AS THE HIGH point of Indonesian pop music, it was made without any expectations, other than satisfying musical desires. The album, ‘Badai Pasti Berlalu’, seems to be an album that continues to be discussed until now.

When he decided to return from Germany to Indonesia in 1975, Eros Djarot had only one wish: To continue his mission of making music with Indonesian style. In Germany, Eros formed Barong’s Band, with Tri Anggono Sudewo (Drums), Choqy Hutagalung (Keyboard), Epot (Bass), and Darmadi (Guitar). 

Barong’s Band consistently performs their own songs in Indonesian, making it a bold creative decision considering they are living in a foreign country. “We are still determined to play a band with Indonesian spirit. We are Indonesians,” Eros recalled at the time.

For Eros Djarot, leaning towards the West does not guarantee the band’s work to be cool. Generally taking a lot of influence from the West, Indonesian bands should explore the potential of the country’s diverse cultures, including language.

After arriving in the country, Eros spent much of his time at the Nasution brothers’ house located at Pegangsaan Barat 12, Menteng, Central Jakarta. There, Eros often exchanged ideas about music with Chrisye, Guruh Sukarnoputra, Keenan, Debby, and Gauri Nasution.

This process led to the birth of two masterpieces: Guruh Gipsy and Badai Pasti Berlalu. Both were released in the same year (1977). The first (Guruh Gipsy) is considered a blueprint for progressive rock music in Indonesia, while the other (Badai Pasti Berlalu) was a breakthrough in the pop music industry, which at that time was in the midst of a boom in the pop music industry, which at that time was stagnant.

The story of Badai Pasti Berlalu begins in the mid-1970s. At that time, Eros was acquainted with Teguh Karya, a film director and boss of Teater Popular, where Eros Djarot’s brother Slamet Rahardjo studied drama. The introduction made Eros, who was known to be outspoken, free to criticize the songs in Teguh Karya’s films.

One time, Eros Djarot’s criticism made Teguh angry, and he turned to attack Eros. “If you understand, try to make music illustration for my movie later. I want to know what the result will be like,” said Teguh Karya.

Eros Djarot was challenged and without thinking accepted the offer of the director Teguh Karya at that time.  In 1975, Eros and Barong’s Band began working on the soundtrack for the movie ‘Kawin Lari’ starring Slamet Rahardjo and Christine Hakim.

In the process, Eros was obsessed with original works, he didn’t want his songs to sound westernized once again. In order to realize his vision, Eros Djarot bought a number of cassettes from famous domestic pop bands at the time such as Koes Plus, Panbers, and D’Llyod. These cassettes became mandatory meals for Barong’s Band personnel, not to forget, Eros also invited Keenan and Debby Nasution as additional Barong’s Band personnel.

The long-awaited album was finally produced.  Eros Djarot created several songs for the soundtrack of the movie ‘Kawin Lari’, ranging from ‘Oh Wanita’, ‘Bisikku’, to ‘Stambul Jakarta’. Some are pop-style, while others are ‘Keroncong’ music.

One thing is for sure: Eros managed to bring an ‘Indonesian touch’. Eros’ achievement was made complete when he was awarded the Citra Award as “Best Music Director” at the 1976 Indonesian Film Festival. A year later, Teguh Karya again asked Eros Djarot to work on the background music for a movie that would become one of his Magnum Opus, “Badai Pasti Berlalu”.

Eros Djarot immediately agreed to Teguh Karya’s offer and immediately looked for the names of musicians who would help him complete the process of working on the album. The first name on his list was Chrisye who was at the beginning of his career. Besides being busy with the Guruh Gipsy project, Chrisye had just gained popularity through the song “Lilin-Lilin Kecil” composed by James F. Sundah for Prambors’ Radio ‘Lomba Cipta Lagu Remaja 1977’ album.

From Chrisye, Eros was then introduced to Yockie Suryoprayogo, a top-notch keyboardist-composer-arranger who at that time had many projects who at that time had many music projects. “I don’t really know him yet, but I already know that he’s a singer through Barong’s Band,” said Yockie about his meeting with Eros Djarot. After the two agreed, the process of working on the album began.

Outside of Eros, Chrisye and Yockie, other names included in the project were: Berlian Hutauruk, Fariz RM, Keenan Nasution and Debby Nasution. They worked in a rented studio in the Pluit area of North Jakarta called Irama Mas, owned by In Chung, which he called more like a ‘warehouse’.

At first, they only worked on songs for movie illustrations, which were continuous and the duration was based on the images from the storyline of the movie ‘Badai Pasti Berlalu’ itself. However, their enthusiasm was hard to contain and in the end the songs were recorded in cassette format.

A total of 13 songs were created, some of which are “Angin Malam”, Khayalku”, “Cintaku”, “Badai Pasti Berlalu”, “Semusim”, “Pelangi”, and “Merepih Alam”. The whole material is arranged by trio; Eros, Chrisye, and Yockie.

The process of working on the album ‘Badai Pasti Berlalu’ was not without problems. The first problem that arose was the ownership of Berlian Hutauruk’s name. For Teguh Karya, Berlian Hutauruk was not the right vocalist to perform the songs of ‘Badai Pasti Berlalu’. The reason was Berlian Hutauruk’s vocal character which was considered too soprano. Instead, Teguh offered the name Anna Mathovani, who is softer like when she sang Idris Sardi’s ‘First Love’.

“Teguh Karya strongly objected when I played a sample recording of Berlian Hutauruk that would be used in the soundtrack of the movie ‘Badai Pasti Berlalu’. “What is this sound? It sounds like a a ghost (kuntilanak),” Teguh Karya said,” Eros Djarot recalled.

However, both Eros and Yockie disagreed. According to both of them, Berlian Hutauruk’s voice had the right chemistry with the nuances of the musical arrangement built in ;Badai Pasti Berlalu’. The tension was unavoidable until finally in order to resolve the difference of opinion Eros Djarot gave the director Teguh Karya an ultimatum.

“If you don’t agree with my music concept, yes, just cancel everything,” Eros Djarot threatened.

But the problem was resolved, Teguh softened and accepted Eros Djarot’s choice. But the next problem arose when the album was finished, no producer was willing to distribute it, the reason was that the music carried by Eros-Chrisye-Yockie was considered strange for a pop class.

Then, out of pity, In Chung came and extended a helping hand, willing to sell the album at his cassette store in Glodok, which at the time was a distributor of Dangdut and Klenengan songs. But unexpectedly, after being slowly circulated, ‘Badai Pasti Berlalu’ was well received by the market.

Many radio stations at that time played ‘Merepih Alam’. This achievement was beyond the expectations of Eros Djarot and his friends. The reason is, from the beginning they did not care if the album sold well. All quoting the words of Yockie Suryoprayogo, “done voluntarily, full of togetherness and kinship.” In fact, it is not uncommon for the three of them to have to pay from their own pockets.

Despite their great success, problems arose again, after the album was widely distributed. This time it was about copyright and royalties. A few decades later, the issue went to court, involving Eros and Berlian Hutauruk. In working on ‘Badai Pasti Berlalu’, each personnel did not receive royalties, but rather a pay-as-you-go system.

When their work is done and they have been paid, there is no further honorarium from royalties. Among musicians in the 1970s, not receiving royalties was a common practice.

There were several reasons: Why the phenomenal album “Badai Pasti Berlalu” is touted as a milestone in the country’s pop music. When the album was released to the market, the pop music industry was inundated with songs of commercial tendencies in the sense that quality was an afterthought.

In the midst of such turmoil, ‘Badai Pasti Berlalu’ was born as an antithesis. This album refuses to submit to the ‘Ordinary Pop Album’ template. Badai Pasti Berlalu is an album that, to paraphrase Yockie’s words, was born with a spirit and passion that was far from industrial.

If you don’t believe me, you can listen to the beginning of the album opening with the track ‘Pelangi’ until it closes with ‘Merpati Putih’. Yockie’s music composition is very classy. Occasionally the instrumentation he creates emits a gloomy aura, the darkness also reflects a hopeless darkness, without a cradle.

Accord progressions were unpredictable: Yockie can casually incorporate Baroque, Chamber, and most notably 17th century classical orchestral colors, as played by Bach. Yockie’s cathartic music sounds even more complete and alive with the presence of Berlian Hutauruk’s high, booming vocals.

It’s unpredictable: Yockie’s relaxed Diamond Hutauruk’s voice gives a kind of spirit to some of the songs in ‘Badai Pasti Berlalu’. He makes the lyrics of Eros Djarot’s songs, which are romantic but don’t fall into the seductive pattern, become more alive and touch the soul of the listeners.

The album ‘Badai Pasti Berlalu’ is one of the traces of collaboration between Yockie, Eros and Chrisye. All three have a long history in the country’s pop scene. They have worked together on at least 9 albums.

However, after the album was released to the public, this triumvirate actually disbanded in the biography written, even Chrisye in a musical memoir (2007) said that the difference in the three’s musical vision was considered the main factor in the rift and then cracking their relationship.

“Maybe because we owned the album too much, we felt entitled to each other,” Chrisye said at the time. Eros and Yockie really kept me in the musical path that they believed was the right one for the three of us,” he said.

Chrisye added, then time rolled on and many changes appeared Yockie and Eros didn’t seem to like me going into a very pop and too commercial music path. They didn’t know I needed a life. I have a family. The conflict, which started because of musicality, then turned into a prolonged cold war.

In fact, when Chrisye and Yockie met at a fast-breaking event organized by the Musica label, they did not even greet each other.

“Our disagreements never came to a common ground,” Chrisye said. Misunderstandings often occurred especially when I later repopularized the songs in the album “Badai Pasti Berlalu.” Big albums seem to have big consequences too. [sources/photo special]