Hanim Md Salleh wrote an article on BeritaHarian.sg about who can beat the milestones of the late Kassim Masdor and I was given a good mention. Thank you.


I flew to Penang to shoot with one of the friendliest photographers I’ve ever worked with, M Ridzuan Kamil of PADI Studio. It seems that this fear of being shot in a professional setting just went up in thin air while working with him. Can’t wait to show you all the end results. Behind the scenes videos and photos shot by Muhammad Amin. New suit, new album, new song, let’s do it!

Follow PADI Studio on Facebook now!


Thanks to Shahida Sarhid to wrote a follow-up piece of Zaibaktian’s call for a local “Grammy” awards for Singapore, and interviewed me via email about whether it can or should be done at all. The article is only available on BeritaHarian.sg on subscription. It was out yesterday. Here’s the original email conversation between us, albeit in English.

1. Would there be a possibility of organising an award that specifically highlight the works our Singaporean Malay musician?

When Anugerah Hitz was organized by MediaCorp as a precursor to Anugerah Planet Muzik 2010, it was a great idea to have a Singapore-only show to celebrate only Singapore talent. It was the only time it took place. To organize another award show, outside of Anugerah Planet Muzik, would actually beat the purpose considering a lot of Singaporean artistes put their hopes into performing, being nominated, or winning at APM. However, a lot of local talents feel that APM has become a symbol of diplomacy and siratulrahim amongst the Nusantara countries, instead of a true recognition of talents.To organize a brand new award show that recognizes and rewards purely Singaporean talents would require us to also educate the public first before it becomes valuable to the nominees and recipients of the awards.
2. If no, what are some of the constraints?

– Singaporeans are not known to purchase music, whether physically or digitally. Everyone is on smartphones but not necessarily literate about downloading or streaming music legally. Therefore we cannot tabulate the MOST popular, or MOST downloaded/purchased music.
–  The artistes are not hungry enough for it. If one wants to be popular/recognized on YouTube, I think we should have moved on from recording webcam videos (ada kipas kat belakang, katil masih berselerak, guitar tak tune) to semi-professional videos properly shot with a camera crew (yang terlalu ramai sekarang). 
– The artistes who really deserve the attention and recognition, are never rewarded properly. Kalau show biasa pun kadang tak dibayar, apa lagi a big award show that requires big capital? No cash prizes, still?


– Artistes/Bands MUST release all their music digitally: iTunes, Spotify, Deezer, Singtel Amped, and new media from telcos M1, Starhub all have the platforms.
– Radio/TV/newspapers must allow artistes/bands to promote their digital links, in an effort to educate the masses.
– Artistes/Bands must recognize their craft as work. If they portray themselves to have no effort, half-baked, ill-disciplined, then that’s how people will treat them as well.
– Don’t perform for free in the guise of it being for recognition. Some artistes garner more attention on FB and Instagram then from people who come to watch the shows they are invited to. Choose well.
3. Sponsorship and funds has always been an issue when organizing such an award show. How can we tackle this problem so our local musicians find a sense of self worth that their works are being appreciated in a more formal manner?

Artistes with music appearing on radio, singles selling digitally or physically, or appear regularly on TV with hopes of building a name for oneself, should never receive too small a pay cheque anymore. And organizers, big and small, media-related, corporate or individuals, should never “salam keruk” with artistes/bands anymore (taking whatever the organizer wants to give) There should be a clear understanding that artistes should be paid for their work before the work is done.When the majority of the community understands this, then we can move on to discuss about tackling sponsorships/funding for award shows.
We can start by recognizing ONE artiste/band every year, by allowing them to receive grants/funding from several avenues to produce an album and a concert, and ultimately, to tour/perform outside of the country.

4. Is there any other way to celebrate the works of our local musician apart from an award show?

Artistes have to go out and organize their own shows and tours like American artistes do. Don’t limit oneself to the shows that you’re invited to.  Perform for 10 people, 30 people, 100 people. When you build a consistent following, a thousand people will know who you are for your work. Singaporeans love to go out and lepak, try out new food places to go but never made watching concerts, shows, theatre part of this experience. If bands/artistes provide this opportunity to Singaporeans, then it would finally kick-start something that American artistes do internationally since the 1960s. Artistes/Bands should aim higher than just to be popular, aim to be long-lasting. Because when popularity fades, the good songs always stays with the fans.

To answer your question, should Singapore have its own Malay grammies? Personally no. Ask me why in another interview.

The fanclub account @imtiaz4ia shot this from TV. What’s wrong with my hair?



I sang “Sudah tu Sudah” (don’t ask me why) and “Setulus Kasih” for the closing of ‘Selamat Pagi Malaysia’ today on RTM1 at Angkasapuri at their outdoor shoot location. I still get so nervous from the night before til the first few seconds of the song. Still feel that way, after all this time. I’ll see if anyone recorded a video ok? Thanks for those who participated in the Whatsapp challenge.



I will be singing “Setulus Kasih” for the first time on television tomorrow morning at 9am at the closing of RTM1’s morning show, “Selamat Pagi Malaysia”. I will be doing a Whatsapp challenge as well. Look out on Instagram!

2-Imran Ajmain Dan Aliff Aziz (1)1


I was interviewed by radio announcer, Henry from SandakanFM, an RTM radio station over in Sabah, Malaysia over the phone. Although we were discussing my new song, my new album, and all things new, I was brought back to the last time I was in Sandakan. This picture was when Farawahida, Aliff Aziz, Diddy, Adam, and Erna did an 8 day tour of Sabah together back in 2008.

There was one time in Tawau where the girls there were particularly interested more in Aliff than anyone else, and they started crowding around the bus and rocked it left and right when Aliff didn’t want to come down and take more pictures. We were the Beatles! Would love to return to Sabah if given the opportunity. Thanks Henry and SandakanFM. Tune in to SandakanFM at http://sandakanfm.rtm.gov.my

So many things have happened in just the past two-three weeks. I thought we just celebrated the New Year, but bammm, it’s already February. I won’t say that I’m not disappointed that I lost a whole chunk of footage that was shot in Nuremberg and Coburg, Germany but that’s ok. That’s that. Nasrullah, my trusted PA and personal videographer, have worked quite hard to put together what he can salvage to become the audio-visual for the song. The song’s already available on iTunes and Spotify but right now the situation is that most people are looking for it on a more familiar platform that is YouTube. I’m hoping to have it up in a day or two, but we’ll see. I’m no Beyonce, but hey, we got dreams! Loving 2014 so far. Hope ya’ll safe.

Could not make it to Anugerah Juara Lagu tonight as I’m out on a shoot. I have been looking forward to it mainly to see if Hafiz’s “Deritaku Bahagiamu” would score. Looks like he did. Posted a throwback on Instagram from AJL a few years ago. 3 mat salleh celup makan belacan cari makan as artistes, except one of them can’t fit into that baju anymore. Guess who! Haha!



I sang tonight at this beautifully done wedding dinner in Hilton Hotel, Singapore. They had asked for “Ghaibmu” but it was wildly inappropriate for a wedding, because the song is about the girl going missing without a trace. HAHA. Well, I sang “Selamat Ulang Tahun Sayang”, “Menimbang Rasa” and of course, that wedding song, “Seribu Tahun”. Let me see if the team recorded a video.

Write to my management at info@imranajmain.com for any inquiries or invitations.

One of the kind Imtiazes, Mamahani, recorded this off TV when MediaCorp Suria aired the highlights of the 1st January concert at the Esplanade in Singapore. My comment on singing Cikgu Yusnor’s lyrics and participation in the Malam Aku, Dia & Lagu concert was recorded by the news team. Thanks both Mamahani & Suria.

Know what you’re getting yourself into.

1. Putting your song on SoundCloud or YouTube doesn’t make it a single. It requires you to get press mentions, be it traditional media or online media, for it to be called a “single”. Better if you can get radio air-play, then it becomes a “radio single”. If it’s just YouTube with no actual sale or promotion, then it’s just “one of my songs”, not a single.

2. You want some spotlight, why private Instagram account? When people start looking you up for your work, they are probably going to find you first on the popular social networks that they prefer, and when your account is a locked up harem of personal party pictures that you have to carefully select who you allow in your club, then you’re not going to be a star, in any manner. You want to show off your crazy lifestyle, go ahead, but not in a private account. It turns people off.

3. If you’re a singer, don’t turn up at the film and TV drama events. If you’re an actor, you also don’t have business at the music award shows strutting your local-designer goods. No matter what people say “Oh we’re here to support each other”, it doesn’t really work that way. Come for events where people know who you are, and where you (believe you can) add value to it.

4. Know that Facebook allows only 5000 friends in your personal Facebook account and nobody actually has 5000 friends. It gets messy, trust me. Have a Facebook Page and share only the good stuff; sync your Instagram with it.

5. Diplomacy can be overrated. People who like you for your craft will squeeze what they have out of you in the guise that it is good for you and your career, and people who don’t like you might later learn the gems you have to offer if you last long in this career. Always remind yourself and also the ugly people that you happen to work with that “only God offers you rezeki” and don’t be afraid to say No. Don’t be afraid to say Yes also, because it’s the dark experiences that makes you who you are when you reach a big milestone later.

Someone Who Cares!


Imran Ajmain Enggan Buat Lagu ‘Sedih’

PETALING JAYA: Penyanyi Imran Ajmain mengakui tidak mahu mencipta atau menyanyikan lagi lagu-lagu berunsur sedih yang boleh memberi aura negatif kepada pendengar.

Imran berkata, lagu -lagu tersebut juga tidak sesuai untuk dinyanyikan di majlis-majlis keraian dan perkahwinan.

“Apa yang saya sedar industri kita kekurangan lagu-lagu bahagia, apabila kita tonton video-video perkahwinan, ramai yang menggunakan lagu-lagu tema daripada negera seberang.

“Lagu-lagu saya sendiri semuanya tentang kesedihan dan apabila diminta menyanyikan lagu pada majlis perkahwinan saya terpaksa menyanyi lagu-lagu penyanyi lain,” katanya kepada mStar Online.

Imran yang sebelum ini popular dengan lagu Seribu Tahun, Selamat Ulang Tahun, dan Dikalung Kasihan mengakui agak sukar untuk berkongsi lagu tersebut di laman sosial kerana berkisarkan tentang kesedihan.

Jelasnya, biarpun lagu tersebut popular namun sebenarnya ia berkisarkan tentang keluhan dan kesedihan semata-mata.

Oleh yang demikian, Imran berkata, dia cuba keluar daripada kepompong tersebut dan mencipta lagu-lagu yang memberi kesan positif kepada pendengar dan dirinya sendiri.

“Lagu-lagu baru saya semuanya tentang kebahagian dan saya seronok kerana ia sebenarnya melambangkan diri saya.

“Pada saya lagu-lagu ini secara tidak langsung juga akan buat orang gembira,” katanya.

Sementara itu, Imran berkata lagu-lagu baharunya juga adalah hasil ciptaan beberapa komposer baharu yang disimpan sejak enam tahun lalu.

Katanya, sepanjang bergelar artis, ramai yang cuba menghubunginya untuk menghantar lagu-lagu ciptaan mereka.

“Ramai yang hantar lagu namun hanya beberapa sahaja yang sedap didengar, jadi saya panggil mereka ini untuk ubah suai lagu tersebut menjadi lebih kormersil,” katanya.

Source: mStar Online


Imran Ajmain’s positive move 
by Shah Shamshiri

IS the grass really greener on the other side? Some people say it is, and it certainly seems so for a good number of performing artistes from across the causeway.

Popular Singaporean crooner, Imran Ajmain thinks that it is only natural that Malay artistes from Singapore move to seek their fortune in Malaysia. Like others before him, Imran decided to cross the border in search of a better future. Of course, it comes as no surprise. After all, the likes of M Nasir, Ferhad, and Jai, to name a few, were his fellow countrymen who managed to make a name for themselves in Malaysia.

“Just like other Southeast Asian Chinese artistes who venture into the Taiwanese and Hong Kong markets for their careers, I think it is normal for Singaporean Malay artistes to come to Malaysia for the same thing,” said Imran in an exclusive interview with Red Carpet last Thursday.

To date, Imran has released two albums in Malaysia, and is currently busy preparing to launch his third. Known for his sad love songs and melancholy ballads, Imran revealed that his next album will carry a more ‘positive’ tone.

“I have always been known as a ballad singer and I don’t think there is anything wrong with that. But I just realised that the songs you write and sing, indirectly are like prayers and wishes for yourself. So I do believe there is a psychological impact. And with most of my songs bearing sad I-love-you-don’t leave-me themes, I think it’s about time I changed the mood a little, and bring a more positive vibe for my next album,” explained the star who just released his latest song, Setulus Kasih.

Even though he is now based in Malaysia, the singer who happens to be of Dutch and Malay descent admitted to spending a lot more time in the Lion City to be with his mother, especially in recent months.

“Ever since my father passed away in May this year, I have been spending more time with my mother to keep her company and give support as a son. We even went to Europe during the fasting month for a long summer break just to get our mind off things.”

Imran’s late father, Ahmad Husaini Ajmain was a well-known musician that had worked with many big names during his heyday, including veteran Malaysian star, the late Azean Irdawaty who passed away only very recently.

Despite the pain and grief of having lost his father, the talented singer and songwriter seems optimistic about the coming New Year, and is determined to ensure that his next album will turn out the way he envisioned.

As an artiste, Imran is one celebrity that actively connects with his fans and followers directly on all his social media platforms. In fact, he believes that it is the best way to promote and market his music.

“Promoting music nowadays is no longer like what it used to be 10 or 20 years ago. A singer no longer has to wait for his video or song to premiere on the radio or TV. Now, we can just preview them on the Internet and social media platforms.”

His latest single, Setulus Kasih, is already available on iTunes, Spotify, Deezer and Amazon. Fans can also view snippets on his Twitter and Facebook.

Originally from RedCarpet

I got an interview slot with the effectively bilingual songwriter/TV host Shah Shamshiri for his Red Carpet show on cable TV network, ABNxcess. Some interesting questions were brought up, especially about how ‘Malay music is being promoted’ in this digital age of downloads and audio streaming. Loved the interview, wish we had more time! Til part deux. Looking forward! Will update on the telecast.