Renowned Indonesian rockers Dewa 19 have announced they have found a new vocalist in veteran singer Marcello Tahitoe.
Ahmad Dhani of Dewa 19 has confirmed Tahitoe as the official new singer of the band, according to Billboard Indonesia‘s Adib Hidayat. He also mentioned that the band was looking to release material featuring former Dewa 19 vocalist Virzha, though Ahmad Dhani did not elaborate further.
Tahitoe also made an announcement on his official Instagram page on February 28, writing, “I never imagined I would have the chance to join Dewa 19. For a long time now, I’ve listened to and idolised their works.”
“Now I’ve gotten this chance. It feels like a dream. I know I cant replace all of the band’s previous vocalists, but I will give my best for this band,” he added.
Tahitoe’s manager Petra told Kompas.com that Ahmad Dhani has completed a new project that would showcase Tahitoe as the group’s official vocalist. “We’re just waiting for the release date,” he said, before adding that the singer was currently familiarising himself with the older songs in Dewa 19’s back catalogue so the group would be able to perform at a gig soon.
He also revealed Tahitoe had unofficially joined the band in October 2021, but it was only recently that Ahmad Dhani made the offer to appoint Tahitoe as the group’s official vocalist.
“He had joined them but wasn’t part of the Dewa 19 structure. He still continued on with his solo project, singing his own songs,” Petra elaborated. “He was like Pamungkas and Virzha. Till this point, he was just singing Dewa 19’s songs.”
Dewa 19 most recently released new recordings of their hits ‘Risalah Hati’ and ‘Kangen’ featuring singer-songwriter Yura Yunita back in July 2021. The two songs are expected to be part of a series of releases leading up to Dewa 19’s 30th-anniversary celebrations later this year.
Just a month before that in June 2021, Indonesian singer-songwriter Pamungkas released his own covers of Dewa 19’s ‘Risalah Hati’ and ‘Pupus’. Dewa 19 also in turn released an official cover of Pamungkas’ ‘To The Bone’.