Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The Colors of My Rainbow

Kemang, South Jakarta
It was 3 a.m. at the end of January 2011. Dhora - my friend, and I laid in our comfortable mattresses, half sleepy. It was another good friends/girl talks sleep-over night. Dewindra played her guitar.
"tell me why, you make everything seems right, you hold my heart so tight, I don't wanna hurt inside..."
I read the lyrics from Dewindra's hand-written notes, trying to sing along. Somehow I could relate to that song. It crunched my heart.

"You're not the only one crying.", Dewindra said. She mentioned the names of our good friends to whom she introduced her song before and who sobbed like I did. Tell Me Why, the song that I she played was soulful. Working in broadcasting industry for quite a long period of time, I knew instantly that it has all the potential to become a hit.

Dewindra was on the way to pursuing her dream to produce her own album independently. This album is really indie; funded by Dewindra's own saving, supported by a great musician, Harry Toledo, who saw Dewindra's talent then poured his own talents to arrange the music and supervise the production of the album. All the love and dedication poured during the making of this project made the album brings the soulful vibes. Her songs are inspired by love and friendship that she lived.

Dewindra is no ordinary singer. She is a medical doctor who is currently working as the Health Manager for the American Red Cross representative in Indonesia. Most of her days is spent to manage the health services programs of the Red Cross, ranging from the issues of water and sanitation to the issues of public health services in disaster risk reduction, writing up the plans, logical frameworks, and reports. She is a busy girl, but she always has time to take care of others.

I met her in Aceh, as we were both working for the post-tsunami reconstruction and rehabilitation projects there. Dewindra arrived in Aceh a few weeks after the tsunami with the Indonesian Red Cross Society's team, working as the medical doctor who provided health services to the survivors. We met in 2007 and clicked instantly.

Inside this young doctor lies a great musical talent and passion. Loving music so much, she used to skip some classes during her medical shool days as she was busy performing with her band. It got her mom came up with the advice, "Dear, after you become a doctor, you can be everything else as you want."

Now, how many people you know who is a medical doctor, a humanitarian worker, who is also a composer and great singer, plus a very kind person? Dewindra is indeed a special personality. Plus, she has a very comforting big hugs, great sense of humor, and great smile. :)

The Color of My Rainbow - that's the title of the album - is about Dewindra's love for the people around her. Everyone who have good friends, families, beloved ones, and who had ever fallen in love would know the feelings described in the lyrics.

Finally, in April, Dewindra launched her album. It consists of six songs, three in English, and three other songs are in Bahasa Indonesia. All are soulful and smooth. Dewindra sent her CD to me two weeks ago. Here's what she wrote:

Selling the album is not that easy. Despite the goodness in it, some stores simply turned it down without even listening to it. The marketing of the album goes friend-to-friend. Some songs entered the radio chart, but still it is not a big impact yet. I felt that it was not right. Dewindra really has a good stuff. The songs are worth to listen to and to remember. There should be a breakthrough somewhere. I want more and more people to listen to it and agreed that Dewindra's songs are great.

Kemang, South Jakarta, July 2011
On my flight to Jakarta I couldn't stop thinking of doing more serious promotion for Dewindra's album. I was about stay in her place again, enjoying the girl talks, and the comfort of sleep-over with my good friends.

Her big hugs welcomed me as always. Between the guitar, blanket, make up, cellphone and laptops that scattered all over the room, I popped my proposal to make simple videos for her songs. She was excited. So here we were, browsing for pictures until I fell asleep with my laptop on next to my head. :)

Banda Aceh, Northernmost tip of Sumatra
July 27, 2011, 2.10 a.m. (yes, a.m.) and I was busy working on my project: promoting Dewindra's indie jazz album through social medias.I finished editing a very simple video for Tell Me Why, with subtitles to help the viewers singing along. Good, touching lyrics is an important part to reach the listeners/viewers' hearts. Thoughtful visualization is important too. It carries the soul of the songs out.

I tried to fulfill my half-a year-promise: introducing Dewindra's album to my contacts in radio networks. I chose to launch Tell Me Why first, because I feel that the song would touch many hearts. With the tools in social media, sharing would be an easy thing. The power of social media lies in its multiplying effect. When it is a good stuff, people would happily and voluntarily spread it out through tags and link-sharing.

10 minutes after I uploaded the video on YouTube and Facebook, I got positive feedbacks from my friends on my wall. Until 3 a.m. I still talked to my old friends from the a national radio network about Dewindra's songs. She was happy to discover new, great musical talent and agreed to play the song in her station. Great!

In the first one hour after the upload I received 35 messages, a commitment from a national radio network that they are interested to play her song, a preliminary order of CD samples from a friend in Lisbon, Portugal, and as much as 25 hits on the song that I uploaded in YouTube.

Some friends asked me if I thought of becoming Dewindra's manager. No. I never thought of that idea. I just did what I believe. I believe that Dewindra deserves all the opportunities to be known for her talents and music, and I believe that Dewindra can be a great inspiration for many. Moreover, she is my good friend and I love her. Those were the drives that made me jump into this Color of My Rainbow project.

24 hours later, the YouTube recorded 319 views. I hope the number grows exponentially. I hope it is viral. I hope Dewindra can become a new inspiration for many people, for her talent, hard-will, kindness, and for her dedication in pursuing what is good for her and for others. She can be a doctor, a humanitarian worker, a singer, and a good friend at the same time.

Here is Tell Me Why, from Dewindra's first album. If you like it, please do spread the words. :)


  1. Dear Asri...

    Gosh, I'm speechless to read what you have wrote about me; wondering am I really the one you were talking about? "Dewindra" that you have mentioned above,, she seems "so many ways higher" then me.. Hiks' (happy tears)

    Thank you for those words which I believe came from your heart. Never thought that you have pictured me that way in your mind.. *Terharu..
    God, how lucky I am to have you as a good friend, motivator and a role model at the same time.. "Thank you" will never be enough to show how grateful I am to have you in my life. God just show His way by the first time we met.. Alhamdulillah although some unfortunate things happened in my life, yet I have so many happiness; even more and more. You are one of that! :)
    Thank you for giving the color in my rainbow, Asri.. its really really beautiful..
    Love you and adore you as always..

    BearHug, D

  2. Mbak De,
    Yes, it's you I'm talking about. Yes, You. You. You. :)
    You might not realize how good you are but I, and all the friends around you always love, adore and respect you for all the way you are. How much we appreciate the goodness in each other is the most beautiful thing in our friendship. And yes, you are the color of my rainbow too. :*
    Love youuu...
    *peyuk besar, A*

  3. 40 hours after the upload... we reach 506 views. *terharuuu...* :)

  4. sekarang udah 1000an mbak, aku bantu promosiin deh. aku suka banget lagunya..

  5. @planetocean: terimakasih banyak ya, sudah membantu promosiin lagu mbak De... Semoga makin banyak yang tahu dan suka. ^_^

  6. Salam. Mba Asri mohon petunjuk, di mana saya bisa membeli album "Color of My Rainbow" - Dewindra. Matur Suwun.