Tue, 09 Aug 1994

Lost pearl

From Kompas

My name is Agus Muhadi and I am now 64 years old. I feel morally obliged to express something that has long occupied my mind. I was watching Vina Panduwinata singing the song Mutiara yang Hilang (The Lost Pearl) on TPI television to welcome the New Year 1994.

This song, both music and lyrics, was composed by me. I composed the song in Denpasar, Bali, in 1957 when I was still a 27-year-old bachelor. Actually the lyrics reflect my own life. In the same year, I sent the song through the Denpasar Post Office to a magazine in Jakarta which published songs. My song was sung by Ni Luh Putu Priyatni and was broadcasted by Radio Republik Indonesia in Denpasar to the accompaniment of piano arrangement.

Until 1960, when I was still living in Denpasar, I had never heard of what happened to my song. It was not returned to me.

In 1970, when I lived in Surakarta, Central Java, I was surprised to hear Ernie Djohan sing the song Mutiara yang Hilang. I was confident that the song was the one I sent to the magazine in Jakarta. But why was other person written on the album as the composer of the song instead of me? I was faced with a dilemma. I wanted to protest against the piracy but did not have the original copy to prove my claim. Besides, my wife always stood in my way as she was ashamed it would only reveal my past life. But if I kept silent, untruths would prevail in our musical domain.

Nevertheless, I believe nobody knows what I meant by "mutiara" (pearl) in the song. Many people would think of a "loved one." But it actually symbolized my emotion of a "love" that was lost after I had to break off a relation with a woman I loved so. Later I salvaged my emotions and tried to put it into my song.


Pasuruan, East Java