quarta-feira, junho 14, 2006
Cinta Manis Indonesia
It was all over the news but now it’s no longer there. This doesn’t mean that trouble in paradise is over. The Merapi is still blowin’ tons of ashes and the chances for a new major earthquake are still very real. The results of the last one are still visible. People in Indonesia have lived with this kind of situation for millennia but nobody gets really used to such terms. Not only people suffer from earthquakes and volcanoes but also buildings. Apparently Borobudur is damaged. To what extent is not yet clear.
I visited Java and Bali a couple of years ago for a period of 20 days. It was an intense and challenging trip to a totally different world. Travelling long distances across an overwhelming landscape with crowded cities, full of noise and life. Djakarta is well known for being one of the most air-polluted cities of the world [I can tell ya, it’s true] but apart from that it’s also the nation’s musical capital. Indonesia has, together with neighbour Malaysia, one of the biggest music industries of Asia and a strong home market. The Indian, Japanese and maybe the Chinese markets are bigger [it’s hard to tell because of all the illegal copies].
A typical music shop or street salesman carries not only home made and western products but in equal parts cassettes and DVD’s with Bollywood soundtracks, Malaysian, Mandarin and Cantonese pop singers. Occasionally you can find some Japanese stuff.
I’m not going to try to explain the history of Indonesian (pop)music. I can’t. I read about it and it looked to me that none of the authors got anywhere either. Obviously people in Indonesia have a strong sense of the nation’s own musical heritage [for instance, Balinese Gamelan] but for years they have also been incorporating a great variety of foreign influences in their music. A cross-section of Indonesian popular music will give you good impression of what people around Asia perceive as pop music.
After the trip I made a collection of oldies and contemporary songs. It’s not a flawless or mint collection. Of some tracks I don’t know the title or even the artist’s name. Some tracks are edited because the original copies where also edited. They’ve just cut off tracks right in the middle or they switched over to a different tune for no particular reason at all. The old ones are copies of old records just like those scratchy ones from Bollywood. Original master tapes are sometimes pretty rare. Nevertheless there’s enough to enjoy and cracks, as wrinkles, have their charm.
Sakura – Harvey Malaiholo
Dunia - Masi Mari – Salute to Koes
Penasaran – Rhoma Irama and Soneta Group
Malayang – Dewi Sandra
Berdendang – Soneta Group, Elvy Sukaesih and Rhoma Irama
Mari Berjoget – Salute to Koes
Tukang Tuak – Benyamin S. and Ida Royani
KNTP - Sunyahni
Nsantana – Salute to Koes
Jaleuleu – Sambasunda
Ayun Ayun – Manthous
Ku Akui – Dewi Sandra
Nolam Susu – Indro
Cinta Berduri – Elvy Sukaesih and Soneta Group
Hanya Memuji – Shany and Marcell
Keadilan – Nasida Ria
Keraguan – Trie Utami
Sengaja – Elvy Sukaesih and Soneta Group
Masya Allah – Rhoma Irama and Soneta Group
Sakura Dalam Pelukan – Chrisye
I’ve added some extra tracks from Sambasunda, Elvy Sukaesih and from Rhoma Irama. He’s the Indonesian answer to Elvis [reborn Christian parallel and everything], has a prolific state of duty in the music industry and still makes records.
Malam Terakhir – Elvy Sukaesih, Rhoma Irama and Soneta Group
Seni – Rhoma Irama and Soneta Group
Team Risk – Sambasunda