Inner Thought

B(r)and I Can’t Live Without

I starred to the white blank paper, trying to figure out what I am about to write. Words don’t come that easy. I have to describe brand I can’t live without. Rearranged my schedule start from when open my eyes in the morning till close to rest in the night, I identified potential product in my daily life one by one. Foods, body care, clothes, bags, shoes, until electronic devices. But the more I analyzed the more I realized that all of them are not that irreplaceable. I mean, if Maybelline suddenly bankrupt and I have to move to Revlon for my make up, it will be okay, I am not going to die. Based on value and lifestyle differentiation, consumers are divided into several categories.  For an experience-type of consumer like me, physical product doesn’t affect us that much. We are driven by the needs to express and the desire to try as much as product that we can experience. We are young, active, easily getting bored, and having so many activities. We build our perspective about brand by directly experience it; therefore experiment is how we perceived brand.

So I think about another thing. Something that have the emotional engagement, something that not necessarily appear as a physical needs fulfillment, something that I have known for a really long period of time, something that already being a part of my life. Something that really me. That bring me into long contemplation about what is actually really matter to me in terms of lifestyle. Then I know music is the answer. I can’t life without the rhythm and beat in each day I step. But more specifically, I can’t live without Westlife!

Under Wikipedia’s definition, Westlife are an Irish boyband established on July 1998. The Group’s line-up was Nicky Byrne, Kian Egan, Mark Feehily, Shane Filan, and Brian McFadden (Brian already withdraw . The Official Chart Company credited Westlife as the second biggest-selling artist and biggest-selling band of this decade. They have made twelve album that turns them to be the most productive boyband on history. The album are; Westife (1999), Coast to Coast (2000), World of Our Own (2001), Unbreakable (2002), Turnaround (2003), Allow Us to Be Frank (2004), Face To Face (2005), The Love Album (2006), Back Home (2007), Where We Are (2009), Gravity (2010), Greatest Hits (2011).

Under my definition, Westlife is a hero.

10 years old Shofi were too young to understand the concept of love, life, faith, joy, pain, or happiness that heavily contained on Westlife songs. But at that moment I slightly remember the first Westlife CD at my home, brought by my uncle from uptown. I watch them and suddenly had a crush. It was funny because at that age I fall for some handsome guys who sing and dance on my TV screen. Simply because they were attractive and they would always, always being that way. This is the first impression that leads me to shape a picture in my head. A picture of my first idol-crush.

Soon afterwards I start my life journey with them. I sing their songs. This is really helpful for me to learn English. Not only teach me how to pronounce better, but also encourage having a wider vocabulary in order to understand the meaning behind the song. They motivated me. At this level of understanding, Westlife impressed me as a teacher who show me about what would going on if you are grow up and being an adult. You rise, you fall, you break, and you start again. I am now grinning for I was such an innocent kid who saw the world trough the perfect mellow song. Now when I already grow one step further, I realize that life is not as easy as songs. But Westlife always be reminder that life should be easy even if it gets rough. That’s what makes them my hero.

Long-time collaborator Wayne Hector once defined the essence of Westlife songwriting said, “If you want to write a song for Westlife, you’ve got to have a lyric that connects on a basic level. We’ve always thought the reason Westlife songs have been so successful is because it’s about situations that everybody goes trough. We weren’t trying to be too clever about it, we were trying to be emotional.”

In my perspective, Westlife is one big brand. Even though they are consisted into four members, I prefer loving them as one. I care about them as a band, not as a personal. If being fangirl means you have to care and know deep about personal life of your idols, does not work for me. Honesty I am not really paying attention about what is Shane’s favorite color, how does Kian spend his weekend, where is Nicky take his wife to a romantic dinner, when Mark decide to declare his gayness. Seriously, I choose not to know. Because it’s only Westlife that I love, it’s their performance, it’s their song, and it’s all the moment I’ve spent with them.

Moments. That’s the keyword. They’re always be there for me during the rough day, as well as glory day. They are complementary trough my ups and downs. A man can grow old, a band can leave unsold. But Westlife? No, they are not growing old, they are growing bold, in my thought. Isn’t that the main idea of brand, right? It’s all about what’s on people’s mind. And the more I spend my moment with Westlife, the stronger their power on the kingdom of my mind. Like what they said in one song, “we got a little world of our own!”

I said I can’t live without Westlife, right? So how about they are going to end up this year? I am awfully sad, of course. Their name have been stick on my mind forever. After 14 years, 26 top ten hits including 14 number one singles, 11 top 5 albums, 7 of which hit the top spot and have collectively sold over 44 million copies around the world, and 10 sell out tours (which one of them I attended last year), it creates countless memories that they will forever cherish. Over the years Westlife has become so much more to me than just a band. Even If lots of new generation comes and go, there would always be a space on top for Westlife. This is what people feel when someone’s already gone. The memories would stays on heart forever. Plus, they will always eternally stays on my playlist. Up until I have children, and my children will have children, Westlife will always live my life.

That’s what I called as a faith for a brand. Even if they meet the end, the feeling for them lingers on our mind. Forever.


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