Michael Uglymen ~ Life Beyond The Visible Horizon

Custom Guitar Picks and Guitar Accessories by Steve Clayton, Inc.

Testimonials

updated: 2009

Testi
# Lee Chee Seng

you are certainly one of the best michael. i duno waht to write also… maybe if u r a girl teacher, i write longer!! 😀

Testi

# Lam Yu Long

michael! i did not expect to meet u at UUM last week, as u said, u went there by last minute, so i think it was really a fate we met there. time passed so fast now you are so famous liao haha… still remember last time when u used to going work on your super bike pasola loh…lol!! although i no longer play music, but i really think learning music from u helped a lot along the way. see now many of your students also got achievement liao…

i duno how to start…eh. mike alwys change his hair style, this one i know… wahaha… he is patient in teaching, but the thing i enjoyed most is he is more a friend than to a teacher, likes to jokes and talk boh boh thing in class in order to make the lesson fun. i hope we can meet up again some day mike…

thank you for the wonder years.

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# Muhd Taufik

I would like to thank u.. Because of u n ur teaching, I’ve done well in the performance. Thank u, sir!

Testi
# Woon Wooi Min

Hi,

Hi Angel, pls pass this mail to Mike for testimonialk . thanks

Michael! u must be very surprise to get this?!! (wat? no? :’-( haha. I know u very happy theses days lo, so many peoplre write u testimonials. I got read your uglymen website every day u know? although i am busy here, I still feel like dropping you a short mail.

I read about you talking on your worth-mentioninfg students in last posts… you picked the wrong one liao la, how come my name is inside one… I sia soi you got la… after seeing Jan Jan write so long, so touching, I just wanted to write you an email, but hai… think think might as well write you a testimonial lo.

I still miss the time where I learn the guitar, although I must admit I never come to a levefl that could make you proud. I have stopped learning since coming to Signapore. Firstly, I work long hours and travelling in Sinagpore really makes me tired (though I got used to it). Secondly, I dont believe I could find another teacher like you. I will be problably settling down in Singapore soon and may only come back to Kedah once or twice a year, but if I do come back, please reserve tea time with me 🙂

Before I sign off, I think your readers and other sutdnets may be interrsted to know how I got to know you, in extra ordinary circumstances. There was a band challlenge show going on in 1999, I think is the Yamaha Band Alert or something like that. I was studying in Penang and went to KL to watch a Penang band. Michael’s band was also in the comtetition, later, I was introduced to him by a friend, apparently an ex school mate of Michael. So, I guess all that while when I was in Penang dint get to know you, but got a chance in KL, wasnt that weird haha…

You have always been a very hardwikring and dedicated teacher Michael, and I know all your students will benefit from you a lot. Thanks for all the happy moments years back.

Miss u.

Testi

# Soon Jan Jan

Dear Michael,

Michael!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I’m very very very very happy today!!! In fact I’m so elated today that I totally skipped my dinner!! You know what happened???!!! Cos this evening I received the parcel posted by my brother!! And I asked him to post along all my piano books….all my music bible!!!!!!!!!!! I literally tore the parcel open, threw everything out and just grabbed those piano books and ran off to my college’s piano room and played for 2 hours!!! I’ve never been happier to play those taugeh songs!!! I played The Entertainer and Mojo Domo again and again and again!!! Ooooh!!!!!!!!!!! It’s like today I’ve been given a new lease of life!! The sky suddenly look so blue today!! And my life here suddenly feel like got meaning again!!! All because of the music that you have been teaching me for 2 ½ years!!!! I hugged those books and almost wanted to kiss those books!!! I think if you’re here, I surely would be so happy that I would have kissed you!! Without the music that you teach me, life here is so intolerable and dull cos everyday have to deal with dry economics stuffs!!

Michael, I know that I owe you this testimonial for quite a long time already..but please believe me when I say that actually I have never forgotten to write you this testimonial..it’s that I’m waiting for an inspirational day and time…and today is really so inspirational!!! Just now when I play the pieces, it’s so emotional to me…I almost cried when I play The Entertainer!! Cos it made me recall all the wonderful time that I have spent with you during your piano lessons!! Actually you have not only taught me music, real music that is, but you have also taught me to be a better person. To tell you the truth, I really respect you, especially your unshakable level of high EQ.

I personally think that you’re a very successful and courageous person…successful because you can handle every trial and tribulations that come your way, and courageous because you follow your heart’s desire and do the things that you love most and don’t give a dime damn to what other people say!! You’re taking your this musical path because of your sincere and passionate love for music…although other people may see that your this path probably would not have a light at the end of the tunnel….but you believe in your passion and your dream and you pursuing it valiantly!! Michael, I really, really, really respect you!! Really!! I always tell xuehua that you’re one of the very few people that I have great respect for. I always remind xuehua to be grateful that our paths cross with yours….Michael, actually I really do not know how I can repay you for all the things that you have taught me about jazz music and about piano playing and about life and about being a person.

I still remember the very first time I come to know of your existence is during the 2003 JFJ competition, where you and your Uglymen sang Si Ai Bin on the stage and I was totally taken aback by your song and by your performance!! I was totally shocked because I think your song and your performance is very daring and raw. I still remember that you actually look at your lyrics when you’re singing it on stage!! Really, looks can be deceiving….i never have thought that you’re so good in jazz piano and that one day I would be one of those to have the great honour to be under your tutelage!!! Actually I love it so much everytime you play the piano during our lessons…cos you really play with such real feelings…you can bring out all types of feelings of songs just by using piano!! And you’re not only a great master in piano, but you have total mastery over the guitar as well!! My God, it’s such a blatant contrast!!…playing rock songs on your electric guitar with distortions and stuffs like that and playing jazz songs on your piano with such dynamics and control on every aspect of music…timing, tempo, rhythm, melody, harmony…….Michael, to me, you’re already a demi-god!!

Michael….so far, you’re the ONLY person who can answer my EVERY question about music stuffs…and well sometimes about other stuffs as well….and I am totally satisfied with all your answers. Everytime after you explain something, e.g. music theory to me, I will totally understand it…although sometimes I may forget cos of infrequent application…  To me, there would be NO OTHER music tutor who can teach me the way that you have taught me before!! And I don’t want to have another music tutor!!! I just want to learn music under you!!!…..(actually, you’re making me cry now….my tears are swelling now….). I’m really very torn between coming here to NZ to do PhD and continue to be under your music tutelage. Your music lessons are one of the few things that I feel so, so, so, SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO heavy-hearted to leave behind!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Without my conscious knowing, you have instilled in me the love for music. Before I met you, I love music too, but not at this level right now…….right now, I can’t seem to listen to a piece of music without analyzing it. Before this, when I listen to songs, I just listen to the main vocal….now, the main vocal would be the last thing that I listen to cos I would be listening to the music arrangements, how each instrument is played and why they are played in such ways, what mood the music wants to bring in each different section of the song, what voice (1, 3 or 5?) are the harmonies singing in, how the song start off and build into a climax and how it brings it back…..before this, I never knew that I can listen for so many things and can learn so much things from just one song!!! So now, I can’t listen to songs when I’m doing things, but when I listen to songs, I must totally stop whatever that I’m doing and just concentrate on the music.

Michael, actually I’m writing all these in the middle of the night, now is already 2.30am in the midnite…this is the first I stay up so late here since arriving at NZ….but tonite is special….my feelings tonite are special…..i have so many emotions in me right now!!! I feel like in cloud nine today when playing the pieces that you have taught me and I also feel sad cos can’t continue to be taught by you and at the same time I feel inspired to continue to play the piano and never to give up on music!!!

Actually, there another thing….i feel very sad about it….it’s about 7.9……I feel sad cos this year I can’t be with 7.9 in their jixun and their fa biao hui (on coming 20th July)….i feel very very down cos I can’t help them with the song arrangements and the actual music-making process and to guide those 7.9 juniors in their music sojourns and to share with them what you have taught me about music…..it really breaks my heart to be not able to be with 7.9………it’s like my family….one big happy musical family…..where all our hearts are pure and just think of music the whole day during our 2-weeks jixun…..for 6 years, i have watched 7.9 grow from making xiao yuan (school-type) music to making music which are of standard…….it also breaks my heart cos every Tuesday night I can only play and sing our 7.9 hui ge alone here in NZ and not there at uum to sing the hui ge together with them all……(God, my tears are swelling again!!)….do you have any advice for me and for 7.9?

Ok hah Michael…I think I have poured out everything that I want to tell you about….all my pent-up feelings about music and about my respect to you and about 7.9…Michael, no matter what your future musical dreams are, I will support you 100%!! Michael, I want to thank you for teaching me music and life itself. I want to tell you again that I respect you very, very much. I also want to let you know that I will not let you down cos I will continue analyzing music and piano for as long as I live cos you have made me fall in love with music, especially jazz music (but I still love The Corrs’ blend of Irish-pop music). I always thank God that He let our paths cross…..it not, I would not be the person I am now. Michael, actually you have influenced me a great deal.

Wow, I don’t whether what I wrote will pass off as a testimonial or not…cos it looks more like a long-winded letter!! oh, just one last thing……when are you going to make a jazz piano album? I will surely buy it!!!

Ok lah Michael, it’s now 2.50am liao…I must sleep…..but my mind is still very active with all the taugeh notes dancing in my head!!! Michael, actually I don’t know what has happened but I have come to love those taugeh pieces more than those pieces written in ABC jian pu…..i think it’s the “Michael Effect” at work!! ok lah, good nite SI FU!!!!!!

Love and misses,
Jan Jan
[Michael’s student from 1st January 2005 (first lesson) – 20th May 2007 (last lesson)]
13 July 2007
2.55am midnite

Testi
Cheng Heng Lih

Everytime leave music system i gotta send u a testimonial. thank you miko. notice michael-one dot com testimonial side majority my testimony. i think u should set “add testimonial” on your michael-one page. i blieve many many students wanna add u a testimonial just havn’t found out an easy and faster way to add directly.

it’s been a while. Yesterday i just finished a musical competition at Komtar presented by xxx xx xxx (a Uni group, organisation removed on Heng Lih’s request). Bring back the best song composition award and overall third prize. I am telling u this, is not that i want to show off, just want u to know it’s your contribution to expose me to variety of music and experience, and it’s such important element to make me stand on stage again. yeah~ i feel good for ur teaching miko.

i experience something during the competition, sorry to talk about this a bit at ur page. I feel that actualy when we win a prize, that’s just the judges approvement for our music. Just that, nothing more. Not the “Music” approveed my music. Judges just are men, their life experience not the same as we are. Everyone has his own life experience and that’s why we came out with our own songs. Judges’ opinion not represented “Music”, that’s just their own opinion, nothing more. Of course their advice of music are valuable. But what i mean here is about taste and feeling. Music is very subjective thing. There is no certain rules or formula to set your music accepted by all people. And that’s why we got abrasion of music of different kinds of people.

What made me got this kind of feeling is, during the competiton, i saw a group, performed their music in live band form. Just 4 people, drumer, vocal aka basist, and 2 guitarists. Their song was good. But i gotta admit that i just respect the bassist that really show his talent and high quality of music for us. The other, drumer, 2 guitarist, i dare to say they spoilt the music. Drummer just hit the drum out loud watever. And the other 2 guitarists, i hear no tone, no feel, not clean or even CLEAR output. But i saw our audience show great enthusiasm of their performance. Maybe that’s the reason finally the group got the overall first prize and the best performance. I forgot to tell u that in the competition they were the only one who performed in live band form.

I have to say it’s a morbid state of music. If this kind of performance get the best performance and first prize, i wonder how the junior will be thinking. Is it we just need to “show off” during the performance, forget about the output of music, bring the audience crazy for us, then, WE ARE THE BEST. is it? then the juniors follow the steps, bring us the “best performance” but low quality of music in the future, is it what the audience want?

i saw some group performed very nice with great feeling and output, why they all lost to the “just-good-performance” band? Is it our so-called great performance and first prize in the eyes of judges just this kind of level? My group members are happy for my achievement and overall third prize reward. But to tell the truth i feel nothing standing on stage to receive this reward. Not i feel cocky but in my heart really feeling nothing. In that moment, i just realize that a reward, actually just the judges show their feedback and approvement to your music. Nothing more. Not the “Music” show approvement for u.

Well look like i just yelling out lout here. haha. sorry miko. this is my testimonial for u. Last time learn from u, i feels like finally know a way to come over my “limit” of level 3. I learn new feeling from SRV, Eric Johnson, and blues~ i can’t stop learning music and guitar. The more i learn, the more i see no limit of it. What i mean, included the life and how music changes a person. For me, MUSIC is MAGIC. yeah, don’t you think so? Sport gather people, music gather people, make people cry, drive them crazy. For me, music is more than that.

haha~ ok~ i stop here miko~
as i promised~

I~~~~~WILL~~~~~~~BE~~~~~~~BACK~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Testi
# Chan Yoke Peng / Loo Hong Khim
(click image to view larger photo)
teacher_card_content

Testi
# Zuriyati
Happy Teacher’s day! U r one cool teacher and make great music. Have a fantastic day.

Testi
# Beh
I recently taking lessons from Mic, I refer him as micShiFu but mic dislike I call him like dat. I attend his first theory class. Theory class actually it’s a boring, sleepy class, but that day we all laugh and laugh and laugh and learn and learn and learn a lot! Dun play play with this shiFU, you look at his looks and playing you juz knew he is like some dude with a guitar on, but deep down he knew a lot more!!!

I think almost everything, he knew piano, guitar, keyboard, bass, and he still read up a lot of books about music theories, styles. Juz went to the trip last time with him, he spent about RM300+++ for music books, i am grad and feel proud to be his student now. coz’ he is a great shifu, and will shapen your skills and music theory step by step with very well planed plan, to guide you from the bottom for knowing nothing to know something in music playing!!! and he is funny!! Never FEEL bored in his class!!!

FINALLY!!! I AM YOUR STUDENT NOW!!! HAHAHAHa..so happy!!!! MIC SHI FU

Testi
#Kooy Eng Yeow
in my mind, i feel tat mike is a damn funny guy!!! he makes me laugh, happy, n even sharing experiences!!!

1st time when i look at him, i so hate ‘her’ because i hate ‘him’!! ei… wat i said? ohoh.. like this la… when i met him the 1st time, i feel like he is a ‘nothing’!!! BUT when i start learning music from her, i feel tat he is a great person to me…!!! TRUE!!

so long with ‘her’, i feel tat he is an understanding person tat i ever had!! coz very little people can understand me! even my fren!

SO………! i will always put him in my heart, n cherish him in my life!!

“CUT!!! wat the…^&$&^()&$@#&^$_^&#^ “!!!!! WhY…*&%^%@#&#@!!!! ”

Testi
# Paul Ooi Cong Jen

Gosh! Me and Michael, we have the unusual relationship since year 1997, at first he was my accoustic guitar teacher, with his tramendous guidances, I become his electric guitar student, from Emil Chau to Beyond, Mr Big, Extreme, Paul Gilbert, XJapan, Nuno Bettencourt and etc…
We have the same common interest, which is listen to the best guitarist playing solo… HoHo… and finally Jason Mraz is from me 😛 From teacher to friend to business partner and now we are brother 🙂 Mike, I miss those day I am in Alor Setar!! All the best to you and UGLYMEN except the bassit la, always say he is handsome.. perasan

Testi
# Beh

Michael, how am I gonna write you? Okie, he is funny, he is nice, he is friendly…no it’s not the way, actually I learn from Michael, its do not judge ppl by the lOOKs. If you mee up mic you might think he is juz a fat guy with a blue color spec on his face. But when you see him with a guitar on….He rock your world up side down!! he is real ROCKER that can ROCK with his axe-GUITAR.
Hope I can be his student one day!!! Juz could not find the rite timin man…. You will be amazed by his guitar playing N of coz’ with his uglyband!!! and YES we are the BROHTER!!! ROckON!!

Testi
#Lim Hui Fenn

tIs gUItAr tEAchEr a. . .
I nOE hIm mOrE thEn A yEAr
sO , , , ,

hE Is A. . .
a)cUtE
b)fUnnY
c)wEIrd
d)nIcE
e)cOOl
f)hAppy-EAsy gO
g)kEEp blAmIng OthEr pEOplE whEn hE dO wrOng

kEEp On rOckIng In dE “UglymEn” bAnd la. . .
gOOd lUck

Testi
# Woon Wooi Min

Hmm… haha.. time to bomb you..
So sad I have to leave… :’-(
It’s very hard for me to say anything here, cos dono why, I feel like already
so get used to learn music with mike. Like if I fail to turn up, I will feel like missing part of my routine life (mike dont boi khiao ha!)
I’ve been learning for some years on and off, my work requires me flying everywhere.

Since everyone is talking about music here, let me talk on my experience with mike better here (hey dont think ehwai ehwai…)

I know mike when I first saw him play with his band in stadium putra 1999 (right boh???) I was there with my friends to watch a penang band, and mike represented kedah in the event. I came to know he is a music teacher after one of my friends told me bout him. As I was looking for a guitar teacher then.

my first impression was, can this guy really teach??? he is so silly and always siao siao one. but I was wrong. he is damn good. I dono how to say, but to me, learning some thing from a teacher is not how good the teacher is, but how comfortable you feel learning from the teacher.

I was very surprise to see mike is so siao in nature, but when it comes to work and music, he is always there to help, I dont think i wil ever learn from another teacher if I happen to hold the guitar again. I just dono how, but learning with mike to me is not only lessons, but is an experience.

I oso want to take this chance to say thank you to mike, when I was facing so much problem in work and life, he always listen to me, and some times we did not talk music for the whole lesson but he just gave me advice and remedies to my problems. mike is no longer my teacher, he is one of my best friends…
but mike seldom share his problem, maybe I oso can help one ma… hihi

good luck to you in your music career, hail the upcoming Uglymen!

i miss u.

Testi
# Cheng Heng Lih

Today’s guitar lesson, you said will teach me more songs before I go to university. I just feel sad, thinking how fast the time running. I have to stop my music lessons and continue my study at university 2 months later. I just hope I’ll learn guitar lesson a bit longer here, at Alsictry, until graduate. Ha…. but I can’t.

Well, two and a half years, since the first time I came to music system to continue my music lesson. For me, it is short. I wonder whether I make the right choice to continue music lesson here when I came to register as a student at the first time. But now, I keep asking myself why din’t I came earlier for musical lesson instead.

My first lesson at music system, when I was waiting for my lesson, a big handsome brother came in and said he will teach me. My first image of him is “siao siao” one, I even think that he is just a substitute teacher because he keep asking TAP FATT jokingly before came in: “Really ?! I’ll teach him loh! Not you ~! Really ?!”

For me, he is my best friend. For learning, he is my great teacher. That siao siao person….yeah….we call him “Michael”.

Well, you make me confident standing on stage. You always emphasize the feel of music, that’s why I always attracted to what you teach. I think I start to understand the real feeling on music that just you able to realize yourself. I appreciate what you teach and the experience you passed to me. It’s fun to learn music, really….

I like what Sze Rin had said :

“From his extraordinary eye, I can spy,
All the fun and glory that is hidden inside.”

“Skill and knowledge he will never hide,
Passing through the veins his experience glides.”

No much description, those words are all I wanna say. Not just me, I believe all Alsictry friends feel this way. Two years, I dare to tell you I’ve improved very well. Yeah …. because of our siao siao and modest teacher.

So…. please join me, to give a big clap to our superb Mike….

Testi
# Bong Sze Rin

In a blink of an eye,
Silently, time has passed by,
From his extraordinary eye, I can spy,
All the fun and glory that is hidden inside.

Friends and students of Alsictry,
There are times when we are blurry and dry,
He’ll come up with his usual power cry,
Which goes, “Don’t worry, just give your best shot and try.”

Striving for the better, day and night,
Skill and knowledge he will never hide,
Passing through the veins his experience glides,
For his rains of advises will never stop,
What a great teacher he has been like,
C’mon, give a big clap to our superb Mike.

Testi
# Ooi Chea Wei

“Well,i’ve been learning electric guitar for 1 year.Hmm…im very fortunate to hav Michael to teach me, he’s a briliant guitarist.Wht more can i say?He likes to share things he learnt and experience he gained with me,this is wht i like about him.He’s like a fren to me.

I started learning guitar since last year,influenced by my friend.When i was learning piano, i did find my interest in music.Then,when i started learning guitar,it opens my mind to a wider perspective of music.How?Get urself to learn some music then u’l know.

My passion for music grows day by day.But,unfortunately,now tht i’l be having STPM exam soon,i can’t put much time into guitar practise,this is wht i’ve been feeling sorry about.I plan to practise guitar and piano like hell after F6.And learn more music of course.

Actually Michael inspired me a lot ya know.I dono how to describe it,but he did
actually,ha…Well,wht more can i say here,almost out of words already.I never regret learning music,and im sure everyone who’s reading this agrees with me.

Last but not least, to Michael,i hope i never disappoint u throughout thr year i’ve been learning from u.

Testi
# Tan Seok Kheng

I have just started my lesson in Alsictry since last February, and have only gone through around 20 classes with Mike. But, have learned and gained really lots of knowledges, from music to life, from techniques to feel.

The unique “Hall of Fame” section is indeed a good motivation and healthy competition to all of his students. At least, to me! Although it sometimes do make me feel stressful and pressure, but it did inspire me to a greater level and higher achievement.

I really enjoyed every single lesson and public performance, and was so reluctant to stop at the end of this year but was forced to. Last but not least, Mike is not only a good teacher who always give me words of encouragement which come in very helpful and increase my passion for music, but also a good friend of mine as well. Thanks a billion…

Testi
# Lee Hooi Jin

Learning music here is very good, because i am very boring friday nite, bo peng iu ka wa siu lah…
sir very nice lah, afterwurds i say bad thing he potong my marks loh… hehehe… just kidding,
i learn guitar siok siok only, play myself hear nia…. anyway, good place to learn lah… 🙂

Testi
# Ooi Su Fern

School work is so tiring, if no learn music then cannot breathe already lah.
Why I learn with mike, because he is very patient loh, i am so lazy, look at my marks also pai se lah… but mike really good teacher. (^_^)

Testi
# Cheng Heng Lih

wakakakakakakkaka~

so i “graduate” again~
shit~
how many times i have to “graduate” from music system?
everytime stop lesson pun VERY TAK SIOK MAN~!

anyway i must thankyou, thanksyou N times,
Michael~
wakakakaka~
i having a good time there~ very siok learning
music from you~
everytime finish lesson, i feel myself improve
again, tat make me feels good~ and i appreciate
it, really, thanks~

and i’ll not stop learning, will b back to seeking
musical knowledge soon~

wakakakaka~
so lets laugh like wakakakakkakaka~
and see you la, miko~
take care~!!