Being daddy cool

AWARD-WINNING rock star and composer Akim Ahmad is living proof that fatherhood brings out the best in a man.

His wife, Stacy Anam, who is also a singer, is due to give birth to their first child in several weeks.

“In the past, I spoke my mind without constraint,” confesses Akim, whose real name is Afiq Hakim Ahmad, in a recent interview.

Since finding out that he is going to be a father, Akim has learned to hold his tongue, and gives a lot more thought to what he wants to say before ­opening his mouth.

“I have also learned to be more ­patient,” says the 26-year-old.

Akim is also known for his trademark dance moves ­onstage when he performs. Will fatherhood ­subdue this side of him as well?

Apparently not. Akim assures his fans that nothing will tone down that part of his personality.

“I will always be a rock singer,” he says. “Nothing will change that. In fact, fatherhood might even enhance the rocker in me.”

Akim first made his mark in the music industry when he came in third at the iconic ­reality singing competition, Akademi Fantasia, in 2009.

Three years later, Akim ­released his self-titled debut ­album with most of the songs there composed by him.

Two years on, he formed Akim & the Majistret, a pop-rock band ­comprising six ­musicians from other popular bands.

The band came out with its album, Patriot, in 2015, which ­featured such songs as ­Mewangi, ­Anugerah and Patriot, that became mega hits for Akim & the Majistret.

The band went on to win many awards, ­including the ­Anugerah ­Bintang ­Popular for two ­consecutive years (2014 and 2015) as well as the coveted Anugerah Juara Lagu prize last year.

Akim ­personally has won many awards, both for his vocals as well as his ­songwriting talent.

During the interview, Akim and bandmates guitarists Zimie and Gijie also revealed a new ­career ­milestone for the band: Akim & the Majistret will be ­rocking the Dewan Filharmonik ­Petronas (DFP) stage on Feb 20 in a one-hour ­performance that will ­showcase 15 songs.

It is the dream of many Malaysian artistes to perform at the reputable DFP.

Akim & the Majistret will be following in the footsteps of such performers as Sheila Majid, M. Nasir, Siti Nurhaliza, and Yuna, who all have their moment in the DFP spotlight.

Akim and his mates are ­determined to make their concert a ­memorable one.

“Our concert in DFP is going to be ­different from [our] previous ­concerts,” says Zimie.

He adds that the band’s music is ­usually loud and noisy but points out that certain songs ­cannot be performed in the usual way because of DFP’s ­superior acoustics.

Playing such songs too loudly will ­cause a sharp reverberation in the hall.

Therefore, they need to be more creative and change the arrangements of some of these songs.

The new ­arrangements will give their music a lighter, more relaxed tone, making their concert more about ­beautiful lyrics than loud music.

“[But] you still can hear the sound of rock in our music,” Zimie promises.

While the new ­arrangements may not go down well with some of their diehard fans, Akim and the boys say they do not want to stay in their comfort zone. They want to be more adventurous with their music.

“We cannot [do] the same thing every time we put on a ­concert,” Akim explains. “We have to take some risks.

“We are using our creativity to make sure our fans like our new ­arrangements. We want to [present] a different ‘menu’ to our audience.”

The concert is not going to be all music. The band members will also tell stories about themselves and their music.

“You will get to know about us and our journey in the music industry,” says Gije.

“You will get to know the story behind Gije’s orange hair,” Zimie jokes.

When asked how they manage to stay together in the last two years, Akim explains: “All musicians have [an] ego. We are no different. We [each] have our own way of doing things.

“But we put our egos aside and listen to every ­suggestion [that each of us make].”