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All pictures as displayed in the slideshow above are taken and edited by Tania Fiza Rozlan. Copyright reserved TFR 2012.
All original songs on this blog are written by Tania Fiza Rozlan. Copyright reserved TFR 2012.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Walking down Memory Lane

Who I used to be, what I dreamt to be...

Everyone would have had a time like this, a time of wanting, a time of dreaming, a time of passion, a time of believing...

I remember I was 4 and my mom urged me to take piano lessons. I didn't know I had the skill, the talent but she probably did. I didn't have confidence thus going to piano classes were a pain at first. Mr & Mrs Choo implemented a strict regime of having to practise, practise, practise! You even have to record all of your practise sessions at home to proof that you have been practising! Then piano playing had to stop at 14 mainly because adolescence kicked in and life at MRSMs began. It was then I realized how much I missed my piano. To compensate, I picked up the knack of playing the guitar instead. Thanks guys for smuggling in a guitar for me ;p Never really knew how to play but I learnt mostly from hearing and from my piano knowledge. The composing ability slowly developed when I turned 15 but my first few songs were a bunch of crap! Haha! Hey I'm professional and I admit it. But progression is the key and through time, the flair of writing strengthened. Reading novels such as Dragonlance and Magic boosted my poetry and before I knew it, I was writing more and more good, straight-from-the-heart kinda songs.

At 17, I had the opportunity to learn the drums. My teacher was cool but I can't remember his name. He played back ups and for clubs. He said I got the gift but that alone is not enough, which is true. I lacked confidence and presence. From the drumming classes, an unknown underground wannabe band came up to me, proposing me to be their drummer. As much as I like playing the drums, I only learn it to help enhance my composing and music arranging skills. So I had to say no. Plus they were never interested in my songs anyway!

College years were the best though. My dad bought me a KORG Trinity. It's not just a keyboard, it's
a music workstation where you can do music programming and arrangement. Loooove to bits my KORG and of course my songwriting skill heightened quite considerably. Damn, it was cool! I'm tellin ya, the difference of just writing a piece of music with the guitar or piano and with actually composing the whole music arrangements, adding the drums, bass, strings and even back up vocals, is just a whole new level of satisfaction, knowing that you did all those by yourself. It was the 90s at that time and getting hold of music softwares and having a good computer were a bit of a luxury. So it was just me and my little recordable hi-fi, KORG, guitars, a cheapy microphone and my little song book, spending hours and hours in my tiny little room back home.

'Little Things In Life', 'Dreams' and 'Just Another Day' were selected as my so-called demo songs for my demotape. They were catchy I thought and good enough to present myself. From this one demotape, I managed to crawl up another level in the music industry. In a nutshell, I got to meet Jason Lo, Afdlin Shauki, a music talent manager from Synchrosound Studio, AP from AP Productions, whom she along with Opie Zami recorded my first music video (which was piled under the dust and never saw the light of day!) and Hilary Ang from Search who became my guitar teacher for a short while. My demo also managed to get me a phone call from Paul Moss, the A&R Director of Positive Tone Records (he was not as popular as today at that time). He said he was planning to do a girl band, thought my voice sounded good and was considering me to be one of the members. I reckon the idea of a girl band probably went into the bin cause I never heard from him since!

The music industry is a tough, demanding industry and not many people are willing to hold your hand and show you the rest of the steps. In fact if you are not careful, you might loose your grip and fall off. There were good and bad experiences which I care not to elaborate. A bit of luck came upon me when I signed the contract with Warner Music just to make sure I have some sort of copyright to my songs although I was merely an invisible doll in the company. It was more like an umbrella for me to shade myself for a while.

But I still had dreams. I still wanted to ensue my fervour and I was dedicated to it. I performed and I entered competitions. But because I write English songs and I was influenced by the rock
alternative genre, the journey to recognition was a daunting one. It was the era of Siti Nurhalizas and those similar. The other option I got was to go indie i.e. independent as what the Hanson brothers would say, and evolve myself in the underground world or something!

After all this, you'll probably thought there is a happy ending to this. Well, sadly no. It's still is a happy ending as such but not in terms of my musical aspect of life. A big 'The End' sign had to be rectified in my head after I had to further my bloody accounting studies here (all other majors apart from music was never my choice at that time!). I stopped playing, stopped writing, stopped composing, stopped everything. Even my other significant artistry hobbies i.e. poetry writing and drawing were called to a stop. Slowly but surely the once so real passionate dreams seemed to fade away. But the love is there still. It is just a part of me which I can never get rid of. To make things worse, just after I got hitched, Roslan Aziz rang my dad to see if I'm still up for it cause he wanted to give me a shot. Talk about being star-crossed!

A br
ief moment with my bro recording his song 'It's My Life' which I co-wrote at a studio was so so cherishable and he later went to make a really supernice music video out of it. I sang the girl's part but I didn't take part in the video. I wasn't even there cause I'm so far away here! He performed many a times with this song with my vocal at the back which was cool. Thanks bro!

'It's My Life - Ilsa feat. Tania' music video courtesy of
Lucid Studio (

Even though music dreams dispersed and dissolved into thin air, music also brought me joy and happiness in the non-musical life of mine. Through music I met my used-to-be-bass-player-wannabe-soulmate and that's a whole different side of story to tell if I ever have the time to write ;p It is fated by God and only He knows what we do and don't know.

All and all, the journey was a treasured one and somehow has sculptured my life, partly potraying myself of who I was and who I am today. Special thanks
to families who are forever supportive, good friends who stood by through all the jamming sessions, concerts & gigs watching, etc.(you know who you are!), my loyal roommie whom I dragged everywhere I go and had to listen to my singing 24/7 (haha!) and of course to my ex-manager who was always there through thick and thin. In summary, I have written over 50 songs (including those crappy ones!), I have performed, I have acted, I drew, I do poetry, still and now I blog woohoo! I thank God for even letting me feel a taste of these wonderful talents. Alhamdulillah.

A quote from my dad which I would like to share,

"Teach ourselves to ponder and contemplate more to see better things, not to
see ugliness"

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