Doctor’s project of healthcare workers singing Man Bai’s Kau Ilhamku is tribute to Covid-19 frontliners, Malaysians

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A music video featuring 26 healthcare workers singing the beloved Man Bai hit Kau Ilhamku has been capturing the hearts of Malaysians since its release earlier in the week.

We’ve all seen our fair share of compilation videos dedicated to the selfless efforts of frontliners in the wake of Covid-19 but the latest clip — which has been making the rounds online as Malaysia enters its second movement control order (MCO) — is a poignant reminder that the fight never ends until the pandemic is truly over.

“2020, the year of Covid-19 pandemic. It has been over a year of battling the virus and the end is still nowhere to be seen,” a foreword by Dr Lau Shyan Ling read below the video on YouTube.

“With the number of cases still surging, the stress on our healthcare system is substantial.”

“We wish to pay tribute to our heroic colleagues who devote their time and energy, risking their own lives daily to contain the pandemic.”

The heartfelt video was put together by Ipoh-based general practitioner Dr Tew Pei See, a project which she started last month.

The clip features doctors, nurses, dentists and other healthcare workers from both the private and public sectors singing Kau Ilhamku, which translates to “you’re my inspiration”.

On top of showing off their vocal chops, the healthcare workers can be seen playing the keyboard, piano, violin and guitar in the clip.

“We just thought we’d cheer everyone up with this song during this difficult time,” Tew told Malay Mail.

“It’s a meaningful song that will touch anyone who hears or sings it.

“That’s why I chose this song — it’s my number one favourite song and I was a kid when Man Bai released it.”

The cheerful doctor who owns her own practice in Ipoh thought it was the perfect choice, along with the fact that the singer recently released an updated version to mark the song’s 25th anniversary.

“I still remember how I felt when I first heard that song,” she said.

Dr Tew came up with the idea after she and her friends did their own version of the song and she thought it would be fun to do a compilation featuring her fellow healthcare workers.

It was also her first time editing a video.

“I didn’t even know which software or app to use — I learned lots from YouTube and Google on how to make a music video,” she said with a laugh.

She took an entire week to put the sound clip together, which she completed over the Christmas period and an additional two weeks to edit the music video.

“A few of us in the video were under quarantine for Covid-19 which made the entire project even more meaningful,” she said.

She thought it was going to take her more than weeks to complete the video but was surprised with the end results.

The clip raked in more than 15,000 at the time of writing since it was posted on January 10.

The Health ministry also shared it on its Facebook page.

“It’s a stressful time for everyone — a lot of my colleagues are in the Covid team and almost everyone has come into contact with Covid patients,” she said.

It came to a point some had to administer the swab tests themselves and were infected with the virus.

“A few of the doctors in the photographs that we featured in the video were admitted to ICU, but thank God they are fine now,” she added.

Although Dr Tew runs her own clinic, as a GP, she has contributed to the Covid-19 screening project.

“We are the very first ones to see patients before we can send them to the hospital, so the risk for us is even higher,” she said.

“With the numbers still increasing, we still need to fight hard to defeat Covid-19.” – MMO