What is Sharifah Zahira without melalak pagi2 dalam bilik air pada hujung minggu? Hm, bukan Sharifah Zahira. Kat residential college ke, kat rumah ke, sama je. I'll sing when I'm happy, and I'll sing when I'm depressed. I look at singing as a form of life's elixir. A form of self expression. A tool to reflect. A means to break away.
As far as I can recall, the interest for singing developed when I was in love with nursery rhymes, Sesame Street and Disney animations. At that tender age, I would be really frustrated if there was one nursery rhyme that my kindergarten teacher taught that I didn't know in advance. Sesame Street and Disney princesses collections filled my time at home. Oh yeah, one of the earliest movies my mom bought for us was 'The Sound of Music', which eventually became our favorite. From which I learnt Do Re Mi. The kindergarten teacher saw my inclination towards singing and art, and made me perform a few songs and traditional dance for our Prize Giving Day. I really loved it.
"The hills are alive with the sound of music.." thanks for the music Maria :)
When I stepped into primary school, the environment to show off talent was quite inviting. Apart from storytelling and spelling competitions, I braved myself to also participate in singing contests. It is still clear to my memory, back in 1992, the school organized a singing competition. At that time, the Malay group Exists was really a hit with their song 'Oh Ibu'. Nearly 80 percent of the contestants sang that song! Together with my 2 classmates Zamila and Wan Norehan, wanting to be different, we sang 'Janji Manismu' by Aishah. We got to the finals, but didn't get to the top 3.
Again, in 1994 and 1996, school talent time again, haha! But my parents started to notice and didn't really approve of our interest in music. I took note of that. But to me, a hobby is a hobby. No harm in doing it as long as my grades were excellent. No one could deny that I was a tough competitor.
Stepping into secondary school, the musical influence were changed. Beginning in 1996, the boyband fever strucked girls around the world, and my siblings and I (minus my bro) were among them. Simply said, every dance moves in the video clips of the Spice Girls and 'NSYNC were at the tip of our fingers. We then made a performance during Teacher's Day, of Elite's song 'Tamparan Wanita' (Lepas tu kena blacklist dengan Ustazah, hadeh..) We practised a lot for the performance, and Maktok even made her way to school to support us for the audition. Maktok memang the coolest ever. Even my parents didn't know about that (unless if my mom reads this post la..)
Used to really like them.. before they were defunct
Their best album ever!!
(I used to have the idea of saving money and go to Hollywood to meet them)
Not so much of singing in secondary school, because my attention was more to the prefects' matters, Girl Guides and debate competition. Form 5, it was strictly studying and prefects only. My mom preferred if I was only focused into my studies. But being a prefect was a part of my life too (Hey, I was the boss! And school rules were my Code of Conduct, hehe)
After I finished school, I learnt a bit about wasting time (haha) before I got into the University. I had 3 goals upon entering the Varsity: 1) to get final results of 3.0 - 3.5 (which I did, agak malas nak study gila2 dah) 2) to find that perfect guy (found him during the convo, and we are married almost 3 months ago!) and 3) to have fun in my own definition.
Yerp, I had fun. A series of emceeing since first semester until now, and organizing varsity events. I totally loved it. Singing came in a bit later. It was during the final two semesters that I discovered my old interest back again. Thanks to Star Search competition (I got third place I think?) and Euphonious, alike to battle of the band (my group 425 won 2nd place). Even though some time were spent on practising and jamming, I felt safe because my classmates were in my band, and I trusted them to take care of me too. One of the singers, Bong is happily married now with his long-time sweetie. I'm so happy for him.
After joining PETRONAS, I had a few chances to sing during the forums that we handled for the company. (hajat hati nak present paper, bukan nyanyi! Takpe2, chances will come soon Sharifah..) My friend Feisal@Pacat was a great duet partner everytime he was around. After this, he will have to find a new partner to sing with. I'm out of the game permanently.
Well, nevermind, it's worth it, because I've got a lifetime fan :) and a lifetime critic as well, haha!