Playlists — July 24, 2013 at 5:45 pm

The Playlist Series – Kyoto Protocol


Here begins our Playlist Series! The baptism of fire falls to Fuad Alhabshi – singer and guitarist of Malaysian band Kyoto Protocol. His playlist is about his and the band’s musical influences. Listen, read and discover (Whyd player below)! 

One of the things that I feel makes us unique is the diversity of the styles that we subliminally incorporate into our music. We never try to hard to fit in different building blocks into a song, but we just do what feels right. This playlist includes many of the sounds that shaped our minds and in particular my understanding of music from a very young age. I grew up on the sounds Motown and Philly so The Four Tops, The Platters, The Stylistics, and Stevie Wonder were household staples, especially with my father on his karaoke machine (remember Laserdiscs?). Apparently at age 3, I knew how to sing “Only You” but I hadn’t even learned to read yet.

My mother was a wild child herself and proudly counts herself as a hippie (a little known fact, Malaysia held its own Woodstock in Kajang in the 70s), and I remember clearly when I heard “Born to be wild” blaring on the car stereo as we frequently shuffled across the causeway. We lived in Singapore at the time but would frequently go back to Melaka or Kuala Lumpur to visit family. Those car trips covered ground from Led Zeppelin to Bread and it wasn’t too long until I picked up a guitar with a deep fascination how one instrument was the cornerstone for a generation of music.

Fuad Alhabshi from Kyoto Protocol

Fuad Alhabshi from Kyoto Protocol

The songs in this playlist that I have selected all have, in various ways, played a part in shaping the musicians that we are today. Every song has elements have stayed with us and subconsciously shapes Kyoto Protocol’s sound today. It also reflects that what I think is inherent in human nature, that is to enjoy a bit of diversity especially when it comes to music.However, The Clash was very much a turning point for me as a songwriter, because I always admired the fact that they were never satisfied with being in a box. Originally well known for being second fiddle to the antics of The Sex Pistols, “London Calling” ran the gamut with elements of rockabilly, ska, reggae and more. That really broke the down of walls of how a band’s sound should be defined.

– Fuad, Vocals / Guitar

Upcoming gig for Kyoto Protocol: Good Vibes Festival, Kuala Lumpur, August 17.