in the Asian region. The local Press was predicting Kathy to be the next Anita.
Thankfully, there was no need for comparisons. Khadijah proved that she could hold her own.
And her Pearl concert was added proof. With her powerful and at times husky vocals, Khadijah had the audience in the packed hall mesmerised.
“Before I recorded my first English album, I was required to prove that I could sing in English. I was asked to sing a song of Donna Summer’s (the queen of disco at the time),” said Khadijah before giving a soulful rendition of Summer’s version of MacArthur’s Park, another song she used to sing.
Khadijah recalled how her father did not get to see the day when she released her first album in 1978.
“Mum would follow me around then but after six months, I lost her too. Ladies and gentlemen, I dedicate this next song to my mother,” she said before belting out Mama Oh Mama.
Khadijah’s following medley of numbers reflected her career journey, with the audience cheering her on: Oh Kekasih Ku (a Malay version of Wishing on a Star), Ku Gembira Di Samping Mu, Potret Kasih, Kau Timbul Kembali, Sabar Menanti and English numbers like Memories (which she dedicated to her ex-husband, Mohd Rashid Fahmi Bastaloo), Everyday Girl as well as a cover version of Autumn Leaves.
In between her three costume changes, Khadijah introduced her guests, Datuk Ahmad Nawab and Ramli Sarip.
Ahmad was the man who was instrumental in Khadijah’s success, her mentor of sorts, having penned more than 2,000 songs and so many of her hits. The 75-year-old saxman hit the right notes with the audience when he played Spanish number Besame Mucho and his self-composed winner, Kali Terakhir Ku Lihat Wajah Mu.
Khadijah and Ramli did a beautiful duet with Doa Buat Kekasih, one of their evergreen hits. It also turned out to be the favourite number of Raja Permaisuri Agong, Tuanku Nur Zahirah, who was also present.
Others in the audience included singers Syafinaz Selamat, Halil Chik, politician Datuk Seri Shahrizat Abdul Jalil and several corporate figures.
She ended her show with Peristiwa Di Bulan November, and from her performance that day, November 2008 will be hard to forget.
If you haven’t caught any of her shows, you should not miss any of her performances. For here is one entertainer who can lift up your spirit as high as her immitable vocals can soar!
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Raden Adjeng Kartini, says the history book. An article in the The Sunday Star named her as Raden Ayu Kartini.
She's Javanese for sure. The latter is probably easier to our Malaysian tongue and hence it was used in the article. May be, I dont know. Apparently she played an important role in the birth of nationalism in South East Asia, or Indonesia in particular. She reckoned in order for Indonesians to get out of the poverty cycle, education is the keyword.
However, she died at 24 while giving birth.
But her effort would not go unnoticed or unremembered. She is considered as Srikandi in Indonesia and would be fondly remembered for her effort.
And why, you would ask, that I would be talking about this Indonesian lady who died in the 1900s in Indonesia?
The truth is I am sitting for my SPM and the history paper today (Tuesday).
Eh, I mean, my son Arif is sitting for SPM and his first paper is today.
But of course in this age, it goes without saying that the parent – in this case, it is this blogger, would be sitting for the same paper too. So I had been in the past week reading along his text on history, which is not really this blogger's cup of tea.
I mean years ago – 28 years ago to be exact, when he was sitting for his SPM, we had the choice to choose geography over history and I believe over 90% of us chosed geography which resembles more to science than history.
Nevermind that this blogger during F1 would want to be a archaelogist! So Add Math, Physics and Chemistry; these were difficult subjects to him then. But now, they are a piece of cake.
Sort of. With the benefit of hindsight, of course.
But Biology is still not my cup of tea, just like history or Bahasa Melayu.
To be honest, I am taking it easy this time around. Que Sera sera, so they say, what will be will be.
Sure, I would do anything for him to get good results. But life is a marathon and not a sprint. My regret in life was treating it like a 100 m sprint when it is really is a 42km run. By the time one reaches 100 m mark, one was almost dead if one were to sprint ala Carl Lewis.
So Arif (and Akmal of course), good luck and all the best for tomorrow. I do wish I have one more month to prepare you for the exam. But then again, it would still be one month short and it would never end.
In the end, what is more important is how you lead you life in the future.
I don't remember my SPM that well in 1980 beyond the fact that we were all expected to breeze through. The expectation were high but so were the confidence then. To be honest, at that point, we didn't really care much. Many of us were already visualizing ourselves in Australia or England, or in this blogger's case America.
Someone with his dad in Dewan Bahasa was putting out spot questions for BM on the Dewan Makan notice board. Hampeh, to be honest; we should know better though.
I don't recall much of the other papers. Add math and physics – we were quite nervous then. After all half of the us failed our first add math exam in F4 with getting the egg. This blogger was lucky he was not in that esteemed group. He probably score a 6 (out of 100 of course!).
Aah TY! Where would we be without you?
Honestly in hindsight, except for may be Rashid and Rozhan and a few others, I am not sure if many of us cared that much that year for our SPM.
If at least in reflection.