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Gitarku: Hidupku, Kekasihku
28.12.2007 08:57 AM
Features December 23, 2007 Today's Frontpage DEWA BUDJANA JP/{P.J. Leo -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Gigi guitarist pays tribute to his 'girlfriends' Sri Ramadhani, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta Jazz-pop guitarist I Dewa Gede Budjana launched on Dec. 7 at Gedung Kesenian in Jakarta his book titled Gitarku: Hidupku, Kekasihku (My Guitar: My Life, My Girlfriend). The 44-year-old played a selection of his solo works at the event, swapping instruments -- the drums, guitar, suling (traditional flute) gendang (traditional drum), bass, keyboard and piano -- to produce a colorful variety of sounds. At one stage, Budjana accompanied a recording of his grandmother's voice, performing against a vibrant backdrop of images of Bali. "Through this book, I wanted to share with others my experiences. Hopefully it can serve as an inspiration for local musicians," said Budjana, who was formerly a member of bands Spirit (1989-1992) and Java Jazz (1993-1994). "My idea (for the book) came from the questions people posted on my website, dewabudjana.com. People often ask me for tech advice -- how to make their own tabs of guitar chords or the types of amplifiers I use in my shows. That type of thing. "I wasn't interested in writing my life story but in helping people make music," Budjana said. Gitarku: Hidupku, Kekasihku, which he wrote with Rosi Simamora, is published by PT Granmedia. The first page of the book contains a photograph of a page from the diary of Budjana's Balinese father, I Dewa Nyoman Astawa. The diary entry records the birth of Budjana. In old fashioned writing, Astawa has noted down the baby's weight (3.18 kilograms) and the nurse who assisted with the delivery. Born in Waikabukak, West Sumba, on Aug. 30, 1963, Budjana rose to fame as the guitarist of pop-rock group GIGI, which was formed in 1994. The band has released 16 albums in total and is still going strong. "From the beginning, we were serious about music. I think all the members of GIGI have displayed hard work, patience and perseverance," Budjana said. "This is also an open-minded band." Budjana always has time for his friends, including the four other members of GIGI. On the night of the book launch, Budjana asked them to join him on the stage. One of his best friends is Indra Lesmana, the son of legendary jazz musician Jack Lesmana. The two wrote a soundtrack together, which they performed that night. In Gitarku: Hidupku, Kekasihku, Budjana writes about the making of the GIGI album, 2 x 2, in 1997. He said he suffered many sleepless nights writing the melodies of Cry Baby and Mereka. His fourth solo album, Home (2005) -- which he made with the assistance of Peter Erskine from legendary jazz-fusion group Weather Report -- is a response to the shock of the 2005 tsunami. Besides Home, Budjana has released solo albums Samsara (2003), Gitarku (2000) and Nusa Damai (1997), and religious music albums Nyanyian Dharma (1998) and Nyanyian Dharma 2 (2006) . Budjana married Putu Borrawati in Klungkung, Bali, in 2003. His book is dedicated to his 3-year-old son, Mahavishnu Devananda, and wife, who is three months pregnant. Budjana, who enjoys life, and a good laugh, said he named his book Gitarku: Hidupku, Kekasihku after his 22 guitars -- his girlfriends. "I have too many guitars to call them my wives," he said. Budjana's collection includes rare items like the Parker Fly Delux and the Klein electric guitar. GIGI will perform in Jakarta on Jan. 11, but Budjana is also staying focused on his solo career. "To perform solo concerts in cities around the country is my next target," he said.

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