Indonesia rock band swept off stage by tsunami

Likely the only surviving member of the Indonesian rock bank Seventeen, he covers his face with his hands, wipes the tears from his eyes and fidgets with his hair, trying to hold it together to speak into the camera about what happened on the night of December 22.

Lead vocalist, Riefian “Ifan” Fajarsyah asked for prayers for the deceased and for the missing, among them were his wife, actress Dylan Sahara, guitarist Herman Sikumbang and drummer Windu Andi Darmawan. 

A video of the moment when a wave from a tsunami swept members of Seventeen off the stage during a live performance on Tanjung Lesung beach in Banten Province has surfaced. The footage shows a traumatic reaction with screams from the audience as the stage was washed away while the band played.

Members of the band and their crew lost their lives. Bassist Muhammad Awal Purbani, their manager Oki Wijaya, and guitarist Herman Sikumbang have since been reported dead. Hundreds of people have died and well over a thousand have been injured in the Anak Karakatau tsunami.

Fajarsyah posted a note on his Instagram account in Indonesian, updating everyone on what has happed to date.

Bani was buried at 1pm in Gamping, Herman was buried today at Tidore, Oki was buried at 4pm in Krapyak [and] Ujang was buried this afternoon in Ciledug,” he said. The quote is a translation from SCS News, Australia.

That’s four members of the band’s crew so far. 

Sikumbang’s profile has already been updated on Wikipedia. 

The tragic event took place on the coastal areas near Sunda Strait between Sumatra and Java. 

The tsunami struck almost without warning as it was foreshadowed by spewing ash since the summer and a tsunami in September. On Saturday, the Anak Karakatau volcano on the Krakatoa island chain triggered an underwater landslide that sent giant tidal waves crashing into the coastal areas.

Seventeen video Jangan Dulu Pergi (Never Go Away), like Kemarin, another song about saying goodbye, is about someone not wanting to be left behind.

by Cherryl Bird – Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Twitter @ladycbird | Instagram @cherrylbird

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