Did you hear? Our very own homegrown artist Yonnyboii (full name Muhammad Haqeem Nuriman Nor Azrin) was featured on a soundtrack for the Disney blockbuster movie “Raya and The Last Dragon”. He’s not the only one who took part in this project, as he joined forces with 3 other talented artistes across South East Asia.
Born in Kajang and raised in Setapak, the all-round entertainer has been active in producing and composing songs since he was 13 years old! He gained nationwide fame thanks to his 2019 hit single “Sakit”, along with Zynakal. He has also collaborated with many renowned singers such as Dayang Nurfaizah, Faizal Tahir, Caprice, Azlan & The Typewriter, just to name a few.
Speaking of the “Raya and The Last Dragon” OST, the single, titled “Trust Again”, contains various ethnic musical instruments from South East Asia such as the the Sabahan bungkau, the angklung, the Sundanese flute and also the gamelan. The mastering for the song was done by Grammy Award winner Chris Athens.
For those interested, check out our exclusive chat with Yonny where he spoke to us about the global project and also what he’s been up to so far.
1. You’ve made Malaysia proud with your involvement in the soundtrack for the movie “Raya and The Last Dragon” titled “Trust Again”, how did this project come about?
It came out of nowhere cause I was also surprised that they actually picked me to do the honours in rapping and writing the song – Totally a ‘durian runtuh’ moment!
2. What did you enjoy best about the animation?
The movie was amazing and I loved it a lot. It was quite emotional and had lots of good moral lessons in it.
3. What was it like being involved with 3 other talented acts from SEA, namely Raisa (Indonesia), Matthaius (Philippines) & Sprite (Thailand)?
Very dope and interesting because each country had its own aesthetic and culture to show.
4. Do you know any of them personally? Have y’all been able to connect virtually?
We did, through Instagram direct messages (DMs). We chatted here and there, but I do hope we can collaborate on another track soon.
5. We understand that you weren’t in your “best condition” while recording for the song, could you explain more on that?
Well it was sad that we couldn’t actually be in person together at the studio to connect with each other and the producers but the end result killed it!
6. How has your Ramadan experience been this year?
Ramadan has been fine – Nothing out of the ordinary (Same as last year) but I’m hoping it’ll be better this year.
7. What’s your favourite Raya memory? Can you share something interesting about it?
Well, the one that I remember the most would be when a firecracker was accidentally shot in my direction and it hit my face! I had to lay in bed for quite awhile, but at the same time, I got to laze around and just enjoy the moment.
8. What else is in store for 2021? Are you working with any artists or an album at the moment?
I’ll be putting out an album soon but everything else is a secret for now so you guys have to stay tuned to my socials for any teasers.
9. You mentioned previously that you’d like to collaborate with Yuna. What’s your favourite song from her? Why do you find her inspiring?
I discovered Yuna from listening to “Dan Sebenarnya” and “Terukir Di Bintang”, which were being played like crazy on the radio back then. During those times, I remember not being able to Google the lyrics so I would write the lyrics on my book if I had the chance. Plus, I had to wait for the song to come on the radio again to continue writing the lyrics.
10. As we all know, mental health is very important. How have you been handling your own issues during MCO?
I’ve been trying to keep myself from negativity while trying to make the best out of everything. I’m really trying hard to also push my stuff out there despite the MCO period.
11. What is your go-to when you’re feeling sad?
When I’m sad, I’ll usually just lock myself in the studio in order to have more time to myself and just chill out.
12. What’s the biggest lesson you have learnt last year?
Loving myself. When I look back, I thought I knew what that meant but in fact, I was just putting myself through pressure. I didn’t really enjoy myself like I was supposed to – I couldn’t even motivate myself to push myself. But last year taught me everything I needed to know about loving myself.
13. Did you pick up any new set of skills?
I learnt how to talk while maintaining eye contact with someone – Which is something my old self would have avoided.
Watch the full MV for “Trust Again” here: