Syamel may not have won last year’s Akademi Fantasia (AF) but the singer has been doing well for himself.
Syameel Aqmal Mohd Fodzly or simply, Syamel, came in second after Sufie Rashid on the 12th season of the reality singing competition.
Post-AF, Syamel’s debut single, Hidup Dalam Mati, a song he penned himself, has been receiving frequent radio airplays.
The ballad proved to be a great way to introduce the 23-year-old vocalist to local listeners, what with Syamel earning a nomination for Best Male Singer at the inaugural Anugerah Pilihan Online last April and three nominations at the Anugerah MeleTop Era last February.
The singer reveals during an event at Kuala Lumpur he has a new track in the works.
“We don’t have a title yet. I’ve written the lyrics and melody for the song. I’m just waiting to get into the studio and record with Edry Abdul Halim. I am afraid in terms of how this second song will be received as the expectations are high,” he shares on the pressure of having to live up to the success of his first single.
“I hope that even if it’s not better than Hidup Dalam Mati, at least it would be comparable to it. I will try my best. I am trying to retain the concept (of Hidup Dalam Mati) for this new song.”
Syamel, who describes the new tune as a “continuation of Hidup Dalam Mati”, says he faces stiff competition from a number of artistes currently performing songs in the same vein.
“Now with love songs in the style of the 1990s becoming a trend, such as those by Sufian Suhaimi, Aiman Tino and Projektor Band, there is a lot more competition. I’ll just do what I love and hope people can accept it.”
Nine months have past since the competition ended and Syamel is learning the different facets of what it means to be a celebrity.
“When it comes to interacting with people, I have to take care of that. Some people have said I come across as arrogant, but maybe that’s just the way I look. So I have to smile more which doesn’t cost me anything anyway,” he shares.
Asked if he is satisfied by his achievement so far, Syamel says he has a long way to go.
“One song doesn’t guarantee anything. Being satisfied for me is when I retire and I can enjoy my successes. Right now, I haven’t reached that level of success yet. I still have a lot of hard work to put in.”
The new season of AF is set to premiere tonight. Syamel offers some advice to the new crop of singing hopefuls: “The experience you get on the show learning about vocals, performing and how to carry yourself is worth tens of thousands of ringgit.
“You’ll use these things your whole life and you’re learning from teachers that are industry professionals. So make full use of this opportunity.”