P Ramlee Memorial

Kuala Lumpur

The brief life of P Ramlee, the charismatic singer, actor and movie director who was Malaysia's biggest star in the 1950s, is chronicled at this small museum, a short taxi ride north of Titiwangsa. The modest bungalow Ramlee shared with his wife, Saloma, has been remodelled to incorporate displays about the 250-plus songs and 66 movies he starred in, along with personal items such as handwritten lyrics and his piano.

Ramlee may be a legend today, with a road named after him in Kuala Lumpur, but when he died in 1973 from a heart attack aged only 44 he was reportedly penniless, his style of music and movies having gone out of vogue. His final song, and the title of an unmade movie, was Air Mata di Kuala Lumpur (Tears of Kuala Lumpur), its melancholic lyrics reflecting Ramlee's feelings of failure and loss. His grave lies beside that of Saloma in the Muslim Cemetery.

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