Nationalism and Talented Musicians

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My sense of nationality arises when I see the potential of the nation’s youth in the field of music on YouTube popping up in cyberspace and getting high appreciation from foreign music lovers. Pride in them comes when all the You Tubers who are reactors of their songs know that our singers are from Indonesia.

In 1982 when I participated in the ASEAN-Japan Youth Exchange Program, I was trained hard – at the building of Indonesian Haj Association (PHI) at Cempaka Putih area in Jakarta and Pramuka Island – one of the thousand island clusters of Jakarta – on nationalism insight, discipline etc. And at the closing of the training event our delegates kissed the Red and White flag crying as much as possible – feeling a high sense of nationalism. 

But the sense of nationalism is certainly not only about raising and kissing the flag of the country as the results of the achievements of the nation’s children in all fields can also cause pride of the country. I have a Japanese friend who is proud of his country because he sees almost all the highways filled with Japanese-made cars. Other nations such as the United States, Britain, Germany, France etc. also appeared their sense of nationalism due to fact that most of modern technologies in this world are the creation of their nations.

Similarly, when I see Indonesian singers from different tribes and backgrounds popping up like an unstoppable flood shaking the world – there is a sense of pride of this country. There used to be Khoirunnisa known as Nisya Syabian born in Lumajang East Java, “Gambus” singer whose video seen by millions of people; then appeared mas Alip Ba Ta born in Pacitan East Java – a forklift driver in Jakarta; his skill at strumming guitars and performing western songs in great detail made his viewers in various countries amazed at his skill and simplicity. Then Felix Irwan from Central Java, a former street singer with his heavy voice sings various western songs perfectly made people in the Americas, Europe and Asia beat in awe even some cried. Then Vanny Vabiola – a young mother from the land of Minang Sumatra whose voice resembles Whitney Huston, Agsesia a young girl from Kalimantan former Indonesian Idol – her beautiful voice also amaze music lovers worldwide. There is another Jakarta-born young man who resides in Milan Italy, a former busker on the streets in Italy his name is Eki Tjahyadi won at the talent show “All Together Now” in December 2020. The entire audience stood to loud applause as bang Eki managed to amaze singing the Italian song “Tappeto Di Fragole”. Until there are foreign fans of those our well-known musicians shouted “INDONESIA YOU MUST BE PROUD OF YOUR SINGERS  !!!

The last one I saw the young singer named Cakra Konta Paryaman better known by the stage name Cakra Khan, a Sundanese who was born in Pangandaran West Java – one area with Bu Susi former minister of Fisheries and Marine Affairs. Cakra Khan who graduated from Bandung Music School in 2014 also shook the world when he sings the Blues-themed song “Tennessee Whiskey”. His heavy voice and his grip like a famous United States blues singer astonished foreign nationals in various countries. I am sure after Cakra Khan will appear many reliable musicians from this country who will also shake the world. All foreigners were amazed to find out that our musicians are from Indonesia. What makes me proud when those people open their eyes to see that Indonesia is not a chaotic country, left behind, a lot of problems etc., but it is a big country with great potentials.

I imagine the presence of the state in this regard, for example the ministry that handles the creative economy, or the Indonesian Embassies in overseas holding international concerts presenting Nisya Syabian, Alib Ba Ta, Felix Irwan, Bank Eki, Vanny Vabiola, Agsesia, Cakra Khan and other young Indonesians on one stage for example at London’s Royal Albert Hall, UK; Broadway Theatre Building in Manhattan New York United States, or at Budokan Hall Tokyo Japan, or Sydney Opera House Australia etc. Indonesia will be better known to the citizens of the world and its musicians become one of the icons of the nation’s pride culture; and this will certainly give rise to a high sense of nationalism of the greatness of this nation.

Berita Terkait

Ahmad Cholis Hamzah

Ahmad Cholis Hamzah

Contributor of Media UNAIR, Alumni of Faculty of Economics Airlangga University’73 and University of London, UK.