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Friday, March 28, 2008

*sigh

please... help me. I'll do my level best.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

What can I say

We gave it everything, but the next stage isn't ours. It belongs to others now. The cut feels deep because I wanted to bring something across to more than 200 people. It would have been amazing to be able to reach out to much more than that, in a bigger place where everybody's paying close attention to everything you do. For myself, it was never about winning, I wanted to do my best, just give it everything in a hope of greasing the wheels a bit to send out a positive, perhaps inspiring message through music. I'm not sure how many bands involved actually have the same kind of mindset as us, it just feels bad for me that we don't get the chance to reach out to even more people. I don't know, it feels frustrating because I'm not too sure how much more we could have done right, guess we're lost out by better technicalities from the others. The effort feels almost wasted, I believe it's not but it feels that way. I'd trade my personal accolade for the drums any day at anytime just to deliver something of great personal value to many lives. That's my heart for what Seven Sweet Surrender does, hopefully there'll be other chances to impact people with something better than just music.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Humbled

It was a very exciting time on stage, Witton told me to give it all, I just gave what I could, thank God it turned out well. I think all of us felt very blessed at the end of it all, it certainly was a very humbling experience. I think we gave it just about everything and I believe it produced a good result. It was nice to know that some others felt the same way too.

I really was... very humbled by what was said. I have to admit it was quite flattering on many ends. It's good to know that we all have a good standing, good to know I have a good standing but I don't want to take it all in. That's because I'm not interested in people praising technicalities as much as I am interested in knowing that we can perhaps deliver a positive message through music than can influence the lives of others.

It was very tempting tonight to get a bit bloated over some very flattering feedback, but staying on the ground is important. At the end of the day, who cares if you have the best musicians, but still don't achieve your objective. I just hope we'll have the chance to do that.

I'm really proud to be part of a band, not just a band, a team of people that share the same heart for something bigger than ourselves. That's what I'm after, it's what they're after too. I'm really blessed to be with such people.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Random things in photos

I was just going through some photos I took, just thought I should take some time to blog a little about some of them.



My dear Max, this is the dog I got so fond of, was quite sad when we had to give him away. Worse still, he was given away when I wasn't around, he was such a ball of fun, made really great company. He was the first thing I'd look forward to in the morning when I was around during the holidays. The last I saw of him was the day when my mother and I walked him and Kooky (friend's dog: shown below) out at Desa Park City.


Borrowed from Andy Loh, for dearest Witton to use, is this distortion electric guitar pedal, made in Siberia, quite a pretty one I'd say, a little more interesting than the usual BOSS pedals we see around. It's pretty neat, got quite a number of settings as you'll see below:




Meet my father, Simon Emang, he is many years of age, and this is one of the few photos I have of him. I think this tells me I need more of that. Usually a quiet man, but as you can see in the photo, there's a lot of pent up enthusiasm if you can get it out of him. Truly, a man who is mature with much substance, wise in words and practical too. He loves his family, and among them, his wife, Suzie Chuah

I don't have a close up picture of my mother with me right now, unless you want a side view of her cooking, lol. Anyhow, she's the lovely lady, second from the left wearing a sleeveless flowery top. The others (starting from left) are Andrea, Liz Bendor, Margaret, Paul and the two girls are Andrea's pretty little daughters. I can't remember their names, but they're real nice, they know how to have a fun time, haha!

More to come soon, watch this space, lots more random photos coming up. =)

Hmmm

Well, today seemed pretty alright. It won't be the best Sunday I've had in my life, but all right, nonetheless. A couple of unexpected things happened, but I suppose it's all part of the experience. I think the best part of today was being able to say things, giving opinions to ears that hear, that are concerned, that try to understand, and most importantly, want to help. It's always comforting to know that there are people who are able to see certain things and know action needs to be taken. All part of the growing process, part of helping each other grow. It's good to say these things, otherwise, people won't know, and change cannot happen. Hopefully, all this will trigger something good.

Getting into the week

Well, back in UTP again, got a very busy week ahead for me, put that's largely due to Euphonious, my nights are all taken. I hope I'll get enough rest. I think Wednesday will be a important day for this week, hopefully I can get whatever I need done on that day.

Please.... let Sunday be a good day, I need to start this week on a very right foot. Always seems to make a difference going into Monday. Mood controlling suddenly became more important than ever, can't really afford it to get in the way..

Random stuff: First time I've ever seen a football referee substituted, saw it during the Manchester United vs Derby game.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Wow..

Guilt is so real.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Writing

I've spent the last few days pretty lazily I suppose. I haven't really been that productive, in the sense of catching up with my studies and all. I did my programming assignment, but I'm pretty stuck now, so I'm just leaving it for the moment, perhaps my programming enthusiasm will come back after a while. I've been doing a little bit of reading, which is good, because I really haven't done that in a long time. I think I should start reading more than I watch YouTube, hehe. The one thing that's really occupied my time these last few days though, is songwriting.

I think I've mentioned on this blog a long time ago, that I've written songs before, but somehow, it's really hard for me to finish writing one. As it is, because of my lack of talent, skill or edge in this area; I've co-written two songs with Khye Shin. That was a long time ago, back when I was still in high school. Then, about a few months back, I did finally manage to write one full song on my own which felt very satisfying. As it is for everyone, it's always nice to achieve something on your own.

Right now, I'm trying to work on another song, and this time, it's faster than what I've been trying most of the time. Sometimes, the tendency is to write slow songs, because you get into an emotional mood and then you naturally write a tune that's not so upbeat. That's where I'm challenging myself.

I started with this tune that I came up with a few months ago. It was slow, like I've always done but then I just tried playing it faster. Over time, I started to put some lyrics into it. This is where I face my toughest challenge, only a short line or verse of lyrics will come naturally into my head as I play the tune. The rest of it, I have to really take a lot of time to figure it out. For some, I suppose it's easier, but for me, I can just sit there, thinking about just one line of a verse, over and over and over. It can really get frustrating, annoying too.

This is why... there are still a number of uncompleted songs that I've just left because I gave up thinking about which lyrics would fit in and so forth. Sometimes, I get jealous, or just think about all those people, at least those whom I know that can write songs so easily. If I were to ask Scott, he could probably give me 5 exercise books of songs that he's written, it just comes so easy for him. Then there's Felicia as well, who's got enough tracks to launch a solo album. Then there's friends who keep on popping up with songs as if they are a song writing factory.

To be honest, I've finished writing this song, but I don't quite like it. It's like ARGHHHHHHH, why can't this just fit?! I'll be going through it again, most probably taking out certain lyrics, putting new ones in. That's my music writing process for the moment, a little rocky I suppose. Maybe I don't quite have what it takes to write good songs, especially since a lot of the time I find myself forcing my mind, perhaps not my heart to find the words. I guess writing something original, let it be a song, an essay or a novel sometimes becomes hard when you try to put your own unique touch on it. Someone once told me, I'd end up being a creative person, some people reading this are already doubting the statement. I am too, looking at my exploits so far. It seems that when I try, a lot of the time, it doesn't really come out right. Anyhow, I'm still giving certain things a go, see where it takes me.

What's your writing process like?

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

This is so cool.. eMily tHe GuiTar

Just last night, I was walking around the shoplex at Desa Park City, there was the music instrument shop that were selling some really pretty acoustic guitars. I got a pretty good shock, each guitar had the whole body covered in a specific colour, some baby blue, light pink and so forth. I thought that was pretty radical. Then, I was hanging around Mid Valley today, went to the music instrument shop there, and caught hold of what I thought was a very interesting looking Epiphone Gibson SG design. I couldn't take a photo so I researched it online, and here's what I saw:



Whoa! Emily the Strange Epiphone! This is wicked cool. Any rocker chic should definitely check this out. It's at the music store on the same floor and area as IT World in Mid Valley Megamall. It's priced at around Rm 1430 I think, around there.






Oh, and if you want it, you better be quick. It's a limited edition. =)

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Today

The people that can make it so worth it for me to come back apart from family.. are people like Gerard, Wai Nyan, Kay, Candice and Pei Ling. It feels so good just to see them.

It was nice, got to have slightly more than a 2 minute conversation with Candice, simply precious, I don't get to talk to her often. It's nice to hear she'll be playing for church again, after so long! I've really missed that beautiful voice of hers and her guitar playing. It's really soothing, she's the kind of musician that I think can really just cut into you by the passion of her heart that she puts into the music she plays.

Then there's Gerard, who's always a joy with his smile, and concern for others really. Sometimes, he'll just put in some random phone calls to find out how I'm doing when I'm in UTP, and it is quite encouraging. Pei Ling's another one too, she's really a ball of fun, yet someone of good substance. A girl that's got honesty written on her face, humility and quite a large part of lame always gets me in a good mood. People are so fortunate to have her around all the time.

Simply observing moments like those let you know, that life is so much bigger than yourself. Life has never been about living for yourself. Rather, it's more towards living for other people, filling their lives with joy so that you can experience the same joy alongside them. It's such a simple concept, I make you happy, you make him happy, we're all happy! So simple, yet so easily forgotten sometimes when we focus on the 'self' part of life. I feel we do that too often, too easily sometimes, don't you think?

Back Home

Hello everyone, I'm back in KL for a week. It's the beginning of my mid-semester break and it does feel good to be somewhere other than UTP for once. My bus left at 5.00 p.m on Friday so I arrived at about 8.00 p.m at Pudu Bus Station , went over to Masjid Jamek, from which I would take the LRT to KL Sentral where I would meet up with my mother.

It was a late night and we headed over for dinner somewhere I like to go every time I come back, Madam Kwan's at Bangsar. It is a pricey place but I hardly go there, so it was nice to have a meal there. The lighting inside the Madam Kwan restaurant's pretty dim, good place to take your girlfriend, haha! It does make a nice quiet, dimmed place, not a bad place for a couple.

So anyway, we were talking over dinner mostly about this SAP (Study Abroad Program) opportunity that UTP is offering, there's a chance of going to places like the USA or Australia to study for one semester should I be selected. My mother was definitely enthusiastic about the chance for me to perhaps go abroad for awhile. However, I was the one not particularly enthusiastic even just to fill up the application form. Somehow, I'm not very keen on going overseas, studying abroad even though by head knowledge I know that it would be a very good experience, being exposed to different people and perhaps a whole new learning style. For me, what I feel, is that I don't really want to leave UTP, even just for one semester. Why? Well, I can't really say. I just really don't feel like leaving, put it that way.

Anyhow, that discussion left me with this thing in my head, whether I should try out for it or not. Logic says I should, since I don't even know whether I'll get it or not. I don't know, now I've got one more thing to think(stress) about now. I'm ignoring it for the time being though, trying to enjoy my break here.

That wasn't the only thing we were talking about that night. We spent quite a bit of time about Max too, our cockel spaniel that we gave away. To be honest, I was really bummed out about it, still am really, miss having him around. My mum had to give him away because he ran away, and my mother wasn't so sure if she could take care of him after that. She was pretty concerned that Max would run away again, and end up not being so safe. That was that, and we gave him away about one month ago, until now it feels a little sad because my mother gave him away while I was still in UTP, so I didn't get to see him or enjoy him for a last time before he headed for a new life somewhere else.

What a way to begin a holiday break, huh?

Anyhow, I did have a good day off today. It was a pretty lazy one I suppose. I went out with my mother to catch a movie, we went to see Vantage Point. For me it's quite a nice movie, although you have to be patient, as the movie rewinds itself quite a number of times so that you can see about 8 different perspectives of an event that happened within 15 minutes. Some people were making noises at the back after the third time the movie rewind to another perspective. For me, I appreciated it, so you wouldn't have heard me even sighing at that. I thought it was something pretty cool actually, guess you need to be in a certain frame of mind to enjoy it. I do recommend it, it's an action movie, with a number of nice plot twisting turns, something I think is worth watching, even just for the concept of the flashbacks/rewinds.


P/s - Thinking about getting a new bible..... old one is.. pretty worn out... Should I?

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

A lot more reassuring


To know that we have a minimum of six hours practice in a proper studio on the 17th, 18th and 20th of March is EXTREMELY relieving. This is especially so since we can't use the UTP slots even ONCE! We're gonna have some long nights practicing.... Hopefully it'll be fruitful and worthwhile, quite anxious to see what we can really pull together.

Sunday, March 02, 2008

ToPsY TuRvY

Hmmm, well, I suppose if you're a frequent reader of my blog, you'd know by know that this post's title sums up my past week or so. In a way, it's a good thing, because it keeps me in check, reminding me how human I am, in the sense that there's a lot of imperfection, and at least I'm willing to admit a little of it publicly.

Emotion is powerful, feelings fuel it, strengthening it. Nonetheless, the large driving factor is the power of thought. The way you and I think has a huge impact or influence if you like, over the way we are. The way we think encourages us to feel a certain way, to be a certain way and very importantly, to judge a certain way.

This is the struggle I've been facing recently, tyring to make a concious effort to control my thoughts. That's what needs to be done if you want to take control over whatever negative feelings you experience sometimes. Nonetheless, you don't quite get it right sometimes, when you're constantly feeding yourself with one thing, uncertainty.

That's one word that's really been pulling my mind lately, that word combined with the many aspects of my life sums up to be something quite large really. As I've told a few people, it's quite overwhelming. One of the worst things about is that even though things, aren't bad as it is now, you feel as if things are bad already, being in anticipation of some horrific incident.

I suppose many of you have experienced this before, and this time it's my turn for this year. Many questions fill your head, and by nature, we sometimes hope for the best but expect the worst. My nature is to expect the worst really, in the name of being a realist. I think that's what I try do so I hope I can cope with any form of dissapointment.

However, if I really was realistic, I'd know that there plenty of things out of my control. There's so much we can do, but at the end of the day, the result still depends on a higher authority. Some people say it's luck, good fortune, bad fortune and so forth. For me, God's in control of that result and whatever happens, there's a purpose for it. It's just that some of these things that I've been thinking about concern things that I consider, very very close to my heart, things that could potentially really break me if I had to let go.

Nonetheless, such things aren't in my hands. I can only hope to shape the future, but I can't mould it into it's exact shape. Sometimes, even the shape can ruin itself. That's when you accept that you just have to live life for what it is now, because what happens now impacts the future. Lastly, the burden of anxiety, uncertainty, of fear, needs to be dropped somewhere. I'm thankful I know where to put it.

Cheers.

stability

I really need... a stable.. mind