September 19, 2009


I would like to wish all my Muslim friends, blog readers/visitors and relatives "SELAMAT HARI RAYA AIDIL FITRI". May you all have safe journeys to and fro wherever you may go and may you be blessed with meaningful moments with your loved ones.

September 17, 2009


This evening, my heart sank when I read the news in New York Times HERE that Mary Travers of the famous 1960's trip Peter, Paul and Mary died at the age of 72 in Danbury Hospital in Connecticut. Their songs were very much a part of my childhood in the 1960's.

According to Wikipedia,

The group was created and managed by Albert Grossman, who sought to create a folk "supergroup" by bringing together "a tall blonde (Mary Travers), a funny guy (Paul Stookey), and a good looking guy (Peter Yarrow)". He launched the group in 1961, booking them into the The Bitter End, a coffee house and popular folk venue in New York City's Greenwich Village. They recorded their first album, Peter, Paul and Mary, the following year. It included "500 Miles", "Lemon Tree", and the Pete Seeger hit tunes "If I Had a Hammer" (subtitled "(The Hammer Song)") and "Where Have All the Flowers Gone?". The album was listed on the Billboard Magazine Top Ten list for ten months and in the Top One Hundred for over three years.

The group made its television debut in either 1961 or 1962 on the PM East/PM West talk show hosted by Mike Wallace and Joyce Davidson, though neither audio nor video footage has yet been found. By 1963, Peter, Paul and Mary had recorded three albums. All three were in the Top ten the week of President Kennedy's assassination.

That year, the group also released "Puff the Magic Dragon", which Yarrow and fellow Cornell student Leonard Lipton had written in 1959, and performed "If I Had a Hammer" at the 1963 March on Washington, best remembered for Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr.'s "I Have a Dream" speech. One of their biggest hit singles was the Bob Dylan song "Blowin' in the Wind. They also sang other Bob Dylan songs, such as: "The Times They Are a-Changin'"; "Don't Think Twice, it's Alright"; and "When the Ship Comes In".

Peter, Paul and Mary Pictures, Images and Photos

"Leaving On A Jet Plane" became their only #1 hit (as well as their final Top 40 hit) in December 1969, and was written by John Denver (who already had some success with The Mitchell Trio [replacing Chad Mitchell]), and first appeared on their Album 1700 in 1967. "Day Is Done", a #21 hit in June 1969, was the last Hot 100 hit that the trio recorded.

The trio broke up in 1970 to pursue solo careers, but found little of the success which they had experienced as a group--although Stookey's "The Wedding Song (There is Love)" (written for Yarrow's marriage to Marybeth McCarthy, the niece of senator Eugene McCarthy) was a hit and has become a wedding standard since its 1971 release.

Peter Paul and Mary Pictures, Images and Photos
In 1978, they reunited for a concert to protest nuclear energy, and have recorded albums together and toured since. They currently play around 45 shows a year.[1]

The group was inducted into the Vocal Group Hall of Fame in 1999.

The trio became political activists for their commitment to peace in Central America and for supporting musically and personally the peace and social justice movement in America. They were awarded the Peace Abbey Courage of Conscience on September 1, 1990.

peter, paul, mary Pictures, Images and Photos

In 2004, Travers was diagnosed with leukemia, leading to the cancellation of the remaining tour dates for that year. She received a bone marrow transplant. She and the rest of the trio resumed their concert tour on December 9, 2005 with a holiday performance at Carnegie Hall.

Peter, Paul and Mary received the Sammy Cahn Lifetime Achievement Award from Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2006.

Peter, Paul and Mary - In These Times Pictures, Images and Photos

The trio sang in Mitchell, South Dakota, for the George and Eleanor McGovern Library and Center for Leadership dedication concert on October 5, 2006.

The trio canceled several dates of their summer 2007 tour, as Mary took longer than expected to recover from back surgery and later had to undergo a second surgery, further postponing the tour.[1]

This LINK HERE is the official website of Peter, Paul and Mary.

This LINK OVER HERE will lead you to the New York Times write-up about her death and other tributes.

For YAHOO NEWS about her death, please CLICK HERE.

Thank you Mary Travers for the many years of music you gave to us. Thanks for singing with so much feeling, conviction and power. Rest in peace, dear Mary Travers.

The following version of "Where have all the flowers gone?" was sung 2 years ago and I can see that with the passing years, they sang with even more depth of emotion - so much that I was moved to tears the first time I heard it...The harmony is different and the accompaniment as magical as their voices - simple, melodious and purposeful plucking of the guitar strings, elegantly executed...Look at their eyes when they were singing this song - deep pools of feelings mirrored in the eyes of their fans who were just as awed by the meaning of the lyrics being sung in the hall and it was obvious that the crowd were just mesmerized by their vocals. Astounding performance with a moving response from the audience. I will miss you, Mary Travers.

September 15, 2009


I refer to "Good life turns sour for apartment owners" in Malaysiakini.

I felt sad reading about the plight the people are in through no fault of their own.

Segi Objective (M) Sdn Bhd. and Vibrant Leisure Sdn Bhd. are both 100%-owned subsidiaries of MK Land Holdings Bhd.

Isn't it the responsibility of MK Land Holdings Bhd. to ensure that its subsidiaries fulfil all obligations to their customers?

In the event the subsidiaries cannot fulfil those obligations, doesn't the parent corporation, in this case MK Land Holdings Bhd., have to make full restitution to the customers, such as a full refund of all monies paid, with interest, so as to make it as though the customer never had any dealings with the subsidiaries?

Shouldn't the parent corporation also pay any legal fees involved and compensate the customers for the time they wasted?

My opinion is that a corporation cannot disclaim responsibility for the acts or promises or statements of its subsidiaries or employees.

I also think that MK Land Holdings Bhd. should sort out the mess caused by its subsidiaries if Mustapha Kamal (the MK behind MK Land) wishes to maintain his good name and the good reputation of MK Land for social responsibility.

My suggestions to avoid a repeat of problems with a developer:

The developer have to set up a Trust Fund to fulfil any future obligations OR require all developers pay into an insurance pool that will compensate buyers AND require that developers obtain funds from banks, not buyers, to build projects AND the banks carefully assess the developers before providing a loan. The insurance company will also have to be careful that only capable developers can be part of the pool.

Build quality should also be paramount. Contractors should employ specialists, a carpenter to to do carpentry, a roofer to do roofs, an electrician to do wiring, etc. rather than employing people who are a "jack of all trades" and do nothing well except mucking things up.

Government can help by licensing trained tradespeople, e.g. plumbers and electricians and ensuring they do only tasks they are licensed for. The handbills stuffed in letterboxes saying "We are specialized in" and then listing 10 or more things should become a thing of the past as Malaysia develops.

To provide trained tradespeople vocational colleges will be needed.

The Education Ministry can assist by ensuring there are sufficient places in the vocational colleges for the electricians, auto mechanics, etc.

See how the construction industry and Education Ministry are linked?

Everything is linked in modern societies.

To become a fully developed nation Malaysia has to develop all types of links within society, education, industry, government, social services, agriculture, to name a few.

written by Pakac Luteb