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Gen Z Gets Schooled For Hating On Zainal Abidin’s “Puteri” History

Gen Z Gets Schooled For Hating On Zainal Abidin’s “Puteri” History

Zainal Abidin claimed his spot as a living legend in the music industry; from his time with Headwind to going solo.

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Mention the name Zainal Abidin and most people would immediately think of the song Hijau.

Recently, Zainal spoke about another hit song “Puteri” and its back story.

It was then shared on TikTok in a short clip by Selebriti Online which later led to online arguments between those who were teenagers or adults in the 80s and 90s and the younger generation, possibly born in the late 90s and early 2000s.

@selebritionline Datuk Zainal Abidin berkongsi mengenai kisah lagu "PUTERI".. #SembangEntertainment #MusicOnTrend #fyp #fypシ #fypシ゚viral #fypage #hiburan #entertainment #filem #lokal #selebriti #artis #trendingnewsMalaysia #muzik #konsert #amgras #amgrassoundmeta2pro #honor #honormalaysia #honormagic5pro #ZainalAbidin #DatukZainalAbidin #Puteri #LaguPuteri #concert #music #beritadiTikTok #tiktok #selebritionline ♬ Puteri – Zainal Abidin

Zainal spoke of how he came to record Puteri which was originally an English song called “Hearts Don’t Lie“.

He said Celine Dion had booked the song and wanted to record it but had yet to pay for it.

Enter Zainal who was under Warner Music, which then paid for the rights to use the song.

The song was composed by Andreas Carlsson, the legendary Burt Bacharach and Kristian Lundin.

Malaysian musician Syed Ahmad Faizal Syed Fadzil or more popularly known as Pacai penned the Malay lyrics for Hearts Don’t Lie.

And so it became Puteri.

Zainal said when Dion heard his recording, she called him from Montreal, Canada to express her disappointment that he had taken the song she wanted.

So he told her that Warner had paid for it so the song was now his.

He said they had a slight argument but all was good and they remained friends.

Puteri was released in 2004 in Zainal’s album of the same name.

The song was arranged by Mac Chew.

It boasts a magnificent line-up of musicians, legends in their own right: Chew on guitar, Luke Mason on drums, the late Aji on guitar and Steve Thornton on percussion.

Zainal explained that they were not able to enter Puteri in local music awards such as Muzik Muzik (Anugerah Juara Lagu) because it was not composed by Malaysians.

So what was the argument about?

Some of the younger generation made fun of Zainal when he said there was a tussle for the song between him and Dion.

Enter those who have been familiar with Zainal’s music career since his Headwind days, “educating” the younger generation that Zainal was already going places before they were even conceived.

Headwind fame

Zainal was part of a rock band called Headwind in the late 70s. They even opened for a Uriah Heep concert.

Among their hits are the songs Kita Serupa, Suraya and Hanya Di Radio.

Zainal’s music career

In 1986, at the Golden Kite World Song Festival, Zainal won the award for Talented Young Artist.

In 1991, Zainal who by then had signed under Roslan Aziz Production released his first solo album titled Zainal Abidin in which he departed from the ballad genre to explore World Music.

The album propelled him to further stardom with Hijau, Ikhlas Tapi Jauh and Insaf.

Ikhlas Tapi Jauh took on a life of its own with a concert that was held in 1992 featuring Sheila Majid, Zainal, Afdlin Shauki, Azman Warren, Amir Yusof, Zubir Ali, among others.

When Sheila performed Sinaran in Japan at the Tokyo Music Festival, Zainal played percussion with Chew on keyboard.

In short, Zainal Abidin is a musician of international standing and his story of fighting for “Puteri” with Dion does not sound farfetched to those who are familiar with his music journey.

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