Category Archives: Indonesia 70-ies

10 Best Indonesian Islamic Albums

Indonesian Islamic song has it’s history. It was published for the first time in 1970-ies. The band who popularized this genre for the first time was supposed to be Bimbo, a latin-pop group from Bandung city. According to Bimbo as quoted in a book Sajadah Panjang Bimbo (Tatang Sumarsono, Mizan, 1998), Samsyudin, a leader of Bimbo, once upon time in 1973, got inspiration after praying Friday in Salman ITB Mosqoue to write a song about God (Tuhan). This song was created intentionally as a pop song. But after this song got its popularity very soon, later Bimbo was inspired to published an album consist of Modern Kasidah, what the so called Islamic religious song.

Before this era, Islamic song was expressed thru Gambus, a traditional music rooted from Egypt and Arab, and therefor the lyric also in Arabic. In this context, Bimbo made a breakthrough because they composed Islamic song in Indonesia language, and with modern instrument and arrangement. So that why Bimbo called this genre as Modern Kasidah.

After Bimbo popularized this genre, other bands followed this trend such as Koes Plus, even AKA, a rock band. And in every decade since then there are several bands and singers who published Indonesian Islamic pop song. Koran Tempo in 2011 published a brief review on 10 Best Indonesian Islamic Songs — ever. Check it thru pdf.file below. *

C2 Ramadan-C7 ok

C3 Ramadan-C6 ok

Diksophone, Dakotjan and Idris Sardi

Album Dakotjan by Idris Sardi Orchestra, Bali record, 1970-ies

Idris Sardi is a maestro violinist par exellence. Fortunately that he has his attention to children song.  One of his works, beside album Ninabobo, is Dakotjan. Published by Bali record in 1970-ies, this album is such rare item. In here Idris Sardi conducted an orchestra and a children choirs to interpret 8 children songs composed by Indonesians such as Pak Kasur, Ibu Sud, Lim Keng Liong, and Kwartet Sariman. The songs are: Dakotjan, Lihat Kebunku, Naik Delman, Ajam Berkotek, Burung Kutilang, Kukurujuk, Amin dengan Kerbaunja, and Bungaku.

This album is also unique, because Idris Sardi blended modern instruments with local instrument called angklung. This instrument is made of bamboo which crafted to produce sounds. Even the angklung which is used  here already modifed as “piano angklung” to the so-called “dikso-phone”. Diks is the name of the inventor of Dikso-phone. Curious? Check this album. *

10 Best Lebaran Songs

Album Tahu Tempe, by Oslan Hussein, Irama.

Single Hari Lebaran, by Didi, composed by Ismail Marzuki, Irama.

Lebaran, or Idul Fitri festival is most important moment for Indonesian Moslems. It is a happy moment after fasting almost 30 days long. In this moment, people celebrate a winning moment for spiritual cultivating. And usually, music and Islamic song is part of this festival. Some musicians are aware of this such moment for composing song which express happiness and joyful. Some of the songs are memorable and almost become national anthem, since those songs always been heard in public space, such as mall, plaza and shopping centers.

I try to find out Ten Best Lebaran Songs, off course among my personal collections. And the result is:

1.Lebaran, composed by M. Jusuf, interpretated by singer Oslan Hussein, taken from album Tahu Tempe by Oslan Hussein, with a band Orkes Widjaja Kusuma under direction M. Jusuf, published by Irama, no date releasing.

2. Hari Lebaran, composed by Ismail Marzuki, interpretated by singer Didi, with a band Orkes Mus Mualim, a single LP, published by Irama, no date releasing.

3. Raihlah Kemenangan, composed by Elfa and Wieke Gur, interpretated by Elfa’s Singers, with a band Elfa Seciora, taken from album Lebaran, published by PT Aquarius Musicindo, 2004.

4. Joged Lebaran composed by Oslan Hussein, interpretated by Elfa’s Singers, with a band Elfa Seciora, taken from album Lebaran, published by PT Aquarius Musicindo, 2004.

5. Selamat Idul Fitri, composed by A. Mustofa Bisri and Neno Warisman, interpretated by Neno Warisman, music and arrangement by Dwiki Dharmawan, taken from album Tembang Lebaran under music director Dwiki Dharmawan, published by Sony Music, 1999.

6. Idul Fitri, composed by Tompi, interpretated by Tompi, taken from album Soulful Ramadhan by Tompi, published by e-Motion, 2010.

7. Fajar 1 Syawal, composed by Wandi and usep Romli, interpretated by Bimbo, Yanti Bersaudara, Lingga Binangkit, taken from album Wudhu, by Bimbo, published by Musica, 1990.

8. Lebaran, composed by Rhoma Irama. Interpretated by Rhoma Irama, taken from album Lebaran Bersama Soneta, published by Pelangi Record, no date releasing.

9. Lebaran, composed by Ibeng and AB. Utomo, interpretated by Osby, Ibeng, Aditya Gumay, AB Utomo, Sita and Nuke, arrangement: Agus Hendra Jaya, taken from album Nada & Dakwah by Garis, published Ceepee, 2000-ies.

10. Idul Fitri, composed by Tri Utami and Analta, interpretated by singer Gito Rollies, taken from album Tembang Lebaran under music director Dwiki Dharmawan, published by Sony Music, 1999. *

Giant Step for Indonesian Music

Giant Step is a progressive rock band from Bandung City (Indonesia) which founded by Benny Soebardja, Yockie, Deddy Stanzah, and Sammy in 1973. Later on, the line up of this group was changed many times. Since it’s genre is not so popular among Indonesians in that time, so this group is not as popular as Favourites group or the Mercys, two of pop bands in that era.

But actually, their contribution to the history of Indonesian music was giant. So far untill 1985, they released 7 albums. So it is such a blessing in disguisse if their group was called Giant Step, since this band’ works was such a giant step for Indonesian music. It is because Giant Step was a leading band which introduced progressive rock genre for Indonesian music lovers, beside Guruh Gypsy (1976), and Harry Roesli (1971 ect).

LP album "Persada Tercinta" by Giant Step, Irama Tara, 1978

It is undeniable that Giant Step music was influenced by prog-rock and rock music from the west in that era, notably Gentle Giant, and Frank Zappa. One of band member ever quoted as saying in Rolling Stone Indonesia magazine that his music was influenced by Gentle Giant and Frank Zappa. Even Giant Step ever release a pop-rock album, but their best albums was still the prog-rock ones (Giant on the Move, and Kukuh Nan Teguh).

We have one LP of Giant Step album entitled Persada Tercinta (released by Irama Tara, 1978). Listening to this album, the people who are familiar to the music of Gentle Giant, they will remember the relatively same atmosphere between the two. Off course not identical. *

Reference: 1. Book “Musisiku”, Republika and KPMI, 2007; 2. Rolling Stone Indonesia magazine


The Spring of Lokananta

Album Keagungan Tuhan, by A. Kadir (Lokanta, 1970-ies, CD version 1980-ies)

Album Menanti Musafir by A. Kadir (Lokananta, 1970-ies, CD version 1990-ies)

Lokananta lovers now can get old Indonesia albums released by Lokananta in CD format. These CD’s are sold in some stores in Yogyakarta, such Popeye Store in Mataram street, and Mirota Batik in Malioboro street. On January 2011, I bought two albums of A. Kadir entetitled Keagungan Tuhan, and Menanti Musafir. These two albums originally released in LP format on 1970-ies, and may be cassettes. This CD version was rereleased by Perum PNRI Surakarta, local government agent for state printing on 1980-ies. So it is not something new. But it is supposedly that when those albums was rereleased, public were not yet being aware on such old albums. So the albums were not succes commercially. Fortunately, that in these years, the  situation  is different.  Some people start to like such old Indonesian songs as we can see after an organization KPMI start to pay attention on old Indonesian recorded music.

These two albums are truly superb recording. It consists of Melayu songs in term of traditional genre.  This  Melayu  song  is  a second  evolution of Melayu music before later on become dangdut. Mostly the songs composed by A. Kadir and interpretated by singer Ida Laila. The music sounded traditional, and the band was a traditional Orkes Melayu — with acoustic bass ect. The key  works:  Keagungan Tuhan, and Malam Pengantin. *

Fenty Effendy’s Footstep

Fenty Effendy's album, Irama, no date.

Fenty Effendy is the Indonesian singer who begins her career at13 years old in 1965. A television pruducer find her singing in Kota Bandung, and brought her to perform in TVRI firstly on March 1965 with a band Quartet Eka Djaja under direction Rudi Rosadi. After that first television show, publisher Irama, the leading recording company which publish such Oslan Hussain reputation, recorded Fenty Effendy’s album entitled “Paturaj”.

There are 12 songs: Harapan Ibu (Fenty effendi), Paturaj (Kosaman Djaja), Sarinah (Rudi Rosadi), Naik Kelas  (F Rorimpandey), Relakan Aku (F Rorympandey), Sapu Njere Pegat Simpaj (Sambas), Historia D’an Amor, Hari Gembira (A. Salis), Tanpa daksa (Mang koko), bandung Selatan di waktu malam (Ismail marzuki), Burung merpati (Kosaman Djaja), dan Tidurlah Adikku (Fenty effendy).

I am not familiar with Fenty Effendy, but this album is collectable, for some reasons:

1. The band Medenasz under direction Dimas Wahab is the popular name, especially Dimas Wahab is the man behind the success of Yanti bersaudara.

2. There are songs composed by some leading composers such as ismail Marzuki, Sambas, mang Koko and so on.

3. The music and arrangement are well-crafted.

4. The quality of the sound and recording is superb.

I post this album to day, to celebrate KPMI, the community of Indonesian music lovers, which  celebrate the 5 anniversary.  This organisation has a deep concern to the recorded Indonesian musics. *

God Bless This Huma

Sorry for long time no posting my opinion. And because I just got this LP Huma di Atas Bukit by rock band God Bless, so I urged my self to post this note. God Bless is the best Indonesia rock band ever so far. They composed some memorable songs such as Panggung Sandiwara, Syair Kehidupan, Sodome Gomorah and this Huma di Atas Bukit song. Actually, this old group (70-ies) did not released any LP album. But their publishier, made a copy in LP format for commercial purpose. But whatever, this is the blessed LP of God Bless. *

LP Huma di Atas Bukit by Gode Bless (Pramaqua, no date)

Sepakbola Song

There are a lot of indonesian songs talk about football (sepakbola). It is common if the songs were created upon the order of FIFA comittee, such as song written by Padi, Indonesian band. But it was something special if the songs written by Indonesian composer without any interest with FIFA. Look what a band Trio Bimbo done. They have a song entitled Sepakbola which was written in 1970-ies. Although not so popular, but truly there was an Indonesian song talking on football. *

Oma Irama on Sundanesse Gamelan

Do you ever imagine that Oma Irama, Indonesian dangdut singer, interpretated traditional Sundanesse song — even under Sundanesse gamelan orchestra? But, this was a fact that Oma Irama unce upon time in history engaged in album entitled Sekar Tjatur by duo-vocalists Titim Fatimah and Oma Irama with orchestra Gamelan Seni Sunda Bhinneka Tunggal Ika (produced by Canary and Metropolitan record, with no time of releasing).

Consists of 8 songs, Oma Irama only interpretated one song entitled Sekar Tjatur. This album is purely traditional music with it’s gamelan sound and melody. Why Oma Irama was engaged in this album? I think he just want to endorse traditional music and musicians, since Oma Irama in that time (1970-ies) had his popularity, meanwhile the traditional musicians were diffcult to get popularity.

This artefact showed us that there was similarity between Sundanesse and dangdut music. It is in the case of Oma Irama who then become a King of Dangdut. And there is such opinion. Singer Hetty Koes Endang ever said in television that the singer who can sing traditional Sundanesse should easily sang dangdut, since there is similarity bertween the two. *

Qasidah of Ucok AKA

Album Qasidah AKA and Duo Kribo' Albums

Andalas Datoe Oloan Harahap, a.k.a. Ucok AKA Harahap (70 years old) was a singer, musician and song composer. His rock band was AKA, a name taken from Apotik Kali Asin, a drug store in Surabaya. This band was a news maker in it’s era (1970-ies), for it’s extreme acrobatic performance. Unfortunately, that AKA group did not make any hits unless song entitled Badai Bulan Desember.

Some AKA’ albums as mentioned by a book Musisiku (KPMI-Republika, 2007) are: Do What You Like (1970), Reflections (1971), Crazy Joe (1972), Sky Rider (1973), Cruel Side of Suez War (1974), Mr. Bulldog (1975), Pucuk Kumati (1977), AKA in Rock (1979), The Best of AKA (1979), AKA 20 Golden Hits (1979), dan Puber Kedua (1979). In a short periode, Ucok and Ahmad Albar made a group Duo Kribo which made hits like Dunia Panggung Sandiwara, Neraka Jahanam, and Penari Jalang.

But may be what was not noticed by public from AKA and Ucok, that they ever released an album with genre qasidah, an Islamic religious pop genre. This album consists of 8 songs with it’s hit Insaflah, a pop-qasidah which blended Marawis, Batavia ethnic music with rock. This album was a side B of album Qasidah Bimbo (Fajar Satu Syawal, Remaco). At least, Ucok, the legendary rock-singer who passed away on December 3, 2009, ever sang religiously. *