FROM composing songs and music in his home recording studio in Kampung Duras, popular Bidayuh musician Donny Christy has switched to hairstyling and become the first Bidayuh to own a barber shop in Siburan near Kuching.
The father of four opened the barber shop at the Mile 17 bazaar with two other musician buddies a month ago.
“We’re the first Bidayuh to do this here and so far, the response has been good as most already knew us as musicians and singers,” the 43-year-old said of his new business venture.
Despite owning a hairstyling business with his partners, Donny said music would always be important to him.
He formed a five-member band – TruForce Band – with his friends in 2015.
“We’re really honoured as musicians and TruForce members to have won an award in the Anugerah Lagu Bidayuh with our song titled ‘Memori Bisamah’ in 2016,” he said.
Donny told thesundaypost although he was now singing part time and composing songs and music as a hobby, promoting Bidayuh songs had always been close to his heart.
“A few years ago, Bidayuh songs had never been given any air time by the radio stations but now, it’s a bit okay. Bidayuh Biatah songs and music especially are very seldom heard and I want to help promote them,” he said.
However, TruForce’s own popular compositions such as ‘Kuu Darum Atinku’, ‘Kaus Kuu’, ‘Joget Anih Shah’, ‘Pinyirindu Di Kuu’, and of course ‘Memori Bisamah’ have gotten quite a lot of airtime.
Producer and arranger
While Donny has produced and arranged the songs and music for all the TruForce numbers, he has also been approached by other singers and bands to compose for them.
“Sometimes popular Iban singers, such as Marjorie Albert and Connie Francis, and popular Bidayuh bands, such as Snipers and Band Musika, request me to write songs and music for them. I do this in my recording studio I opened two years ago,” he said.
Donny’s 16-year-old son is following in his footsteps and has joined the band as a drummer.
“I taught my four children how to play the guitar and drums since they were very young. It’s a bit easier with the boys as they show more interest in music,” he said.
“I want my son to become a member of TruForce so that when I retire, he can take over.”
This talented musician, business owner and father is taking all in stride as he strives to popularise Bidayuh on the local music scene.