Velvet Aduk, Alena Murang unite for new song ‘Bejugit Betanda Menari’

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Alena (right) and Violet are seen while shooting the video for ‘Bejugit Betanda Menari’ in Kuching.

KUCHING (May 29): Sabahan singer songwriter Velvet Aduk and Sarawak sape songstress Alena Murang have joined forces to release a new song titled ‘Bejugit Betanda Menari’ (Dance Dance Dance) for Gawai.

Alena said the upbeat track with a catchy rhythm is guaranteed to get everyone in the Gawai mood across the island of Borneo.

With lyrics in Iban and Bahasa Malaysia, the song is their first collaboration as a duo.

“We’ve been planning to write a song together and this year’s Gawai seemed like the right time. The song is about gathering for the celebration and having a good time laughing, chatting, and dancing,” Alena said in a press release.

The song’s music video was released on major digital platforms yesterday.

Alena said those listening closely to the song will also hear some subtle Bahasa Dusun lyrics, a nod to Velvet’s heritage.

Velvet said they had a lot of fun writing the song together.

“And we hope that listeners will enjoy it. We would like to wish Gayu Guru Gerai Nyamai to all those who celebrate,” she said.

Velvet has been in the Malaysian music industry for 18 years, first gaining recognition as a finalist on Akademi Fantasia 4 in 2006.

Known for her unique blend of contemporary music with Borneo traditional sounds, she has since created numerous local hits, including the popular ’Sumandak Sabah’, which has garnered over 18 million views on YouTube.

In 2023, Velvet debuted her first English album called ‘Darkest Knight’, which featured 14 songs.

This year she was named Carta Lagu Artis Sabah (CLAS) ke-15 winner and won the Best Vocal award for her self-written song ‘Mungkin Ini Bukan Sayang?’.

Alena sings in the endangered Kenyah and Kelabit languages and is the first woman to professionally play the lute instrument of the highland tribes of Borneo.

She is from the Kelabit community, one of the smallest tribes of the island, and picked up the sape when she was 10 years old.

Standing in the intersection of the past and the present, Alena’s songs are the crossroads of traditional and contemporary spheres.

She sees herself first as a storyteller and expresses herself and her generation not only through music but also through video production, which is apparent in her music videos ‘Midang Midang’ and Warrior Spirit’.