Domestic Groove: HERU WAHYONO

DOMESTIC GROOVE ~ Celeb’s Chosen Seven is my biweekly column in The Beat (Jakarta) mag. Basically it’s an interview via e-mail which focuses on small, intimate, domestic stuff; what Indonesia’s public figures are really into, musically speaking.

For the 16th edition I went upclose-and-personal with Heru Wahyono.

HERU WAHYONO
Singer, Songwriter, DJ

What music are you into at the moment?
Lately, I’ve been diggin’ some mixtapes and podcasts. I like the mixes from www.maddecent.com records, which is owned by the super-producer, Diplo. They have some reggae/dubstep/Baltimore/dancehall style in their sets/mixtapes. Kinda mash up really…

But, you know, I still love all my music collection, sometimes I listen to it over and over again. Mostly the Jamaican stuff, whether its reggae, ska, Jamaican soul ‘n funk to raggamuffin.

What was the first record you bought—any interesting story behind it?
I don’t really remember, probably Alpha Blondy.
Well you know, I live in Kuta, Bali, during the 90’s, and you could hear Alpha Blondy along the the Kuta streets played by those old-school dreadlock guys. I was curious as a kid, because Alpha was singing in French or African in some of his songs. And I was thinking, who’s this guy with the sweet voice singing in strange language?

What is your all-time favorite album? Why?
Bob Marley’s Legend.

I know it’s very common, same ol’ same ol’, to quote Legend as your favorite album. But, for me it’s more than just a reggae album. It has a wide range of music and also topics.
In this album, Bob Marley is influenced by so many American music: funk, soul, rock, and even pop. Meanwhile, the lyrics contain so many things, from love to society, also rebellion and movement that build awareness amongst the people. The songs in the album, as we all know, each and everyone of them is a classic.

What was the worst record you ever purchased?
The worst… hmm… ain’t got one.

Who do you want to be, other than yourself, next time you reincarnate?
Ravi Shankar.

What music do you choose to start your weekend?
Something upbeat, ruff and dirty like The Aggrolites or Major Lazer.

And song/album you choose to end your weekend?
Chill out stuff, lazy Sunday at home and hangover, from the likes of Norah Jones, Bob Dylan or Jack Johnson.

At the moment Heru is in the studio preparing Shaggydog’s next album. With his other project, Dubyouth, he plans to release full-length album in June. He’s also doing a solo European tour in July supporting Chinese Man, a French DJ collective.

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*This interview was firstly published on The Beat (Jakarta) #39, May 2011

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