Music is another reason why we travel aboard, especially for Faizal. He always does his research on finding what are the music attractions beside our backpacking plan. Sometimes he will check out who’ll be performing a concert tour on the month that we plan to travel. He..he… (a self acclaimed concert traveller).
Yup! We travel because of concert too… crazy huh!. (but this is something that Malaysian Tourism should look into..). For example, we went to Singapore to catch Coldplay’s 2006 X&Y tour and at the same time, we went for our backpack there. Same thing goes to our Indonesian backpack, we managed to catch the Java Jazz Festival in Jakarta too. Awesome..!!!
So, bila the unexpected meet up dengan Papa Rock, Ramli Sarip di Singapura last February, he said there’ll be the Sweet Charity reunion concert, apalagi we straight away marked the date and prepared for the trip..
I’ve never watch a Sweet Charity performance before.(kalau Ramli Sarip solo tu adelah…). So, it’s a “not to be missed” concert by the legend of rock n roll that I started to know from their “Jangan Tak Jadi” song. Lagu yang cukup popular di radio dan majlis perkahwinan sekitar tahun 1980an.
The “sold-out” concert was held in Esplanade and started at 8pm. By the time we reached the venue (around 7pm), the place was already filled with the mix of young and old fans. Everyone looks eager and excited to watch the generation that create the buzz to our rock n roll music scene.
This is my second time watching a performance in a concert hall as grand and beautiful like Esplanade. (The first one was Malaysian Philharmonic, watching a performance by Orchestra Baobab). The stage setting was simple but the crowd was fantastic. The whole concert hall ambiance drastically turns us back to the 70’s feel of “tapak pesta”. Loved it..
Even there were only 4 members left (Ramli Sarip on vocal & guitar, Rosli Mohalim on lead guitar, Aj on keyboard and Rahman Sarbani on drums), and backup by the strings sessions conducted by Haji Eddie Marzuki (Flybaits), but that didn’t stop them to give a 100% top notch rock n roll. A big thank you to Hamid (Black Dog Bone bassist) and Kudin (Headwind keyboardist) who did great job filling the place of late Syed Hassan and Masrom. Well done guys!.. (Wan Ahmad – 2nd guitar non-appearance has left the fans guessing).
The opening song “Hilang Gelap, Timbullah Terang” really got the crowds cheering. Everyone was singing together word by word with Ramli Sarip. It shows the vintage 40 years old band still have fans that love and miss them.
Although Sweet Charity only made 7 albums, to make a setlist for the concert was not an easy task. It was told by Ramli Sarip. Each song has its own message and story, while performing Ramli Sarip has told us a bit on the history of the band and how thankful they are to be where they are now today.
From Dunia Perlumbaan, Tahun 2000, Musibah, Ribut 10.59 to Lahirmu Bukan Untuk Dunia, the band music arrangements have a very strong Deep Purple influence. You can feel the raw sound of Rosli Mohalim guitar and licks. Seronok bila lagu Raja Kumbang was on their set list. Masa ni Rosli yang memegang double job as lead & rhythm guitar, memang layan habis dia punya goreng..! Kalau ade Ian Antono (Godbless) jamming together, lagi power..!!
Once Ramli Sarip started the first bait of the most awaited song “Kamelia” (Ana’s favourite song), the crowds spontaneously sing-along with him and my eyes were searching if there any lighter waiving inside the hall. Hehe…
After Kamelia, we knew the 2 ½ hours was coming to the end. The crowds threw Sweet Charity a standing ovation and asking for an encore.
Not to disappoint their fans, Sweet Charity ended the night with Deep Purple “Black Knight” and “Jalan Malam”. There was also a meet up & autograph sessions after the concert. Anna was queuing for the autograph while I’m queuing for the merchandise. The merchandise was selling like goreng pisang panas. (Bought a t-shirt & their last year concert vcd). Sorry cause some of Anna’s photos with Ramli Sarip is blur since I was rushing here and there.
We also snapped a picture with BDB bassist, Hamid. “Something interesting is on the way for BDB fans”, he said. It was truly a night to remember and if they will be performing in Kuala Lumpur, our recommendation is Jangan Tunggu Lama-Lama.
*Remember the song “Fikir-fikir” by the group Rausyanfikir. We met with the singer Art Fazil who was watching the concert too. He’s still active singing and writing songs in London. Click to checkout on Rausyanfikir (here) and Art Fazil (here).