Friday, 19 September 2014

MUSIC VIDEO AND BEHIND THE SCENE PREMIERING ON ASTRO RIA




MUSIC VIDEO AND BEHIND THE SCENE PREMIERING ON ASTRO RIA THIS
SUNDAY, 21 SEPTEMBER AT 11.30PM

12 September 2014 – Hafiz Suip, Sarawakian born multi-award singer has chosen to film his latest single “Matahari” back home in Kuching recently featuring Puteri Balqis Azizi as his little sister, Chopie as his best friend and Afick as a bully from ERA fm Sarawak. According to Hafiz in the recent interview, he hopes to bring the messages of love between family and friends through “Matahari” music video. 

Catch the premier of “Matahari” MV and the behind the scene this Sunday, 21 September at 11.30pm on Astro Ria.







Thursday, 18 September 2014

AFGAN L1VE To LOVE Showcase in Kuching



Afgansyah Reza, a 25 year-old famous Indonesia soloist or better known as Afgan has recently been to Kuching to promote his latest album 'L1VE TO LOVE, LOVE TO L1VE' and a single Katakan Tidak as well as meeting his fans at the Hills Shopping Mall on the 14th of September. The showcase was presented by ERA fm Kuching 96.1fm (ASTRO Radio Sarawak). Three members from Sarawak Bloggers Society were given the opportunity to cover not only the showcase, but also the press conference and Meet & Greet session with Afganisme or Afgan's fans. This event was supported by Leema Drink the Music, Hills Shopping Mall, SRC, Station One Cafe and Orang Kampong. 

I have been his fan since I first listened to the song Bukan Cinta Biasa. Afgan is widely known as an Indonesian pop singer and actor. He has won various awards for his work in music, among them are MTV Indonesia Awards and Anugerah Planet Muzik. He is recently shortlisted as final nominee of MTV EMA 2014 for Best Southeast Asia Act. Afgan was born into a musical family of Minangkabau origin and he is the second of four children. Fate took a turn when he and a few friends were making their own karaoke songs at an instant recording-studio-turned-record-label. The studio personal noticed his talent and they offered him a deal a few months later. That is how his singing career began and the rest is history. 

Afgan is currently famous for his song Jodoh Pasti Bertemu. His third album which entitled 'L1VE TO LOVE, LOVE TO L1VE' was released on 14 February 2013 by Trinity Optima Production. His first single from this album is Pesan Cinta which was released back in 2012. The album contains ten tracks which can be generalised as having romantic feel to them. Afgan usually would sing songs that cover genres of pop, jazz, soul and R&B. However, in the latest album he explored further into other genres. It took a long time to complete and release his third album as he was busy pursuing his tertiary education at Malaysia, Monash University Malaysia Campus to be exact. In a nutshell, the journey of the latest album revolves around his life and which also derives from the experience of being in a relationship. Just like other artists, Afgan preferred to tell his own stories through his artwork. For those who wish to listen to his songs, the CD will only cost you RM19.90. You will not regret buying it as all ten songs are superb. I have personally bought the songs via iTunes back in 2013. 

At the press conference, Afgan confessed he was still S-I-N-G-L-E. It was no denying that this young man has become a lot more good looking as he noticeably shed some weight. It made his dimples even more obvious than when he used to have slightly chubby cheeks. Besides the interview session, the press had the chance to take photos with him and get their CDs signed personally by Afgan. The real excitement only began the next day on 14 September when he was set to meet and greet his fans at Station One Cafe. These lucky fans also had the privilege to watch him performed up close from the Rockzone besides getting their posters and CDs signed by their favourite Indonesian singer.  

The showcase was the highlight of Afgan's promotional tour. It was estimated 4000 fans came to watch him perform live at the Hills Shopping Mall. His appearance on stage sent the fans shrieking in frenzy, even Afgan thought his Afganisme in Kuching were 'crazy'. He repeatedly using the same word to describe his fans' craze not only during the performance, but on his social media too - Instagram (http://instagram.com/p/s60AXLSoAi/?modal=true). That was enough to send our beloved Afgan a message that he indeed has rock solid fan base here in Sarawak. Afgan did mention he would love to come back and hopefully next time it will be for a concert, even bigger concert he said. Yes, let's hope he will! Fingers crossed. Bisa diatur ya Afgan. 

The Afganisme were absolutely fanatic to the extent they would follow him everywhere he went from the moment of his arrival in Kuching. Fans followed him from the airport to the hotel where he stayed just to catch a glimpse of Afgan in real life and take a selfie with the handsome lad who owned a sweet mellow voice. So, Afgan, if you want to see more of Afganisme madness here, do come back to Kuching and I am sure your die hard fans will welcome your return with open arms. Probably with a lot more surprises! Last but not least, I would like to thanks ERA fm Kuching (https://www.facebook.com/ERASarawak?fref=ts) for the invitation and a lifetime opportunity to meet my favourite singer from Indonesia. I also would like to extend my gratitude to Sarawak Bloggers Society for this opportunity to cover the showcase. To watch the whole event, click play on my Youtube video down below (http://youtu.be/feQkKNxVSJs). 

For more information about Afgan, you may want to follow him on:







Album cover

Friday, 12 September 2014

#kitasama Blood Donation Drive Comes to Kuching!



Kuching, 12 September 2014 – In conjunction with Malaysia’s 57th Merdeka Day, Astro has launched a nationwide blood donation drive to reinforce the message of ‘Unity Runs in Our Blood’. The #kitasama blood donation drive will be headed to its final stop at Plaza Merdeka, Kuching this 16 September starting 10am – 7pm and the public is invited to donate their blood for those in need. Both #kitasama blood donation drive and Negaraku campaigns will be taking place from 15 August 2014 till 16 September 2014.

Henry Tan, Chief Operating Officer of Astro said, “Our 2014 Negaraku campaign focuses on the uniqueness about being Malaysian which is expressed through the theme, “Unity Runs in Our Blood.’ A key event for for this Negaraku campaign is the #kitasama blood donation drive which emphasis that Malaysians are bonded to each other regardless of our multi-cultural, multi-lingual and multi-ethnic composition. On air, Astro will celebrate the unity and diversity of Malaysia through more than 140 programmes of which 48 are Premiere titles. At the same time, we would like to invite all Malaysians to share their Merdeka moments by using the hashtag #kitasama on social media”.

Dato' Dr Faraizah Bt Dato' Abd Karim, Deputy Director of National Blood Bank said, “We would like to thank Astro for inviting us to be part of the #kitasama blood donation drive which is also supported by a great line up of artists that will serve to heighten people’s awareness regarding this campaign. We would also like to take the opportunity during this Merdeka celebration to encourage more Malaysians to pledge themselves to be blood donors.”

Astro talent and personalities took time off their busy schedules to participate in the first #kitasama blood donation drive that took place at the Astro headquarters in Bukit Jalil on 12 August 2014. Asmawi Bakiri from Astro Arena mentioned, “I hope that we can touch more lives and rally together to help our fellow Malaysians who are in need of blood”.

Besides Kuching, the blood donation drive was also held in 6 other states including East Malaysia to encourage all Malaysians to donate their blood to the National Blood Bank Malaysia.

Viewers can log on to www.astro.com.my/Negaraku for the Negaraku content schedule starting as well as information on the #kitasama blood donation drive locations.




Tuesday, 9 September 2014

ERA PRESENTS AFGAN ‘L1VE TO LOVE’ IN KUCHING




Kuching, 4 September 2014 ERA presents Afgan L1VE TO LOVE showcase in Kuching on the 14 September. Afgansyah Reza, a 25 year old famous Indonesia soloist better known as Afgan will be in Kuching to promote his latest album L1VE TO LOVE, LOVE TO L1VE and single Katakan Tidak as well as meeting his fans at the HILL Shopping Mall, Concourse Level at 2pm.

Fans that are eager to meet Afgan up close and personal can stand a chance to win meet & greet and Rockzone passes from ERAfm Sarawak. Be the first caller through on 082 420961 when ERA announcer triggers the cue to call and participants who is able to provide the password AFGAN LIVE TO LOVE and sing any of Afgans songs will win  pair of the passes. In addition through the bonus hour, ERA fm Sarawak will give away an exclusive access to dine with Afgan to one lucky winner.

While for ERA listeners in Sabah, will also stand a chance to win a pair of fully paid 2 days, 1 night trip to Kuching, an autographed album, attending the meet & greet session as well as an exclusive dinner with Afgan. Be the first caller through on 088 485 024 and shout out the longest Saya mau jumpa Afgaaaaaaaaan..! to win the trip to AFGAN L1VE TO LOVE showcase in Kuching.

Apart from winning through ERAfm, the Hills Shopping Mall and Station One Café will be rewarding its customers with meet & greet passes as well. To find out more about the offerings, please log on to www.facebook.com/hillsmall.kch or www.facebook.com/station1kuching or call the Hills Shopping Mall at  082 253309.

Thats not all, besides indulging by Afgan charisma and with his beautiful voices; an up and coming local artiste Syamin will the opening act to entertain the audiences with his famous single Lagi Dan Lagi, a track that is produced and composed by Ajai. Mark your calendar and tune in to ERAfm now to win special & exclusive passes. This event is supported by Leema Drink the Music, Hills Shopping Mall, SRC, Station One Café and Orang Kampong.

For more information about the AFGAN L1VE TO LOVE showcase in Kuching and ERAfm Sarawak & Sabah contest, please log on to fbsarawak.era.fm and fbsabah.era.fm.



Friday, 29 August 2014

Ophelia's Shepherd's Pie


If there is any special occasion where we are required to bring a dish to share with others, I would normally choose to prepare the English Shepherd's Pie. I recently found out if you are using other than lamb's meat, it should be called Cottage Pie. Ah well, the recipe is the same. I discovered and learned the dish from my beloved aunt Polly. I only watched her did it once and then tried it on my own. It was extremely difficult to cook up the dish for the first time and it took me many hours to get it done. Over the years I have modified some steps to make it easier to be prepared, hence lessened the cooking time. Well, practice makes perfect!

The ingredients for English Shepherd's Pie are as followed:
  • Onion
  • Mixed Vegetables 
  • Prego Spaghetti Tomato Sauce (I preferred Mushroom flavour)
  • Minced Beef (any minced meat will do)
  • Potatoes
  • Dutch Lady Full Cream Milk
  • Butter 
  • Salt and Pepper 

Steps:
  1. Before you start cooking, peel and chop the potatoes. Then, boil them. 
  2. Chop the onion and cook it with mixed vegetables. 
  3. Once the mixed vegetables have soften, add minced beef. 
  4. Pour the Prego Spaghetti Tomato Sauce and stir all the ingredients together. Add salt and pepper. (In order to reduce the acidity of the tomato sauce, you can add a spoon full of sugar although it is optional. Some people do not like the sour taste of the sauce.) Once all ingredients are cooked, pour the whole thing into a casserole and spread it evenly as the base of your Shepherd's Pie.
  5. To prepare the mashed potato, you need to boil all the potatoes until they are really tender. After you strain the potatoes, transfer them into a larger pot. Then, mash them with a large spoon or potato masher.
  6. Add some butter to the boiling full cream milk before pouring it into the mashed potato. You can add a pinch of salt and pepper to give it a taste. The purpose of the milk is to soften the texture of mashed potato. Do make sure you add it little by little as you do not want to make the mashed potato too mushy. 
  7. Cover the base with mashed potato before baking it till golden brown. Brush the top with melted butter. You will need to poke some holes before putting the Shepherd's Pie into the oven. (You would not want to see the pie burst inside the baking oven!)
The Shepherd's Pie is best to be served hot and you might want to heat the leftover in the microwave before serving it to your loved ones. So, all the best and I hope you will enjoy my favourite English dish too!

Saturday, 23 August 2014

ALS Ice Bucket Challenge


Yes, I just did the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge! The challenge that goes viral around the globe through social medias. I was nominated by my cousin, Abilaksha Denise Das. She currently lives in one of the islands in the Pacific Ocean. I gladly accepted this challenge in the name of charity. I not only doused myself with a bucket full of iced water, but also donated to the ALSA research fund. My hope is through in depth study on ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis), hopefully experts in the field one day will discover the cure and treatments for those who are affected by the disease which more often known as the Lou Gehrig's Disease. It is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord. 

I found it was more difficult to get the words out of my mouth after being doused with cold water. I even did it in the rain which made the matter worse, haha! I think for a few seconds I actually suffered brain freeze. Since I only had 24 hours to do it, so I left with no choice but to take up the challenge after I came back from work. Then, I challenged Fr. Kelvin Jawa (Priest at St. Faith's Church, Kuching), Hevance (Sarawak local indie band) and also Garner (a member of Sarawak Bloggers Society). I have my own reason to nominate these three people in my Facebook. They are influential in their on fields, so I believe they can get more people to do the challenge and donate. For more information on ALSA, do visit their website at www.alsa.org . 


Saturday, 9 August 2014

RWMF West Side Story 2.0

Sarawak Bloggers from left to right: Ana, Garner, me, Arizad, Veyronica, Lindy and Khairul. Not in photo: Aliey and Alyssa.

Yeah, I wrote a "West Side Story" last year. This year I decided to do the same again. It is all about my personal journey as a blogger at Rainforest World Music Festival 2014. Going back to one of the top 25 music festivals in the world would definitely make someone so stoked that you could not focus on other things days before the festival kicked off. Like everybody else, I was at RWMF all for fun and for the love of blogging. Apart from that it was a way for us to give back to our own community and Sarawak tourism particularly. Just for your information, Sarawak Bloggers did not get paid for covering the event. We were rewarded with goodie bags, free food, free beer and access to media centre's facilities. However, with great power came great responsibility. We may not need to pay for the three-days passes, but we had to write at least three articles and submit them to Sarawak Tourism Board for promotional purpose. So, it was not all play. We each had an assignment. I would not deny it was tiring but enjoyable at the same time. 


Here is a recap of RWMF 2014 I uploaded on Youtube. I had to edit the music due to a copyright issue as I was using a song by Coldplay. Then, I decided to change the music and obtained the permission from someone I followed on Vine. I am grateful Phatso Music allowed me to use all of their songs for my Youtube video.  

Passes for RWMF 2014. Made of paper. Could easily tear if you're not being careful.

I personally think the 2013 wristbands were nicer. We could wear them for three days as they were durable.

As usual you would need the media pass to go everywhere for 3 days.

Stuff inside the goodie bag. Love the official tee by Rip Curl.

I don't drink coffee, tea yes!

6 glasses of Heineken but I used none of these free tix. I gave them away! Not that I don't drink, the surrounding was too hot.

Very limited pass. One would need this for some nice photos during night concerts.

This was the most useful printed material for me during the festival. It was foldable and lots of useful information in just one piece of paper.


At the RWMF Community Drum Circle. It was a big hit among the festival-goers. 

My yearly ritual at RWMF, getting airbrush tattoo on my left arm.

Yeah, I was asked to sign it after getting tattooed.

My partners in crime. They were getting one too. 

This is where you can quench your thirst and feed your hungry tummy during the festival. Damai Central food court.

And here is our shot with Sentia and her colleague, Cyril. Tia was one of the bloggers for RWMF 2013. We miss her this year. This photo is taken by Cyril's son. 

Panoramic view in the evening at Sarawak Cultural Village.

Photo taken using Alyssa's smartphone.

A family photo before we had dinner.

Like the previous year, we had to hang out at Dewan Lagenda during dinner just to charge our phones and cameras for the night concerts. We took turn to look after each other's belongings. 


One of the sweetest memories at RWMF 2014. My friends and I had our mini reunion during the night concert. This meant a lot to me honestly. I had not met Sukri since university graduation, that was like almost a decade, wow! As for Josclyn and Mariana, met them at Mariana's wedding last year. Thanks for coming guys although it was a short reunion.

They came all the way from West Malaysia and also Miri. Terbaik lah!

Our biggest mystery solved! We finally got to meet the Sarawak Tourism Board "Michael" who has been stalking Sarawak Bloggers on their Instagram accounts, haha. He was playing the hide-and-seek game all day long before he decided to meet us in the midst of dancing crowd at night concert. If you want to 'stalk' this fella, do follow him on his Instagram @sarawaktravel . Thanks Michael for the brief meet up, now we know how you look like in real life. You're awesome!

Last but not least, I met the winner of 2013 CLEO Most Eligible Bachelor on the third day right after the first workshop. Nicholas Mak was a friendly and gorgeous lad! ;-) 

Throwback Thursday photo on my Instagram @opheliajohn . 


Adventure is worthwhile.

- Aristotle -