Thursday, 15 August 2013

RWMF Flashback: Mohsen Sharifian and the Lian Band

I was one of the bloggers for the 2013 Rainforest World Music Festival and my blogs get featured on RWMF official website ( ). I did not expect it would go further than that, but I was wrong. My blog post is currently featured on Mohsen Sharifian Ensemble Official Facebook Page ( ) and also Mohsen's personal blog ( ). Mohsen Sharifian Ensemble was one of the performers at RWMF 2013. They hail from Iran. Based on the information I gathered online, Mohsen and Lian Band have won several awards and performed in many parts of the world. Mohsen has performed Boushehr music in some states of America including Washington, New York, Virginia, and Philadephia (1997); United Arab Emirates (1997, 2002, and 2003); Oman (2001 and 2004); Turkmenistan (2001 and 2008); Qatar (2002, 2008 and 2010); Kuwait (2002); Bahrain (2003); Turkey (2003); Singapore (2005); the World Cup in Germany (2006); Beijing Olympic Games - China (2008); Russia (2008 and 2009); Jordan (2009) and Shanghai (Expo 2010). Besides, the ensemble is currently regarded as one of Iran's most prestigious folklore musical bands. They also won several local and international awards. Therefore, it is not surprising that they are always invited to perform at some international music festivals. The Lian Band has performed in countries such as United States, France, Belarus, Croatia, Switzerland, Italy, Bulgaria and recently Malaysia. It is a privilege to be able to cover Mohsen and the Lian Band at RWMF. I personally wish them the best in their music career and hopefully to meet them again in the future. 

 Mohsen Sharifian's Blog

Mohsen Sharifian Ensemble Official Facebook Page 

My blogs published on RWMF Website 

Saturday, 10 August 2013

Gracias Sarawak Bloggers Society

THANK YOU Sarawak Bloggers Society for making my blog as August 2013 Featured Blog at Never thought I would make the cut as I knew there were many great bloggers around. This is truly an honour. I bet the people in the society's committee have their own good reason to feature my blog. 

Most people would not know I have been blogging for some years, since my enrolment into university. That is like almost a decade, which is contrary to popular belief that I am a newcomer. No, I am not. I started about the same time as Cyril Dason, the Chairman of Sarawak Bloggers Society. The blog you are reading now is my second domain, which existed since early 2012. I had deactivated the old one to start afresh. Human do evolve through time, so do I. I initially thought to dedicate this blog to photography but somehow things around me changed. My current blog is like a fusion of writing and photography. That is how I end up calling it a photoblog. Most of the photos I taken them myself. 

I am glad I made the decision to join Sarawak Bloggers Society. It is an enriching experience and I get to make lots of new friends. This is a humbling experience too as I learn a lot from people I meet along my journey as a blogger. This is the society which really makes me feel like I belonged to it. Something I can easily relate to in both heart and mind. My hope is we continue to make this society a respectable one and to let others know blogging is also a way of giving back to the community. We are the impact of this generation! 

Sunday, 4 August 2013

World War Z

Though the movie has been shown on cinemas for some weeks but I only got to watch it today. I was waiting for school holiday to watch World War Z at GSC CityONE Megamall. As expected the cinema Hall 10 was filled with probably two dozens of people. I had the whole row C to myself! Great but a little scary too. I love watching movies and this particular movie reminds me of I Am Legend starring Will Smith. Of course I had expectations prior to the movie as a fan of The Walking Dead series. As any Hollywood apocalyptical movie, I knew human would prevail and expected some survivors to be living at a secluded safe zone. It is not a rocket science at all for anybody to figure out the hero, who is none other than Brad Pitt himself, or known as Gerry Lane in World War Z. 

The movie began by portraying Gerry's family as happy and normal as it could be. 

Suddenly the whole world was at war with zombies attacking only healthy human being. 

Then, people were running for their lives on the streets. The Lanes fled from the chaos in a caravan heading towards the nearest store looking for medicine. That was when the situation changed from bad to worse. 

It was a little relief to see the family members and a Spanish-speaking boy were rescued by a helicopter on the rooftop and headed for the sea where it was the safest for mankind during zombie apocalypse. 

When Gerry reached the military base on a navy ship, he was immediately instructed to the find source of virus outspread at Camp Humphrey or else his family would be sent onshore. He reluctantly agreed just to be deemed contributing and to keep his family as far as possible from the land.

The UN team arrived at the camp to find themselves being ambushed by zombies. 

The pilot and Gerry managed to escape South Korea then flew to Jerusalem looking for more answers.

The walls built by Israelis eventually gave way to zombies' pyramid. So, not even Jerusalem was spared.  

Segen and Gerry were very protective of each other wherever they went. 

Gerry and Segen had to board a commercial airline to find a WHO research facility which later landed them in Cardiff. Series of unfortunate events apparently continued while they were high up in the air. 

 In the end, a cure was found which helped human to survive the apocalypse. The vaccine provided a sort of camouflage so that people would not become easy meals to the zombies.

I personally think I Am Legend is more horrifying than World War Z though they both have one thing in common, which the main character dominated the whole movie. One obvious thing is from the beginning to the end the plots are revolving around the main character, Gerry Lane. Other characters have spoken very few lines, especially women and children. Besides, races other than white people suffered the same fate. Racism and sexism elements are evident in a few scenes. For example, the infected black woman in the WHO research facility and people who are chanting in celebration after being allowed into the Jerusalem's walls. To make it worse, this group of people is holding up a Palestine flag. Therefore, it is not a surprised some movie reviewers said the movie was wrong in many ways. Though most would view it in negative perspectives, I cannot help but wonder if that is the way how the movie maker trying to highlight racism, sexism, politics, social, religious and humanitarian issues. Perhaps that could be their way of drawing the movie goers' attention towards such matters through criticism. Sometimes controversy does grasp attention. One thing we all know Brad Pitt is very involved with humanitarian work both in United States and internationally. Both he and his famous wife, Angelina Jolie, are very dedicated when it comes to charity and Angelina is an Ambassador of UNHCR. Besides, I could see in a subtle way the movie is telling us it is okay to welcome a child to our family in a dire time. That is the case with Tommy when Gerry's family takes him in after his parents attack by the zombies. This somehow reflects the Jolie-Pitt's family in real life. As we all know charity begins at home, Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt have adopted three children from different countries. So, is Brad Pitt encouraging us to do the same for many unfortunate children in this world through zombie genre? Or is this just a coincidence? Nevertheless, there is no denying humanitarian work and charity are matters close to the Hollywood A-list couple's hearts. After all the movie was secured by Paramount Studio for Brad Pitt's company (Plan B Entertainment) to produce. Hence, this is clearly his given chance to communicate world's issues to the audience in more illusive and indirect ways through World War Z. I do not know if this movie does cause you to realise what is going on around the globe, but it sure did in me. I guess that is why I choose to differ from popular opinion. It is wrong in many ways that it creates awareness not in the most direct way.