ARTISTES PAY TRIBUTE TO JOHAN NAWAWI
Award-winning composer and husband of singer Nora dies of heart attack
COMPOSER Johan Nawawi, 51, who died of a heart attack yesterday, will be remembered by the music fraternity as a hardworking professional who never failed to spend quality time with his loved ones.
Yayasan Artis 1Malaysia (YA1M) founder Datuk DJ Dave described Johan as a talented and visionary composer who worked well with everyone.
“I’ve known him as a gentleman in every sense of the word. He was very close to his wife, Nora, and their four children, and brought the family together musically via the spiritual music group Voices Of Ummi.
“YA1M met him a few weeks ago, and he was hale and hearty. It’s a shock that he’s gone, and we’ll miss him.”
Dave advised Nora and her children to stay strong in their moment of grief.
Composer Azlan Abu Hassan described Johan as an old friend, who was passionate about music and life.
“We worked together on the song Selamanya Bahagia for Nora. Johan had a fantastic music memory and was always spot on when it came to creating good songs for his wife. Of all the songs he wrote, I’ll best remember Sinaran, which was a super hit for Datuk Sheila Majid. It’s evergreen.”
Singer, actor and songwriter Nabil Damanhuri, who is also Johan’s relative, described the late composer as his “second mentor” after Nora, who guided him into second place in TV3’s reality talent show Mentor (season one) in 2005.
“He was cheerful, humorous and working with him was a joy. I’m going to miss his positive attitude, jokes and passion for life and music. I will always cherish the song he wrote for me titled Hey Emma!”
Primeworks Studios chief executive officer Datuk Ahmad Izham Omar described Johan as an old friend of more than 25 years.
“He was dedicated to music, worked extremely hard for his success, and was a naturally-gifted musician. We met three days ago for dinner. He looked well.”
He said he was shocked to learn of Johan’s death, and described it as a major blow to Malaysian music.
Among Johan’s credits is 22nd Anugerah Industri Muzik award for Jentayu in 1996.
Veteran lyricist Habsah Haswho san, has known Johan since the 1990s, described him as a dedicated composer, lyricist and family man.
“He loved his work, but never neglected his family. Forming Voices Of Ummi was proof that he wanted his family to stay unitwhat ed in they loved doing most — making good music.
“Johan will go down in history as a great role model for future composers and lyricists.”
Johan’s second son, Shakir Alif, 18, described his father as a man who was seldom ill and worked tirelessly in his studio.
“He had just become a director at the National Arts, Culture and Heritage Academy (Aswara), last month. He lived and breathed the arts, but never forgot about his loved ones. ”
A distraught Nora said she and Johan were supposed to celetheir brate 25th wedding anniversary on April 9.
“We were looking forward to that joyous event. Johan had been working very hard of late. All this while, he did not suffer from any chronic diseases, apart from diabetes, and never forgot to take his medication.”
Johan was laid to rest after Friprayers day at the Bukit Kiara Muslim Cemetery near Taman Tun Dr Ismail.