Sheila Majid Biography
Sheila Majid (Shaheila Abdul Majid) is a Malaysian pop musician born on 3rd January 1956 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. She is dubbed as ‘Malaysia’s Queen of Jazz’ due to her musical prowess in Jazz. She is popularly known for her 1986 song, “Sinaran”. She was the first Malaysian artiste to have held overseas concerts in Los Angeles, Tokyo, London and Jakarta.
Her mother is a native Malay with Mandailing ancestry and her father was a Malay of Javanese descent, whose great-grandfather had settled in Malaya after surviving a shipwreck en route to Java from a pilgrimage in Mecca.
Sheila Majid Education Background
She attended schools at Convent Goodshepherd Kindergarten, Methodist Girls Primary School and Methodist Girls Secondary School, all in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Sheila Majid Career
In 1982 during a friend’s birthday party her ex husband heard her sing and signed her. In 1985 she released her debut album ‘Dimensi Baru’. It broke all records then, selling more than 20,000 copies in all.
In 1996 Sheila Majid became the first Malaysian artiste to hold a solo show in London’s West End. She has since released 8 highly successful albums, including the latest album named ‘Boneka’ and held over 40 concerts and showcases around the world.
Sheila Majid Husband
In 1989 Sheila Majid married Rosian Abdul Aziz, a record producer, but they divorced in 1996. They have two children Wan Nur Khaleda (born 1991) and Megat Abdul Majid (born 1993). Wan Nur Khaleda is also a hip hop musician under the stage name of ‘Kayda’.S
In June 2003 she married Hasridz Murshim Hashim Abdullah, a musical director and better known by his pet name Acis. They have a child together, Khadeja Zaireen Murshim.
Sheila Majid Songs
- Cinta Jangan Kau Pergi
- Engkau Laksana Bulan
- Antara Anyir Dan Jakarta
- Ikhlas Tapi Jauh
- Hitam Putih Kehidupan
- Aku Cinta Padamu
- Sinaran Cinta
- Jelingan Manja
- Ku Mohon
- Wajah Rahsia Hati
- Gerimis Semalam
- Tunggu Sekejap
- Inikah Cinta
- Haruskah Ku Pergi
- Pengemis Muda
- Kita Bersama
- Ku Nanti
- Tiru Macam Saya
- You Should Know By Now
- Tua Sebelum Waktunya
- Mengapa Kasih
- Bunyi Gitar
Sheila Majid NEWS
Evergreen singer Datuk Sheila Majid reminisces on her long career and reflects on the state of the music industry, writes Loong Wai Ting
LET’S face it: We have an excess of talented singers and musicians but lack the proper channels to promote them. These days, everyone seems to refer to themselves as “artistes” after appearing in reality-based singing competitions. The truth is, there is much more to being an artiste than good looks and passable talent.
In other words, be prepared to work extremely hard if you want to be heard.
No one knows this better than veteran singer Datuk Sheila Majid, the recipient of the Sri Wirama award (in recognition of her hard work and contribution to the music industry) at the recently concluded Anugerah Industri Muzik 22 (AIM22).
She voices her concern on the decline of the local music industry and offers advice on returning the magic of its heyday.
NURTURE THE YOUNG
For the young new artistes, Sheila says it’s important to give them guidance. “It’s all about nurturing these young up-and-coming talents. We should not abandon them midway through their career,” she says.
“It saddens me that our music industry is being tainted by those reality-based music shows with their unnecessary jokes. Those TV stations never cared about the quality. It’s all about the ratings, not quality” she insists.
Her comments may sound harsh to some, but they are not without some truth in them. “It is not my intention to belittle anyone. It’s just how I feel. Popularity isn’t a bad thing. But you need to have responsibility towards your followers and yourself,” she adds.
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With a career that spans over three decades, the 51-year-old singer, whose real name is Shaheila Abdul Majid, has seen the ups and downs of the music industry.
RECOGNITION OF HER CRAFT
“People tend to forget that music is also a form of art. We need to band together so that the industry will flourish and progress, like how it used to be, if not better. It’s sad to see that we no longer strive for that kind of excellence anymore,” she says.
It is her undying love and passion for the industry that pushes her to strive better, to introduce Malaysia’s best music to the world. And the Sri Wirama award couldn’t have arrived at a better time, as 2016 marks her 32nd year in the music industry.
“The Sri Wirama award means a lot to me. It is also for everyone who has been a part of this amazing journey. Music is a platform to spread good values among the people. It’s our responsibility as an artiste not just to entertain but to educate the people,” she says.
“Well, at least I don’t have to die in order to get this award,” she jokes, before bursting into a laugh.
Humble, sporting and approachable are just some of the many adjectives that fans and friends have used to describe the singer, who is known for hits such as Sinaran, Ku Mohon, Jentayu, Dengarkanlah and Aku Cinta Padamu.
Sheila made headlines after delivering a long but inspiring speech at AIM22 recently.
She says: “It’s not an easy task to stay relevant in this fast-moving industry. Thirty years is a long time. There were times when I almost gave up but decided to go on because I love music. It takes a lot of discipline, dedication and sacrifice to stay relevant in the industry.”
For Sheila, making a career out of music was not what she had initially intended.
Singing was just a passionate hobby for her then. It all started while she was waiting for her Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia results. “My dad, who always inculcated in us the importance of a good education, eventually saw that I could make a living out of singing. He later gave his consent for me to pursue what I loved to do, which was music. If it weren’t for his blessings, I wouldn’t be here today,” says Sheila.
But it was that undying passion that she attributes to being part of her ongoing success. “I’ve always believed that if you have a passion for something, you will definitely excel. Because only you know best what you want. If you love something so much, you will find ways to do it and get better,” she says, giving an example of a chef who continuously works on his recipe.
Sheila was extremely popular in the 1990s. Arguably considered the best decade for the Malaysian music industry, Sheila made the nation proud when her second album Emosi (1986) successfully penetrated the hard-to-break-through Indonesian market.
In 1987, three years after her official debut, the aspiring Kuala Lumpur-born singer went on to win the prestigious BASF Award (presently known as Anugerah Musik Indonesia or AMI) for Best Female Artiste in the R&B category, making her the first non-Indonesian to win the prestigious award.
With her newfound success in Indonesia, she embarked on a nationwide tour which was met with overwhelming response. By 1988, with her album Warna going multi-platinum, Sheila broke sales records both at home and abroad.
In 1989, she won America’s International Star Search Award for Best Female Vocalist, and performed at the Tokyo Music Festival.
A year later, she was the first Malaysian artiste to break into the Japanese market with her albums Emosi and Warna. Sheila was also the first Malaysian artiste to stage a solo show in London’s West End, at the Royalty Theatre, in 1996.
FANS FROM ACROSS THE BOARD
Sheila made an indelible impression in Malaysia. With her soothing vocals, catchy lyrics and moving melodies, her songs broke all racial and age barriers, making her a household name. In a poll by the New Straits Times, Sheila won Best Female Artiste category for three consecutive years from 1987.
In 1996, she was awarded the AIM Anugerah Kembara. The following year, she became one of the biggest winners at the AIM, taking home Best Female Vocal Performance for Ratu, AIM Best Female Vocal Performance for Bersatu Hati and AIM Best Pop Album for Ratu.
In 2000, she once again created history for being the first local artiste to perform at the Dewan Filharmonik Petronas for two consecutive nights. The sold-out concerts were held in conjunction with her 15th year in the music industry.
Among the personalities who were at her show were Yang di-Pertuan Agong Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz Shah and Raja Permaisuri Agong Siti Aishah.
Just recently, she concluded her 30th anniversary concert series, with shows in Singapore, Jakarta and Bandung in Indonesia.
Three decades on and she still shows no sign of slowing down. The youngest of eight siblings, Sheila, also known as the Queen of Jazz due to her jazz and R&B-flavoured pop music, will work on a new album next year.
“A lot of the details are still under wraps but I am in the midst of looking to work with the right people. I am also looking at some songs, which will be included in the new album,” she says. “I’ll be so busy preparing for the album that I don’t think I’ll even have time to prepare for any concerts in Kuala Lumpur,” she adds.
Although Sheila has enjoyed tremendous success throughout her career, life, at home is quite normal. “I don’t expect my kids to have straight As in their exams. For me, that doesn’t work anymore. You can have straight As but if you don’t have the right character, you’re nothing. In the old days, if people don’t behave, we’ll say that the person lacks proper education.
“These days, even educated people can behave badly,” she shares.
She also adds that the number of As obtained does not determine who you are as a person. “If you have kids at home, build their character. Pay close attention to their interests and nurture these,” she says.
EARNING HER PLACE
On music, Sheila hopes that the same point applies to the younger artistes as well. “We need to set a benchmark so that the young artistes will know what to do to get to the top,” she says.
And she has some advice for the Press as well. “The Press plays an important role in ensuring that only those who are really qualified will get exposure. These young and up-and-coming artistes must know what it takes to be featured in a newspaper. In the old days, we needed to work extremely hard to earn our place. If we really want the best for the music industry, then it’s time we work together,” she says.
What was her most unforgettable moment in the industry? She takes a while to reflect. “There are just so many highlights. But if I were to choose one, that has got to be the time when I left RAP (Roslan Aziz Productions). I was feeling all alone. I was like a little duck being thrown into the water and I had to learn to swim, fast. That was a tough time and I had to constantly tell myself that I have got this,” she reminisces.
And then she decided to craft an album all by herself. The album was Ku Mohon (1999).
“I was being criticised left and right. At one point, I felt like quitting. But I also had the unwavering support of my fans and the Press,” she says.
She then adds: “Some said that my album was bad and that it was not up to standards… all these even before the album was out. As it turns out, Ku Mohon became one of the best albums I’ve ever released. Whatever insecurities I had before, well, that went out the window,” she says, with a laugh.
Ku Mohon went on to win two major awards at the AIM in 2000 for Best Pop Album and Song Of The Year.
Another important lesson that she has learnt is in knowing when to put her foot down. “Sometimes, people say things just to hurt you. The problem lies in our industry, we don’t have qualified people to judge your work. It’s just like when an architect is designing your home, naturally you’ll want to know what’s best for your house.
“Similarly, we need to have more qualified people like the panel of judges on AIM to judge our work. Again, Sri Wirama is not just any ‘popularity’ award. A lot of blood, sweat and tears goes into it,” she concludes.