Music is the language of the soul. Music is food for the soul. You can feel music yet you cannot physically touch it, it flows in your veins, it is in the thoughts, hearts and minds.

Music is thought to encourage people either one person, few people or large groups of people to act or react in a way. The general election is days away. At the last election, the then Prime Minister who wanted to share his love of music; brought in the one and only, uncopyable (if there is such a word), Psy; who performed his outrageously world famous, “Gangnam Style” to wow, entertain and woo voters. This time round, now as ex-Prime Minister, he may give his own rendition of “Jailhouse Rock”.

What is music? According to Wikipedia, music is a form of art that uses sound organized in time.

It is the art of sound in time that expresses ideas and emotions in significant forms through the elements of rhythm, melody, harmony, and color. The tones or sound employed, occurring in single line (melody) or multiple lines (harmony), and instruments, or both. (1)

“It is the expression of deep emotions and feelings.” “Music calms me down, lifts me up and always makes me feel a certain way.” “Explains things when words fail; Music speaks.” “Music means something that’s inspiring and can match your moods” “Music helps me connect to life.” (2)

To me, music fills the void by pushing out silence. Is it an art? It may just well be. It colors life. Is music a “Control panel” of life? It may well be, too, but just only; as the war drums sets the adrenaline to do battle in coming out tops; yet harps and violins can set you to a peaceful calm; a rockstar band sets the tone for high excitement in a rock concert, and an orchestra playing can tell a story without a single word having to be uttered.

Just recently, at the 90th birthday celebration organized by world renown Chef Wan for his mother; my wife, Jeannie, and I; were making our way around the many junctions of the large variety of food that was on the offering. Then, there was this beautiful music number sung by a lady, that came over the large music speaker nearby. I thought nothing of it except that it set the mood of the afternoon party. What a way to enjoy this beautiful array of food, even further.

As we continued towards inside the house on our food extravaganza search; I soon found out that the music that was coming through the speakers was not recorded, but a lady singing the songs in person. Wow! I was blown away by her rendition of this music piece, “Getaran Jiwa” by the late Tan Sri P. Ramlee. Her delivery of this song was effortlessly her natural self.

Ushera singing “Getaran Jiwa”

Generally, I am not familiar with most local music due to Malaysia’s rich diversity of languages and talent. I believe that music is an international language that anyone can fit in anytime.

From Right to Left: Jeannie Atkinson, Cik Ani Sayang (Chef Wan’s mother), HRH Sultanah Hajjah Kalsom and Ushera. Picture taken at Chef Wan’s home.

I had the opportunity to meet with this wonderful singer, Ushera. She is her natural self on stage as well as off stage – one and the same. She sang many more songs which captivated the audience and got them to dance, too.

Ushera is versatile, effortlessly sings jazz, latino, romantic. I think a performing star like Michael Buble could team up with her to come up with some great song hits.

I would like to leave you with her version of “Buka Pintu”; a song that my siblings and I grew up with in our much younger days. Also included here are more of her hits.

Ushera singing “Jikalau Abang Merindu”

1. Issuu
2. Clocksandcloudmusic


This schoolgirl, very popular with many friends. (Pic.1)
A young military officer, in London, England; on his way home to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. (Pic. 2)

And so the story goes…This young man originally from Ipoh “mari”, had come back from England to his family now staying at Lorong Hicks; next door to some of the Lorong Hicks Road kids. It seems that he’d be in his army uniform whenever he was back from the army. And this is how this young army officer (Pic. 2), attracted attention. Whether he had attracted the young girl (Pic. 1) first, who also used to come home everyday in uniform – school uniform, that is; or she attracted him; the jury is out on that one.


“Oh, you sing? I can sing, too”, said he, the army officer named Eustace; to the talented singing schoolgirl, Philomena. That’s how he won the hearts of the musically talented Gomes family. “Figaro, Figaro, Figaro” sang Eustace…. ..not really. I’m not sure what song he sang first to gain the attention of the Gomes family.

Serious stuff took place not long after….they were engaged on April 1st, 1956. Seriously.

Then, more serious stuff took place. They got married on June 16th, 1956. There’s a proof copy (above) to prove it.

The young wedded couple with their first born, Jennifer.

Jennifer, the first of five children; came on July 6th, 1957; after over a year of them getting married. Then, yours truly (me) on July 10th, 1958; Nigel (April 24th, 1960); Terence (November 27th, 1961) and Malcolm (October 2nd, 1966).

In Penang, just after Christmas; a few years back.

We move several chapters (years) of this story to 1981, their 25th Wedding Anniversary.

25th Wedding anniversary. It was a time when I used to sport a brush (moustache).

Well, that’s what mum used to call it. “When are you going to shave that brush off?” was a pretty common question. And when I did, “I see the light!”

Celebrating their 57th wedding anniversary at the Majestic Hotel Kuala Lumpur – the hotel where they held their wedding reception.

And then, moved forward by more chapters….to their 60th Wedding anniversary.

Dad & Mum with Jeannie, Laura and I. This picture was taken on their 60th wedding anniversary. Venue – a restaurant called the “Old Malaya”, which is situated in a renovated row of houses converted to a row of restaurants. One of those houses was where mum’s family used to live in from 1910 to around 2000, and the unit next door was where dad’s family lived in.

In the photo above, we have the whole family in it, including Jennifer and Nigel who are no longer with us; but sure are changing the scene in heaven almost on a daily basis. God keeps saying, “Oh My Gosh (he can’t use the letter “d” here, because he is that with a “d”), I can’t recognise this place heaven; anymore. Where are all the harps? And the white clouds…what happened to them?” asked God; with “Achy Breaky Heart” blaring over the speakers and a bunch of angels doing line dancing.

Fast forward to June 16th, 2022. Mum and dad have added another chapter and milestone in their lives – 66th Wedding Anniversary. Now, both of them are training to race each other in their wheelchairs. Mum has just acquired the Ferrari red sports model. Don’t let this fool you. Dad still walks quite a bit, with or without his walking stick, and gets in his car and drives to the shops for little grocery errands. Mum is still making the world’s best buttercake with her trademark icing, too.

Something to celebrate their 66th Wedding Anniversary: “Route 66” by Nat King Cole and another version sung by his daughter, Natalie.


As I wrote this article, I often got up from my workstation (that is almost anywhere)…as I often got away from the computer or my Fold 3 or my S7; I would do something different, even for a few minutes. I do this when I write all my articles; just to pause and refresh my thought process. In this article, I did one of the two (the two pictures below): play our (Jeannie’s and my) folderable piano with renditions of “Devil’s March”(no idea why the tune was named that), “Boogie Woogie” in slow tempo…very slow tempo; and “Auld Lang Syne”. I learnt to play Auld Lang Syne on my little musical note Casio calculator in the early 1980s. I was sold on the calculator with the idea that it could play musical notes, and record your played music to boot. How cool is that?

Or (remember, I said I did one of the two), I ate those durian cream filled cookies. Yummy. With all the talk of inflation going around; my 6 pack has become 12. Which do you think I did?

Nat King Cole, ROUTE 66 (anneesvinyl)

The awesome run of the bassist keeps up with Natalie Cole, Nat King Cole’s daughter. ROUTE 66 (martyprod2)


U.S. Route 66

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Length 2448 miles ( 3940km)

Existed: Nov 26 1926 to June 26 1985

Tourist Routes: Historic Route 66

U.S. Route 66 or U.S. Highway 66 (US 66 or Route 66) was one of the original highways in the United States Numbered Highway System. US 66 was established on November 11, 1926, with road signs erected the following year.[4] The highway, which became one of the most famous roads in the United States, originally ran from ChicagoIllinois, through MissouriKansasOklahomaTexasNew Mexico, and Arizona before terminating in Santa Monica in Los Angeles County, California, covering a total of 2,448 miles (3,940 km).[5] It was recognized in popular culture by both the 1946 hit song “(Get Your Kicks on) Route 66” and the Route 66 television series, which aired on CBS from 1960 to 1964. In John Steinbeck‘s novel, The Grapes of Wrath (1939), the road “Highway 66” symbolized escape and loss. Other designations and nicknames for the highway include the Will Rogers Highway, the Main Street of America and the Mother Road.

US 66 served as a primary route for those who migrated west, especially during the Dust Bowl of the 1930s, and the road supported the economies of the communities through which it passed. People doing business along the route became prosperous due to the growing popularity of the highway, and those same people later fought to keep the highway alive in the face of the growing threat of being bypassed by the new Interstate Highway System.

US 66 underwent many improvements and realignments over its lifetime, but was officially removed from the United States Highway System in 1985 after it had been replaced in its entirety by segments of the Interstate Highway System. Portions of the road that passed through Illinois, Missouri, New Mexico, and Arizona have been communally designated a National Scenic Byway by the name “Historic Route 66“, returning the name to some maps. Several states have adopted significant bypassed sections of the former US 66 into their state road networks as State Route 66. The corridor is also being redeveloped into U.S. Bicycle Route 66, a part of the United States Bicycle Route System that was developed in the 2010s.

minons FIGARO FIGARO FIGARO (Dragon Daily)