The Soul Patrol Cured The McPhee-ver



What a finale. The final show of American Idol 5 last night was really entertaining. All of the guest artiste was awesome. My man, Al Jarreau (who I haven't seen in ages) was there doing a wonderful duet with Paris Bennett. One of my favourite band, Live performed with Chris Daughtry. (Ed Kowalczyk and Chris look like bald twins.) Mary J Blige gave a rousing performance with Elliot Yamin. The very hot Toni Braxton did a duet with Taylor Hicks. Even the great Meatloaf was there, man! (..although he look like he's having a stroke). I also love the Top 12 finalists performance with Dionne Warwick because all of them sounded great. It was really nice hearing them all sing for one last time. But my favourite guest artiste performance was by the original soul man, His Royal Purpleness himself, Prince. Damn, he sounded good! All and all, the music and the performance were very lively and it sounded great. By far the most entertaining American Idol finale so far.

And it wasn't just music, it was funny too. I kinda like the Puck n Pickler segment, because Kellie wasn't that annoying, it was actually hilarious. And she looks cuter with short hair. Somehow I think that she's going to have a career as an actress or a TV host. The funniest segment was of course the Golden Idol segment, when 'Crazy' Dave Hoover jumps down accidentally from the stage upon receiving the 'Best' Male Vocal. That guy is nuts! Another funny moment was when Clay Aiken surprised this Napolean Dynamite lookalike Michael Sandecki. That Michael guy was so shocked he literally shake and shivers and prompted Ryan Seacrest to gave him a stool to sit down. Clearly that was the gayest moment of the night. And of course, who can forget The Brokenote Cowboys...haha.

So it was Taylor Hicks who was crowned the American Idol Season 5. Disappointed that Kat didn't win? Not really, because I actually like Taylor. I actually predicted early that he and Kat will be in the finale. I guess it was OK because both of them was very good singers and deserves to be in the finale. It's not like Kat loses to that ChickenLittle lookalike... now that's a different story.

So, to Taylor, you deserve it, man. Looking forward to see more of The Soul Patrol. And to Katharine McPhee... well, I guess now, when I came home from work every Wednesday and Thursday, you won't be there anymore. Thanks for everything... I know I'll be seeing you again. :)

Grease The Musical : It is not quite the word


The week before last week I entered this SMS contest on Astro and luckily I won(..yeah!) 2 free tickets to watch Grease the Musical at the Plenary Hall in KL Convention Centre. Why did I enter this contest? Well, for those who were paying attention to my useless and pointless rantings, Grease is like my favourite movie of all time. Why does a movie about teenage lust, soppy music and American subcultures interest a guy like me so much? I mean, I'm not really a movie musical fanatic.. but yet I could memorized every single line to that movie. I could I sing every single song word by word. I don't really know why, but I enjoy that movie so much, I never grew tired of watching it. The fact that the movie was released on the month and the year that I was born also help I guessed. Plus the No. 1 song all over the world on the day that I was born was, you guessed it, 'You're The One That I Want' from Grease: Movie. So you could imagine my excitement and expectations for this live musical version.

The verdict? Well, it doesn't really lives up to my expectations, really. It was OK but lacking in some parts. First of all the sound systems sucks. You could barely hear the dialogue especially when they were singing, the music drowned the vocals. The musical arrangements was not that impressive considering the fact that Grease is one of the successful musical of all time in Broadway. In some parts it feels like a children sunday matinee show, largely because they were hundreds of children in the audience, laughing hysterically at every crass joke. I'm not really sure if they understand the whole story because they were laughing when Danny and Sandy had their (..quite long) onstage kiss. And speaking of kisses, the show was not really suitable for kids with all the upskirts pulling, breast touching, air-humping, smoking and one character shoves up his middle finger to the air 3 times. I guess that Berita Harian reporter is not a fan of Grease, otherwise we might hear about it in the papers... hehe.

What I like about the show was the very solid vocal arrangements that sounded really amazing, especially those acapella, doo-wop songs. The actors were all very good singers. They sounded great most notably, on songs like 'Beauty School Dropout', 'We Go Together' and 'Hopelessly Devoted To You'. I really enjoy the hype before the show started when several actors and dancers invited the audience to dance on stage. There was this one very sporting makcik who went up and do the twist and rock the party like it was 1959. I swear if I was sitting nearer to the stage, I might go up there and pull the Hand Jive. But if I did that, I'm not sure my girlfriend sitting next to me would agree..hehe. Other than the vocals and those familiar songs (..that I sing along quitely), the show was just OK.

I do know the fact that the movie version of Grease was very different in some parts from the stage musical. For example, the song 'Grease Lightning' was actually sung by Kenickie and not Danny Zuko. It was John Travolta who persuaded Randal Kleiser, the director of Grease movie to let his character sing that song. And in the stage musical the guys were not called T-Birds, but Burger Palace Boys. I guess these little differences make it less enjoyable for me to watch. For instance, the Teen Angel in this stageshow was a black woman who sings 'Beauty School Dropout' in a gospel version. Where the fark is Frankie Avalon and the flying angels? And my favourite song 'Sandy' was nowhere to be found. My favourite scene in the movie, the school dance contest scene, was not that exciting in this stage version. It lacks the excitement and flair of the movie version.

Well, I guess you can't please them all. But for what it's worth, I guess it's an OK show. I have now, seen both the stage and the movie version of my favourite movie. But for me, the movie was a classic, the stageshow was just plain OK.

Links :
Wikipedia - Grease: Movie
Wikipedia - Grease: Musical
Grease: Movie official site

She's in the finale..


Yes... she has made it to the final 2. Next week she will compete with Taylor Hicks (which is also is a very good singer) in the grand finale of American Idol. It's gonna be tough to decide.. but you guys know who I'm rooting for right? :)



P/S: After seeing Kat McPhee performance of 'Somewhere Over The Rainbow' last Wednesday, Simon Cowell commented, "It was the single most best performance of the competition to date".
I definitely agree....what a performance by her. Go Kat!

Mengulas Sebelum Melihat.. Boleh Ke?

Aku belum tengok filem Man Laksa, MI3, Poseidon dan DaVinci Code. Jadi sebab itulah aku tak tulis komen aku pasal filem-filem tu di blog ni. Aku nak sangat tulis komen.. tapi aku belum tengok lagi.

Eh, wait a minute... Boleh ke kalau kita tulis komen atau reviews sebelum kita tengok sesuatu filem? Maksud aku, kan sinopsis dah ada.. Maybe aku boleh praktikkan apa yang cikgu aku ajar masa form 3 dulu iaitu buat rumusan daripada buku. Masa tu cikgu aku advise, kalau takde masa, baca aja sinopsis kat belakang buku tu, pastu buat rumusan.

..tapi boleh ke buat camtu? Tak menyalahi mana-mana undang-undang kewartawanan Malaysia ke? Adil ke kalau aku buat camtu?

Maksud aku, contohnya, kalau mak aku buat kuih tepung talam yang aku memang tahu sedap, tapi kali ni dia buat dengan warna yang lain, patutkah aku kata kat mak aku ".. ah! tak sedap aa kuih ni!" sebelum aku cuba untuk menjamah tepung talam tersebut? Mesti mak aku sedih kan..?

.. kalau tak boleh dan tak patut, kenapa ada seorang wartawan hiburan di akhbar Berita Harian boleh menulis tentang filem-filem yang dia sendiri belum pernah tonton? Dan dari penulisannya itu dia mengatakan yang filem-filem tersebut tidak 'sedap'. Tawar, pahit, hangit..

Aku sebenarnya sedih dengan si wartawan tu. Walaupun aku dan kawan-kawan penulis blog yang lain hanya ada papan blog sebagai kanvas untuk kami melakar komen kami mengenai filem, tetapi kami masih tahu etika penulisan. The rule is simple : watch the movie first, write a review later. Kalau suka bagi ulasan positif. Kalau tak suka bagi ulasan negatif. Tapi kalau seseorang terbalikkan rule tersebut , mengulas sebelum melihat, bolehkah seseorang itu dianggap sebagai seorang wartawan? Kalau boleh, di mana etikanya? Takde? Hmmm...

..aku tak nak bercakap lagi mengenai wartawan tu. Semenjak aku tengok keletahnya dalam program Fenomena Seni TV1 hari tu, aku mula nampak ke'pandai'annya.Dan aku mula benci dengan ideanya. Bermula dengan isu Kaki Kino, Gubra dan kini pengharaman filem terbaru Amir Muhammad 'Lelaki Komunis Terakhir', wartawan tersebut ternyata belum selesai berperang dengan kebangkitan filem-filem tempatan. Bagi aku, dia adalah penghalang utama pengarah-pengarah muda dan baru di Malaysia. You've been warned..

..biarkan si wartawan tersebut dengan dunia palsunya. Yang aku tahu sekarang ni, aku nak makan tepung talam. Nanti aku bagitahu sedap ke tak..




Check out these link kalau nak tahu lebih lanjut :

- Blog Lelaki Komunis Terakhir
- Patah Balek complete links of all issues and articles regarding LKT
- Jeff Ooi Screenshots
- Tulisan Vovin mengenai program Fenomena Seni


Lantai T Pinkie - Thank God For Kebaya Nyonya.

Aku belum pernah saksikan pementasan Lantai T Pinkie (LTP) walapun sudah beberapa kali ianya dipentaskan dengan pelakon yang berbeza. Jadi aku tidak boleh membuat perbandingan di antara pementasan kali ini dengan pementasan sebelumnya. Dari ulasan yang aku baca, ramai yang mengatakan pementasan kali ini kurang hebat berbanding pementasan sebelumnya. I don't know. Apa yang aku tahu, dari apa yang aku saksikan semalam, ternyata aku sangat terhibur.

Aku dan partner-in-crime sampai tepat pukul 8.30 malam ketika show baru sahaja akan dimulakan. Kali ini kami membeli tiket di bahagian stalls, P11 dan P12 yang lebih kurang baris kelapan daripada pentas. Ternyata ianya lebih baik dari seat kami semasa menonton PGLTM kerana kami lebih dekat dengan stage. More intimate.. Secara kebetulan pula seat aku bersebelahan dengan seorang rakan sekelas aku. It's a small world after all..

Aku tak mahu membuat ulasan dengan mendalam tentang teater LTP kerana telah terlalu banyak telah diperkatakan. Lagipun secara rasminya, pementasan LTP berakhir pada malam ini (Ahad). Enough to say that they got it just right. Bukannya mudah untuk merealisasikan sebuah karya sastera hebat Datuk A Samad Said kepada sebuah teater muzikal yang menghiburkan. Untuk itu ucapan tahniah harus diberikan kepada pengarahnya, Rosminah Tahir. Yang paling aku suka ialah lagu-lagu dan muziknya yang sangat menghiburkan yang terdiri daripada joget, mambo, cha-cha, tango dan pelbagai lagi. Satu perkara yang bijak tentang pementasan ini ialah terdapat satu papan tanda pada bahagian kiri pentas yang memberi tahu penonton tentang jenis tarian yang sedang dipersembahkan (..mungkin ianya juga wujud di kelab joget zaman dahulu). Ternyata setiap scene kelab joget adalah sangat menghiburkan. I swear that when they were doing the mambo, I felt like jumping onto the stage. I was tapping my feet throughout the show. No wonder why kelab joget terkenal pada suatu ketika dahulu. Cuma aku agak sedikit kecewa kerana para pelakon kelihatan miming semasa menyanyi (..except for Safura). Mungkin juga kerana mereka bukan penyanyi. Tetapi ianya terlalu ketara bila wujudnya audio level yang tidak setara semasa mereka mengucapkan dialog dan menyanyi. Namun begitu, the sound was OK kecuali terdapat sedikit masalah teknikal pada speaker pada bahagian kanan pentas semasa Act 5 apabila bunyi distortion yang low level sedikit membingitkan telinga penonton tetapi kembali kepada biasa selepas intermission. Tahniah untuk Pak Ngah atas ciptaan lagu-lagu indahnya.

Satu perkara yang penting tentang sesebuah pementasan teater semestinya lakonan para pelakonnya. Nasha Aziz ternyata pilihan yang bijak untuk teater LTP ini. Watak Pinkie seharusnya dibawakan oleh seseorang yang cantik, seksi, menarik, yang boleh membuatkan penonton percaya bahawa dia menjadi rebutan semua lelaki di kelab joget pada masa itu. Dan melihat kepada karisma dan aura Nasha di pentas, aku rasa watak Pinkie memang sesuai untuknya. Aku berharap Nasha dapat mengasah bakatnya pada pementasan teater yang lain pula kerana ternyata dia mempunyai tarikan tersendiri. Tapi pada fikiran aku, dalam teater LTP ini, lakonan yang paling mantap datangnya daripada 2 teater heavyweights yang hebat, Azizah Mahzan dan Jalaludin Hassan. Setiap kali mereka muncul di pentas, walaupun bergandingan dengan para pelakon lain yang tidak kurang hebatnya, they stole every limelight. Pengucapan dialog yang jelas, lantang, dan lakonan penuh emosi ternyata membuatkan penonton terpaku menyaksikan lakonan mereka. No wonder why they got the loudest cheer at the encore. Lakonan pelakon lain seperti Vanidah Imran, Zuhairi Ibrahim, dan Zaifri Husin juga tidak menghampakan. Aku kurang pasti dengan lakonan Abby Abadi kerana nampak seperti dia masih kurang ekspresif dan agak sedikit kaku beraksi di pentas. Mungkin juga kerana watak Siti Udaya yang dibawakannya tidak ada perkembangan. Lakonan Soong Ai-Ling sebagai Puteh Su boleh diberikan pujian. Rata-rata ramai yang menyukai lakonannya kerana ternyata watak Puteh Su yang innocent, naive dan lovelorn terhadap watak Jongkidin Jaroi lakonan Jalaludin Hassan memang sesuai dengan perwatakannya. Walaupun sedikit pelat dan terkadang intonasinya tidak sesuai, namun secara keseluruhan she pulled it off. Kebanyakan babak Soong Ai-Ling adalah bersama Jalaludin Hassan, but she did just enough not to be totally outshined by him. Now I know why she got rave reviews for her performance in Puteri Hang Li Po last year. Secara keseluruhan, lakonan para pelakon LTP adalah sangat baik dan berkesan.

Beberapa perkara lagi yang menarik tentang teater LTP ialah rekaan set yang nostalgik dan dapat mengoptimakan penggunaan elevated stage Istana Budaya, and of course, the costume. Let me tell you this, any woman, regardless of their looks, shape, height and age, can look very sexy in a kebaya nyonya. No doubt about that. Para pelakon wanita LTP ternyata tampak begitu anggun dengan kebaya nyonya dan kain batik pelbagai warna yang ternyata merupakan satu dedikasi kepada Allahyarhamah Datin Seri Endon. Ditambah pula intipati jalan cerita LTP, yg berkisarkan tentang punggong seksi para penari joget (..the T in LTP actually stands for tonggek), pemakaian kebaya nyonya ternyata penting dalam penceritaan teater ini. Ternyata dialog yang paling diingati pada malam tersebut datang dari watak Nyai Sunarti Rekno lakonan Azizah Mahzan, '...Punggungmu satu kenikmatan!'. Awesome, hehe.

Selepas selesai menonton persembahan, kebanyakan penonton tersadai di Istana Budaya kerana hujan lebat turun mencurah-curah. Oleh kerana itu sesi autograf dan meet the fans para pelakon LTP dengan penonton menjadi sedikit havoc. Pegawai-pegawai Istana Budaya yang ternyata mengantuk dan tidak bertenaga untuk membuka mata, became a little bit grumpy and rude towards the fans. There was even one IB guy who actually fell asleep while standing guard. Yang paling mencuri tumpuan pada malam tersebut sudah semestinya Nasha Aziz yang friendly dan bubbly walaupun ternyata wajahnya mencerminkan kepenatan. I managed to get a few photos of her while she was signing autographs, and standing a few inches from her I can tell you that she looks even more stunning in person. Absolutely gorgeous. Terlalu ramai orang yang berpusu-pusu untuk menatap wajah para pelakon sehinggakan agak sukar untuk aku dan girlfriend aku untuk mengambil gambar mereka dengan jelas. Tetapi agak menyedihkan apabila ramai orang berpusu-pusu untuk mengambil gambar dengan para pelakon LTP, tetapi di bahagian hujung IB kelihatan orang yang bertanggungjawab terhadap cerita LTP, sasterawan negara Datuk A. Samad Said kelihatan tidak dipedulikan oleh orang ramai. Maybe everyone is a bit intimidated by his presence. Atau memang ternyata beliau bukanlah orang yang glamor. But we are talking about our Sasterawan Negara here. Ternyata peluang tersebut digunakan oleh kami untuk merakamkan foto bersama beliau dan mengucapkan tahniah di atas kejayaan pementasan karya beliau. Ternyata aku sangat bangga dengan foto tersebut.

Pukul 1 pagi hujan masih turun dengan lebat dan orang di IB makin berkurangan. Kebanyakan orang meredah hujan untuk ke kereta masing-masing. Tetapi memikirkan kereta aku yang diletak terlalu jauh dari pintu masuk IB, kami memutuskan untuk menunggu beberapa minit lagi. Ternyata penantian tersebut membuka peluang kami untuk bergambar dengan kebanyakan pelakon LTP kerana mereka telah selesai sesi tandatangan autograf dan bilangan orang yang semakin susut memudahkan kami untuk approach mereka. Kami sempat bergambar bersama Azizah Mahzan, Vanidah Imran, Nasha Aziz (..nervous gila aku bergambar ngan minah ni) dan Jalalaludin Hassan who was very friendly and soft spoken. Bak kata girlfriend aku "...patutlah orang cakap dia ni hero romantik, memang boleh cair pompuan ngan dia" And she likes it even more when Abg Jalal shook her hands and said "..take care, OK". Flirt! Haha..

Aku sebenarnya ingin meletakkan gambar aku dengan para pelakon LTP (..especially the one with Datuk A Samad Said) pada blog ini but I decided not to, simply because I look really fat on those pictures.. haha. Namun begitu, aku berasa sedikit puas dengan malam tersebut kerana persembahan teater yang sangat menghiburkan ditambah pula dengan kesempatan untuk merakamkan foto kenangan bersama para pelakon (..even though I was a little bit frustrated because Soong Ai-Ling disappeared before I had the chance to take a picture with her). Anyway it was an enjoyable evening and a night to remember. And I'm glad that I could be part of the whole Pinkie experience.

U like Weird and Strange?



Turn Your iPod into a Sex Toy

The iBuzz connects with your iPod to create vibrations in sync with whatever music you're playing.Now you can feel the music in places you've never felt before! iBuzz comes with a headphone splitter so you can listen on one end while vibrating on the other.

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Man Kills Self Over Genital Size

An 18-year-old Singaporean student committed suicide last month because he was convinced his penis was too small, a report said on Wednesday. The teenager, who was not named, jumped from a building on March 3. A suicide note explained why, an investigation to determine the cause of death said.
It said the teenager had confided in his mother in October 2005 that he was worried about the size of his penis. She took him to a clinic where a doctor said it was normal for an Asian man and prescribed multi-vitamins. State Coroner said the boy's case showed that even in the age of the Internet when information can be easily obtained, "the less informed also become victims to junk information and worse, untruths."

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Yup, whether we like it or not, we are the victims of junk information. Both stories above can be considered as junk information to some but to the information hunters, knowledge seekers or even normal readers, it's INFORMATION. By reading this u are now wiser than the person sitting next to you.

So if u want to be the wisest person in your own little world why don't u visit this two awesome, mega-cool sites. The first story above is taken from strangenewproducts.com. The second story is a link from weirdnewstoday.com. The name says it all.. Trust me, you'll be amazed..