IO – Singer Once Mekel shows her concern for the problem of climate change in the world. Once collaborates with world singers on these issues; an example is a work with Croatian singers Dino Jelusic and Jeff Scott Soto, singing “Human Race”.
Derek Sherinian, Ron ‘Bumblefoot’ Thal, Simon Phillips, Jeff Scott Soto, and Billy Sheehan have recorded this song about climate change.
Any revenue the song generates will be used to grow the Human Race Forest, a collaboration with ForestNation.
“These forests will create sustainable livelihoods for people affected by deforestation and help our collective fight against climate change,” said Andrew Pothecary, founder of ForestNation, as quoted by NCN , Tuesday 25 January.
Once also shared the happy news through his personal Instagram account.
“HUMAN RACE’ is a charity song recorded by musicians from USA, Croatia & Indonesia in 2021. DREAM Team Project was organized by Indra Putra, Derek Sherinian, Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal, & Edo Widiz. The song will be used to raise funds for the Program “ReForest Our Planet” from ForestNation @imagineforestnation,” wrote Once quoted from the @oncemekelofficial account, Tuesday.
He also included a video clip of the song “Human Race”, in which he collaborated with Jeff Scott Soto (USA) and Dino Jelusic (Croatia) as lead vocals.
Once was born as Elfonda Mekel in Ujung Pandang, South Sulawesi, on 21 May 1970. He began singing while attending junior high school at Tirta Marta Junior High School. He also learned how to play the drums, piano, and guitar. Once eventually began participating in singing competitions, including an inter-high school competition in Jakarta.
After graduating from Tirta Mirta Senior High School, Once joined numerous bands. His first bands, Brawijaya and Dimensi, were cover bands. After joining Java Burns, he began singing songs he had written himself. He eventually provided a song for the compilation album Seribu Angan (A Thousand Dreams) in the early 1990s.
Due to a problem with his voice box, Once took a hiatus from singing between 1993 and 1997. He used this time to study law at the University of Indonesia, graduating in 1996. He also worked for a construction company.
By 1997 he had begun singing again, in cafes, and in 1998 he recorded the soundtrack for the film Kuldesak with Ahmad Dhani. Once was later asked to join Dhani’s band, Dewa 19, in 2000 and eventually replaced Ari Lasso, who had been expelled from the group after being accused of using illegal drugs. In the beginning, Once had difficulty fulfilling fan’s high expectations set by Lasso, and was noted as not communicating with them as well as having a stiff on-stage persona.
Once was eventually accepted by Dewa 19’s fans after Bintang Lima, his first album with the group. The album was a hit. It eventually sold 1.7 million copies. He later recorded four more albums with Dewa 19. In 2004, Once had a hit single “Separuh Nafasku” (“Half of My Breath”). He also released three solo singles, “Dealova”, “Aku Mau” (“I Want”) and “Symphony yang Indah” (“A Beautiful Symphony”).
On 19 January 2011, Once dropped out of Dewa 19 to develop his solo career. (rp)