Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Kartina Dahari: Mellifluous, Lyrical, Magical...

(1) A name that many 60s music followers still remember is Kartina Dahari. One such follower of this Malay artiste is Roem Ahmad who is a known blogger calling himself 'aermataemas' (golden teardrops).

Roem explains that his love for kroncong music developed when he grew up in Johore Bahru, Malaysia, in the 60s and early 70s. He was listening to music and watching musicals on Radio And TV Singapore where he appreciated the great singers in that era like Kartina Dahari, Ismail Haron, Ahmad Jais and other well-known ones.

Because of his love for Dahari's songs there are several YouTube videos on the 'lukisanperasaan' channel where enthusiasts will find uploaded kroncongs of Dahari. Roem does it as a hobby and finds it a pleasant occupation during his long winter nights while he was living in Switzerland.
He feels he needs to keep alive the great artistry of Kartina Dahari. Another video outlet is 'miocanzoni' where there are some other interesting music and songs including a few asli ones. (Comment from this blog: October 17, 2009 2:49 PM).
According to Roem Ahmad, Kartina Dahari is "a singer of the highest calibre" but her recording career was rather short-lived. Under the shortened name TINA she recorded songs from 1966 to 1976, among them 4 EPs, 2 LPs in English and 3 LPs in Malay of mostly kroncong songs.
The songs featured on Roem's You Tube videos are between 35 to 40 years old as they were recorded between 1968 to 1976 but, according to him they are still fresh and contemporary. Musical arrangements for these vinyls are by Ahmad Wan Yet, Kassim Masdor, Ahmad Jaafar, S. Atan and Reggie Verghese. Sound quality is excellent.
Kartina Dahari's mellifluous voice and superb vocal delivery is second to none. Young singers today can learn from the way she delivers her carefully selected songs and her wonderful crystal clear phrasing that has the right emotion for each song.
(2) Another enthusiast who calls himself 'Salvatore Dali' finds that Kartina Dahari's rendition of Sayang di Sayang is his favourite. Although P. Ramlee's Bunga Melor has been covered by many artistes, he knows of no better version than the one by Dahari which is effortless, restrained and lyrical.
The highly popular and now traditional Di Tanjong Katong (about this island's famous beach) loved by both young and old is also sung by Ms Dahari. Followers do not know the singer although they know the song that is emblematic of Singapore.
Well, all of Tina's friends and fans out there. Still remember her? What about her English songs? Doesn't she still capture your heart with her beauty and voice? Tell us.
Image: Roem Ahmad's blog.
Blog 2: http://malaysiafinance.blogspot.com/ 

Latest News:
Kartina Dahari passed away on 30th April, 2014.  The concert at the Esplanade in August, 2013 was her last stage appearance.  Condolence to the family and may she rest in peace.

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