Thursday, September 25, 2008

Peti Nyanyi @ Gramophone


Folks this is a story of a dream come true. It sort of a back to the future story like in the movie. It is about this amazing machine that came into my life at an early age. It is about what we folks at that time call the Peti Nyanyi as seen in the image above. A direct translation into English of Peti Nyanyi would be the Singing Chest/Box. I first got introduced to this fascinating machine was when I was growing up in the forties. I believe I was then just ten years old when my dad brought home a gramophone. The one he bought is a huge one unlike the one shown in the image above. It is sort of a combination, a huge cupboard with the gramophone mounted on the top. Below it there are spaces to store the vinyl records. To get to the gramophone and wind it up to get the machine working, I had to climb on a high stool. To me at that time it is a wonder machine that could nyanyi or make sound of our favorites song especially of P.Ramlee, Saloma and Normadiah. And the English numbers as well. With this instrument it sort of changes my life and I began to appreciate music and good song. Friends would come over to our house and we all would sing along and enjoy like all kids do. If fact it is the only such machine in our neighborhood and we are indeed proud to own one of the latest technology at that time.

I have been trying to get one of these classic machines and every time I saw one the price has gone up. Anyway I told a nephew of mine who sell antique to look around for a good one and get one for me. Just before leaving for the US in May this year, that nephew of mine call and said that he got one for me and since he live in Kuantan, I told him to keep it and that I would come over and get it. Busy with things in KL I did not get the opportunity to get to Kuantan and take the machine. He call last week and said that he would be coming to KL and would bring the machine along. I was delighted. So last Sunday I got this wonderful Peti Nyanyi. Without much ado I put a piece of my old vinyl record and play an old song by non other then the famous P.Ramlee.

That evening our grand kids came and saw this machine which they say they saw in the cartoon movies. Wow! They all shouted, is it the real one. Grandpa where did you get this and all the other questions that came when they see something new. I gave them a short explanation of what the machine do and how does it works. They all were excited in trying to wind up the machine, giving it power to play a few records. I could see the joy in them seeing this out of their world music machine, so unlike their iPod and the computer that they are used to. Even their mom and dad and auntie were as excited. It is a sort of a back to the future, taking them back to the time of my childhood. A time that darkness was brighten up by the oil lamp and the only music we hear are those that are made by the cricket, bird and insects. There was no noise population thus you could hear the flow of water in nearby stream and from time to time enjoy the platter of rain drops on the thatch roof. And then this machine came, the noise pollution made it beginning and introduce new cultural element on the music front. Indeed a beginning of a revolution of sorts; the invention of the music/songs/talking machine that became the wonder of the modern world. It is a wonderful experience that made me love music.

I am glad that my generation got to see the first music machine and along the way saw the coming of the Radio and TV and now the iPod/MP3 and other electronic gadgets. Indeed a wonderful journey with fun all the way. Folks of my generation would agree with me that indeed we are a lucky generation that got to seen these developments during our live spans. What a wonderful world we live in. With this gramophone in my living room it completes my mission of getting this piece of history. My own classic Peti Nyani. A perfect birthday gift on my sixty ninth birthday.

Folks have a nice day.

23 comments:

Berisman said...

Wow,congratulations young man!I envy you Pak Idrus.I do remember dok pusing benda ni.Happy 69th birthday:-)

--Adib

Akmal said...

Pak Idrus,
Music played a pretty big part of your life, I see? I read the physics of gramophone for my secondary school physic project, and highly captivated by it. The needle 'reads' the surface of the disc and the vibrating sound acoustically amplified by the phone. Though I haven't had life experience with this machine, I'm pretty sure there must be sort of uniqueness in the sound that makes certain group of people avid collector.

louis said...

Hello Idrus,

What a beautiful instrument and work of art!

The nameplate with the Victor trademark emblem "His Master's Voice" with the dog listening attentively brings back a lot of memories of those days.

Gramophones used to be called "Victrolas" because of their strong association with that emblem and that manufacturer, much like facial tissues of whatever brand are still generally called "Kleenex".

JALAN REBUNG said...

salam pak idrus,

WOW, 2 things that I'm impressed. The first is the musical device and most importantly your age (you look 20 years younger). Probably we can get some of you "how to look young" secrets..hehehe.

Anyway. To Pak Idrus and family..SELAMAT HARI RAYA MAAF ZAHIR DAN BATIN.

RIZAL

changgeh said...

Pak Idrus

I remember those gramaphone..peti nyanyi.My father used to buy the stylus (jarum)by the boxes. It look like nail.We remember changing the jarum every 3 or 4 piring hitam played.Have fun.

shidah said...

69 is nice number! Happy birthday Pak Idrus. Eid mubarak too....

Pak Idrus said...

berisman, Adib thanks for the visit and the good words as well as sharing your experiences on this amazing machine of our generation. It do make me smile when you say 'dok pusing'. True it was a rather wonderful experience.

Indeed we are a lucky generation of that period of our history. I believe it is the child in me that made me want to own it at this age. It real is fun especially so with the kids and grand kids.

Have a nice day and thanks again for that birthday greeting. Take care.

Salt N Turmeric said...

That gramaphone is a beauty! And you still keep the albums? Nice.

Anyways, Wishing you, Aunty Asmah and family Selamat Hari Raya and maaf Zahir dan Batin.

Ms B said...

Pak Idrus,

Happy birthday! The gift is truly ideal for a man like you who appreciates fine art. May you are blessed with beautiful days ahead.

Wish you a meaningful eid with your loved ones.

Pak Idrus said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Pak Idrus said...

akmal, thanks for the visit and sharing your thoughts on the mechanic of this amazing machine.

This machine is part of my life and through it that I began to enjoy music and over times music has became a part of me. Never a moment that I am not without music of sorts. Although I did not play any music instrument I love to hear and enjoy it.

All my grandchildren learn to play musical instrument. Had we the opportunity to learn when we were kids, I would surely be able to play the piano like my grand kids do now. One of my brother do play musical instrument and sing at clubs. I believe music do run in the family.

Akmal, this machine is unique and the static sound alone would made you want to enjoy music more they ever.

Have a nice day.

Pak Idrus said...

louis, thanks for the visit and sharing your thoughts on this amazing machine that folks here call 'Peti Nyanyi'. That brand 'His Master Voice' with that dog image is still clear in my mind and like you say always associate with the gramophone.

It is indeed a unique machine of our era and getting that at my 69th birthday is indeed godsend.

Have a nice day and take care.

Pak Idrus said...

jalan rebung, Rizal thanks for the visit, the good words as well as the Eid greeting.

Indeed this is an amazing machine of my generation and like I said I have been trying to get one and now at this age got it. Indeed a wonderful gift of my 69th birthday.

As for the look Rizal I believe it is in the gene and clean living and always enjoy life. For I always believe that life is to be enjoyed and enjoyed I did all the years. Your generation should learn to appreciate living and enjoy it to the fullest and I believe when you reach my age you would be able to say the same things.

Have a nice day and see you at Hari Raya. Take care.

Pak Idrus said...

changgeh, Alias thanks for the visit and sharing your thoughts on this amazing machine of our generation. Yes, the needle do play a very important part in getting the quality of music on this machine. I got a set of the needles and treasured it like jewels.

BTW what happen to you blog. It has been hibernating far too long. Hope to seem some new posting soon.

Have a nice day.

Pak Idrus said...

shidah thanks for the visit and the birthday greeting as well as the Eid greeting.

Have a nice day and take care.

Pak Idrus said...

Salt N Turmeric, Farina thanks for the visit and the kind words on this posting.

Yes I do kept the old vinyl record, the 78 rpm. I also kept the 45 and the 33 but has yet to get a proper machine of that period to play those records. Indeed worth keeping all those oldies.

Thanks as well for the Eid greeting for the family.

BTW tak balik kampong ke. If ever you are back do come and visit us. Just email me. Take care.

Pak Idrus said...

Ms B. thanks for the visit, the birthday greeting and the good words as well as the Eid greeting.

At this age what better gift then some priceless item of the past that associate with one's life in our youth. Not only that I enjoyed this machine of the past, our grands kids and kids were as well amaze and enjoy it too.

If you are back do drop in on the first day of Hari Raya. Have a nice day and take care.

mekyam said...

what a lovely entry! :)

drop by to wish you and family "Selamat Hari Raya Aidilfitri, Maaf Zahir Batin!"

Liza said...

Dear Pak Idrus,

SELAMAT HARI RAYA AIDILFITRI to you and your family.

Take care :)

Pak Idrus said...

mekyam, thanks for the visit and the good words on this posting. Thanks as well for the raya greeting.

Selamat Hari Raya to you too. Have a nice day.

Pak Idrus said...

liza, thanks for the visit and the raya greeting.

Selamat Hari Raya to you too. Have a nice day.

aya.whitetea said...

salam , pak idrus saya minta kebenaran meminta gambar gramophone tu ya ....

Pak Idrus said...

aya.whitetea, thanks for the visit and the greeting. OK take it and use the images. It is gratis.

Have a nice day.