Sunday, October 28, 2012

Saturday, September 29, 2012

My Heavy Metal Buddy

Mohd Ali Bin Ismail, doesn't ring anything to your ears. Do mention Ali XPDC , then most heavy metal or hard rock music lovers in the country know this guy.

I first met him in year 1999, introduced by my good friend Ahmad Nazri Hj Abd Rahman.I think most of you guys find it difficult to understand how I am close to Ali since we looks world apart in terms of appearance. But like our sifu always mention that music is universal and can relate people with different background together, actually it is no surprise at all.

That year 1999, I was still attached with the bank and the music industry was quite impressive in the country. Rock albums are selling like hot cakes and the demand for live shows for rock band such as XPDC was still sought by most event and concert organisers. To add extra income to his pockets, Ali was venturing into another additional business that is related to what he is good at. He was planning to open a music studio cum XPDC official base that comprises four rooms divided into main office area,one jamming room for XPDC,one jamming studio for rental and another for recording purposes with a 18-track recording mixer!

He was sharing with a partner En Ahmad Nazri Hj Abd Rahman, a very business minded guy with a fond for heavy metal music who also happens to be my very good friend since my early big bike days. Ali and Nazri was looking for someone that will look after the XPDC office admin matters. Nazri suggested my name and Ali agreed after we started to know each other then.

Since then we were busy setting up the studio together with Ahmad Nazri.The dreams becomes reality when the studio was announced officially open in August 2000.

Izo XPDC and Ahmad Nazri on my wedding day

Their album 'Real & Realiti' was soon released after that. The studio was always crowded and 'fully booked' especially during weekends and our regular customer comes for jamming session are mostly varsity students. Normally our business operations reached the peak hour from 10pm up to 2am in the early morning.

Izo the guitarman, then become closer to me as he hails from the same state as I am. Lola the drummer cum sessionist was the 'smart guy' in the band as he is the only one with an experienced playing all sorts of music even jazz and R & B in pubs and events around the city.He is young but so talented and he got experience from his stint with Kamikaze and Lefthanded. Then there was Yan the bassman, as sifu always addressed him as Yan from Jamaica,I managed to hang out with him only once but he is also an experienced musician as his stint with M Nasir, Ramli Sarip, Lefthanded and Search. He always have a different view compared to his other bandmates.

The music studio was unfortunately closed after two years as the nation music industry was hit by massive changes in musical direction. Music industry nowadays traded music, especially the younger generation look for the internet to download songs without having to go to a music shop. Most younger composer now even composed songs via computer music programming!
When I came back from performing my Hajj in year 2004, he and his family visited me at home and was among the earliest of friends that came in visit me and with a purpose to have a taste of the zam zam water. What a shock as this came from the unlikely guy considered as the No.1 Metal Performers in Malaysia! that is what makes Ali special , to me he is the most polite heavy metal friend that I encountered. Never smoke a cigarette, never drinks and always keep himself in a good shape with cycling and jogging. Now , he is no more with XPDC, as they have reunion themselves with the old line-up of Mael, Izo, Amy and Zua.
Anyway life goes on and I still keep in touch with him once in a while as Ali now venture into business of sound system provided for any events small or big.
So Long Bro, Heavy Metal Will Never Die.

Friday, December 31, 2010

True Leaders Are Born, They Are Not Made

Welcome to Year 2011. We are now officially one step ahead in terms of ages. We are no more turning back to our childhood age instead we are going to a much much more challenging life awaiting ahead of us.

Some men and nowadays even some women play their role in their daily life by leading others in life. Either it is just a small and not so important group or its a big and important group. Its a lifecycle that almost everybody encounter everyday.

We also without any hesitation needs leaders to lead us to achieve our goals and become more successful in the eye of other human and fulfilling our own desire. Eventhough at the eye of God we are of equally the same.

To me, great leaders are born and they are not made. The most important criteria that a good leader must have is a good and strong decision making. Good leaders are sometimes seen as being ruthless and heartless but at the end their achievement will determine whether they are good or not. They must sometimes listen to the advice of the people around them too.

During my stint with a financial institution almost 15 years ago, there was this Branch Manager who were just newly promoted from the rank of senior officer by the bank's Management. He was being promoted because his wife happens to be a remiser and handles the shares for one of the top Management people at the bank. During his duty , he failed to obliged to the needs of customers and to the employees due to his difficulty and hard headedness by not listening to any advise from his superiors under him. After 5 years working under his reign, he was then transferred back to our HQ as the complaints and bad feedback from customers and employees reach to the ears of the top Management. The Branch then were taken over by the more approachable and experience man for the position.

Leaders that are practising favouritism will lead to bad judgement and unfair decision. Unfair decision will throw the morale of employees or followers down to the drain. In the long run , that kind of leader won't last long. And unfortunately the followers will follow too. Decision must be strong , precise and must meet the objective. As a Muslim, we are so lucky and so special that we have our way of 'talking to God' and ask for the 'right decision making' through few solat sunat. Why don't we as leaders and being Muslim didn't use this channel as part of decision making? The answer is because, some Muslim leaders are too proud to 'talk and ask from God himself'.

Followers will also tend to do their part half heartedly instead of contributing with full commitment if leaders continuing practising favouritism and double standard. What's the point of keeping an undisciplined person in your group without any punishment on any wrongdoings instead? Quoted an example, Sir Alex Ferguson the team manager for Manchester United football team sold his most valuable player and most favourite son in Manchester, David Beckham , due to bad discipline and too much glam on the modelling canvas but later on goes on to win more more major trophies for the team and club. What happen if he listen to fans pleas and not punishing Beckham? The team will be ruined in the long run.Maybe the rest of the players in Man Utd will contribute not in 100 percent effort.

So through my experience, bad decision making, working without objectives, unnecessary spending financially and practising favouritism will all be the major contributing factors of a bad leadership.

Remember , again ..leaders are born they are not made.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Sea Of Madness

Year 2010 is approaching its second part. I am turning 37 soon. That is not the main concern. The main concern is the way most people in our country now ending their daily life , day in day out searching for things that they also unsure and uncertain.

Being alone without both my beloved parents have made me a person who observes more and more and try to figure out and try to put myself in other people shoes. But still, I could not find the answer.

The level of self centred and selfishness among our younger generations are increasing as we are now living in a world of materialistic. Most people judges the self esteem of a person by what he or she owns not by what he or she present. To take an example of a successful person is by the way that person portrays such as expensive vehicles, living in a mansion like house and the amount of money kept in possession no matter whether it is legal or not.

Trying to be a true Muslim, is almost an impossible tasks as most workplace are controlled by those who are 'graduated' with a contaminated Western culture. Nobody cares about what Rasulullah saw our true leader of mankind left us - Quran and Hadith. How many of us really refers to the Quran and Hadith for daily life? How many?

Who ever follows are considered as orthodox backward people who denies modernization and development. No doubt that there is still few people with 'Hati Emas' but there are discarded and usually being passed unseen by most bosses in an organization.

No respect for the elders , never consider about how others might felt are becoming common act of attitude in most workplaces. Those who are shining are normally those that lick the boss bottom and ready to step on anybody's head to be on top.

When I joined this company , I thought I can instill good value by showing my Lead by Example attitude. Instead I was totally wrong, if I start doing that job, looks like I'll be the one doing it till I become breathless. I try to put myself on everybody's shoes, doing lots of work that is beyond my capacity as a so called management level staff, but at the end nobody cares. What they see is that I am always there so , why they should bother anyway?

Being attached to Human Resources Department promises that in day-to-day life , I can't avoid facing all these people with their colourful character because they are humans not machine. Should have known better, but they said the brightest flame burns quickest so I will try to understand till I reach the time when I just do not care anymore. Everyday I am playing with all sort of madness, sadness more than happiness.

Am I at another level or am I just being to observant? Only time will tell. The cracks in the wall have grown too long, its just a matter of time.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

My First Bike

Its a Kawasaki Vulcan EN500cc. Bought it on 5 March 1997 while i was still attach to Oriental Bank Berhad. The idea of having the bike was initially set up by En Ahmad (my Head of Credit and also the big brother of famous singer , Aris Ariwatan). He thought it was a good idea for me to buy the bike since I have enrolled on a evening class after office.

I used to remember back in those days when I was still a bank clerk at Balakong branch, after office at 5pm , I had to rushed to attend my evening class at Amset Business School in Petaling Street. The class starts at 6pm , so the idea of having the bike just fit the bill. It was a 500cc bike made in Japan with a weight of 200kgs. The interest to the bike make my dreams come true and during those days most of my buddies and even my dad was puzzled on how I managed to ride the bike , as I don't have any motorcycle's licence before. Not even can ride properly a kapcai.

It was a love for the first sight for me , with the selling price of RM17,612, I started experiencing sleepless nights imagining about having the bike. The dreams finally come true as on the month of March 1997 just right after Chinese New Year holiday , the bike was officially owned by a guy name Muzafar Abdul Karim. To add to my happiness is that my best of buddy, Syeikh also decided to have one!! Mine is a red silver, and his bike are purple silver. Later on I was also known by my friends as MuzVulcan. A synonym to the bike I am using.

He got his bike later than mine because Kawasaki was having limited distribution for purple silver and finally in May 1997 , our dreams of riding together comes true. We went out almost every nights to have just a simple 'teh tarik' in a nearby mamak stall. We went out riding as far as Malacca (south) and Ipoh (north) together with another one of our ex-school mate, Raymond Jeffrey. It was our glory days and we do it all just for the love of the bike and the enjoyment of riding. All that us can think of during those days are just riding and talks only on matters concerning big bikes.

Our riding days becomes to a halt, when Raymond sell off the bike because he shifted to work in Singapore after his father passed away in 1998. Syeikh was getting married in year 2000 and stops riding permanently, and I was the only sole biker soon after that. It was not easy for me as I used to ride with Raymond and Syeikh alongside. However, nothing lasts forever and I have to accept the facts that I am the only biker left riding among the three buddies.

I change the bike's colour three times during my close relationship with the bike.Now I have also sold the bike to a man from Batu Pahat after owning it for almost 11 years. I parted with the bike exactly 2 months after my mum passed away. One day, I think I should pay my ex-bike a visit and meet again.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Ayah - As I Was Told (Part 1)

Haji Abdul Karim Bin Mohd Ali
(Aug 8 , 1933 - May 15, 2000)

He was born in Hulu Yam Lama at Hulu Selangor to a big family of 10 siblings.
His dear father , Mohd Ali Hussein, was a very respectable man and was chosen to head the village for almost 10 years.

The whole family shifted to Kampung Baru, KL (Jalan Raja Uda) as the situation in the kampungs especially rural area in the middle of 1940s until late 1950s back then was very chaotics and not safe due to the guerilla attacks by the Communist. Many families took shelter to the urban area as this area are much safer and were covered by the army and police.

He then continued his primary studies at Sekolah Jalan Raja Muda, KL and completed his secondary education at Victoria Institution (VI). He was crazy about football and the teams he supported back then is of course, Manchester United with players such Duncan Edwards, Sir Bobby Charlton, Billy Foulkes, Eddie Colman (as I can remember from his non stop stories about his beloved team).

He represented his school (VI)football team and he was also selected to play for Selangor team after finished his Form Five, which is called MCE at that time. He was selected by Dato' Harun Idris as the team defender and plays for Selangor in the late 1950s, regularly alongside Datuk Abdul Ghani Minhat and Edwin Dutton.

During his days, there were so many great players representing the national team as the national team is also the strongest in the South East Asia region.