Singer, Songwriter

What music are you into at the moment?
I’m currently in love with The Flying Club Cup by Beirut, Rolling Through This World by Bob Brozman and Jeff Lang with Angus Diggs, and of course, Soundgarden’s King Animal!

What was the first record you bought—any interesting story behind it?
It was Semut Hitam, the third album of God Bless. Back then, 1988, I was still in primary school—I’m not sure what grade. I bought the cassette using my pocket money plus the money I made from watching over my auntie’s baby. I remember that night clearly (and shamelessly) because my dad took me to the record store and I insisted to him that the name of the band was Semut Hitam. Since that night, I’ve had nothing but respect for God Bless. …who would’ve thought, 20 years after that “Semut Hitam” moment, I would share the stage with God Bless…
What are your all-time favorite albums? Why?
Soundgarden’s Superunknown: As a rock musician, a grunge worshipper, this album is like a bible. Every texture in the album is filled graciously by the band’s personnel. Throughout my career with Navicula, I’ve continued to utilise Superunknown as a guitar reference for each of our studio albums.
Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon: This album has become my benchmark in understanding and appreciating silence within noise. You don’t need to worry about any prediction in the art of sound, Pink Floyd have taught us the beauty of exploring the uncertainty in music.
Bob Dylan’s Self Portrait: Does anybody dare to oppose him?
Tom Waits’s Swordfishtrombones: This album works effectively to build my confidence, as a strong mantra to make me forget about my diffidence. You just go out and sing, just do it.
Eddie Vedder’s Into the Wild: This is the album which inspired me to form the folk band, Dialog Dini Hari.
Beck’s Guero and Radiohead’s OK Computer: These albums are genius; a bit too genius! They have the potential to make me feel stupid, like I’m nobody in comparison to such forward thinking albums.

What was the worst record you ever purchased?
I’ve never purchased a bad record. I don’t buy albums that I’m not interested in.

Who do you want to be, other than yourself, next time you reincarnate?
I just want to be me. But if I really had to choose my next lifetime, next time I would have to choose…

What book are you reading now and what’s the score (1-10)?
History of God by Karen Amstrong. Score: 8

What new movie should people see? Why?
People should watch Looper (Bruce Willis, Joseph Gordon-Levitt). What a twisted sci-fi! It has an unpredictable ending and is full of valuable messages.

What music do you choose to start your weekend?
Dave Matthews Band’s Everyday.

And music to end your weekend with?
Ali Farka Touré’s The River.

Is it because Dadang believes that loving music is an integral part of loving life that he is as busy as he is today? Having rocked Record Plant in Los Angeles, Navicula are soon to release their eighth album. In the meantime, he’s been writing the music score for Richard Oh’s next movie, ensuring that his electronic music side-project Saman is all go. And Dialog Dini Hari? You’d better watch out for their fourth album; it’s coming soon!

P.S Dialog Dini Hari are also getting ready to tour Java in early March alongside White Shoes and The Couples Company.


This interview was firstly published on The Beat (Jakarta) #83, March 2013
Co-editor: Lauren Shipman
Check out also Dadang’s video of his new electronic music project, Saman, titled “Kulminasi”

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