Impact of Islamic Music to me

There are some people that are easily touched by music, like me..

Honestly, I started wear hijab when I entered high-school. One of the strongest reasons was when I saw my mom put hijab, months before her Hajj. But, my heart was really touched whenever I heard a song about Hijab by mba Asma Nadia that kinda moved my heart. From that, I rigorously searched about Quranic verses about hijab, such as Al-Ahzab: 59, and tried to convince myself that this is of course, the right way, for a woman.

I believe that Allah SWT shows His hidayah in a different way for different people.

That was not the first impact of Islamic song. I remember when I was a kid, I really like Islamic songs from Neno Warisman with bilingual version (Indonesian-English) and very sophisticated orchestral-children-choir arrangement, Masha Allah… (I really want to make some thing like this with my kids in the future, inshaAllah..). I was not really ‘into’ Islam in my childhood, but then through those songs I began to know how beautiful Islam is.

As I grew older, I found that Islamic music (in Indonesia) was just ‘dull’. Yeah, because I also got some exposure and influences on many many music from different genres, from classic to rock, from jazz to country, etc. I’m sorry to say but most of them only in Nasheed version (group of accapella-men) or more in Arabic tunes. But, I admit there are some very-good nasheed team such as Gradasi and SNADA. Then, Opick came with his powerful melodies and lyrics. Yes, we like it… and his songs also give some self-reminder for us whenever we are down. Very good music, indeed.

However, still… I think we need other pop-genres of Islamic music. There are some people out there that still not touched by Islamic musicians who dressed with turban, long-dress or ‘baju-koko’ (indonesians), and bring prayer-beads. They become antipathy and only listen Islamic music during Ramadhan.

Then, around 2011, there was a BIG HIT by Maher Zain (@MaherZain)! He dressed casually (like us, normal people, with jacket, jeans, cap) and the music is just… POP! I mean, easy-listening music that can grab the massive audience. For me, The most clever way is that he made one song with several versions from with different languages, such as in Bahasa Indonesia, turkish, urdu, french, etc. It really reflects that Allah SWT made peoples and tribes that we may know one another (Al Hujuraat: 13). He successfully wins the Islamic market worldwide, then. From the west to the east, he makes a powerful impact of new revolution in Islamic music.

Yes, in order to conquer people in that area, first you have to go with their languages.

A new thing in Islamic entertainment industry was the Awakening Talent Contest by Awakening Star in 2013. They made a breakthrough with huge participants from over the world (yep, including me –>  , I was 39-months pregnant at that time and I could hardly breath to sing). I really love song ‘The Chosen One’ from Maher Zain because of the video shows the good-deeds that Rasulullah SAW taught for us, as Moslems in Muamalah or in living with others.

Finally, they have chosen Harris J (@HarrisJOfficial ) as the winner! I definitely couldn’t agree more about their decision. It is brilliant! Harris J is just a magnet for young-teenagers segment. Now, he is 17 and ready to make his debut before this Ramadhan! MashaAllah… He’s just got everything you need for an Islamic artist: the voice (of course, I just love his voice very much!), the look, the personality, and the style (that is ‘very-normal’ for teenagers). His songs are just so-awesome, ear-catchy, and meaningful.

Luckily (?), I am not a teenager anymore. If I were a teenager, I would be crazy for Harris J since he is like the Islamic version of Justin Beiber. It is a big responsibility for Harris J as more teenagers will look at him as not-only a star but perhaps more than that.. As we know, some of the teenagers are still ‘unstable’ and we hope that his songs can bring the enlightenment; bring more teenagers into Islamic way. Or make Justin Beiber listeners turn into HarrisJ listener 😀

For me, Islamic songs are the gateway for me to study more about Islam.

And now, after seeing many Islamic musicians with very-good quality, especially here in London, I still feel the impact. When I listen to Saif Adam – @IamSaifAdam song (Believe), there is some lines in Arabics in the lyrics. I know that some Maher Zain songs also come with Arabic lyrics and Mesut Kurtis songs are mostly in Arabic. But, when I hear all lines of lyrics are in Arabic I just don’t feel I can follow it. It is too difficult. Anyway, if you only give a-little-bit of Arabic lyrics in the songs, it makes the listener feels so curious. Like in Saif Adam – Believe, I feel curious: What is the meaning of this phrase? The last line in the lyrics?

Fortunately, my mom is an Arabic scholar, she studied Arabic literature so I just asked her the meaning. I think, now it is time for me to study Arabic… I know it is kinda pity, we pray in Arabic, we read Qur’an but we only know some of the meanings. Yes, again… Islamic music makes me realize that it is also important to study Arabic language. I hope I can start soon this Ramadhan, insha Allah..

Being an Islamic musician is indeed a big responsibility… for every lyrics you chant. –> Why do you say that which you do not do? [As-Saff: 4]

As a musician, I made lots of songs (I started to make music since I was 9 years old and can’t stop doing that until now) but unfortunately I created none of Islamic songs. Then, in 2010 I tried to make one. It is harder than you think because of the verse above. These are one of my nasheed collection (other nasheed songs on MY MUSIC link above in this web):

and my music video (sorry it is in Bahasa Indonesia, I think I need to make it in English or other languages as well, like Maher Zain? :p)

I really believe that in order to support Islamic music and industry, we have to support them! If you still want to hear new songs from Maher Zain, HarrisJ, Saif Adam, Raef, Opick, and other Islamic musicians, please… Buy their original songs. Or if you can’t, you can watch their shows and make it sold-out… or if not, just make their YouTube views reach millions and millions. If not us, then who else support the Islamic music industry? As a musician, I know how amazing it feels when someone appreciate your music.

I hope that your songs can be amal jariah that can inspire more and more moslems 🙂

The most important things is that their songs really reflect on our daily life, such as the common problem we face and how Islam approach it. This makes clear that, Islam is a way of life…

I also point about their good-will to collaborate music-show with charity and fundraising event and religious lecture. After watching the shows, we can also do sadaqoh and get new Islamic knowledge 🙂

Performing Islamic songs is like a part of da’wah… and when you do da’wah, it is like pointing with your pointer. It seems like you point one finger to audiences but, actually your other four fingers point at you. It means that you remind yourself more than remind people.

Spread the world of Islam to the universe though music…  🙂