RAISA DO­ING IT HER WAY

The Jakarta Post - JPlus - - Front Page - WORDS YU­LIASRI PER­DANI

Singer Raisa An­dri­ana is con­fi­dently go­ing it alone. Af­ter work­ing with Univer­sal Mu­sic In­done­sia on her first two al­bums, Raisa launched her third, Hand­made, un­der her own record­ing la­bel, Juni Suara Kreasi, ear­lier this year. “Hav­ing my own la­bel had been on my mind since I en­tered the mu­sic in­dus­try,” said Raisa, who made her solo de­but in 2011 with her name­sake al­bum.

“In fact, I have never been fully man­aged by the la­bel. I found the in­vestors for the al­bums and pro­duced the al­bum on my own be­fore pre­sent­ing it to the la­bel. I also have my own man­age­ment.”

Raisa said Juni Suara Kreasi, which she co-founded with her man­ager Adryanto “Boim” Pratono, was her way to con­trib­ute more to the coun­try’s mu­sic in­dus­try.

“I have the will to learn about the mu­sic in­dus­try and un­der­stand its prob­lems. I want to do some­thing good for the in­dus­try.”

De­spite hav­ing gained suf­fi­cient knowl­edge and con­tacts within the mu­sic in­dus­try dur­ing her suc­cess­ful ca­reer, Raisa is wellaware of the risks of build­ing her own la­bel.

“The stakes are high. I in­vested my money in the la­bel. So if it fails, it means a good­bye. More­over, I have to em­ploy many peo­ple to han­dle all the work.” All of Raisa’s hard work on the la­bel paid off. Sin­gles from

Hand­made — “Jatuh Hati” (Fall in Love) writ­ten by Raisa and “Kali Ke­dua” (Sec­ond Time), penned by pro­lific au­thor and singer Dewi “Dee” Les­tari — dom­i­nated the charts. Raisa brought home nine tro­phies at Anugerah Musik In­done­sia 2016, the lo­cal mu­sic in­dus­try’s Gram­mys, in­clud­ing for Best Fe­male Artist and the Best Pop Al­bum.

She went on to win two awards, in­clud­ing Best Fe­male Artist, at Anugerah Planet Muzik 2016, a re­gional award cer­e­mony for artists en­gaged in Malay- and In­done­sian-lan­guage mu­sic.

The al­bum’s suc­cess paved the way for her to con­duct her first ever al­bum tour, “Hand­made”, with a five-city per­for­mance tour in Java through­out Oc­to­ber.

It also marked her lat­est mu­si­cal ex­plo­rations. Known for her ro­man­tic song­writ­ing skills, Raisa for the first time talked about hu­man­ity and en­vi­ron­ment on one of the al­bum’s songs “Nyawa dan Hara­pan” (Soul and Hope). She was in­spired to write the song af­ter she broke down in tears when watch­ing an en­vi­ron­men­tal doc­u­men­tary.

“I am not an en­vi­ron­men­tal­ist. I wrote the song based on my ca­pac­ity as a per­son who reads var­i­ous kind of head­lines and en­coun­ters many things in my life. The

song is about how peo­ple nowa­days eas­ily hurt each other,” she said.

Her choice to launch Bara­suara as the first band from the la­bel is par­tic­u­larly in­ter­est­ing. Raisa knows the band mem­bers well, par­tic­u­larly drum­mer Marco St­ef­fi­ano who serves as Raisa’s mu­sic direc­tor. How­ever, in terms of mu­sic, Raisa’s pop and RnB tunes are worlds apart from the blar­ing rock sound of Bara­suara.

“Bara­suara’s songs were not the kind of mu­sic that I lis­ten to ev­ery day,” she ad­mit­ted.

“But I was in­ter­ested and kept want­ing to know more about their mu­sic. They have an enor­mous amount of pas­sion and en­ergy. They are like the Avengers. Each one of them is the best in their field.”

With its eth­nic-in­spired rhythms and a unique use of for­mal In­done­sian lan­guage lyrics in its de­but al­bum

Tai­fun (Typhoon), Bara­suara has charmed mu­sic crit­ics and is build­ing a grow­ing, loyal fan base. SIL­VER SCREEN DE­BUT

The drama, Ter­je­bak Nostal­gia (Trapped in Nostal­gia), re­leased on Dec. 1, marks Raisa’s big-screen de­but.

Set in Jakarta and New York, the Rako Pri­janto-di­rected movie tells of the love tri­an­gle be­tween Raisa (who uses her real name for her char­ac­ter) with Sora (Maruli Tam­pub­olon) and Reza (Chicco Jerikho).

“I am quite proud of my­self for act­ing in the movie. The film­ing was en­joy­able. I had a great con­nec­tion with my cast­mates and the direc­tor helped me a lot.”

Raisa finds it a bit chal­leng­ing to as­sess her own act­ing per­for­mance.

“In singing, I can judge ‘Oh… I can hit th­ese high notes, or I am a bit shaky in this part’. But in act­ing, I can’t make a clear as­sess­ment. All I can see on the film is that I was pre­tend­ing,” she chuck­led.

As some­one who con­trols al­most ev­ery­thing in her mu­sic work, Raisa ac­knowl­edged she must learn to take less con­trol over the film project.

“Mu­sic is my thing. I write and sing the mu­sic, and also know its dis­tri­bu­tion. I can be con­fi­dent be­cause ev­ery­thing is un­der my con­trol. Mean­while, in act­ing, I just do my part and let the oth­ers do the rest,” she said.

“Well, I am not a con­trol freak but it feels like we’re to­tally let­ting go of con­trol [mak­ing movies],” Raisa added.

Born on June 6, 1990, to a Ja­vanese fa­ther and a Dutch-Manadonese mother, Raisa started singing at the age of three. She briefly be­came the vo­cal­ist of An­dante, the em­bryo of Kevin Aprilio’s

pop band, Vierra, be­fore serv­ing as the back­ing vo­cal­ist of RnB band, RAN.

Since launch­ing her solo ca­reer in 2011, Raisa has be­come known for her unique star qual­i­ties. Her voice sounds soft but she can also ef­fort­lessly hit high notes. Her love songs, which mostly she co-wrote, in­clud­ing 2013’s hit “Man­tan Terindah” (the most beau­ti­ful ex) have be­come an­thems both for the bro­ken­hearted and love-struck teenagers. And her at­trac­tive ap­peal has gen­er­ated a flood of memes of guys wish­ing to have her as their girl­friend.

“I feel star­tled that I could reach this point. At this quite young age, I have re­leased al­bums, held con­certs and a tour.”

With build­ing her own record­ing la­bel and mak­ing her act­ing de­but al­ready taken care of, Raisa is eye­ing her other dreams.

“I want is to have an in­ter­na­tional al­bum, while for the re­main­ing dreams […] I will write them down later.”

JP/Jerry Adi­guna

JP/Da­mar

Film talk: Raisa talks about her big-screen de­but ac­com­pa­nied by co-star Maruli Tam­pub­olon.

JP/Jerry Adi­guna

On tour: Raisa per­forms with Bara­suara in Jakarta.

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