Behind the Drum and Beyond

drumming1I have a great passion in music, first, as a listener. I started listening to a music genre that probably, not many people are fond of, Metal. I remember I was head banging in front of the stage in one live underground (non major label bands) event, and suddenly someone recognized me while saying, “Oh my god! What are you doing here?”

It was from one of my students.

I assume, considering who we are, at least to my student’s view, it is probably not quite appropriate to bang your head in a metal concert (that time, the underground scene was massive in Bali, called Bali Corpsegrinder 19 – 21). I understand this. But I think, it’s more like a matter of preference. To me, what counts most would be how you behave appropriately in a particular context. I have watched several metal bands already – major ones in the metal scene – and I saw various kinds of people there.

Second, I play(ed) a music instrument. As many people probably do, I started with the guitar. I borrowed a guitar from a high school friend who already had a band that time. I learned chords but I found out, even though I knew all of them, I couldn’t play a guitar well. I felt the guitar was not going to be my instrument. I switched to the drum, then.

To note, I never had a formal or an informal lesson to play a drum. I just like it. Well, in the old days, I often pretended to play a drum while listening to the music :). Something like what Rowan Atkinson did in one of his famous videos – The Invisible Drum. I remember, the first gig I played was at the campus, in a band, which is in my words, accidentally formed.I still remember we played Kangen (Dewa 19) and Stand by Me (Oasis). Not bad, I would say, for a newly formed band. The next, we tried to perform in a bigger event at the regency level. As we were not having a similar music preference, it was a bit difficult to orchestrate every choice to fit. One of the songs that we practiced were Pasukan Berani Mati (Betrayer) where I played the drum and took the vocal duty. However, it appeared to be unsuccessful. We found we needed more time to practice. This first band, I would say, was just the beginning.

It was long after that, I had a chance to play more regularly in two bands I founded with some students, Twilight Symphony and Gothic Princess. The former band was more on Power, Symphonic, Speed Metal, playing songs like Forever and One, In the Middle of a Heartbeat, Power (Helloween) and Paradise (Stratovarius). I took the lead vocal. A better drummer took over the drum set (He could actually do double bass longer and better! Haha). The latter was a band which was more into Gothic type, playing songs such as Mother Earth, Memories, Stand My Ground (Within Temptation), Eversleeping (Xandria) and Come Cover Me as well as Nemo (Nighwish). We had a creative keyboard player, a talented guitarist, a firm bass player and several promising lead female vocalists. We were forced to go with three different vocalists one at a time due to various reasons, including graduation or a different focus. You can listen to some of our live audio recordings here. In the mean time, I also played the drum part in a newly formed band with some colleagues at work. Even, we played Kopi Dangdut, a famous Dangdut song. Something I would not do in the past :). Unfortunately, my main bands – Twilight Symphony and Gothic Princess – went off due to graduation and further study. Still, these give us interesting stories to cherish.

First was as a listener. Second was as a player. Now, what will be the next? A part of my future plans is to turn many of my poetry collections into songs. Well, I cannot compose the music, but I believe there will be many talents out there. And this time, the music will be a poetry-musical genre. What is that? Generally, it uses poem verses turned into a music composition. A complete overview about this type of music can be read here (in Indonesian). I try to ask for any potential composers to interpret the verses into musical pieces. Next will be finding instrument players – at least a guitar and/or a keyboard player with singers. I have a big interest in this genre. I was firstly introduced to this kind of music genre when I saw several parts of a recording process of “Kuda Putih” (A White Horse) album by Tan Lioe Ie (watch report of the pre-launching here). He had some poems from Umbu Landu Paranggi sung into a poetry-music arrangement, and to my ears, they turned out to be enchanting! I feel the musical symphonies help to deepen the meaning in the poems’ verses.

Here is a sample of a music-poetry composition that you might want to listen.

Dalam Doaku (Sapardi Djoko Damono) by Saung Sastra Lembang Bandung

There are a lot more that we can find on poetry-music compositions. One of my colleagues, Sonia Piscayanti, has started with her “Komunitas Mahima” in North Bali. So, it will be a great opportunity to share ideas with them in the future, I believe! Anyone interested to compose my poetry works into musical symphonies? Let me know ^_^

©mhsantosa (2012)
I am happy to share this. Please feel free to reblog or share the link, all with my accreditation. Thank you.

5 thoughts on “Behind the Drum and Beyond

  1. levuhoangoanhqn says:

    My fingers’ tops hurt when I learn to play the guitar, that why i don’t practise it often. I love singing but never good at performing. Best.

  2. yessiesuniartie says:

    Great post Hery ….. and little bit make me smile because how could a Teacher like to headbang in a Metal Music Concert :D, but music is universal and i’m sure all of us like music. “If there is one thing that’s constant in this world, it is the power of music” (quotes). Have a nice day Hery 😀

    1. Made Hery Santosa says:

      Thanks for reading Mbk, as always. To me, it’s only a way to cherish old days and move forward with it. Have a nice day, too!
      Cheers 🙂

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