Koes Bersaudara and HI(story)

Koes Bersaudara (Koes Brothers) is a pop and rock band from Jakarta, Indonesia. The group consists of five sons of Mr. Koeswojo, an ambtenaar from Tuban, east Java. Members of this leading group in early 60-ies are Koesdjono (John), Koestono (Tony), Koesnomo (Nomo), Koesjono (Yon), and Koesrojo (Yok). This article is referred to book Musisiku (KPMI, Republika, 2007) and some to Wikipedia.

It is undeniable that Tony, who play music since his very young with actor Sophan Sopiaan in Teenagers Voice band, is the master mind behind Koes Bersaudara. Founded since 1962, Koes Bersaudara released 11 singles in EP format, and 20 album in LP and cassete format. Some of their hits are Dara Manisku, Angin Laut, and Kuduslah Cintamu.

Koes Bersaudara goes recording firstly in Irama, Cikini Jakarta, after passing audition by legend musician Jack Lesmana. In the first formation, Yok and Yon are likely to be leading vocalists, and likely influenced by Kalin Twins and Everly Brothers, who used simple style of harmony mostly based on parallel thirds.

After releasing a single Telaga Sunji, John disbanded from the group. Koes Bersaudara songs are popularized mostly thru Radio Republik Indonesia and radio AURI. They become more poplar than soloists Alfian and Rahmat Kartolo, who are very popular before Koes Bersaudara.

The story of Koes Bersaudara is very closed to the history of early Indonesian political situation. Old Order regime under Soekarno administration banned Koes Bersaudara music and their fashion, because politics of anti-America. Koes Bersaudara music and fashion was identical with Westernlook and that is anti-patriotism. Tony and his brothers then were jailed by government. After three months in jail, they were released a day before what the so-called Gerakan 30 September 1965, happened. It is the worst political turbulance ever happened in Indonesia.

In 1967, Koes Bersaudara went to recording studio Dimita and published a long play consists of 12 songs (Jadikan Aku Dombamu, and so on), and later published an album entitled To the So Called the Guilties. In early New Order administration, national economy collapsed with it’s inflation 600 percent. Koes Bersaudara members got their trouble with daily life. Nomo (drummer) then disbanded from the group. The rest made a new group called Koes Plus, after Murry (drummer) from Zainal Combo and Patas band join the group.

In 1977, Nomo came back to the group and made any album notably Kembali, which bring old name Koes bersaudara perdana. It is cited that Koes Bersaudara (new formation) released a few albums, but I am not sure to this such version story. *

Track list

Artist: Koes Bersaudara
Album: Angin Laut
Publisher: Irama, 1964

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