Legendary singer SM Salim laid to rest

KUALA LUMPUR: The late Tan Sri SM Salim, 88, was laid to rest at the Muslim cemetery in Jalan Ampang here at 2.45pm.

Earlier, his remains were brought from his residence in Ukay Perdana to the Kampung Baru Mosque here for prayers before the burial.

About 1,000 people comprising family members, relatives and friends were present at the mosque and cemetery.

SM Salim, whose real name was Sheikh Salim Sheikh Muhammad Al Mahros, died of old age at his home at 5.45pm yesterday, after being in critical condition since Wednesday morning.

He is survived by his wife Puan Sri Aishah Mohd Ghani and seven children.

The singer's eldest daughter, Siti Noraishah Salim, 60, said the family hopes that people would remember her father as a man who contributed considerably to the entertainment industry, especially in the struggle to promote classical Malay songs.

"Remember him as an advocate of true art, father did not sing because of money, but rather considered it self-therapy.

"He often expressed his worries about the younger generation not being too interested in traditional songs, he wanted the genre to survive even after his absence," she told Bernama.

SM Salim's sixth son Shamsul, 51, said his father did not encourage his children and grandchildren to venture into the field of arts.

He said this was because the singer extraordinaire did not want his children to face the bitter challenges he faced during his career.

"Father did not want any member of his family to follow in his footsteps as for him, the experience of being known as an artiste was not easy to be borne by anyone.

"We can all sing well, maybe we inherit that from him, however, we have not made it into a source of income to rely on," said Shamsul.

SM Salim began his career as a singer in the 1950s and was a passionate advocate of Malay classical songs.

He became paralysed due to a nerve disorder, and had been moving around on a wheelchair for the last 17 years. — Bernama