PEACE PREVAILS

May peace prevails upon all beings on the earth and beyond. You may scroll down to browse the contents of this blog.

Tuesday, 30 September 2014

THE ECSTASY OF HYPER-CONNECTIVITY

Reaction on another reaction of another reaction from another reaction......a chain of reaction on social media, can behave like a nuclear reactor, based on series of chain reaction, to exponentially grow to release a massive energy outburst that destroys everything on its path.  A tiny ripple can escalate into a giant wave or even tsunami. 

Everyone online now seems to have a stunning ability to sniff shits (that are not really there in front of them), except their own. Everyone online seems to have woken up, to smell other people's shits. Everyone seems to be very fast in sharing their reaction to people, events or happenings that they don't really encounter and experience. Everyone, including those whom I previously presumed as 'clever' and even 'pious'.  Interestingly, some of the people, events and happenings didn't really exist or didn't really take place at all, or in most cases, have been 'distorted' and 'got lost' in the intricate cybernetic webs of reaction upon reactions, or....ecstasy of hyper-connectivity.

Instantaneous communication and the ecstasy of hyper-connectivity, as the outcome of information implosion, may make everyone feels 'high'. Yet, like the actual ecstasy pill (or of similar mind-shifting nature), it may result in someone in a remote kampung in Malaysia, having a heart attack, due to some event that is taking place thousands of miles away. There were stories about how soccer fans died out of heart attack while watching a live-telecast of world cup match involving a team that he supported dearly. My late guru, Ismail Zain used to write and speak about this more than twenty years ago.

As we engage in the 'high' of hyper-connectivity and the confluence of hyper-view, it is highly pertinent to occasionally get offline, smell the roses (not shits), engage in the experience of 'living' and 'being' in a truest sense, and free ourselves from becoming an over-reactive slave or numb agent of a social-media 'nuclear' bomb.  

This is the predicament of hyper-view, a virtual voyeurism without a spiritual compass that may destroy humanity from within, regardless of whatever 'labels' one puts on his/her forehead.

 

 

Saturday, 27 September 2014

ENCOUNTERING 'BAR-CODED' MAN

With Tan Sei Hon, Azzadiah and Long Thien Shih, confronting Bar-coded man.
 
Bar-coded man is an epitome of global digitization where everyone, and everything  are reduced into 'data'. Everyone has his/her own binary coded identification (credit card, hp no, email address, facebook/twitter account, bank account,etc). All his/her 'online' actions can be traced, accessed, quantified, studied, tabulated and analyzed in real-time to form his/her 'psycho-metric' profile. The profiles, both micro/individual and macro/societal level are stored as a part of a massive web of global 'meta-data', accessible only to few obscured trans-national mega or giga-corps, their local proxies, political elites and 'minions'. The meta-data can be used, abused, manipulated, exploited to discretely feed total economic control, global domination and manufacturing of public opinions or global consensus; as well as complete take-over (possession) of individual privacy (and dignity).

Welcome to post-colonial cosmopolitanism.

Friday, 26 September 2014

PUTERI DI PINTU MAHLIGAI


Satu lagi khazanah tertimbus yang tergatal jari saya mengoreknya dari youtube. 

Ini khazanah rock balada, lebih mesra disapa sebagai rock kapak atau rock leleh. Ya, saya pernah melanggannya satu ketika dulu, seiring dengan lagu-lagu rakyat kelas pekerja "Poi Pokan" dari Ito Blues Gang, "Mimpi Nelayan" dan "Ekspress Rakyat" dari Kembara , dan "Kamelia" jeritan Ramli Sarip. Saya pernah disampuk badi Blues kampung dan Rock kapak.

Yang ni, lagu "Puteri di Pintu Mahligai" nyanyian Salem dari kumpulan legen Iklim. Kualiti video dalam youtube ini hancus (terlalu gelap), mungkin kerana di'petik' tanpa mintak dari empunyanya.

Ia adalah muzik video versi rasmi Warner dengan lirik 'sufi' S.Amin Sahab, brader seniman otai yang saya tabik. Hakcipta lirik empunya Luncai Emas.  Muzik videonya diterbitkan oleh Kak Cah (Habsah Hassan) pemilik Serangkai Film, arahan Kak Normah Nordin, otai guru teater saya dulu.

Liriknya tentang Cinta manusia dengan Pencipta. Cubalah dengar, teliti dan hayati tiap kata dan barisnya. Untuk muzik video halwa telinga serta mata masyarakat umum, ia telah di'turun'kan ke bumi dengan sentuhan romantisme dan feminisme manis Melayu dari Kak Normah. Ada beberapa treatment asal yang dah ditapis oleh Warner, contohnya imajan menara dan kubah masjid, yang kemudiannya diganti dengan imajan muka Salem yang besor mengadap dan menyanyi berlatarkan gambaran pokok dan langit. Saya kata pada Kak Cah, kenapa mereka tak suruh fokus je kat lubang hidung dia? Saya ingat lagi Kak Cah jawab, "nasib baik tak bawak Hasnul jumpa client, kalau bawak, tak dapat business la Kak Cah!"

Ini era awal muzik video ketika syarikat rakaman sibuk menggunakan muzik video sebagai sebahagian dari produk promosinya (untuk TV). Tambahan pula TV3 ada buat AJL (Anugerah Juara Lagu), selain dari AIM (Anugerah Industri Muzik). Lagu ini masuk final AJL 1995 kalau tak silap, manakala muzik videonya terpilih lima finalis untuk AIM (tapi kalah).

Ada sebab mengapa ia terpahat dalam pangkalan data memori saya. 

Saya antara anasir yang terlibat dalam pembikinannya, peringkat pasca-produksi. Saya dan anak-anak murid saya di ITM ketika itu (Zulkifli dan Pachingey Lanus), telah mem'balaci'kan diri untuk membuat beberapa siri animasi zaman batu dengan komputer Amiga, untuk digabungkan dalam suntingan akhir oleh rakan editor ketika itu, Basri Musa (yg kemudiannya banyak buat editing untuk drama dan filem Rasyid Sibir). 

Waktu itu, Kak Cah baru beli mesin editing berkomputer AVID yang canggih. Kak Cah antara yang terawal di Malaysia yang membeli sistem ini. Basri dan saya tak berapa fasih dengan alat ni, terpaksa dikursuskan oleh pelatih dari Singapura, Juling mata kami membaca manualnya. Pada waktu yang sama, Kak Chah dapat job dari Warner untuk buat muzik video ini. Setelah kak Normah siap shooting, saya dan anak-anak murid siapkan animasi, saya dan Basri terpaksa bersengkang mata beberapa malam untuk sekaligus belajar AVID dan menggunakannya.

Ini menerangkan mengapa terdapat surplus 'lemak-lemak' efek grafik seperti chroma key (waktu tu, nak buat kena tunggu lama untuk komputer render, boleh pi minum kopi dan nengok wayang dulu), chroma and luminance adjustment (tukar tona dan rona warna klip video), slow mo, multi-layering dan segala macam efek visual serta teknik suntingan lagi la. Dengan dateline yang menekan, dan ketidak-fasihan menggunakan AVID, kami banyak berkesperimen dengan konsep balunisme dan 'bedal'isme.

Hasilnya, adalah gabungan antara bedalisme kami dan feminisme kak Normah. Nak kata hancus, ia terpilih sebagai top 5 untuk AIM 95 (rasanyala, atau 94 kot).

Bila nontonnya balik, saya senyum lebar sambil terus akur untuk tidak cepat mengutuk suntingan pada muzik video yang bersepah di pasaran kini.

Gitupun, respect saya pada Kak Cah, Kak Normah, Basri, S. Amin dan Salem, tetap utuh.

Selamat berjiwang dengan khazanah legen rock kapak ni.


REVISITING KEBUN BUNYI AND LATTALILAT


Children's laughter and happiness are the best medicine. I miss Kebun Bunyi and Lattalilat with kids.



Thursday, 25 September 2014

'MASUK HUTAN' - RE-VISITING JAMBORI RIMBA.


I stumbled upon a youtube version of "Jambori Rimba" (1996), a project I did with one of my electro-acoustic mentors (and graduate thesis committee member) from Pettersberg New York USA, Barton Mclean, and his wife Priscila. Its a 'slow burner' piece, perhaps not for the fainthearted or those with short attention span. Yet, worth to experience through till the end as the piece is like a visual-aural emotional journey into a rich, diverse, at times hauntingly mesmerizing and densely textured rainforest to encounter the enticing cultural heritage of its inhabitants (the jovial and friendly Iban community of Nanga Sumpa longhouse).  Best to listen with earphone to appreciate and enjoy the rich arrays of stereo sound composition.

I brought both of them to Kuching Sarawak, where they stayed about 3 months, to set-up UNIMAS (Universiti Malaysia Sarawak's) computer music studio and to produce a concert as well as an audience-interactive visual-aural installation. It was a time (late 1990s) when experimental music, electro-acoustic and video performance were not much known yet in the local visual art and performance ecology. Of course, now we have many young people and urban hipsters doing experimental music and electronic/new media performance, especially in Kuala Lumpur. Few even behaved as if there were the earliest trailblazers of such endeavors, which never fail to induce a 'Buddha smile' on my face.








Barton, Priscilla and I went to several remote locations in Sarawak, including staying few nights at the Nanga Sumpa longhouse in Ulu Ai, at the upriver of Batang Ai damn in the Sri Aman district of Sarawak, Malaysia. For a while, we felt as if time time had stopped as we immersed in the majestic, serene and peaceful ambiance of the longhouse jungle ecology. We went even further upstream, experienced river fishing on a boat, picnic by river side in the jungle with foods prepared by using ingredients sourced from the jungle itself, rejuvenated our body by taking a dip in a natural pool by a beautiful waterfall, stayed for a night in a small hut whilst being entertained by the song of cicadas. We recorded both the rich and diverse visual-aural materials of the rainforest, whilst being humbled by the majestic beauty and raw pure natural energy of the rainforest. 

We also brought in a virtuoso Kenyan sape player, Minggu, and recorded Malay Gendang (drum) performance, as well as Ngajat dance-music by Iban musicians-dancers. 

The pinacle of the project was a concert and an open installation for walk-in audience at the Experimental Theater UNIMAS. The concert was recorded by RTM (Radio and Television Malaysia) and later broadcast as a material for its morning program. 

Before leaving, I brought Barton and Priscila to Kuala Lumpur to stay for few days, drove them to my hometown in Teluk Intan to stay at my home to experience a Malay kenduri kesyukuran (thanksgiving dinner) with local Perak traditional foods, went to Melaka and Johor Bharu, and finally to Changi Airport in Singapore. 

It was a three month well-spent, and left a lasting memory in me. I really hope I could see them again, working together in a creative project such as this. Happy and good to know that they are still kicking and active doing their touring. 

Miss you both Bart and Pris!!  

(endnote - I met the little girl featured in the video at the Faculty of Applied and Creative Arts, Universiti Malaysia Sarawak, during a final year project assessment for its Fine Art department. I was an invited external examiner. She was one of the final year students there, of all the places!. Click here for the story http://hasnulsaidon.blogspot.com/2014/05/pertemuan-adalah-rezeki.html )

Tuesday, 23 September 2014

TRANSFORMER SINGGAH LEBUH ACHEH


Kedatangan Iron Man ke kedai Rozana's Batik dan MyGarrage di Lebuh Acheh, kini disusuli pula oleh seorang lagi pendatang dengan izin (PADI), transformer. Ia menandai pertemuan manis antara globalisasi dan tradisi di bandaraya bersejarah George Town. Siapa kata kedua-duanya tak boleh berjiran? Boleh pe. No hal la! Tak percaya, mai la sini.

TEMBOK

Mengimbas ziarah ke China suatu ketika dulu, dikerdilkan oleh kehebatan buatan, menjejak psiko-sosial dan saka tembok yang baunya sesekali boleh saya hidu.