Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Interview on WAVELENGTH with Ali Johan on BFM in PJ, Malaysia - August 16, 2014

Here's a link to the INTERVIEW on WAVELENGTH with Ali Johan on BFM from Aug 16, 2014, last week!!

Many thanks to Ali Johan, and BFM for inviting me to be on Wavelength.

And thanks also to Joe Chelliah for making the special effort to contact BFM on my behalf to suggest that they interview me.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Giving a talk about my research project in Singapore tomorrow evening!


Took a bus back to SIngapore the very next day.. toured Jalan Ampas studios, and met the Rythmn Boys!

 JALAN AMPAS STUDIOS - Where Tan Sri P Ramlee's films were made for SHAW STUDIOS. 
(thanks to SHAW BROTHERS for giving me an exclusive tour and entry to the grounds)

Then the very same day, I went to Geylang Serai (the seedy red light district of Singapore - once called THE LIVERPOOL of Singapore) to meet the legendary Rythmn Boys - one of the absolute TOP bands from those days - and backing band for Adnan Othman for 4 EPs.

MEETING Zaleha Hamid again, and one day in Cool, Funky Johor Bahru

My sole mission in going to JOHOR was to meet up with 60s and 70s pop star Zaleha Hamid again. However, as a huge bonus, I also met up with a young lawyer in JB name Yi who bought my Pop Yeh Yeh comp and contacted me via Instagram.  He offered to show me around JB and also took me to the location for the interview with Zaleha.

The interview was AMAZING.  I will post some more anecdotes from this talk with Malay pop and "Dangdut Queen of Malaysia" very soon.
It also turned out that a really cool artists collective called JOHO (named for the local pronunciation of JOHOR) was right next to the shop where I did the interview with Zaleha Hamid.

Me and Yi
One of the artists for GOOGLE DOODLE visited JOHO's new location recently and decorated one of the walls.  It's really impressive close up but I couldnt manage to get a very good shot.

After the interview with Zaleha, Yi gave me his "Ten Cent Tour" of all the hip cool spots in JB (will post photos and links soon!), and then, offered me a spare bed to crash on at his family home.  SO GRATEFUL TO THIS GUY!!

Parting is such sweet sorrow....

Finally, the time to leave KL arrived and I had to say goodbye to Adnan and Fatimah, who have shown me the most incredible kindness and generosity in the past week.  Here's a photo taken the morning they drove me to the bus station (where I departed for Johor Bahru, and the Singapore the next day).  Words cannot express how grateful I am to them for all the help they gave me this past week.   I hope to see them again soon.   THANK YOU ADNAN and FATIMAH.

Of course, I also had to take a photo with Adnan's super-cool daughter Ariana who plays guitar in the power pop group COUPLE and also in the moody, experimental group The Venopian Solitude.

Interviews at THE STAR and BFM

BU 8 Building in PJ  - Home of BFM -  the Business Station
 A peek inside the BFM office
 ADNAN chatting with ALI JOHAN - host of "The Muddy Confluence" on BFM (among other productions he contributes to there)
I was invited by Ali Johan to do another interview at BFM (I did one with She Fah Szetu back in 2010) a day or so before I left KL.  Adnan came along and talked with Ali Johan a little bit before our interview (he said he didnt want to be interviewed and would rather that I do the talking for now.)

Then, the next day, I met up with Zack Yusof - a writer and producer for THE STAR.  He took me to HARD GRAFT RECORDS to do a video interview for THE STAR ONLINE  Zack also happens to do a show on BFM called 33RPM

I will post links to BOTH of these interviews as soon as they are available, but for now, I thought I'd just post some photos, and say THANKS to both of them for covering my POP YEH YEH Research project. 

Looking at photo albums with Adnan Othman

Adnan Othman and I are working on a compilation of his songs from the 60s which will be coming out very very soon on Sublime Frequencies. We spent a lot of time over the past week working on the liner notes for this comp and making sure everything was correct.  

On one of the last evenings I stayed at his house, Adnan brought out a few very precious photo albums and we went through them one by one and he told me stories about the photos.  We discussed various ways of preserving the photos in a better way also and he and I agreed that we should purchase some new photo albums for these rare relics from his personal, and pop star life.

It was really magical to look through these photos with him, and i really picked up on the "feeling" of those days from looking at them with him and listening to his stories.