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Start ’em young: 7yo M’sian metal guitarist riffing his way into the spotlight

Start ’em young: 7yo M’sian metal guitarist riffing his way into the spotlight

Do you remember what you wanted to be as a kid?

7-year-old Muhammad Alman bin Muhammad Najmi (or Alman for short) dreams to become a respectable metal guitarist, and he has already started paving his way to stardom! 

We had the privilege to interview Alman’s mom, Dhiya Izwin Zainal Abidin, who also happened to be an alumna of ICOM (International College of Music).

Alman started showing interest in beats and melodies ever since he was a baby. Other babies have a security blanket or a plushie, but Alman had a Xylophone stick he couldn’t live without. 

At age 3, he started imitating metal drummers (especially Emy from Massacre Conspiracy) on his toy drum set.

Photo credits to Pixoraphoto

According to Izwin, Alman’s interest in guitars started when he was 6 years old. He couldn’t stretch his fingers wide enough back then, so he got annoyed and started finding ways to play the guitar.

Alman listened to a few metal bands and discovered drop tuning (the lower the better, according to him). He experimented with different tunings until he was happy. Eventually, he started composing riffs and got into songwriting.

Undeniably, Alman’s interest in music sprouted from the fact that both his parents are musicians.

Our house is filled with music. From oldies to R&B, nursery rhymes to rock and metal, etc. His grandparents are also very musically-inclined. His TokWan (grandfather) is a guitar collector so visiting our hometown feels like visiting “Guitar wonderland” for Alman.

Dhiya Izwin via TRP

When Alman was three, he hummed a tune that inspired this adorable collaboration with his Abah (dad):

For every Asian parent, education comes first no matter what. Alman’s parents ensure that he balances between school and pursuing his passion well.

So far, Alman’s been doing well in school. We always tell Alman to finish his school work first before playing the guitar, because he can spend hours on music! So nowadays, he makes sure to finish everything in school and not bring home any homework so he can just enjoy his guitar-time at home.

Dhiya Izwin via TRP

As a mother, Izwin personally feels that it’s important for parents to acknowledge and support their child’s interest and talent early on.

Pay attention and support them, whatever their passion may be. A good support system goes a long way. You never know how far they can go. Plus, when it comes to passion, we have to look at it as an outlet – to explore creativity, for emotional stability and even mental strength.

It’s very important to release all those energy and feelings, you know? Today and especially in the future, we need more skilled and innovative individuals in every industry. It’s time we celebrate quirkiness and support the creatives!

Dhiya Izwin via TRP

Photo credits to Pixoraphoto

You can check out more of Alman here and if you’re interested, his debut album is on sale too!

Do you know any other Malaysian child prodigies we’ve yet to discover? Let us know on our Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

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