Tag Archives: musik

Java Rockin’ Land VS Anti-Smoking Campaign

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For any concert freaks, the upcoming 2011 Java Rockin’ Land (JRL) with line-ups such as 30 Seconds To Mars, Good Charlotte, The Cranberries, and other international (and local) artists would surely be hard to miss. But despite to us being anxious about it, an online petition has been made, which asks musicians to reconsider playing at JRL, because the event is being sponsored by one of Indonesia’s biggest tobacco company: Gudang Garam.

“.. by performing at a tobacco-sponsored festival in Indonesia they will be helping to sell cigarettes to young people – a product that leads to death, disability and hardship, in addition to causing environmental damage.”

According to the online petition, artists such as Maroon 5, Kelly Clarkson, and Alicia Keys have successfully requested Indonesian promoters to removed tobacco advertising and sponsorship from their concert. And now they want those JRL line-ups to do the same.

Google Images

Music events will attract plenty of young individuals, and sponsorship from a tobacco company was believed as part of a massive marketing strategy to create more and younger smokers. This is going against WHO’s Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (where Indonesia is one of the few countries who haven’t signed it yet). Some artists such as 30 Seconds To Mars is also known for their concern towards social causes such as earthquake relief, etc. Hence, playing in a tobacco-sponsored event will be considered a deviation.

How about that? The dream to enjoy a concert with international artists is about to fall to pieces, due to some anti-smoking petition.

I respect the movement, I support the government’s rule to prohibit smoking in public places, and I think we should learn from Japan and some European countries who put a lot of taxes on their tobacco products, along with horrific images on the cigarette package.

But this is Indonesia, a country on which more than 30 percent of its people are heavy smokers. If the petition thinks that artists who played in JRL will help selling cigarettes to us, well, I think they’re WRONG.

Those companies don’t need anyone to help them selling those packs of cigarette, because they already have loyal consumers. Cigarette price in Indonesia is relatively cheap, and it comes in good packaging (and by good I mean it doesn’t have any terrifying images of tobacco-related diseases). So despite my respect for the anti-smoking petition, I also think their effort will be useless.

Sponsoring a music event is just one of the regular strategy used by tobacco companies in Indonesia. In fact, they are often engaged in more ‘socially responsible’ strategies such as creating foundations, hosting international sport events, and provide scholarships. So despite their products which have killed hundreds of thousands Indonesian people every year, they are also doing some good things, and like it or not, created a lot of job opportunities.

So who’s bad and who’s good? I absolutely have no idea.

In the end, to my personal opinion, if the international petition make its way to those artists and canceled their performance on JRL, we in Indonesia can only learn to accept the bitter facts that not only we have failed to watch the live performances of our favorite artists, we are still going to be in the third place in the world, after China and India, as the country whose people have fallen deeply in love with the habit of smoking cigarettes.

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You are nobody until you create something.

Mark Zuckerberg was nobody until he created Facebook. Billie Joe Armstrong was just a confused teenager until he and his fellow mates of Green Day created those beautiful, inspiring songs that rock the world until today. Steven Spielberg and his sci-fi madness would never have succeeded for the last five decades if he didn’t create Close Encounters of the Third Kind on 1977. There will be no Avatar without The Terminator (or Titanic), and Stefani Germanotta will never make our jaw dropped due to her mind-blowing outfits, if she didn’t decide to create, well, who else.. Lady Gaga!

Kurt Cobain, grunge, and Nirvana, is like Einstein to the theory of relativity. Simon Cowell, talent shows, and American Idol is like Adolf Hitler and the Nazi era.

So, is it wrong for me to conclude that the ability to create has been implanted on our DNAs by The Great Creator since the day we were born?

And yet there seems to be something wrong with the way we were nurtured, raised, and taught, because often the fear of failure took over and dominates our mind. It stopped us from enjoying the process of creativity. We were raised to be the smartest kid in school, to have high grades, to graduate on time, to finally settle with a family and have a decent job. Passion is not an important thing to consider, that’s why innovators are treated as rare creatures which are extremely valuable, because they’re very hard to be found anywhere.

It’s every people’s right to choose a “safe” destiny, but will it make us ready for the upcoming 21st century? All the richest people in the world today are making money from being innovators, and here we are still underestimating the power to create. The reason, for most of the time, is fear of failure. In a culture where everyone is being achievement/end-result-oriented instead of process-oriented, it’s very hard for us to keep on going and ignore the negativity from other people mocking our “mediocre” result.

I was watching Invictus last night, and there’s a scene where Nelson Mandela gave an inspiring note to Francois Pienaar right before the South African rugby team is supposed to fight against the New Zealand “All Blacks.” He took a couple of lines from a poem by William Ernest Henly, about how a person should have full control over his own destiny.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll
I am the master of my fate,
I am the captain of my soul..

I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul. Don’t you just love that phrase so much? Or did you find it like a slap in the face for being such a chicken and surrender to your own fears? As the masters of our own fate, the decision to create victory or to listen to other people’s negativity, has and will always be upon our own hands. So create, create, and keep on creating. From small, personal inventions to major breakthrough.

Everything big is a result of what was once small, but were made by people who dare to think big.

Steve Jobs, Mark Zuckerberg, Kurt Cobain, all of them started their little steps on this world by doing small projects at their own garage. It doesn’t matter whether you created popsicle, paper-towels, or even the fastest planes on the planet, you’ve create something. Nobody ever imagined that the internet (as one of the greatest invention in the world) would be an inevitable necessity for modern human beings, and I can’t imagine what this world would be like today without having the internet as part of our daily lives. No, I’m not addicted, but it sure has helped us a lot, right? You won’t even be reading this boring post by me if it wasn’t for the internet.

Create anything, a story, a song, a poetry, a blog. You can be the next Dewi Lestari, and you can be the next Oprah Winfrey. And since we are now in the mood to create something, why don’t you guys start by helping me think of the best title for this piece that you’re currently reading right now?

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[REVIEW] Album: Florence & The Machine – Lungs (2009)

Florence + The Machine "Lungs" (2009)

Yes, it was because of the 53rd Annual Grammy Awards which was held a couple of weeks ago that I discovered Florence and The Machine when they were nominated for Best New Artist, if I’m not mistaken. I might be a mommy but I’ve always and will always try to keep up with the music industry, I was instantly attracted to “Dog Days Are Over” (watch the official video on YouTube).

Dog Days Are Over is also the first song of the album “Lungs” which was released on July 6, 2009. I still don’t quite understand what Florence is trying to tell us through this song. From my point of view, she is trying to remind us about all the things (or person) that matters the most for us. While love, due to its pain and uncertainty, must be left behind. I couldn’t agree more! Dog days are over, dog days are done, it is a must that we should left everything that causes us pain.

It’s a good choice to put the song as the first in this album, because her next songs are somewhat confusing. So I fast forwarded until I bumped into “Kiss With A Fist” which basically tells a story about domestic violence, in a good way, where having a fight is a normal part of any relationship. On her blog, Florence said that she wrote this song after graduating from high school. The lyrics of this song is very creative and made me laugh, such as “you hit me once, I hit you back, you gave a kick, I gave a slap, you smashed a plate over my head, then I set the fire into our bed.”

Another song that took my attention is titled “You’ve Got The Love.” Somehow I see a spiritual side in this song, that no matter how hurtful life can be, and although at times you might lost your faith, having someone to love and love us in return is still helpful for us to see things clearly. “Calling You A Liar” is also catchy, just like this other song I like “Cosmic Love.”

Florence grew up in Camberwell, south London. One of her earliest musical memories is standing on top of the trunk where her dad kept his vinyl collection, dancing with him to the Rolling Stones. She felt that she wrote her best songs when she’s drunk because that’s when the freedom came. “You’re lucid,” she explains, “but you’re not really there. You’re floating through your own thoughts, and you can pick out what you need.” (read more about Florence on her blog).

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