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‘Crazy good’

Indonesian superstar Anggun is so impressed with Jona that the former jokes, ‘Maybe I should retire!’



French-Indonesian singer-songwriter Anggun, who was in Manila recently to accept an award, is open to work with Filipino artists, especially Jona.

Asked when it will happen, she said, “Not soon enough!”



Jona performed at the Asian Television Awards that honoured Anggun with an Outstanding Contribution to Asian Television Performing Arts plum. The Filipina performed “Somewhere Over The Rainbow” and “Queen Of The Night” aria both of which impressed the other Asian artists in the audience and backstage.



“I fell in love with Jona,” Anggun would later confess.

She said Asian talents, including Filipinos, are “really crazy.”

“Especially coming to this country where every 10 meters you stumble upon (good) singers. Tonight I heard Jona singing, my God, I almost feel like.. maybe I should retire,” she quipped, laughing.

She has an amusing theory where all the talent comes from.

“It must be something in the water or something in the mango? I don’t know, what is that?” she said. “Everywhere you go (in the Philippines), even at the hotel lobby? At the airport, when I arrived, there are singers playing live and they’re crazy good.”

She repeated that she’s open to working with Filipino artists. Anggun is also impressed with Lea Salonga.

“She opened up a lot of door for lot of (Asian) artists,” she said of the Broadway star.



“I want them to call me, that (collaboration) would be fun.”

Meanwhile, Anggun admitted she didn’t expect to get the award given to her.

“I mean I’m not doing this job for the award or for anything like it. But it’s always nice to receive such recognition from the business, from the people,” she said. “And again, you know, I’ve been in the music industry for more than 30 years so this is a nice bonus. It’s a nice plus. But truly, my heart always belongs to the fans. I’m always trying to do songs that are timeless, I’m not trying to be trendy. I’m very old-fashioned, an old soul.”

Does she think it’s easier for artists to penetrate the industry few years back? Or now?

“It’s very complicated for artists nowadays or for artists in general, because now we’re no longer talking about physical aspects of an album, we’re talking about streaming,” she explained.

“And you know how everything can be bought, and you know the live streaming form. It’s really difficult when everything is based on how many views or how many clicks, how many streaming — it’s not palpable.”

She believes the music industry is getting more demanding with more artists entering the scene by the dozen everyday.

“It’s more complicated today for the young generation because the competition is so hard. Like every day, how many songs, how many singers, how many collaboration are being released?

“And then your approach to music is very different because you need to, they need to be on top of the game, and they need to be fast to attract your attention. So, it can be through sexuality, it can be through scandals, it can be through anything but not music.”

Anggun loves songs that give her goosebumps and make her want to cry.

“I love songs that are for artists, that have something to say, really,” she said. “People that can change your perspective in life or just inspire you to become a better person, or just become a better human being.”

Anggun shared she’s not been touched that way by any music released lately.

“It’s catchy, they must be a hit or two, but it’s like mini-phenomenal,” she explained. “Like, I don’t know, two weeks after they forget about it? Like fast food — I love Jollibee, by the way — but then you have to eat it on the spot because if you bring it home, it doesn’t have the same taste. So it’s like that, I love home-cooked meal but I also love fast food.

“So I guess there’s everything for everybody, but I like the old-fashioned way of doing things.”

She gives this advice to young artists.

“Sometimes young people, they, forget that it takes a lot of time (to make it),” Anggun said. “(My advice is for them) to always be themselves.”

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