Malaysia is one of the rare Asian countries that produce English language songs, but with the influx of international artistes ruling the music industry today, it is hard for the local artistes to make it big, even if it is in their own country.
So, how many Malaysian English-singing musicians or bands do you actually know of, and how many of their songs can you name?
Unlike the Malay music scene, the local English scene noticeably falls short as it does not get much support from listeners, simply because the scene has been dominated by the international artistes who are getting more exposure out there.
So this is where WEbePOP comes in!
Via talking to the lead singer of pop-punk band An Honest Mistake, Darren Teh and Malay-singing sensation Elizabeth Tan, who are both part of the WEbePOP project – we learn about how this initiative will completely change the local music scene in Malaysia!
|Elizabeth Tan and Darren Teh from An Honest Mistake.|
First things first, what exactly is WEbePOP?
webe was previously known as P1 (Yes, that internet service), and has now re-branded to become the first fully-funded crowdbacking digital platform in Malaysia to help Malaysians bring change in the areas that they are passionate about.
|Darren Teh and Prashan Chitty aka Melakaboy.|
For the WEbePOP project, Darren Teh and Prashan Chitty, AKA Melakaboy, founder of Paranormal Solutions, are collaborating with the webe community to revive the popularity of Malaysian English music by producing an original English pop compilation album to showcase the talents of the local artistes in the country.
About the album.
There will be eight artistes and four producers on board for this project. Who are they?
The artistes – Elizabeth Tan, Narmi, Dasha Logan, Jin Hackman, An Honest Mistake, Daiyan Trisha, Prema Yin and Diandra Arjunaidi.
The producers – AG Coco, Bryan B, Audi Mok and Omar K.
“We got these 8 artistes on board mainly because they are quite popular in their own field and they are all from different genres, but at the same time, they care about changing and contributing to the music scene,” said Darren Teh.
“Each artiste will get two songs, so in total we’ll have a 16-track album.”
When and where to get it?
The whole project is expected to be done by October this year, and once the album has completed, it will be made available online.
WEbePOP project supporters will get to download the album for free, but non-webe members can also get them at a very affordable price either through digital downloads or the purchase of the CD.
A concert tour
To promote the album, Webe is planning on a campus tour, where the eight selected artistes will be playing at local venues, and putting on a huge concert together!
Darren and Prashan are also looking at distributing the album at every possible channel and online platforms including Spotify, iTunes and Deezer.
The whole project is fully backed by the webe community with funding of around RM200 thousand which covers the whole production of the album including the roadshow.
What does the album have in store for fans?
All of the songs in the album will be new and different.
“It’s either songs that we have not recorded yet, or completely new songs!” exclaimed Darren.
According to Darren and Elizabeth, the songs would be something different from their usual genres and style.
Here’s what Darren has to say:-
“For this project, I don’t want to do band-style songs because I can do that anytime I want. I want to make super killer tracks which can be of any genre. It can be a R&B track, it can be an EDM track too if it works. We want to try something new. Because people know An Honest Mistake as a pop punk band, we will always be that. But with this project, we want to show that we can also do something different.”
Here’s what Elizabeth Tan has to say:-
“The music market in Malaysia is very segmented, it’s either you’re in a Malay market or you’re in an English market, and right now most of my fanbase are in the Malay market, so an English market is something that I would like to experiment with.”
It is expected that each artiste would be getting their own music videos as well, apart from a series of videos following the production of WEbePOP.
“We’re planning to document the whole thing – it’s like a journey,” Darren continued.
Objective to achieve
Since Malaysia is one of the few Asian countries that produce English songs, through this project there is a hope to create more job opportunities for musicians in Malaysia, particularly those in the English scene.
“Through this project, we want to tell Malaysia that we can also be as good as anywhere in the world and sometime even better,” said Darren.
“The project aims to educate Malaysians that we also have producers and artistes here that can meet the standards of an international level,” said Elizabeth.
“To create awareness and hopefully start a change.”
“Perception is the hardest to change!”
Why is it so hard for Malaysians to support their very own local artistes?
When Paperplane Pursuit made it to the Billboard Charts, everyone were saying how good they are and that they don’t sound like local artistes. So, how exactly does a local artiste even sounds like?
“I think it’s just mindset. Like if you buy a phone that is Malaysian made compared to an iPhone, but it could’ve been of the same quality, but just because it’s Malaysian made, you assume that it sucks,” explained Elizabeth Tan.
“It is perception, and perception is the hardest to change, but we are trying to change perception,” Darren added.
If this project works well, webe might be planning on kicking off other similar projects which focuses on the Chinese or Tamil music scene.
“Hopefully, in the future we can have a full on Malaysian music festival for 3 days, with like 50 stages. We camp out and there’s music for 24-hours,” Darren added.
“These kind of festivals happen all the time in the U.S. but it’s something that has never been done here.”
“It’s basically putting Good Vibes, Urbanscapes, Rock the World and all the EDM festivals together at a single place – that is the grand plan,” he continued.
So, what do YOU need to do?
In order to make the WEbePOP a reality, all you need to do is download the webe community app, share the project on any social media platform and earn more webits (it’s free!), and then use the webits that you’ve earned to support and pledge for the project!
So pledge NOW because the project has 24 more days to go, and it needs a total of 250k webits to unlock, and it is now at 107k!