Girls of Rock: Anggun

The body of work accomplished by the beautiful, beautiful singer Anggun has long been one of Indonesia’s most successful pop music exports. She performs live in a smattering of languages (Indonesian, English, French) and is well-received by audiences across Asia and western Europe. She’s basically a prime example of hard work that pays off, and homegirl worked hard.

Her style has also gone through an evolution of sorts: in the early days of her musical career when she was a teenager singing rock-inspired tunes, she laid it on heavy with the denim but took it easy with the makeup. Young and fresh faced, she didn’t really need heavy makeup anyway, and let her music do the talking.

In 1997, Anggun came out with a global breakout hit, Snow on the Sahara, and the record that came with it brought us an entirely new woman. She had matured as an individual and as musician, moving away from her rock roots and experimenting with an urban pop sound. Her marketing team capitalised on her ethnicity and began using words like “exotic” and  “mysterious” to describe her to the international market; it’s interesting to note the difference in fashion and makeup choices that made up the music videos produced for Indonesia and abroad.

Music video for Indonesian airings of Snow on the Sahara.

Music video for international airings of the same track.

She began to veer away from the “exotic” label as people stopped looking at her and started to really listen. Following the success of Snow on the Sahara, she produced four more albums (in English and French!), much to the delight of dedicated fans on multiple continents. She settled on a the urban pop sound tinged with an Indonesian touch that fully exploited her vocals, as evidenced by Still Reminds Me, a track from her Chrysalis album released in 2000.


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This classy lady currently splits her time between France and Indonesia, where she  recently appeared at a press conference to announce her role as the international judge of X Factor Indonesia. She showed up wearing a bodice that was both soft and textured at the same time, with lots of sheer and brocade to keep things interesting. I don’t know how crazy I am about the top, but I do like her choice of accessories, and think overall she looks amazing.

Are you on the same boat, dear reader? Or do you think she could have done better with the outfit?