Real roles for reel men

There has to be an end to the wimpy deadbeat male characters we see in movies today. But more importantly, there must have been a start, before which cinema actually portrayed responsible, respectable men.

Have audiences not tire of the many man-childs filling the screen? Shallow with the emotional maturity of 15 year-olds, for whom life seem to revolve around sports, videogames and bongs. The thought that film-makers are only producing characters like these because people are able to identify with them makes me worry too much about our young males that I simply refuse to believe it.


ASAMTv with Reza Salleh Malaysian Independent Singer-songwriter

It ain't easy being indie

In this week's episode of Asamtv, Azrina meets with Reza Salleh at his recent gig in Melbourne.

Reza shares his thoughts on his inspirations, life as a musician, and selling out.


Backstage at Muzika

I'd say my first real involvement with Muzika Musim Luruh began two weeks before the event in the basic radio studios of 3ZZZ in Fitzroy. I was butting in on the Malay program that night, and the committtee members turned up to promote the event.

They brought along with them free tickets to give away, and once announced, the studio phones were never hotter.

An auspicious start, it seemed, for the final stage of a project four months in the making.


An ancient confession

It’s a book that chased me around. Recommended, referenced, and mentioned, so I read it. I bought myself the abridged Penguin version with the pretty cover that said ‘God grant me chastity and continence but not yet.’

An awfully familiar line around here. Something you'd say to yourself to silence your conscience when you habitually do something wrong.

This saint had a mistress and a son born out of wedlock. He had a mother too, and she never stopped praying for him. He knew this of course but was determined to do things by enquiry and reason, more so than faith. He harboured Manichean views before he turned Catholic.

At this point of reading the book, I am reminded of the saying that it is better to be stupid in truth rather than rationalising error. Sometimes being too intelligent just doesn’t pay. There are catalogues of views, opinions and thoughts right in front of us, each offering their different takes on things. The PC thing to say here is that every opinion is equally valid. History would tell us otherwise.

Maybe it’s not about validity, but about the right of every opinion to exist and be expressed so that they its claims may be taken apart and put back together for validation.

Humbleness must be what we need to always keep us grounded. St Augustine was fortunate to have received an epiphany that made him leave his world of sin. Miracles and epiphanies however aren’t much of an option for us earthier individuals, so that only leaves us with humbleness. The humbleness to listen to other people’s views and recognise their merits, but more importantly, the humbleness to listen to other people’s thoughts and recognise our faults.

The title of the book is 'Confessions of a sinner'. Don't bother reading if you aren't one.


My Tribe: A Home For Your Work On The Web

by: Juliana Zainal Aznam

Looking for a place to share your work?My Tribe is the perfect opportunity for you to submit audio, video, stills and text on the web.


Basking within the vibes of Zee Avi

Zee Avi was playing two shows in Melbourne recently did you know? If you didn't . . .


Well I had the opportunity to see the show and personally meet her for a chat so obviously I have nothing but nice things to say about her because as far and I'm concerned we're best mates whether she likes it or not.

Her music, is good. But you all know that. You've subscribed to her YouTube channel when she was still known as KokoKaina, you've sang and swayed along to her songs to the point that your ears start twitching and you get strangely excited when you see an uke, and you've bought the CD's or snagged it off iTunes. However, you've might not seen her play live and to that I say 'you're missing out on the most important part of the marvelousness that is Zee Avi'. I am one of those people who prefer my music live. "the medium is the message" as Marshall McLuhan would put it and everyone who hears it nods. The show was.. [ believe it or not, I paused and left my laptop for about 40 minutes trying to think of a suitable adjective and i finally found one ] ... fun. Incredibly fun. Watching a lady in an oversized sweater with an uke playing songs that are lyrically and atmospherically heavy is just so much fun. I would imagine that it would be hard to stay chirpy when singing about drug addiction and cheating partners, but everyone was singing along, swaying, especially these two big, tall, burly, ang mohs who were at the top of their lungs cue "my phone was on silent, I was at the gym!". Good times.

I caught up with her after the show and we hung out with a small group of friends and chatted about, owh gosh, all sorts of things, art, old school movies, Bob Marly, Tarsem Singh, Quentin Tarantino, malaysian food, malaysian urban slang, the works. She is such an affable, approachable person, it's beautiful. And why shouldn't she be? A friend of mine commented on a ring that Zee was wearing that night that had a Piet Mondrian influenced design on it and she responded with a Vito Corleone impression, she got excited when she saw my clone trooper keyring and when we talked about malaysian food she just sulked. "don't la guys, I rindu". I guess before last night, I only recognize her on YouTube, posters, cover's of CD's. Things. In my head the idea that she is just as Malaysian as I am just blurred along the way. I was wrong. And am glad of it.

I got home way past midnight, with a feeling in me that I initially thought was star-struck. But gathering my thoughts I came to understand that emotion as satisfaction of being involved in a decent conversation. She's so approachable, so friendly, and I had so much fun talking to someone who was so actively involved in turning creative ideas into songs.

You should be able to tell, I'm finding it hard to keep this as a music review because I've met her and spoke to her, and listened to her past the barriers of webcam, microphone, stage, and she's wonderful. I am excited to see what she would do next as a musician. And I do wish her the best.

Asam Siam
Wiriyak Suvanmani

Zee Avi's website link : www.zeeavi.com
Zee Avi's iTunes : click here