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    Tuesday, August 21, 2007

    I've been watching that Arabic channel on Astro recently (Channel 5). It is quite entertaining. At first, I was watching it because I was getting cheap thrills from watching beautiful people speak Arabic. Imagine: this pretty model thing speaking like she is trying to hock this hunk of phlegm out of her throat.

    Then the shocking revelation. Their music.

    I am not sure if what I saw on TV represents what is going on in the Arab world but the music is fantastic. And the industry, while I am sure, is also plagued with piracy and illegal music downloads, seems so much more vibrant compared to what is going on in Malaysia. You'd think as Islamic countries, they'd have their women artists wrapped up head to toe. But no. The music and image are far more appealing and modern (and of course, sexier) than what we have going on here. Compared to them, Malaysian artists look antiquated and old-fashioned.

    I am going out on a limb to say this. But damn the torpedoes. I blame the media (to a certain extent) but I also blame the phase of the moon that clashes with Neptune.

    A singer here shows a little too much bare shoulder, and everyone gets on their case. A singer gets a little attention from some religious department, and that story becomes an exclusive. Siti Nurhaliza shows some cleavage and that makes the front page with her cleavage blurred out.

    With such backward and regressive thinking, it is no wonder our music industry is still in the stone-age. The only excitement is when a singer is embroiled in scandal. But never about the music. What does that say about us as a people and as a race?

    But I hear that people still get stoned to death in some Arab countries though. Go figure.

    Tuesday, August 14, 2007

    Feeling rather patriotic, I came to a quiet realisation a few days ago amidst our almost-reckless national ass-kissing pre-Merdeka celebrations. Like most Malaysians, I am quite proud of Malaysia's achievements. But (there's always a "but" when we say something positive about Malaysia) it is the same kind of pride you get when you look at some under-developed African country and go, "I'm glad to be Malaysian."

    Still, pride nonetheless.

    Anyway, back to my realisation.

    We look to become this "world-class city" with "world-class people." Sadly, I do not think that's going to happen in my lifetime. Simply because we already have a model of the kind of country we are but may or may not realise. But we think we want to grow up to become something else. Perhaps like Tokyo. International city with it's own identity and culture. Proud and productive people. And economic superpower.

    Unlike, say, Singapore. International city. Total sell-out. In 20 years, there will be more white people than Asians in Singapore. But the leaders of Singapore seem to be OK with that because they already speak with an accent. The difference here is that Singapore has been pretty clear about what they want to be when they grow up: Hong Kong.

    So back to Malaysia.

    I am driving to KL. Traffic was slow. I take some time to soak in the sights. I am really looking around. I've driven down this highway before but I had never noticed that building or that sign. Then it hits me. Kuala Lumpur is not a friendly international city. Look at the street signs. I am on the Sungai Besi highway. The entry road to the city for most foreigners who fly in to KLIA. Yet the street signs are in Malay. Are we suppose to expect our buddy Dieter from Germany to know what "IKUT KIRI" is?

    You'd think I'd think "Hey! We have our own language. Why not show it and make our visitors feel like they are REALLY in another country right? After all, those Germans do the same!"

    Sadly, I didn't think Germany or Japan. What came to mind was Mexico.

    Yes, Malaysia is like Mexico.

    And that's not necessarily a bad thing. (!)

    Both countries have very similar characteristics and you can see where this is going. So, we are really like beautiful Mexico. Only difference is, we will hang your ass if you sell drugs here. Other than that, we are almost there. We even have the Spanish soap operas to prove it.

    Friday, August 10, 2007

    There are two things I really do not get. (Actually, I don't get a lot of things!) The first one is the popped collar. (See pic below.) I see that a lot with guys wearing their polo shirts. I want to come right out and say "I don't get it." It's right up there with the hip hop rapper guy who pulls up one side of this pants up to his ankles.

    Maybe I am old but is this supposed to be cool? The way I see it, only two two people can do the popped collar thing: A priest and Dracula. On anyone else, I just don't get it. If you know me, and you pop your collar, please explain it to me. The only reason I can think of is for neck-area ventilation. Better air flow? You tell me. I want to understand.


    And then there's this "babe" thing. "Hey babes!" or "Hi beb!" And there's the "sweetie." Somehow, these people think they are in an episode of "Friends" or they are white and in a teen high school movie.

    Stop it.

    Sunday, August 05, 2007

    It's 8 a.m. Sunday. And the mixes are done! All eight songs!

    Life goes on. And it is going in the form of the McDonald's Sausage McMuffin™.
    It's 6:38 am on Sunday. I've been sitting in the studio since 2 p.m. Saturday afternoon. And I have two more songs to go. I am about to pass out now. I just hope that the mixes won't sound like crap when I listen to it with fresh ears later today. There is nothing glamourous about being a music producer.

    Saturday, August 04, 2007

    Today I am finalising the mixes for Diddy's album. And while waiting for the mixes to be exported, I have decided to blog aimlessly.

    Before I begin, I would like to announce that the "NO BLOG UPDATE MONTH" for the month of July was a great success! *Applause*

    On with the show.

    Let me tell you about this party I went to last week. I do not usually go to parties. In fact, I do not get out much. But this one, I had to go because.....

    This is a very exclusive party and only a handful of people were invited. I think the only reason why I was invited was because I am a close friend to this person. Not because of my personality or that I've ever shown any affinity for this kind of lifestyle. (And come to think of it, neither has he.) Anyway, it's a costume party and we were to dress up like members of the "Village People".

    So exclusive is this party that we were not told of the location but were told to meet at this place in KL. Once everyone arrived (about 20 or so), we were searched and our handphones and cameras were taken away from us and put into little bags.

    I thought to myself, "Oh goody! We are going to get a sneak preview of "The Simpsons" movie!"

    Not so.

    We were led like cattle to another place and whisked away into a suite. (When you are dressed like the "Village People", you have to be "whisked away". And I am sure I heard someone say "Look at them. They must be going to a self-improvement seminar in personal style and fashion!")

    Well, we open the door to the suite and I see pretty men in their thongs serving drinks...hairy butt cheeks and all. Then we have more pretty boys in their cotton whities dancing in the four corners of the room. And let's not forget the one pretty naked boy sitting at the fruit table with fruits and vegetables cover his crotch.

    The things people do for a living...

    And now, I shall pray and ask the good Lord for healing.
    This past week, I'd been feeling a little depressed. And I finally found out why just last night at about 3 a.m. right after I finished the final "Harry Potter" book. After I finished the last page of the book, I felt some relief. I reread the last chapter because I had some withdrawal symptoms.

    Finally, it is over. And that damn book actually made me sad! Largely because it's the last thing I read before going to sleep. And it's usually a dark moment in the story. So I go to sleep with it and that "darkness" just brews in my subconscious when I am asleep. And I wake up with it and carry it with me for the rest of the day. It shows when I start referring to my friends as "He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named" or "Asshole-Number-One". And this has been going on for over a week.

    Now I can go back to my other book and watch Star Trek before I go to sleep.