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POSTED ON – 05.01.15

SSR Jakarta - Arkarna Guitarist Matt Hart Interview
Arkarna Guitarist Matt Hart Interview
Guitarist with UK band Arkarna, Matt Hart recently visited SSR Jakarta for a look around our campus and give a talk to our students.

Matt's visit followed that of lead singer Ollie Jacobs who also came to see us recently. During Matt's time with us we took the opportunity for a quick interview...check this out!

Hi Matt, how are you?
I’m good..Baik.

Tell us a bit about Arkarna so far?
At the moment, relatively quiet because I broke my leg. So for the past year and a half I’ve been focusing primarily on getting my health back to where it needs to be. And now it’s clean and we can start fresh, new things and opportunities. Even being here in Jakarta for the past 3 weeks, so many things come up and yea, it’s kinda an exciting time!

What makes you come to Jakarta?
One of the main reasons was to congratulate Jokowi (President of Indonesia) because when he came to meet us last year, I actually broke my leg four weeks before. So, the timing is perfect and that was kind of my intention for coming.

And why Jokowi? Any specific reasons?
Well, it’s kinda funny because I have more friends here in Indonesia than in London. I speak to everyone like on a daily basis and it makes sense to me that to care so much about the country and the government of my friends. One day if I come here maybe for a long period of time (because 3 weeks doesn’t seem to be enough!), I’d like to know that the country is under the safe hands.

We heard that you guys in Arkarna are going to have concert here in Jakarta to celebrate Jokowi’s winning. Is that right?
Who told you that? (laughing). Everyone's been telling this to me. I’m curious it’s been getting around very quick. Honestly, at the moment I don’t really know. There’s kinda rumors I’ve been aware on twitter and such. Because twitter is my main format of communication with the world.

Do you think Jokowi should know about SSR and visit us and share knowledge related to the creative industry?
Ya, one of the main things that we’re discussing is about the music industry itself in Indonesia. Kind of the strengths and weaknesses and how we can look to improve it. So yea, it would be a great interest for Jokowi to visit and to meet the new kind of productive youngsters in Indonesia. Because ultimately, they are the future of the industry here. And it’s time for the production teams to get creative and to improve the sound and to start changing the benchmark. Stop comparing what Indonesia is already creating to Korea, UK or America.

Do you think local musicians here can compete globally?
Why not? Music is the universal language. It doesn’t matter where are you come from. Because you can communicate musically. I kinda felt the language can be a barrier because in UK, we never listened to anything other than English spoken. It’s probably similar to America. My message to local bands in Indonesia who wants to branch out to UK and States would be to write their songs in English. Also try to get networking, because networking is so important.

Is it possible for you to make projects with SSR Students or our Audio lecturers?
Yea of course, I’m always trying to help other people. Even when somebody got project, just send me the link to tweet. I kinda produce the music myself with Ollie. He’s like the main technician. We’re in the studio at the same time. I do editing and such, I can relate to that a lot. So I can speak to the students on the same level. So, yea...

Last but not least, it’s quite personal. What do you think about Indonesian girls?
Indonesian girls? (laughing) I think they are quite exotic and different. I don’t know whether because in London is a lack of that. I’ve seen the twitter followers respond well every now and again and sometimes hear of people saying "marry me"! (laughing).

Big thank you to Matt for taking the time for this interview! He and the band are welcome at SSR anytime.

Follow Matt on twitter - https://twitter.com/arkarna_matt

For more info on the band and to check out their music, visit http://arkarna.net/