Zainal Abidin to hold mini charity concert for Ooi

PETALING JAYA: It’s heartening to know Malaysians are a caring lot. Since the social media post about composer Datuk Ooi Eow Jin’s (pic) plight went viral, many people have been stepping up to lend a hand to the musician’s family.

The story (Composer Ooi Eow Jin’s wife touched by support) which ran on The Star Online on Friday received more than 58,000 views in 24 hours and had over 1,000 shares on social media.

The Star also got a call from Mr Hijau himself, Datuk Zainal Abidin, who is organising a mini concert at the end of the month to raise funds for Ooi.

“This has nothing to do with race or religion, or even about being a musician,” said Zainal, 58, who became an icon with his solo album in 1991, which spawned the evergreen hit Hijau.

“It is just my responsibility as a human being to stand up and help another person, another family, in need.”

Zainal will collaborate with the Spanish-style Tapas Bar La Bodega in Jalan Telawi, Bangsar here for the “La Bodega-Zainal Abidin Live From The Heart” show on Jan 30. The show will start at 10pm.

“I have told my friends that ­tickets will be RM100, and many of them have said they are willing to pay much more as it is for a good cause. There are a few sponsors lined up too. Response has been overwhelming, people want to help,” he said.

There will also be an auction of CDs and other merchandise, which will go to the funds raised that night for Ooi’s family.

Zainal hints that other notable artistes may join him on stage, and promises to render favourites including Ikhlas, Damai, Manis, Kau DiHatiku and the anthemic Hijau.

Both Karyawan and Yayasan Artis 1 Malaysia (both organisations that care for the welfare of local artistes) have said they will be visiting the family next week to further assist.

The 80-year-old composer/songwriter has been stricken with Alzheimer’s disease since 2015.

He now lives with his wife Datin Elaine Khaw and their son Raymond, who has brain tumour and is also visually impaired, in Petaling Jaya.

The couple lost their second son, Ronnie, to leukaemia some years ago.

Family Community , Zainal Abidin