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2006 / 1

 

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2006 / 1

From: Harris Anwar Saadullah
To: Fans of P Ramlee
Sent: 28 May, 2006
Subject: P Ramlee article

Hi All P Ramlee's Fans Club Members, young and old

It is imperative that all members read the ariticle found in 'Berita Minggu' of May 28, 2006 (coincidentally, this is the date but year 1968, my father, a P Ramlee fan, passed away) written by Tan Sri Adam Kadir, Chairman of Malaysia Post Ltd.

Reading Tan Sri Adam Kadir's 'rencana' is enough to make one feel like crying. Of course, listening to P Ramlee's oldies is very nostalgic indeed and one thing will come to our mind and that is our society has overlooked the fact that we were presented with a totally indispensable artist, once gone could never be replaced. The vacuum will remain forever, needless to say.

There would never be anyone who could match P Ramlee's inborn talent, in being able to write scripts, act, sing and also direct, all in one go. Very few in Hollywood, if any, would be able to match P Ramlee's gift from God. Those in Hollywood are normally trained in colleges and universities, before taking up acting as a career and subsequently learn to direct. What formal education in the world of entertainment had P Ramlee? He had no opportunity to study like many others but he eventually became one of the most versatile and talented artists, the world has seen. He had set a good example for those unfortunate to follow and that is not to give up hope in life. Just like Leonardo da Vinci and other great painters, P Ramlee died a poor man, only in terms of money. If money is a yard-stick to measure one's greatness, poor P Ramlee would be crying in his grave-yard today.

For anyone to say that P Ramlee was 'A Jack of all trade and master of none', I am sure it should be reworded to read, P Ramlee was 'A Jack of all trade and master of all'. He could even advise and teach those with a string of professional qualifications, when it comes to the world of music, script writing, acting or even directing. Where and when on earth, will there be another P Ramlee? Unfortunately, he was not seen as a highly prized God sent being, when he was alive.

When it comes to multi-talent, even Clark Gable or the highest paid actor of today is miles behind P Ramlee. Unfortunately, the yardstick for measuring one's success is his bank account, in our modern world. The wealth he left behind for us all and also the younger generations to come cannot be measured in terms of dollars and cents. All along, during his life-time he had put the interest of the community above that of his. Otherwise, he would left millions of dollars, after his passing away.

P Ramlee came down to Singapore hunting for a job. Unfortunately, no one was interested in him, in view of his frail structure and lack of formal education. It so happened that Jasni, a tap dancer and also one of our very popular singers, introduced him to the fledging entertainment industry. From there on P Ramlee flourished, from a nobody to somebody. He became our most popular actor and singer. No one in Hollywood can match P Ramlee's popularity per population. The next one I can think of is Bruce Lee, eclipsing the popularity of Peter Cheng Ho of Hong Kong. Unfortunately, P Ramlee and Bruce Lee suffer a premature death, before they could fully discharge the potential, they still had in them. If all the world's population can speak and understand two languages, English and Malay, I am sure P Ramlee's popularity would dwarf that of Clark Gable's or Gina Lolobrigida's.

The only regret for P Ramlee is he's born a Malay and not a Chinese or a Jew. The Chinese and the Jews would support their talented individuals to the maximum. Thinking that the Chinese and the Jews are well supported, P Ramlee decided to move to a Malay country, infested with numerous wealthy Malay businessmen and entreprenaurs. His dream became a nightmare. There was no one there to give him the financial support, which he badly required. While working for someone, his talent could not be exploited to the optimum. As a result of which, he wanted to be on his own, not for the money. Otherwise, he could have demanded an exorbitant payment to act in any film, being the most popular actor in the the whole of the Malay speaking world and Asia. This happens in Hollywood, at all times.

I thank the writer of the 'rencana' for giving lots of information with regard to films and also songs, relevant to P Ramlee.

To those other names mentioned, whether actors, actresses or singers, they are also great in their own rights and have excelled in their respective fields. Like P Ramlee, they have entertained us and we are very thankful and grateful. Their names would also be long remembered, just like P Ramlee's. Again, like P Ramlee, they had also played their parts, more for the love of it rather than the good money. Sad to say, there was none then. Whatever they got in terms or rewards were enough to see them through, day to day, unlike actors, actresses and singers of today. People of today talk about money first before they perform and no money, no talk. However, our greats of yesteryear performed for either, survival sake or for the love to entertain the community, in particular and the country, at large.

It is hoped that our brothers and sisters of the club enjoy the 'renchana' written by Tan Sri Adam Kadir and follow it up with your comments. With regard to mine, should there be incorrect information imparted, kindly advise the club.

Once again, it is hoped that the P Ramlee Fans Club will remain popular and strong, day by day.

Thanks and regards.

Harris Anwar Saadullah
Sydney, Australia


From: Zaedi Zolkafli
To: Abdul Shariff Aboo Kassim
Sent: 19 April, 2006
Subject: A R Tompel and Ibrahim Din

Hi Abdul Shariff,
A R Tompel died the same year as P Ramlee in 1973. Both were buried at Jalan Ampang, Kuala Lumpur. Ibrahim Din passed away in 1996. Unfortunately, we don't have information where he was laid to rest.

Abdul Shariff wrote:

>I am a fan of P Ramlee.
>
>I am not a Malay and do not exactly watch Malay movies. However, P Ramlee's movies are an exception. I have a collection of P Ramlee VCDs at home. I also came to know, from watching his movies, two other actors who are equally entertaining - A R Tompel and Ibrahim Din.
>
>I understand that both these actors have passed away. I would be grateful if you could let me know when did the two actors pass away. I understand that A R Tompel is buried at Jalan Ampang, Kuala Lumpur. What about Ibrahim Din?
>
>I am planning to visit Malaysia soon.
>
>Thank you.
>
>Regards
>Shariff


From: Saliha Jaya
To: Fans of P Ramlee
Sent: 10 January, 2006
Subject: Children of P Ramlee

Hello and Happy New Year to fans of P.Ramlee. I think its nice to know things about P.Ramlee, whether its personal and professional, its not because we are 'busibodies' and judgemental, its just because he was/is our hero and most of us don't really know about him and still have lots of questions. I am always happy to read anything written about him.

Saliha from the Netherlands.


From: Harris Anwar Saadullah
To: Fans of P Ramlee
Sent: 10 January, 2006
Subject: Children of P Ramlee

Thanks for bringing to our attention the article from M/s Kamriah Galanter of the USA. She has really hit the nail in the coffin.

I share her views with regard with to "not to 'kepo' about P. Ramlee's personal life". Like it or not, the general public, as well as P.Ramlee's fans have to acknowledge the fact that both he and his beloved wife, Saloma, left this world, leaving behind no wealth but their most unforgettable deeds in the world of entertainment, just like 'Harimau mati tinggalkan belang, manusia mati meninggalkan nama'. (Loosely translated into the English vernacular: Tiger dies leaving behind the stripes, humans die leaving their names behind.)

Two of the world's greatest and most talented actors, in my opinion, were P. Ramlee and Bruce Lee. They did not leave any wealth behind, when they passed away (may peace be upon their souls). I am sure, unlike the actors of today, especially those in Hollywood, if there are no several million dollars on the table, they would not get out of their bed. Perhaps, P. Ramlee and Bruce performed more for the love of it, rather than the money. It is their selfless attitude that we have to admire and not the criteria that they did not leave any wealth behind or owned a house, while they were still alive.

There was no money for our actors and actresses in our bygone era. They took up acting or singing, as an occupation and most of them were not formally trained to act sing, unlike today. It was the talent in them that made their films stand out, even till today. It was the talent in them that made their songs evergreen till today. Just like actors and actress, singers of those days, apart from Nona Asiah, what have other singers like Saloma, Momo Latiff, Rubiah, Lena, Rokiah, Laila, Rohani, Sutinah, Normadiah, Siput Serawak, Jasni, R. Azmi, Abdullah Chik and Aziz Jaafar, etc have left wealth, worth mentioning. To say mildly, virtually all of them could not even make ends meet with their remuneration, from acting and singing. As a result of which, they had to have a second job, in order to keep the family going.

I will never miss any song sung by Momo and all the other greats, and in the sixties, I discovered Momo had a stall at Farrer Park, Singapore, selling 'lontong' to supplement her husband's income, so that the family could survive the poverty, they were in. Had she been in the US or the better part of Europe today, with her talent and golden voice, I am sure, she would be able to own some of the choicest real estates in Singapore or Malaysia and would not have to endure, what Saloma experienced, while she was in hospital. Many thanks go to Sharifah Aini for the humanity in her. May others also follow this foot-step, preferably not when our greats of yesteryear are already hospitalised.

When Bruce Lee was alive, he was offered several roles in films, which portrayed him as a character beaten in a fight by those, whose expertise in martial arts was miles behind that of Bruce Lee's. He refused to accept those roles, even though the money was relatively lucrative, as against the income, he could get from the local studios in Hong Kong. Such was his pride and sacrifice for his community and we have to respect him for this selfless attitude. The same can be said of our own P. Ramlee, A R Tompel, Osman Gumanti, Harris, 'Haji Bakhil', Ahmad Mahmud, S Shamsuddin, Ibrahim Pendek, Siti Tanjong Perak, Mak Dara, Kasma Booty, Sarimah Ahmad, Fatimah Ahmad, Rahmah Rahmat, Rokiah, Neng Yatimah, Murni Serawak, and many others, who put community interest above that of their own. As a result of which, they forgot to make all the money for themselves, always thinking about the interest of others first.

It is rather sad to note that many of the film stars from Shaws and Cathay Kris in Singapore migrated to Malaysia, thinking that they could get the support of their brothers and sisters, who were financially well-off to help them in their new ventures or enterprise there. Nothing came about and the Malay Film World died a premature death. Only after the demise of P.Ramlee, he was recognised, as someone worth mentioning or remembering. All of sudden, P.Ramlee was mentioned by the media and the general public. Prominent streets and places were named after him. I will not be far wrong to say that had P. Ramlee been alive today, he would still be begging for food in one of the streets of Kuala Lumpur or Penang.

If P. Ramlee had neglected his children for the sake of the community's interest, it is hoped that the community will take care of his children now and not despise the father or the worse still, the children. Of course, not by giving them money but the financial help to give them the best of education, so that they would also serve the community, like what P. Ramlee and company had done. It is difficult though but not impossible and Einstein would testify this.

Let us hope that our community will not make this same mistake again. While our current talents are still alive, be it in the world of acting, singing or whatever field, they may excel in, our community with money should give them all the financial support required to bring the names of our 'pioneers' to world's recognition. As long, as we remain unmoved and adopt the couldn't care less attitude, I am sure all our budding 'heroes' will also surely die a premature death, just like our most beloved film stars and singers of yesteryear. It is good to remember them, when they were gone but better still, to support them, while they are still alive.

I may be wrong in supplying some of the facts and figures and if so, do please correct me since, I have away from Singapore the past 19 years or so.

As for Zaedi and company, I am sure what they do today is not for the money but the undivided love to preserve the outstanding achievements of our past entertainers, which were neglected, while they were alive and serving us.

To all P. Ramlee fans, do keep this Forum alive for the generations to come.

Harris Anwar Saadullah
Sydney, Australia


From: Kamariah Galanter
To: Fans of P Ramlee
Sent: 7 January, 2006
Subject: Children of P Ramlee

Greetings to Fans of P.Ramlee,
I think it's un-important for us to *kepo about P.Ramlee's personal life. When you are an artist, you'll be too engrossed or absorbed in the Cinema World. There're certain sacrifice that you have to make in order to focus in this criteria. Even towards Saloma's 'Golden' era she was not in a position to make things right. I read that Singer Sharifah Aini was helping out Saloma with her Hospital Bills when Saloma was hospitalised and later on Sharifah Aini was making a remark that she hope that she'll not be in that kind of predicament, if the same situation arise. What Sharifah meant was that she hope that nobody should bail her out incase she's hospitalised. Please correct me if I get this infos incorrect. Some people even said that P.Ramlee did not own the house he occupied. I mean, I think it's unjust to explore too much on P.Ramlee's personal life. P.Ramlee contributed so much to the Society.
Only in Fairy Tales we can expect, create and look for perfection. In real life, we have to deal with real (human) emotion. Let us not dwell too much on his personal or inside story. Just like the rest of us, the mortals, we have the right for solitude or alonement within ourself. It's our place of sanctity.
I thank you for sharing.
Happy New Year.
Salam mesra, K.Galanter, Florida, USA.
P.S. By the way, I found out the word *kepo is taken off from 'kempetei'...KPO..which is (Japanese) Kempetei-Police-Officer.


From: Zaedi Zolkafli
To: Norazly Md Yatim
Sent: 1 January, 2006
Subject: Children of P Ramlee

Hi Norazly,
The personal life of P Ramlee is a subject least explored by local historians. Like many big stars of the bygone Malay films era, P Ramlee married more than once. He married actress Junaidah Daeng Harris in 1950 and had two children. The eldest son Mohamad Nasir was born in 1953. Little was known about the younger brother Arfan who was born after the couple split in 1954. Junaidah remarried and later moved to Indonesia with young Arfan and her other children. Arfan died a young man in Jakarta early 1998.

P Ramlee remarried for second time to Noorizan Md Noor on 6 February 1955. He has another son Sazali born in 1958 named after his famous character in award winning Anak-ku Sazali (1956). There was a mystery surrounding the paternal mother of Sazali. But family photos would reveal that Sazali came around during P Ramlee's marriage to Noorizan.

P Ramlee divorced Noorizan in 1961. He married actor/singer Saloma on 21 November in same year. They did not have any children. Saloma already had a son Armali from previous marriage to actor A R Tompel. The couple had several adopted children, Zakiah @ Zazaloma, Sabarudin @ Badin and Safarina @ Dian.

Norazly Md Yatim wrote:

>Salam Sejahtera. Saya ingin mengetahui bilangan sebenar anak-anak Allahyarham Tan Sri P. Ramlee. Jika boleh dengan gambarnya sekali...
>
>Terima kasih


From: Mohd Hatta Mahmood
To: Fans of P Ramlee
Sent: 1 January, 2006
Subject: P Ramlee and other classic malay movies

Hi there all P Ramlee fans
I am also a P Ramlee/Saloma fan and other classic malay movies. I managed to get hold most of the malay movies in VCD and was wondering why they were never released in DVD format instead? I fully understand that some of the movies are really really old and I don't expect them to be in perfect condition as in digital cameras right now. I would love to own these movies in DVD format and hope there will be a company out there with permission and licensed granted by copyright owners to release them in DVDs. Infact if there is anyone out there with the original movie posters of all the classic malay movies made in Jalan Ampas MFP, Cathay Keris or even Studio Merdeka in KL would come forward to share these leaflets are the DVD covers. We need someone to make the first move. If we don't cherish these movies now, it will be gone in due time, believe me. Do we have to wait until the movies are about to perish only then we start to think? Also for one reasons or another, some old movies were banned for sale/reproduction due to its mystic ideas but these are only movies and like what they do to other movies, companies could include the caption i.e. not suitable for children, or mystic etc..... before the beginning of each movies and for heaven sake, not to have the company trademark on the movies too please, it is just distracting. I understand the ideas of doing this is to avoid pirating etc., but no matter what we do in the show business, the scums are out there. I would love to hear or own cds of the yesteryears by singers i.e. jasni, asiah, momo, rokiah, etc. in CD format as the master copy I believed in still kept by the respective music companies or at least by their main h/offices in UK mostly. Again, no music companies is willing to make the first move other than some small music companies whose merchandise quality or music reproduction quality is very poor.........simply because they were re-recorded from records. I understand that the main idea is to make money and profit for the music companies but there is no one out there who is also into cherishing them for future generation listeners.
I wish I have the power and $ to be the 1st one to implement what I had stated above.
Thank you.
Regards,
Hatta

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