Friday, August 26, 2011

Foodage: Rojak, Kacang Puteh, Green Spot, Music

1. On 'Foodage' Documentary November 2012: Thursdays Channel 5 at 9pm.
"In the 60s, hawkers roamed the kampongs and the streets of urban Singapore. The children who grew up in this foodscape share their memories - the roving calls of these hawkers were music to their ears and fed their seemingly insatiable appetites. Their memories - both pungent and poignant - are set against a turbulent backdrop of merger and independence, lawlessness and unemployment and the Big Fire.

2. With The Silver Strings in 1965.
The food on offer in this episode includes Indian rojak, wanton mee, kaya bread, mee siam and tuckshop tidbits. The Singaporeans sharing their stories, include Jerome Lim, Peter Chan, Shak Kadir, Yeo Hong Eng, Andy Lim, Toh Paik Choo, James Seah, Lam Chun See, Aziza Ali, Dick Yip, Ong Yew Ghee, Ivy Lim-Singh, Geraldene Lowe-Ismail... Foodage Facebook."
3. Indian rojak used to ply the streets in Singapore.
The images were captured from Foodage TV Episode 2 (shown on OKTO Channel) where Andy Lim described how he waited outside the five-foot way of his home for Mr. Sultan's Indian rojak and the wonton mee pushcart man with his bamboo stick tick-tock call.

4. With Shirley Nair on Philips Records (now Universal Music Singapore).
He also recalled the pop 60s music explosion when Cliff Richard and the Shadows invaded Singapore with their twanging guitars and new Fender sounds. The heat generated by the music was so intense concert patrons had to buy ice-cold, bottled, soft drinks like Sinalco, Green Spot, Framroz, Red Lion and F n N drinks (image 4) to cool their hot and soaking bods.
5. Kacang puteh or fried peanuts with other tidbits.
Caught in this exciting music tsunami, Andy joined The Silver Strings (image 2) for two, short but exciting years where they performed at nightspots, lounges, restaurants, hotels, and the Vic and National theatres. When he left, Shirley Nair held the stage, the group contracted with Philips Singapore to become recording stars (image 3).

Back to the documentary, Andy discussed the close proximity of his home to the Queens' Cinema where he watched movies from the 50s and 60s and how the kacang puteh man stood outside the Cinema to sell his array of peanut goodies to the patrons.

As MC with The Velvetones: music first, food n drinks afterward.
All images from Okto Channel screen grabs: Foodage documentary produced by
SittingInPictures.  Thanks to producer Chang Soh Kiak.
Images 2,4,6 were provided by Andy Lim.

"Food n Singapore 60s Pop Music" airs @ 9pm, Thursdays, November 2012 on Channel 5 (StarHub at 102 and 155HD).


Lam Chun See said...

I think the next we have a Foyers' gathering (in air con place of course) we MUST have the 3 oldies; Andy, Peter and Dick give us a proper performance. In the uni, we used to have occasional 'jam' sessions and those guys who play the guitar well used to be so popular.

What do you guys think?

Anonymous said...

From: Peter Chan e-mail:


I was waiting for u holding the mike and gelek.

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Thanks to all my blogger friends, without whom this particular posting would have been impossible.

Unk Dicko said...

I think it's an excellent idea C See. We have 3 oldie crooners and a hearty backup group. Let the cameras roll again. Really good nostalgic music.!
Thanks Andy for this post. It brings back the memories again and again.

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Thank you gentlemen. Like I mentioned earlier, what could I do without support from all of you?

Unknown said...

Hi Andy, thanks for the screenshots! I was born in the early 70s and of the 4 drinks you mentioned, I remember Green Spot and F&N but the other two seems unfamiliar. Maybe they didn't make it into the 70s? Btw, were those Gibsons or Fenders in the 2nd picture?

Lam Chun See said...

I suggest for the next Foyer's gathering, we have it in the function room of a condo. I believe that most condos allow their residents to book the function room in their clubhouse for free or a modest fee. The one at Mandarin Garden looks pretty good. Plenty of parking some more. Wee Kiat .. are you reading this?

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

In reply to Ivan Chew's comment, here's the answer from the Man himself, Audie Ng, Silver Strings' bass guitarist and boss man:

from SMS:

"They were all Hofner guitars. Only Fender when we were with the late Shirley Nair and Mike n Herb when making the EP records."

My own comment:
Gibsons were pretty expensive and so were the Fenders. The "Fender sound" mentioned in the posting were the ones used by The Shadows when they appeared with Cliff Richard at the Singapore Badminton Hall. They could well afford them.

'Framroz' was known as an "aerated water" company and sold soft drinks like F&N. 'Red Lion' was an orange drink. There was also 'Sinalco'. These names stood out and went beyond the 70s if I remember correctly.

Hope the above answer your questions. Thanks for visiting. Your blog is interesting and informative.

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

There's a beautiful coffee house called 'Take 5' at Novena Square/Velocity Shpping Mall beside the new Novena Medical Centre. It's new, clean, spacious with good food and drinks.

And the Novena train stop is convenient for everyone?

Anonymous said...

From: EM, FRANCE (edited):

Hi Andy,
Selamat Hari Raya too. Hey! I appreciate the kind thoughts!

I read about 'Foodage' and I think it's a great production! I am sure you enjoyed your new brand of fame. :)

Just wondering. How come I've never seen this photo (of you singing with Silver Strings) before? You mind if I have a full quality copy from you?

By the way, I'm in talks about my ongoing film. Something entirely different I'm afraid.

Anonymous said...

From: a personal email, SNOOKHAWK, MALAYSIA:

A fun food list which this blogger DOES NOT endorse. It's published here only because of the FOODAGE documentary on my posting.

It is a reminder of the types of Curry Mee you can find in Penang. And it's only half of what has been given on the email.

Fwd: All the best Curry Mee in Penang, Malaysia:

In your next trip to Penang, you ought to give these places a try.

Bring your sports shoes so that you can work out the calories after indulging in the glorious food. And don't forget your GPS...

Happy eating!"

七条路早市 (seven road market - morning section)

新街头巴刹 (campbell street market) xin kay tao market

关丹律阿万 (Kuantan Road Ah Ban Curry Mee) Tue & Fri from 2:00pm to 5:30pm)

青草巷 (Greenlane)

湖内花旗园招福茶室 (Relau Hua Kee Hooi chew hock coffee shop)

头条路金露华旁小巷咖哩面 (Magazine Road side lane)- next to Kim Luk Wah.

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Just a reminder on the above postings. Mine is a music blog and never a food blog. Letters that come to me through my personal email and related to this particular posting on food I have put up.

I do not endorse the different food types that have been discussed. If you get a stomach ache do not sue me!
Andy Lim.


Hi Andy. Naughty of you not telling me that you are a historian on food till I saw food heritage program. Delightfully interesting! Hock. Cheers!

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Thanks Hock. Play, play only.

Anonymous said...

Dear Andy,

I have made contact with Veronica Young and she told me that she will be back in Nov to do a concert with The Silverstrings.

If you have more details of the concert, please enlighten us so that we do not miss it. She told me it will be held at Kallang Theatre on 9 November 2013.

Keep us posted. Thanks.

Fabian Foo

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Thank you Fabian for visit. I am not familiar with this information but will let you know if there is anything.

LAM CHUN SEE said...

I haven't seen this yet; but among all the recent local documentaries shown over Okto, I think Foodage is still the best. Of course, I could be biased becos I played a small part in it. But the fact that Okto repeated it several times, and then they showed aired over Ch 5 must be testimony to the producers' liking.

The way the story was developed; with a clear link from one episode to the next was very absorbing. And Catherine's style of narration adds a relaxed homely atmosphere.