A Lesson Learned from Covering a songs

Arif Akbarul Huda
3 min readNov 7, 2023

This article contains an insightful opinion after I released a rearrangangment song.

The single “Penjaga Hati” by Nadhif Basalamah has risen to become one of the top 5 songs in Apple Music’s Indonesian Hits chart. It’s A pop love song with a beautiful acoustic guitar sound. Music like this has become popular in coffee shops accross Indonesia.

Since the arrival of the adorable monster “Laney IRF Dualtop”, I have been challenged to present the song in a different atmosphere. I envision the song’s romantic vibe transforming into something more energetic and upbeat. As a reference for an energetic song, I turn to One Ok Rock.

I have a deep appreciation for original work. By this, I mean nothing but challenging myself to practice a wide range of skills. You can listen to the song’s original version on the Apple Music platform. In contrast, the rock version is available on YouTube. The audio quality may not be perfect, but I endeavored to present it as best as possible, which is the result. Someday, if my insights develop further, this work will prove the process I went through.

In this article, I will share the lessons I’ve learned by rearranging the song.

Another Perspective.

Just as modifying a family car into a racing car results in a different driving experience, the sensation is undeniably distinct – it becomes more aggressive, agile, and faster. Of course, not everyone may accept this change, but a small group of people who share an interest in the same thing might.

The objective I aim to achieve with this project is to transform a romantic pop genre song with an acoustic background into a song that exudes a more aggressive, enthusiastic, and unique feel.

The first step is to construct a beat using the drums. I added the guitar rhythm and a subtle bass progression only after that. The song’s dynamics are built gradually, starting from a calm beginning and increasing in intensity until reaching the climax in the final chorus.

Stepping Out of the Comfort Zone

Being within a comfort zone is secure. However, for some people, their comfort zone is when they can savor the sensation of shifting zones. It seems that I am one of them. I truly enjoyed the creative process of transforming the song.

Discipline and Commitment

In reality, I’m not a musician, so it takes considerable effort to start and finish a project like this. I completed this project within two weeks, even amidst my busy schedule as a lecturer. There were moments when I almost gave up due to my productivity rhythm being disrupted by other activities. Nevertheless, I returned to my commitment – everything initiated must be concluded, regardless of the result. Failing fast, learning faster – I evaluated and iterated.

Understanding the Right Context

This part may be somewhat challenging to explain. Still, as a composer of musical arrangements, I had to learn to recognize the context. To create song dynamics, I needed to avoid overwhelming the song with guitar distortion initially. On the other hand, I had to determine which parts of the song could be enhanced with guitar melody notes to evoke the listener’s emotions. I also applied this principle when creating drum beats.

In summary, this activity has significantly impacted my life journey because these valuable lessons are also applicable to my daily activities.