A shining gem in rock music

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Ikhwal Hafiz Ismail, also known as Ewal is Malaysia’s well-known rock and R&B singer, songwriter and actor who have won the hearts of many people with his music. The young and talented singer is a vocalist from the local band, Kristal, famous for hit songs like “Terpisah”. In an interview with Top 10 of Malaysia, the singer talks about his passion in music and how it drove him to achieve success in his career. 

Ewal discovered his passion for music when he started singing at the tender age of two. “My parents are my greatest influence and they led me to fall in love with music,” says the bubbly singer. “My dad was a recording artiste and he used to be a member of one of the biggest rock bands called Wings while my mum was a singer who performed at hotel lounges.”

The singer-songwriter had to stop schooling at the age of 14 as he was unable to cope with his hectic schedule. “When I was 14, my schedule was so hectic that I had to leave school. I started attending a few music schools to further my education in music. Now at the age of 30, I’m more capable in handling my own schedule,” says Ewal with a smile.

“I started taking singing more seriously when I reached the age of 16,” says Ewal who represented Malaysia at Hollywood, Los Angeles for the World Championship of Performing Arts. “It was similar to the Olympics but the only difference was that it was for the music entertainment scene.” Ewal performed with flying colours and won four gold medals, one silver medal, one Hollywood Industry Award and was known as one of the best international artiste in Kodak Theater in Los Angeles.

When Ewal started singing, writing music and performing, he was inspired to be like his idol, Michael Jackson. “The first thought that came to my mind was to be like Michael Jackson as I’ve always looked up to him as a role model in the music industry,” he says with excitement in his voice. “I’m always passionate in anything related to music, be it singing, song-writing or even in music creation. The three main genres of music that I usually perform are R&B, rock and jazz.”

One of the most memorable achievements in Ewal’s life was the recording of his third album in Los Angeles. “It was in 2011 and I had the opportunity to record it in America. It felt like one of the greatest accomplishments in my life as I had the chance to work with well-known producers such as Jay Landers, who was the producer for No Doubt, Michael Jackson and many other artistes.”

“I believe that in the next five to ten years, I would still be recording and producing music. I would also love to scout around for new talents and mentor them to be successful singers. I would also strive to produce good music that will bring Malaysia to the international limelight.”

When asked if he has any advice to give to young people who are interested to pursue a career in the entertainment industry, Ewal replies, “I think it doesn’t matter how many followers you have on social media because in the end it’s all about the people who truly support you in your career. Just do what you’re passionate about and if you’re into music, you should focus on your music and work towards achieving your dreams.”

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