Monday, June 18, 2012

Mas Joko

I decided to take a little break today from Tour d’Joko video making to compose a vanity video. Yes, that’s what my “random videos” are.. Me making a video about my favorite thing, me. This one goes even further in that it’s set to song called “Mas Joko”, which is Indonesian for..hmm… “Older brother Joko” would be the direct translation, but “mas” is used like we would use “Mister”, except a little more informally… Perhaps “Dude Joko”…  

That’s the thing about trying to translate a language that is used half way around the world in a culture that is so different from modern Western culture… So much of it doesn’t translate properly due to the cultural context.

 I copied and pasted the lyrics to Mas Joko into the Google translator website and it spat out this:
Ouch ouch .. Mas Joko kissed my cheek
Ouch ouch .. Mas Joko touched my lips
I love you, he said
Rich crab, he says
Goose bumps all over my body would
Imagine eating uncomfortable Mas Joko
I can not imagine sleeping soundly Mas Joko
Mas Joko .. (ta 'u' u ')
Mas Joko .. (ya 'u' u ')
burning love, burning rinduku
The sleek black mustache
I do not lose heart memangdangmu (wuelleh wuelleh ..) Myriad of handsome men
Mas Joko just love my darling (ah uh ..)
So… that didn’t make much sense, now did it? Here’s my translation of the same lyrics:
Oooo… Oooo… I was kissed by Mister Joko
Oooo… Oooo… My lips were touched by Mister Joko
I love you, he says
You’re so rich, he says
I get goose bumps all over
I can’t eat without Mister Joko
I can’t sleep without Mister Joko
Mister Joko…Mister Joko
My love is burning, my longing is burning for you
With his sweet black mustache
I do not lose heart when I’m with you
Of all those handsome men
Mister Joko, I only love you
Back in the mid-80’s when I first lived in Indonesia, they had no laws whatsoever about music copyrights and piracy and such. Consequently, there was a world-wide ban by the musicians of the world against the word’s 5th most populous nation. No one went there because their albums made no money. As a consumer, back in the brief golden age of the cassette tape (after the LP, but before CD’s), it was paradise. Imagine being able to buy any record you wanted, professionally done on cassette for about $1...  

Then again, that’s not so hard to imagine. In the age of file sharing, I haven’t paid one penny for a piece of music in over five years…  

In any case, it's kind of poetic justice that 25 years later, through the internet, I could rip off and pirate the hardwork of some Indonesian videomaker.

  Enjoy the Dangdut music, the pop music of Indonesia. Dangdut may sound a little odd to Western ears, as it is based on ¾ time, not 4/4 time…


  1. Anonymous10:27 PM

    Dangdut Northwest...weird.

  2. The version linked below is better... a faster version of Mas Joko.

    Plus, the girl on the right has better boobs than both Helvy Maryand and I put together.