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Archive for April 2015

Writing commercially.

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Been looping Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp A Butterfly for two, three days straight now(since I got the album, two, three days back). Watching his MTV commentary of him breaking down a few songs in the album somehow made me question my stance on writing; am I doing this because I have to or because someone expects me to?

I’ve churned many a writings through emotions the past few years; since I started, actually. But lately, or to be exact, since the moment I realise it gets easier to write stuff, strangely enough, it’s getting harder to write stuff. Let me explain.

Ever had that moment, when you’ve been doing the same thing all your life, and people ask you how you do it, and you tell them how you do it, but the next morning or the next week, you try doing the same thing, but it doesn’t feel the same way? It’s like a jinx happening, just y telling people your sacred natural process. Hence, the oxymoron statement I had earlier.

Lately I’m doing some copywriting. The materials involved were based on biblical events in the Quran(specifically, prophets), and philosophical understanding of God’s many attributes(specifically, His names). While I delved into it with an empty mind eagerly expecting many challenges to come, I am now at the point where I feel too empty to go further. I used to manage to write ten scripts(of 2-minute narration) within six hours, including research and crafting scientific correlations with the philosophical meanings, but now, even writing one script takes me a week to get to. The worst part, is failing at my best; writing lyrics.

Going back to Kendrick’s MTV album narration, he was telling stories about how he dealt(and still dealing) with fame whilst keeping true to his roots; a troubled neighbourhood called Compton. Every lyrics in each song carries weight of emotions; not just a song written for the sake of an album, but for the sake of telling the stories that needs to be told. One time he would be on tour, the next minute he would go back to his hometown, going to a funeral of his murdered close friend. And despite the fame, he still manages to retain his sanity of balancing a famed front and keeping ties with his disturbing background.

Which made me ask myself; why am I doing this commercial lyric writing project? I don’t feel strongly about the topic I’m writing, yet why do I do it? It’s different from writing a script. The script was easier because I would get thrilled with child-like wonder, just sifting through scientific theories that best describe the God’s trait I’m writing about. There’s excitement in that. But writing lyrics on the other hand, I have to connect sentences with the melodies given, which aren’t even mine. And the melodies just doesn’t strike a chord in my soul as easily as it used to. Because it feels fabricated; the lyrics I’m writing will be sung by some famous singer, and I doubt he/she feels the same way as I do regarding this topic. Even I don’t feel anything upon researching about the topic given. So it becomes detached from my emotions the the moment the lyrics are being written, and even more so the second they are finished(because I rarely revisit things that have been completed).

it’s like lying to myself, writing commercially. But the only way to get out of this without feeling guilty of writing for money, is to utilise the opportunity given.

‘Look on the bright side, your lyrics will be heard by many people, because artist A will be singing it, and it will get high rotation on radio!’


Written by Takahara Suiko

26 April 2015 at 16:58

Posted in Uncategorized


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A friend once said that the entertainment industry is the only thing that isn’t tainted by politics(minus the ones inside organisations; we’re talking about parties here, and by that I don’t mean the ones at nightclubs, duh).

To some extent(or rather, most), his words hold true. ‘Hold true’ is that like a real phrase I dunno I just used it to sound smart.

The difference between politicians and celebrities are, people actually give a fart about what celebrities wear, apatah lagi segala apa yang keluar daripada mulut diorang. Even the simplest of comments would be made sensational, because, well, you’re a public figure and you’re supposed to watch what you say because you’re practically perfect and your words apparently affects people’s judgments and by people I mean the ‘ignorant, lalang, unwise youth’.

Famed public figures have a strong hold of society and its inhabitants, true dat. And it is indeed scary how most of them still preach about momentary life experiences. Songs hollering short-lived moments of falling in love, falling out of love, brink of breaking apart, blabla. Not straying far from the topic of love since the last few decades(norm for any pop song for the past decade, really, until Lorde came). Dramas showcasing one-dimensional, patriarchal, and weak women. Newspapers headlining Celebrity A kissing wife in public and apparently has made many a weak, religious men and women jizz and squirt everywhere and want to have intercourse with every moving creature in sight.

All these sensational bulltahi, boils down to one thing and one thing only; public figures are told to be and shown as perfect human beings. Epitome of ethical advancement. The symbol for societal pride.

It’s scary how public figures(retis ke twtfemes ke instafemes ke sukati la), usually parades perfection due to the reason above(or were told to do so by their seniors and superiors), and the people who observes/chance upon them often(let’s call them ‘followers’) believe that the perfection showcased is for them to enjoy, because public figure practically means society claiming, ‘You’re ours, biatch’, when most of the time, it’s just the said figures(let’s call them ‘idols’) trying to give themselves some sort of boost in self-confidence. Though you cannot argue the fact that most people do it for the likes, favs, revines, whathaveyou.

It’s scarier to think that due to this mindset of giving approval of said idol’s ‘perfection'(let’s call this, ‘likes’ or ‘double taps’), the followers/masses think they need to be ‘perfect’ as well in order to garner as much attention as their idols. I mean, how many of us are infatuated by the looks of their idols, more than they do their artistic works? How many would listen or watch something their idols have been working so hard on, just to see their face, and not the beauty of their sweat and blood? How many idols have been overshadowed by their physique more than their masterpiece, due to that cruelly shallow mindset?

Of course, pros and cons. But it’s hard to see past the cons when all you see nowadays are idols, and not crafters. Nicely packaged idols get more attention, not brilliant crafters. Nicely donned idols get more opportunities, not tatty-looking crafters. While they both can be of a same person, it’s tough when the society has set in stones what the media set for them to believe in; your idols are grace and perfection. It’s tougher still to change the mindset.

Written by Takahara Suiko

24 April 2015 at 00:44

Posted in Uncategorized