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Wednesday, July 04, 2012

Manunggal Wardaya interviews the founding members of Dara Puspita - Lies Adji Rachman, and Titiek Adji Rachman

(2 above photos (courtesy of Manunggal Waraya) - Titiek Adji Rachman - lead singer/guitarist of Dara Puspita)
(Lies Adji Rachman -rhythm guitarist of Dara Puspita - photo courtesy of Manunggal Waraya)

Anyone who has ever heard the electrified psych sounds of 60s Indonesian girl-group Dara Puspita (flower girls) will be exited to see these recently filmed interviews with Titiek Adji Rachman (lead singer/guitarist) and her sister Lies Adji Rachman ( rhythm guitarist). They were the two original founding members of the group - originally called "Irama Puspita".

Although the interviews are entirely in Bahasa Indonesia (At the beginning of the interview, Lies Adji Rachman says "I'm gonna do this in Bahasa Indonesia not English ok?  thanks..") it's still wonderful to see the wonderful expressions on their faces, and to hear them speak.

The interviews are in the style of a conversation (two Indonesians living in the Netherlands - one a rock legend, and the other a young reporter).  Manunggal K. Wardaya, who lives in the Netherlands, conducted the interviews. He also recently wrote a retrospective article about Dara Puspita for Rolling Stone Indonesia.  He was in close communication with their tour manager, the late Mr Handiyanto, until he passed away this past March.  Apparently Mr. Handiyanto gave him access to hundreds of their photos - photos which have since appeared all over the internet (as well as in the Dara Puspita release by Sublime Frequencies).

(Above: Lies Adji Rachman, second from left, seen on Dara Puspita's debut LP on Mesra records.  Her sister, Titiek, is third from Left.)

Dara Puspita (the flower girls) is one of my all time favorite pop-psych Indonesian groups from the 60s and 70s. They also happen to be nearly everyone else's favorite group - judging by the high prices their original records have sold for. But no wonder.. they were way ahead of their time.. proto-punk one might call them.  And they were excellent musicians... they could sing..  the music was intense, rhythmic, dangerous!! and they were dangerously beautiful.   After becoming hugely popular in their native Indonesia, Dara Puspita went on to do extensive European tours in the 60s and 70s and gathered a huge fan base in France and the Netherlands- where Lies Adji Rachman, and Titiek Adji Rachman live today. 

Filmmaker and Media Scholar Manunggal K. Wardaya had the opportunity to sit down with Lies Adji Rachman and her sister Titiek, and interview them. This was certainly a rare opportunity to capture some of their memories from those colorful days on video.  

Manunggal shared these interviews with me this morning via youtube link. He had told me about the footage last month, but wasn't ready to show them publicly yet.. so I had to wait!  And finally, here they are...   

Thank you to Manunggal K. Wardaya for sharing these excellent interviews.. I'm really glad you're doing this inportant documentary work.

Interview with Lies Adji Rachman (in Bahasa Indonesia) by Manunggal K. Wardaya

Interview with Titiek Adji Rachman (in Bahasa Indonesia) by Manunggal K. Wardaya


At 5:35 PM, Blogger Inca Colors said...

This band is amazing!! Thanks for the introduction!


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