Jazzuality.com – Indonesian Jazz News http://jazzuality.com Get Your Daily Dose of Jazz! Fri, 20 May 2016 09:04:21 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.5.2 Grace Sahertian: HELA ‘Tracing Back the Roots’ Concert: The Report http://jazzuality.com/jazz-event-report/grace-sahertian-hela-tracing-back-the-roots-concert-the-report/ http://jazzuality.com/jazz-event-report/grace-sahertian-hela-tracing-back-the-roots-concert-the-report/#respond Fri, 20 May 2016 08:58:44 +0000 http://jazzuality.com/?p=16796 GraceSahertian-HELAThe length of Grace Sahertian‘s music career is about the same as ours. We have been following her since we were born and became friends with her through the years. We knew her as a soulful singer with deep passion in jazz, as she shown in her first band, Palm From Moodytunes. From there, we saw another milestone of her when she teamed up with the young guitarist now riding his international fame, Tesla Manaf, digging the jazz-coated world music. This duo managed to release one album. At around the same time, Grace also involved in an urban soul group, Circle O’Fifth, and joined the group from Depok, Margo Rising Stars.

In 2011 we heard about her taking another big decision, pursuing a solo career. It shouldn’t be difficult for someone her caliber, but she took this very seriously. Instead of rushing, as a true artist (she is also a reputable fiber artist outside music and currently works as the lecturer of Faculty of Fine Arts and Design majoring craft textiles and fashion), she took time, searching her inner self to find out what she really wanted.

GraceSahertian-Hela (1)Now finally the album has come out. With the title “HELA”, Grace Sahertian opens up her heart, mind and soul, using the album as a reflection of her 10 years journey. As an evidence, we could listen to variety of styles through 8 tracks, from soul, gospel, blues, jazz to world music, which are painted throughout her career. The album is expressive and artistic, but also easy to listen and to love. Even more, tracing back her roots, where the Sahertian family name came from and interestingly the nearly extinct language of Yamdena from the island of Maluku. You can read our review of this album here: http://jazzuality.com/album-reviews/grace-sahertian-hela-tracing-back-the-roots/

Grace wished to make the launching of her debut grand. So, she held this special concert at the auditorium of Institut Français Indonesia (IFI) Bandung on May 14, 2016. Choosing this venue is good, since this place seems to bring good fortune to artists who perform there. Just to remind you, Tulus actually launched his debut album with a special concert also in here 3 years ago. From here, he rose to fame and stands as one of the top stars today in Indonesia. Now it’s Tulus’ friend, Grace Sahertian to walk this path, may Grace follow his footsteps.

GraceSahertian-Hela-GindaBestari (1)All the tickets were sold out even long before the concert started. There were many faild to get the ticket, so they had to stay outside or went home. Inside the auditorium  all seat were taken by friends, family and fans. As the opening act, Grace featured one of the frontliners in Indonesia’s blues scene today, a remarkably talented young man named Ginda Bestari. Earlier last year he also released a critical acclaimed, most anticipated album titled “Soulful Desire” with super team including veterans Yance Manusama and Harry Anggoman, senior drummer Rayendar Sunito also featuring Yura Yunita in one track.

Ginda performed all by himself, giving a strong blues painting on stage. Playing a set of songs including his own from “Soulful Desire” titled “Free Your Mind”, he demonstrated how strong the blues runs inside his veins. Remarkable guitar playing and singing. Ginda is a real bluesman, but he has been living inside the jazz scene as well, as seen in how good he scat in unison with his guitar the way George Benson loves to do.

GraceSahertian-Hela-(18)After a hot opening, the main concert was directly began. The eerie music filled the pitch black hall. Theoresia Rumthe, one of the vocals stood up from the audience’s seat and narrated the opening. “I am Sahertian. Sahertian came from the words ‘Sei Heri Tiane’, which means ‘rowing passed the enemy’. Hela is a story of life, that I will tell to everyone who listen.” she said on behalf of Grace.

Then the stage light began to shine. Grace was there with the band: Rayhan Sudrajat (guitar), Gantira Sena (drums), Omega Touselak and Faishal (keys & Synth bass), and Puspallia Panggabean as the back vocal. This song is written in Yamdena language, a very old language from the east west of Maluku that took us into a journey of tracing back her roots. Without any stop, Grace carried on with “Freedom”, a song in black gospel blues and soul nuance that captures the feeling of recollection, repression, pain, unfairness, being chained until a shout of hope. Painful but not hopeless.

GraceSahertian-Hela (6)Grace then took one song not from the album but from her collaborative time with AJ the Real titled “Deep Down Inside”. This nice ballad was written in 2012. Then Grace sang her favorite from the album, “Picture Me”. A beautiful cellist who also plays for Bandung Philharmonic, Mega Ariani joined the team on this one and created much deeper feel through her play.

GraceSahertian-Hela (7)The hall turned to totally dark again. Theoresia Rumthe spoke a poetic opening for the carrier single, “Diam”. Slowly she walked towards Grace along with other singers: Puspallia Panggabean, Eka Karya, Ayub Jonn and  Johanes Fayakun. This acapella song interestingly appeared by having the choir scattered among the audience before they gathered in front, under the stage with Grace. They did a very beautiful work on vocal harmony.

The next song was “Da Di De”, presented really different than the album version. “Thanks to Tesla who rearranged this song for this concert”, said Grace. If in the album “Da Di De” was built within the blending of power nu metal/alternative rock and hiphop like Linkin’ Park, this time the song appeared much softer in acoustic style. Which one is better? We say, both work perfectly.

GraceSahertian-Hela (13)After that, Grace sang the only coversong in the concert, from Alanis Morissette’s “Jagged Little Pill” album in 1995, “Hand in My Pocket.” The arrangement of this song was unique, because it digged the dramatic side of it through melody, harmony and dynamic.

GraceSahertian-Hela (10)Rayhan then kept his guitar aside for a while and played saluang, the traditional West Sumatra bamboo flute. Just like in the album, it was used as the opening of “Sun of Hope”, the only song with world music ambience in Hela. This song wich has a strong African rhythm not only felt like taking us into the dark, vast rainforest deep down in Africa but also inspirational. As she always loves to be connected to the earth and beautiful nature as a part of the universe, this epic song depicts it in the most graceful way.

GraceSahertian-Hela (15)As the last song, Grace invited everyone to dance with a Motown-feel song, “Better to Love”. In this song Grace introduced all the bands and singers one by one and had them showcase their thing. In the end, Grace got standing applause from most of the audience. It was a blast!

Grace Sahertian’s “HELA” concert was made really cool. Well prepared and nicely executed. For anyone who came to this concert, they will know that the album actually contains so many interesting stuffs and could perfectly work as a window to know Grace and what she has in her mind, heart and soul.”I still can’t believe it! I’m speechless”, said Grace to us after the concert.  We know how hard she works for this, with all the ups and downs and struggles. It’s really not easy for her passing through a long and winding road, but now it’s all paid off. It’s going to be interesting to see her career being developed after this. We are really happy for Grace.

GraceSahertian-Hela (16)A gorgeous album that has strong spirit and really, really artistic is up for grab. Support her by buying the album. Congratulations Grace! We wish you the best in your new chapter.

See more pictures:

Reporter: Riandy Kurniawan
Photographer: Mia Damayanti Sjahir

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Bumi Sangkuriang Jazz Night #5 : The Report http://jazzuality.com/jazz-event-report/bumi-sangkuriang-jazz-night-5-the-report/ http://jazzuality.com/jazz-event-report/bumi-sangkuriang-jazz-night-5-the-report/#respond Mon, 16 May 2016 05:53:44 +0000 http://jazzuality.com/?p=16768 BumiSangkuriangJazzNight5Bumi Sangkuriang Jazz Night began its service since January 2016 with a simple intention, to bring jazz back home. We had that intention in mind because jazz has been written inside this old building with vintage, grandeur ballroom since it was built in 1957. Several jazz communities events were found in some periods, most notably in 1981, 2008 and 2010 by different organizers/curators. After several years in silence, Jazzuality.com partnering with the pioneer of jazz school in Bandung, the Venche Music School (VMS) is giving the regular community event a rebirth, naming it Bumi Sangkuriang Jazz Night. So far we have done 4 editions with good progress. We are getting many possitive feedback and input, also supports from more parties. This of course stimulates us to run this event the best we can.

Here we come to the Bumi Sangkuriang Jazz Night episode #5. In this edition we once again combined the experienced and iconic jazz musician from Jakarta with the best local talents. From Jakarta we got the ‘El Montuno’ who has embraced this rhytmical Cuban music for over 20 years, Rio Moreno. Then from our own city, a female duo Puspa Sekar filled the ballroom with beautiful swing and 5th Avenue was just awesome, combining jazz, rock and soul into tight lite fusion/smooth jazz.

BumiSangkuriangJazzNight5-5thAvenue (2)We decided to give a high energy start with 5th Avenue. We got to know them since 2 years ago and have been having them in our events ever since. They got the consolation prize at the Jazz Goes to Campus 2014, but the guitarist won The Best Guitarist for the same competition. This brought them to perform at this annual festival, successfully dragged hundreds of people to their show.

For this performance 5th Avenue consisted of original members: Chris Alfeus (guitar), Stella Inke (piano), the new recruitment from last year Ilham Septia Inda Nugraha (bass) and three fresh mates: Kevin Jonathan (guitar), Andi Pramudito (drums) and Budy Prama Dongoran (saxophone).

For the first time we saw them playing nothing but original songs. The melodious “I Found You” was first, followed with “Damn I’m Falling” and “Sweet Thought”. From one song to another they managed to play tight as a team without leaving the moment to shine when each of them got the chance to run in front.

BumiSangkuriangJazzNight5-5thAvenue (4)For the last presentation they gave our favorite from their compositions, “Centrifugal Degree”. Knowing that they reached the end, they all released every bit of energy they had left. Stunning jazz guitar playing by Chris, the wild rock roar from Kevin Jonathan, sharp funklines from Ilham, the delicate sax-attax by Budy, power beat from Andi and attractive Stella’s finger-dancing above the keys. Funky but also smooth, relaxing but challenging, full of action.

“Having new players will give us the chance to have new colors. That makes us exicted!” said Chris to us before the gig. They have been having more than just guitar and piano in front from time to time since the band was formed, but of course having new players with their own styles will create something different. Yet again, the signature music of 5th Avenue that we know was still well kept. This band really know how to give one delightful package which seems to be simple but has all the excitement in each song. Clean, neat and tight, they surely satisfied everyone, from fanatic jazz fans to the common listeners.

BumiSangkuriangJazzNight5-PuspaSekar (1)The second session belong to Puspa Sekar, the combination of beauties courtesy of Puspallia Panggabean (vocal) and Dyah Sekar (piano). Both of them have made remarkable impacts in Bandung music (jazz) scene. Puspallia existed in several bands including the stunning Gypsy swing Satura and the Malaysian-Indonesian interplanetary fusion jazz band, OCD and now is getting more chances performing in Jakarta among the greats, while Dyah Sekar is known in two all-ladies bands: Jazzy Juice and SHE. Not long ago they found a reason to collaborate. Mainly to play children songs, but soon after they realize that they actually could go further in exploring the jazz world.

Like two flowery fairies they sprinkled the magic dust and charmed everyone right from the start. With “Alice in Wonderland” as the opening, Puspall and Dyah directly introduced everyone to their different music profile, which is rooted in the combination of jazz, classical and some Broadway-ish music and theatrical gestures. They pinned a famous song of The Carpenters from 1973 which was written two years earlier for Sesame Street, “Sing”. What’s interesting is how they managed to keep the sweetness in a brand new arrangement including the progression of the notes. Chants and applause were heavily given to them.

BumiSangkuriangJazzNight5-PuspaSekar (9)It seemed that they were like tributing Disney films and songs for children, the third song was a ‘forgotten’ classic from Mary Poppins the movie, “Chim Chim Cher-ree”. Again, a beautiful rendition that was felt as good as how Julie Andrews did it in the movie. Then for the last song, Puspa Sekar sang a medley of “Cruella de Vil”, a signature song of Disney’s “101 Dalmatians” (1961) and Fats Waller’s “Honeysuckle Rose” (1934). As listed, there are 27 years difference between these songs, but they made a seamless composition as if it was one song. One final appreciation was given to them from the audience, loud and long.

Puspa Sekar is still new in the scene. But since they are individually well experienced and really gifted, they can create a solid team as if they have been doing it for years. For us who have known their journey for at least the last 5 years, it feels refreshing to watch them and even more, they surprised us with their candy sweet, expressive, theatrical, jazzclassical with poetic gestures. Charming, unique, the concept is not easy to execute but it isn’t difficult at all to enjoy. The combination of flawless jazz vocalist and cheerful jazz pianist is perfect, especially since they are both creative and talented. Such an enchanting duo of flower fairies, this collaboration will surely beautify the jazz scene.

BumiSangkuriangJazzNight5-RioMoreno-VMSRhythmSection (17)For the final presentation we invited Rio Moreno to take over the stage. As we mentioned before, Rio Moreno embraces jazz-flavored Latins, from samba, bossa, salsa, chacha, especially the wonderful, rhytmic Cuban son (music) like no other here in Indonesia. He rose to fame when he established a multi-colored jazz band Cherokee around one and a half decades ago. He already showed his passion in this music since then, said to be inspired by mostly Michel Camilo and Arturo Sandoval. One of his own composition listed in Cherokee album titled “El Montuno” became his nick name. Just two years ago he released his solo album under the same title, consisting of 8 original compositions. The album is available at our online store: http://store.jazzuality.com/product/rio-moreno-el-montuno/.

Supporting him for tonight were two young boys under the name of VMS Rhythm Section: Ezra Manuhutu (bass) and Alman Naufal (drum). Stating that he could only practice with the boys only once, just a couple of hours before the event started, Rio decided to go swingin’ with standards but of course without leaving his Montuno. “Blues for Elise” turned the audience to feel a vintage romantic night.  Such mood was well kept with “All the Things You Are” and two Walt Disney’s theme songs, Pinocchio’s “When You Wish Upon a Star” and Snow White’s “Someday My Prince Will Come.”

BumiSangkuriangJazzNight5-RioMoreno-VMSRhythmSection (13)One of the audience then shouted, “sing!” Rio was surprised and said, “Sing? Are you sure?” only to get more approval from the audience. He sang “Sabor a Mi” , a famous Mexican song composed by Alvaro Carrillo which brought popular by trio Los Panchos many decades ago. “This is a song my father used to sing,” he said. FYI, his father, Rudy Rusadi was a famous Latin singer, mostly known with his group, Los Morenos whom career stood around 50 years.

Rio continued to play solo. The next song was “Indonesia Pusaka” which brilliantly played in Montuno style, in medley with children song “Balonku”. He went back to swing with Alman and Ezra on “On Green Dolphin Street”, then sang “It Might Be You” originally sang by Stephen Bishop for 1982 movie, Tootsie.

BumiSangkuriangJazzNight5-RioMoreno-VMSRhythmSection (11)A bossa classic from Jobim’s collection, “Só Danço Samba” came right after. Alman did well in giving rich bossa beat which was close to samba. Rio said thank you to everyone still staying in the ballroom, but then agreed to give one short encore, “Fly Me to the Moon.”

Indonesia is blessed to have so many remarkable jazz pianists throughout the years, but not many actually digs Cuban son Montuno like Rio Moreno. He captures the simultaneously pianistic and percussive rhytmic pattern of Montuno as if he was born there in its origin. Since Rio is also a music teacher, he knows how to utilize the two younger compatriotes to build each composition with sparkling energy. In this event Rio showed his swing side with the two boys, but also took us into the enchanting, exotic side of Latin jazz we don’t get to find every day. Splendid.

BumiSangkuriangJazzNight5-Tidbits (3)So that’s how it went. It’s wonderful to see this event grows up until now. We thank the partners, supporters, the loyal audience, new attendance, the board of Bumi Sangkuriang, playing musicians and everyone else who are with us.

Since next month we are going to enter the fasting month, this event will be paused too until further announcement. We will keep you updated.


We still have many plans for this Bumi Sangkuriang Jazz Night, hope we can make each of them happen. One thing for sure, we are doing our best to shine this vintage ballroom shine bright again with jazz. Keep swingin’ and boppin’, we will see you again on the next episode!

Special thanks to: Classoundsation, Ron88, Music Gear, Tiga Negeri, AB Production, Ultima Music Indonesia, Pikiran Rakyat, 106,7 Mara FM, Roemah Enak Enak

See more pictures:

Reporter: Riandy Kurniawan
Photographer: Titus Firmanto

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Braga Jazz Walk #23 http://jazzuality.com/jazz-events/braga-jazz-walk-23/ http://jazzuality.com/jazz-events/braga-jazz-walk-23/#respond Thu, 12 May 2016 14:41:39 +0000 http://jazzuality.com/?p=16770 bragajazzwalk23-posterIn each and every of our event we always give our best in fulfilling our mission, presenting multi coloured jazz, played by variety of artists. From kids to seniors, the newcomers to experienced musicians, local, national and even international players, we are more than happy to have them to have fun on our stage.

For a year and a half we have stretched the boundaries, welcoming all genre of music have graced our stage with their music as long as they hold ‘jazz by spirit’ inside their mind. What also makes us proud is the fact that the jam session has been included ever since. The Braga Jazz Walk as the fruit of solid cooperation between us Jazzuality.com, Braga CityWalk and KPH Music provides a fun and friendly playground for just about anyone to play on. Now runs on the third Thursday of each month, we feature 4 bands/groups/soloists in each edition.

nadine, nadine adrianna trio, little wonder girl, little jazz band leader

And here we come to Braga Jazz Walk #23, ready to launch on May 19, 2016. First of all, let’s talk about Nadine Adrianna. She is a magical little girl, still 9 years old but full of jazz spirit. Nadine is already motivated in responding her passion in Jazz ever since she began performing in front of public; at this very stage last year in 12th edition (http://jazzuality.com/jazz-event-report/braga-jazz-walk-12-the-report/). From there she gained more and more appearance, playing in community events and other events, including a surprising appearance at the 61th Asian-African Conference which brought her to receive a Token of Appreciation from Directorate General of Information and Public Diplomacy of Ministry of Foreign Affairs Republic of Indonesia. She played in front of the world leaders and wowed them with her genius jazz playing.

She played solo for quite some times while still learning with some marvelous teachers, from Yahya Salam to now Imam Pras. Last September we encouraged her to take the next higher step, establishing her own group and wrote her own compositions. It didn’t take long for her to do so, as now she already has her own trio called Nadine Adrianna Trio (featuring her papa Boy Krisna on bass and Rizky Augustian on drums). She now has two original compositions: “Night Jams” and “Wayne Street”, inspired by the living jazz legend, Wayne Shorter.

She is still delighted to attend any jazz events everywhere as much as possible. She is still eagerly learning new things from many sources, including or especially Youtube, finding the songs that she likes, switch the songs to her jazz style and then plays them. With more enhanced skills especially her delightful comping, she is the new Joey Alexander as far as we see. Tell us, how often do you see a 9 year-old child leading her own band? Nadine is magic. Cant wait to see her and her trio!

dhani syah, dhani syah trio, the jongens quartet

This time we are proud to welcome a great jazz pianist from Jakarta, Dhani Syah and his brand new band, Dhani Syah Trio. As probably some of you have already known, Ramadhani Syah Warongan, his complete name, is a member of successful jazz band, The Jongens Quartet with Johanes Radianto, Dony Sundjoyo and his brother Elfa Zulham. Born in Makassar, he began his musical step with a simple keyboard at his home. He became more and more interested in piano and jazz especially after listening to some giants like Wynton Kelly, John Coltrane, Charlie Parker and Miles Davis.

Dhani took his passion in music seriously. He went to pursue his formal study abroad. He finished his under-graduate degree at the Prins Claus Conservatorium in Groningen, Netherland. During this time he featured on saxophonist Kestutis Vaiginis Quartet’s album “Gypsy Nature”, touring to Birtonas, Vinus and Palanga, Lithuania and awarded “The Artistry of Dick Oatts and Young Jazz Musician.” He also became the member of Re-Bop Unit, a jazz group comprised of selected multi-national students by Dick Oatts himself. In order to promote the album, they also visited Bucharest, Arad, Cluj, Timisoara, Romania, Amsterdam, Assen, Den Haag and of course the home base Groningen.

This young man with illustrious career studies piano under the guidance of phenomenal teachers including Jasper Soffer, Marc Van Roon, David Berkman, Indra Lesmana, Tjut Nyak Deviana Daudsjah, Aksan Sjuman, Michael Moore, Elena Mlainova, Steve Altenberg, Joris Teepe, Ralph Peterson, Alex Spiagin, Freddie Bryant, Deanda DeRose, Kurt Weiss, Brian Lynch, Don Braden, Mark Gross just to name a few.

Other than his important role in The Jongens Quartet, Dhani has made some interesting project like Duo Project with his buddy Johanes Radianto and currently busy with establishing his own band, Dhani Syah Trio. Besides performing and composing, he also shares his knowledge as a teacher at Universitas Pelita Harapan, Conservatory of Music. He came to perform at our other event, Bumi Sangkuriang Jazz Night ep #04 (http://jazzuality.com/jazz-event-report/bumi-sangkuriang-jazz-night-4-the-report/) but now he is ready to show his new ideas with Dhani Syah Trio. For this Bandung gig, he is going to bring two local players who are often supporting us by the name of VMS Rhythm Section: Aries Ardiansyah (bass) and Alman Naufal (drums). Surely this would be a golden chance for jazz musicians in Bandung especially pianists to learn something from him, while of course the entertaining factor is guaranteed.

estuning, acoustic guitar duo

We proudly presents two best friends in a group called Estuning. This guitar duo was established based on friendship and their hobby to play guitar together. The name was built from their initials: ‘E’ from Erick S. Mildan and ‘S’ from Suey (Alsa T. Putra). Then they added ‘tuning’. So, Estuning means the harmonization of guitar tunes courtesy of Erick and Suey.

What’s unique is that each of them has different style and background. Erick is more to Classic Rock and Blues, while Suey is into Romance Classical and Smooth Jazz. Combining these genres isn’t easy, but from two samples they gave us, they did really well in creating new musical atmosphere by such fine blend. They even infuse some ethnic musics too inside some of their repertoires. We have invited some great acoustic guitar duos with their own flavors like Satura and Gigitaran, now we are going to have another signature being added to this event, courtesy of two young guns as Estuning. Different color, different nuance, different sensation.

izky mudza

We invite again a charismatic young man who plays guitar and sings. His name is Rizky Ahmad Mudzakir, better known as Izky Mudza. He embraces blues as his core, and because of that it’s natural for him to get into rock, alternative and jazz.

Izky plays guitar and sings at the same time. He can write songs and arrange too. Currently he’s working on his debut mini album, with one single titled “Buatku Gila” (“Making me Crazy”) that is doing pretty well in some radio stations. Other than the important aspects such as ability to sing, playing guitar/instrument, write song and lead, he has the originality, charm and charisma. So, having passion, skill and the X factors should make him a complete package that could bring him into success.

For this edition he is going to perform in the formation of four. Other than himself on guitar and vocal, he is bringing his team mates including Praditio (guitar), Ginanjar Arif (drums) and a bassist, yet to be confirmed. He needs to work only three more songs to complete his mini album. Let’s wish him luck and support his appearance in this edition.

Jam session will be available as usual after all the featured bands made their appearance. Either you’re a musician  or singer, a pro or just hobby, you can always join the party. Let us know that you wish to play, we will gladly provide so. Many musicians from amateur to pro have tasted the fun, pleasuring jam session on this very stage. No need to be shy, make yourself feel like home on it.

The Braga Jazz Walk #23 will come on May 19th, 2016 starting at 7:00 pm onwards. This event is totally FREE of charge. Other than getting the jazztertainment, you can also involve yourself in. Come, bring your friends and family, have a good time with us.

Braga Jazz Walk #23

Date: Thursday, May 19, 2016
Time: 07:00 – 10:00 pm
Location: Braga CityWalk
Jl. Braga 99 – 101, Bandung



Dhani Syah – piano
Aries Ardiansyah – contrabass
Alman Naufal – drums

Nadine Adrianna – piano
Boy Krisna – bass
Rizky Augustian – drums

Izky Mudza – guitar, vocals
Praditio – guitar
Ginanjar Arif – drums
… – bass

Erick S Mildan (Eik) – acoustic guitar
Alsa T Putra (Suey) – acoustic guitar

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North Sumatra Jazz Festival 2016: The Report http://jazzuality.com/jazz-event-report/north-sumatra-jazz-festival-2016-the-report/ http://jazzuality.com/jazz-event-report/north-sumatra-jazz-festival-2016-the-report/#respond Thu, 12 May 2016 07:51:16 +0000 http://jazzuality.com/?p=16774 northsumatrajazzfestival2016The ‘Rock City’ Medan once again showed its fangs. And they are really sharp and sparkling. Entering its 6th edition of the festival, North Sumatra Jazz Festival 2016 (NSJF 2016) still upholds the pure idealism of the festival’s frontman, Erucakra Mahameru. We still remember what he said in the first edition of the festival. Not only he dreamt to bring a special celebration of jazz into the city where rich diversity of cultures exists, he always tries to keep the international standard by careful selection of lineup.

By cooperating for the 6th time with indiejazzINDONESIA/Dion Momongan, this year, aside the return of South Korea’s Phil Yoon Group, he remarkably brought the jazz icon Jeff Lorber in his first collaboration with all Indonesian jazz sensations; Dwiki Dharmawan, Barry Likumahuwa, Echa Soemantri, Ricad Hutapea and Erucakra Mahameru himself. Other than that, the apperearance of superband Krakatau Reunion erupted the festival with joy. And the homeband Erucakra Mahameru C Man Band again proved that they are the undisputed jazz leader of the city.

NSJF2016-PressConference (3)
At the press conference held in Convention Lobby, Santika Hotel, Jeff Lorber said that he’s never been to a regional jazz festival with such standards and well organized as NSJF. Another highlight attended the conference too, Krakatau Reunion in full team. Indra Lesmana, Dwiki Dharmawan, Pra Budiharma, Donny Suhendra, Gilang Ramadhan and Trie Utami were all there. With the failed reunion plan in 2013 under the name Krakatau Kembali Satu which was taken from one of their hit singles, this third and most successful formation finally landed big on Medan.

NSJF2016-PhilYoonGroup (6)The festival began sailing with Phil Yoon Group. This year’s formation consists of Phil Yoon (drums), Lee Jong Won (sax), Lee Myoung Gun (piano), Heo Jin Ho (bass) plus a female vocalist, Ahhye Cho. The first song they played was “Joshua” (written by Victor Feldman) in Phil Yoon’s arrangement,  then three of Phil Yoon’s compositions; EJ (Homage to Elvin Jones), “Sorrowness” and “The Ride”.

NSJF2016-PhilYoonGroup (4)Along with the lovely female singer, they delivered their vocal rendition of the classic jazz hits such as “Fly Me to the Moon”, “Over the Rainbow”, “Lullaby of Birdland” and then ended with “Can’t Take My Eyes Off You”.

In the midst of K-Pop invading the world, it’s just refreshing to see jazz appear grand too from South Korea. We are also happy to see how Erucakra and Phil Yoon keep supporting each other since last year. We enjoyed their music and action. A fine blend between challenging, playful and beautiful jazz performance. Kamsahamnida!

NSJF2016-JeffLorber-AllStars (1)The all-stars collaboration soon took place. It was between one of the pioneers of jazz fusion, Jeff Lorber with heavy artillery: Erucakra Mahameru (guitar), Dwiki Dharmawan (keyboard), Ricad Hutapea (saxophone), Echa Soemantri (drums) and Barry Likumahuwa (bass).

This amazing team played Lorber’s hits from his wonderful years of career especially with his famous Jeff Lorber Fusion like from his third album as the band leader released in 1979: “Toad’s Place” and “Tune 88”, “Hudson” from 2007’s “He Had a Hat”, “Chinese Medicinal Herbs” from “Now is the Time” album (2010), the title-track of his Grammy nominated album in 2013, “Hacienda”, and two songs from 2011 album “Galaxy”: “Montserrat” and the one with Indonesian title, “Singaraja”.

NSJF2016-JeffLorber-AllStars (9)In this song, Ricad Hutapea did very well in substituting the role of Eric Marienthal (and Randy Brecker) in the album. Barry Likumahuwa’s funklines were just as infectious as always, Echa Soemantri demonstrated neat funky jazz drumming and the senior players like Dwiki Dharmawan and Erucakra knew exactly how to spice things up. They got loud pops many times from the crowds.

Jeff Lorber told us he was happy to join this year’s lineup in Medan, the city he visited for the very first time. Speaking of his team mates, he said: “They are skillful and cool.” He also stated that he never played with them before. Well, Dwiki once worked his album in Lorber’s studio, but at that time he only participated as the sound engineer. “We only rehearsed once, but I feel satisfied with the result.” he added. Finally, he wishes NSJF the best. May the festival keep running and have more international artists. It’s not everyday for Medan jazz lovers to have a visit from legendary jazz giant like him. Thanks to NSJF, it finally happened.

NSJF2016-ErucakraCManBand (1)The next performer the pride of the city, Erucakra Mahameru C Man. With the recent formation consists of Erucakra himself in lead guitars and vocals, Brian Harefa (saxophone), Radhian Syuhada (bass), Heri Syahputra (keyboard/synthesizer) and Rusfian Karim (drums), Erucakra C Man explored more of Sumatra’s regional cultures,  from Omar Yusuf’s special Atjeh traditional vocal performance backed by Radhian in Atjeh traditional backing vocals to Nias island traditional singing style courtesy of Brian Harefa.

4 compositions of Erucakra C Man were on including the new ones: “Crossing the Borderline” with (with Hoho, Nias’ traditional music as the overture), “Hom Hom” (Rapai Atjeh collaboration) by Omar, “Hold On” and the wild-ride track “Balap Liar”.

NSJF2016-ErucakraCManBand (5)Since Erucakra wished to include the rich Sumatra heritage inside the festival in every edition, the role of his band becomes really vital. Naturally jazz would absorb the specific music wherever it lands. This year jazz was fusing with Atjeh and Nias Island’s traditional music. Erucakra C Man band gave out a mind-bending world jazz fusion inside a challenging NeoProgressive Jazz corridor that should stun those who came to the show.

NSJF2016-Krakatau-Reunion (1)As usual when we have fun, time seems to run faster than we hope. It was almost midnight already, but the hall just got even hotter by the most awaited performance this year, the Krakatau Reunion.

Started with the name “Mesopotamia” at the Concordia Hall of Bumi Sangkuriang in Bandung in the mid 80’s, this band rose to fame under the name of Krakatau after their winning performance at Yamaha Bands Explotion in Japan. The third formation then became a milestone in Indonesian music history. Donny Suhendra (guitar), Dwiki Dharmawan (keyboard), Gilang Ramadhan (drum), Indra Lesmana (keyboard), Pra Budidharma (bass) and Trie Utami (vocal) went on producing so many songs that instantly became hits which amazingly still popular until now.

NSJF2016-Krakatau-Reunion (18)They managed to sell more than 5 million copies only within 3 years, Their music style was unique. On stage they were against the main stream, tough, explosive, powerful with many magic moments, playing sharp jazz with thick rock nuances in the layers. But in recordings they knew how to make it more ‘pop’, yet without having to loose the identity and true-self of Krakatau. This formula worked really well in placing them as legendary supergroup. But then the personnels parted ways. Some of them still kept the band alive, transforming the band into more ethniques especially the West Javanese, but this famous formation hibernated for 25 years.

Then in 2013 they gave shocking announcement about their return. Three years passed, this Krakatau Reunion is still solid, even stronger than ever. The players are not young anymore, but they are still filled with the same spirit and power just like two and a half decades ago.

Krakatau Reunion started with Indra Lesmana’s composition from their first album in 1987, “Passport”, followed by “Ironis” (Indra Lesmana, Dwiki Dharmawan and Mira Lesmana) from their 2nd album (1988), “Kemelut” (1987), and “Perjalanan” from “Kembali Satu” album (1989). The well known smooth jazz hits “Haiti” from the first album then brought the audience to a nostalgic moment, followed by Trie Utami presented their new single “Aku Kamu Kita” which will be included in the upcoming 2016 album set to be released later this year.

NSJF2016-Krakatau-Reunion (17)This special performance continued on with one of their most famous singles from the second album, “La Samba Primadona” which brought an action-packed duel between  Indra and Dwiki, followed by Gilang Ramadhan’s magical solo drum performance. Still having his special skills after all these years, Gilang’s solo performance delivered another Krakatau’s best “Kau Datang” from 1989. The single that brought Krakatau to stardom, “Gemilang” then brought the audience dancing and singing together. The atmosphere was unbelievable.

As predicted, the audience didn’t want to release them that easy. As an encore, a slow beat hit “Sekitar Kita” from their last album in 1992 , “Let There be Life.” What a moment, what a show, what an experience. All are unforgettable. And, what a way to close the festival.

NSJF2016-Krakatau-Reunion (16)There are many reasons why we take this edition as the best so far. First, the number of attendace rose dramatically. Many came late, but in the end it was solid full house until the end. Then the sound and acoustics of the hall was also way better than before. the world-class quality was found in each session, the rundown built up perfect dynamics, that should also be taken as the reasons. The participation of super jazz star from USA and Korea, the memorable huge blast from a supergroup, all created multi-eruptions that made this edition stood in different league.

North Sumatra acting governor Tengku Erry Nuradi came, gave a speech and then took picture with Krakatau Reunion showed how the local government support this festival. And thanks to the expressive, happening crowds, the North Sumatra Jazz Festival 2016 reached a huge success.

On behalf of everyone in Jazzuality.com, we congratulate Erucakra Mahameru, WEM, indiejazzINDONESIA and everyone behind the event for one amazing edition. It will be hard to beat, but we have no doubt you guys know what to do for next year. We are always proud to support you, a festival that’s not only presenting world-class quality of jazz and its varieties but also care of the local wisdom and our rich cultural heritage including traditional music. Keep it up, look forward to see you again in 2017!

See more pictures:

Reporter: Daniel Irawan
Photographer: Ferry Rumahorbo
Editor: Riandy Kurniawan

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Grace Sahertian: HELA – Tracing Back the Roots http://jazzuality.com/album-reviews/grace-sahertian-hela-tracing-back-the-roots/ http://jazzuality.com/album-reviews/grace-sahertian-hela-tracing-back-the-roots/#respond Sun, 08 May 2016 14:50:47 +0000 http://jazzuality.com/?p=16761 GraceSahertian-Hela-JazzualityArtist: Grace Sahertian
Album: HELA
Released date: May 2016
Label: Demajors Independent Music Industry

We have known her for about 10 years as a natural born jazz influenced soul singer with wide vocal range, good controled perfect pitch. She tried several possibilities, she had some years of difficulties. But finally, at the end of 2015 we heard great news from her, that she is so ready to enter the new, brighter chapter, as a recording artist. She keeps us updated with the progress, and now the album is finally available in the market. She is Grace Sahertian, and her long awaited album is titled “HELA”.

Before we get down to see what the album is about, let’s get to know her deeper. She began her music career as the vocalist of Palm from Moodytunes which is spanned from 2006 to 2009. A year after that she dipped herself into a duo project, Grace & Tesla resulting one EP with thick world music nuance. Interestingly, at the same year she also joined the indie neo-soul group Cirlce O’Fifth and recorded two songs. One of the song “Honestunes” managed to enter the Indie Top Chart in Bandung. This song also created one nice quote from her that we still remember until now: “music always leads me to magic, music keeps me away from tragic.”

GraceSahertian4From there, she carried on by becoming a member of Margo Rising Stars which brought her to perform at the Java Jazz Festival from 2010 to 2014, playing with Benny Likumahuwa Jazz Connection at Ambon Jazz Festival. Other than these activities, she serves at a church along with Venche Manuhutu and son, David Manuhutu. She decided to pursue her solo career in 2011, but still she spent her time to support her friends, such as The Milo, Andezzz and the ladies band Starlite in 2014. She also collaborated with Iwan Fals in Konser Suara Untuk Negeri. Been there, done that. But at one point, Grace realized that she has to do something to make her dream come true. She has full authority to listen to her heart, in total control to pour out her feelings and anything that she has in mind. This album is the actualization of it all.

Speaking of her gift, she is a top-notch soul singer. The way she sings seems to have an endless strain of bright illumination. She doesn’t just sing but breathes soul into the song, letting them out from her heart, taking her audience/listener into serene and giving an enormous vibe of huge glimpse of what she felt through her music. Whether in soulful, chill, deep and gracious music or groovy, upbeat ones, she always does it sincere, honest and down to earth. She is a humble person who never forgets her friends and family, also someone who is deeply connected to the universe.

GraceSahertian-3Not just in music, Grace has fine art in her blood too, as she is also a fiber artist. This thick artistic DNA printed in her seems to push her to explore further, influencing each step she is taking in her music career. She becomes an artist who care much about details, she takes process seriously, she has wide imagination and know how to express her feelings into something real. That is why her works always speak loud about many thing. You can feel them as a result of long process with such depth that not only could describe who she is as a person but also what she has inside her heart and mind. From a pop soulful jazz she embraced world music, then urban music. Looking at the pattern of the path she takes, one could take a guess that she wouldn’t go that easy. During 2013 to 2014 she spent most of her time to find her musical identity and write songs. After three years, finally the result is finished as an artistic product, a debut album called “HELA” under Demajors.

Grace used this album as a vehicle to share many things of herself. Other than using it as a media to tell her life story, uniquely she also uses this album to ‘tracing back the roots’. With “HELA” Grace traces back the long history of her family name, Sahertian which came from Negeri Porto (the land of Porto), located in the province of Maluku, Saparua district. Grace seriously digged her roots, so serious that she even wrote the title track “HELA” using the Yamdena language, spoken in the western southeast of Maluku. This language is more than 200 years old and right now is nearly extinct.

GraceSahertian-1Other than this interesting title track, the album reflects the ‘fragile’ side of Grace. The songs speaks about the life process, from the moments of  sadness, anger, desperation, contemplation, until finally she came to a point where she had to stand up and keep moving. What’s also interesting is that she used mood board (a board with some photos on it) that became her point of references in creating and singing them. Having these guidelines allowed her to pour her emotion much deeper. “You could say that my music in this album is more progressive, explorative and telling. The music in each song works as an illustration of the story, and there can be some different parts describing the mood and lyrics,” says Grace.

The process of recording took around 3 months. Acting as the producer is Tesla Manaf, a stunning young Bandung-based guitarist who currently enjoys his international reputation through USA label, MoonJune Records. To us, Grace stated her satisfaction of having Tesla as her music producer. “Finally I found the perfect one. I am happy to have Tesla because seems to me he is the one who understands me the most.” says Grace to us.

Other than Tesla, Grace is supported by amazing ensemble of all-star casts. Ari ‘Aru’ Renaldi helped her in mixing and mastering plus her friends including Iwan Popo (keys), Rudy ‘Aru’ Zulkarnaen (bass), Topan Abimanyu and Ginda Bestari (guitars), Edward Manurung and Desal Sembada (drums), Brury Effendi (trumpet), Bejo (cello), Hadis ‘Hulhul’ Hendarisman (saluang/West Sumatra bamboo flute) and Zaki ‘4 Peniti’ (chant). For the backing vocals, Grace got Theoresia Rumthe, Eka Karya, Ayub Jonn, Puspallia Panggabean and Johanes Fayakun. Having such strong team like this enabled Grace to go into her feeling as deep as she could, search what she really wanted to do and how to bring it alive.

GraceSahertian-5The album opens up with the goosebumping “Hela”. Starting with a Gregorian chant-like, the song progresses to open a multi-dimensional door through time and space, exploring back the roots gloriously in Yamdena language. “Come on, row the boat to the center of the sea, don’t be afraid to the waves, don’t be afraid to the thunderous storm, keep rowing until we reach the opposite land.” That’s the translation of the lyrics. The haunting song is carried on with Grace’s punch of  “Freedom” which captures the feeling of recollection, repression, pain, unfairness, being chained until a shout of hope. This song is served in gospel blues (wonderful play by bluesman Ginda Bestari) and a splash of provokative experimental approach near the end. The soulful gospel blues still shines on in the third song “Better to Love” but much cheerful and sweeter in the spirit of Motown sound.

Grace goes chilling on the next track where jazz plays the role, “Picture Me”. Brury Effendy’s trumpet sound lifts the song even more, taking your breath away especially if you listen to it late at night. The emotional ballad “Fallin'” reminds us of how Sarah McLachlan did throughout 90’s. Bejo’s cello sound got quite dominant role in this one.

The combination of nu metal/alternative rock and hiphop like how Linkin Park became famous with actually works very well too with Grace’s soulful voice. In this track Tesla and Topan go rocking. Edward Manurung’s drum punches are strong, plus the vinyl scratch by DJ Abo is just awesome.

Then comes the single carrier which is served totally acapella: “Diam”. This song reflects what Grace experienced through her career. “I listened to what people said too much. It took me to nowhere. So then I decided to stop. I chose to rest mysel in silence, spent my time to contemplate, went into deep reflective thoughts until I finally found what I really wanted.” she says.

GraceSahertian-2There’s only one more music from Grace’s career that we haven’t found just yet, the world music which she is also passionate about. Well, the last track “Sun of Hope” serves this side of Grace in glorious way. The traditional bamboo flute from West Sumatra (saluang) played by Hulhul would catch your attention right from the start, and the chanting voice of Zaki Peniti is totally captivating. Listening to this song is like being taken in a journey into a dark, vast rainforest far deep down in Africa. We believe this song is also her attempt to get connected to earth and its beautiful nature, probably to the universe too.

For us who have been following her steps since the beginning, we are really proud of HELA. This is like a door to get to know her as a person, her wish, dream, feeling and thoughts. On the surface you might see an album served with many musical flavors, but actually everything in this album are related to the first 10 years of her career. So, other than exposing her true-self, this album also captures the road she’s been taking up until now. A poetic album with lots of stories in each chapter, artistic compositions perfectly executed, rich in variation but all connected, what a way to make a debut album. With HELA, Grace is opening herself and inviting you to know her and her artistic minds. Once a star in the making, now she is more than ready to shine up there.

Don’t Miss HELA – Tracing Back the Roots Concert!

GraceSahertian-Hela-ConcertPrior to the launching of this album, Grace Sahertian is inviting you all to celebrate it together through a special concert: HELA – Tracing Back the Roots. In this concert Grace will sing all songs from the album. Supporting her are Tesla Manaf (music director), Rayhan Sudrajat (guitar), Gantira Sena (drums), Omega Touselak (keys & synth bass), Faishal (keys & synth bass), Mega Ariani (Cello), Theoresia Rumthe, Puspallia Panggabean, Eka Karya, Ayub jonn, Johanes Fayakun (vocals) and Gracia Tobing (visual & multimedia). As the opening, Grace features a lethal blues guitarist who has just also released an album, Ginda Bestari. As mentioned above, Ginda filled one track in the album, “Freedom”.

The concert will be held on 14 May 2016, starting 7:00 pm at Auditorium IFI, Jl. Purnawarman no 32, Bandung.

Ticket price are:
IDR 50K (on spot) and IDR 35K (presale).
The ticket box are at IFI BAndung and Omuniuum.

Do come and enjoy the songs from the album live, then secure one for you. Let’s congratulate and wish her the best by coming to this special event.

Better to Love
Picture Me
Da Di De
Sun of Hope

The album will be available soon on our online store (http://store.jazzuality.com)

Visit Grace Sahertian’s official website: http://gracesahertian.com
Follow her social medias: @gracesahertian @graceMusicID

Written by: Riandy Kurniawan
Photos are taken from our collection and Dani Huda (provided by Bagus Nugroho)

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Bumi Sangkuriang Jazz Night #5 http://jazzuality.com/jazz-events/bumi-sangkuriang-jazz-night-5/ http://jazzuality.com/jazz-events/bumi-sangkuriang-jazz-night-5/#respond Tue, 03 May 2016 09:54:12 +0000 http://jazzuality.com/?p=16757 BSJazzNight5-Web

It’s the month of May, we are ready to launch the next stop for our event in cooperation with Venche Music School and Kanggep Kusuma, the BUMI SANGKURIANG JAZZ NIGHT #5. As you may already know, this event is set to run regularly on the second Thursday of each month. But for this edition, we have to move it to Tuesday (May 10th, 2016) because the ballroom will be occupied on Thursday. Because of that, please notice the time change so you won’t miss it.

We start this event in the spirit of bringing jazz back to home, based on the jazz history the building has for almost 60 years. We are carrying the legacy left by those who had built it before us, we wish to keep supporting the young talents, pushing the regeneration ahead, showcasing the vibrant jazz colours and providing good quality alternative for jazz lovers. In order to bring this concept alive, we combine the good local talents and those who have given contributions to jazz development from Jakarta. There have been considerably young jazz musicians who graduated from abroad, legends and iconic jazz names. This time we invites a piano master who embraces Latin jazz especially the wonderful Cuban music like no other, a pianist who has been living and breathing inside the jazz scene for no less than 20 years, Rio ‘El Montuno’ Moreno.

rio moreno, jazzuality, bumi sangkuriang jazz night, cherokee, el montuno

Perhaps some of you, our Indonesian readers, still remember a famous band at the turn of the millennium, Cherokee. It was Rio Moreno who formed it. The band consisting of talented young musicians who are into jazz. The album is rich in diversity by having influences from each member, including Rio’s Latin touch, the style he’s inspired in after listening to Michel Camilo and Arturo Sandoval.

Rio has been exploring his passion into the Latins by creating his own compositions that rooted in Brazilian, salsa, chacha, especially the Cuban son (music) Montuno. The Cuban music is simultaneously pianistic and percussive. It has its own rhytmic pattern, and that’s one of the essences that made him fell in love with the son Montuno. He was really into it, staying true with it, so true that one of his composition from Cherokee titled “El Montuno” later was rewarded to be his nickname. A couple of years ago he released his solo album, consisting of 8 songs titled in English, showing his attempt to get the international attention. You can order his album here: http://store.jazzuality.com/product/rio-moreno-el-montuno/.

Other than recording, Rio is one of the top names in jazz festivals for years. He has also played for four Indonesian presidents throughout his career, an achievemnt that not many musicians could get. So, Afro-Cuban latin and some Brazilians are going to shine in this 5th edition. It’s going to be melodious and rhytmical, let’s see if you can hold yourself from tapping your feet or even dancing.

puspallia panggabean, dyah sekar, puspa sekar, jazzuality, bumi sangkuriang jazz night

From local sources, we are happy to welcome two groups to taste the Bumi Sangkuriang stage for the very first time. Meet two ladies that recently joined forces and made impact in Bandung jazz/music scene, Puspallia Panggabean and Dyah Sekar who are establishing themselves as Puspa Sekar. Puspallia is like a acoustic duo specialist based on many duos that she was in, from Aperplea, Gallia to Uku et Alia. She was also stood as one of the vocalists of gypsy swing group Satura, and now still serves as the vocalist of the ‘interplanetary’ jazz joyride band, OCD. She now has more opportunities to establish her name in the capital by playing with jazz greats like Benny Likumahuwa, Oele Pattiselano and Nial Djuliarso. As for Dyah, this lady can be seducing whenever she puts her fingers on the keys. Dyah is mainly active in two ladies bands: the Jazzy Juice and SHE. Other than playing variety of genres on piano from jazz, classical, pop to Latins, she sings too occasionally.

Puspallia got interested in establishing a duo with Sekar when she watched her play at violinist Ammy Kurniawan’s gig. At that time Dyah played more classical, cheerful and lively. So she thought of establishing a duo for playing children songs. Why children? “Because that’s what I always wish to do.” said Puspall. Turn out Dyah liked the idea. That’s how Puspa Sekar was born. As time goes by, they decided to widen up the border. Not only playing children song, they are exploring other areas too like the American songbook or jazz standards. “Since we are still new, We want to try new things as many as possible.” said Puspall. For us, that’s a right choice. Looking at how passionate these young ladies are in jazz, we can expect beautiful performance from them. One is an flawless jazz vocalist, the other one is a sweet jazz pianist. Both have character and charming on stage. What could be wrong? We think it’s perfect match. Oh yeah, both Puspa and Sekar means flower. That’s a strange coincidence. We have been planning to invite these ladies to Bumi Sangkuriang Jazz Night with their each respective groups, but we actually got them together as a duo. It’s going to be a lovely session, you can bet on it.

5th avenue, divo entertainment, jazzuality, bumi sangkuriang jazz night

Next to mention is 5th Avenue. Since the moment the band began their journey some years ago, they set the music course towards jazz, funk, soul and rock. We have invited them several times at our other events and always love the way they bring jazz fusion and smooth jazz live from the stage. 5th Avenue is the Consolation Prize Holder of Jazz Goes to Campus 2014, but the guitarist Chris Alfeus actually won the Best Guitarist for this competition. No surprise, since Chris is a brilliant jazz guitarist that can make great arrangement. He can also scat singing along with guitar playing on the same note (or at the interval of an octave) just like George Benson and/or Mus Mujiono.

For Bumi Sangkuriang Jazz Night, 5th Avenue is going to try new colours. If usually they play by four, this time they are going to be a quintet. Other than the original members Chris, his girlfriend Stella Inke (piano) and their latest bassist Ilham Septia Inda Nugraha, they are having two new players on board: Ari Pramundito (drums) and Budy Prama Dongoran (saxophone). Eventhough these two lads are new, they are no stranger to us. We know they are good musicians with the same passion of fusion like 5th Avenue, so this should work nicely.

The concept of sharing the center stage with several melodious instruments are not new out there. Plenty of American jazz (fusion) bands have done it. In Indonesia there have been many bands adopting the concept too. But nowadays, more and more young musicians seem to go towards this path. As for 5th Avenue especially the frontman Chris, this is not something new. We have seen them executed the concept nicely. The quintet formation of 5th Avenue, guitar-saxophone-piano connection in front, that’s going to be interesting.

vms, vms rhythm section, jazzuality, bumi sangkuriang jazz night

Last but not least, being set to accompany Rio Moreno’s performance are two boys representing Venche Music School, the VMS Rhythm Section. On drums is Alman Naufal, and on bass we got the return of Ezra Manuhutu, the son of Venche Manuhutu, the founder of the school. If last time Alman stole the show with his manic, tranced drumming, let’s see how these boys would do in digging up son montuno and other authentic Latin flavors of Rio Moreno.

As mentioned earlier in the first paragraph, for this edition the Bumi Sangkuriang Jazz Night #5 will come a couple of days earlier than the regular schedule, on Tuesday, May 10th, 2016. Eventhough the day is moved earlier, one thing remains the same: you can enjoy the whole event for FREE! Soulful smooth jazz/fusion, jazz ‘flowers’ and the Cuban son montuno, wouldn’t it be cool? Alright. if you agree, come and have fun time with us!


Date: Tuesday, 10 May 2016
Time: 07:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Location: BP Bumi Sangkuriang
Jl. Kiputih no 12, Bandung


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Braga Jazz Walk #22 : The Report http://jazzuality.com/jazz-events/braga-jazz-walk-22-the-report/ http://jazzuality.com/jazz-events/braga-jazz-walk-22-the-report/#respond Tue, 26 Apr 2016 14:42:30 +0000 http://jazzuality.com/?p=16741 BragaJazzWalk22bIt’s certainly not easy to maintain the regular monthly event for many months. We have to manage the lineup according to variety of styles and formats, we have to think of supporting and/or motivating the newcomers while providing enough space for the success ones to join the party, either to promote their new moves or simply want to share happiness with the younger ones. Of course, we also have to deal with their availability, asking their most updated profiles and be ready to find backups if any of them postponed their participation due to some reasons. It’s not easy.

But now, looking at how the Braga Jazz Walk is doing, we feel really blessed. For a year and a half this event has been opening the chance for jazz lovers in Bandung to enjoy live music performances at the historical location that’s easy to reach without having to pay a single dime. We have featured hundreds of talents and tens of bands/projects/groups and the talents are keep on coming. Other than showcasing new bands to our stage, we are keeping updates on those who have played too.

BragaJazzWalk22-Tidbits (4)Full moon outside, some part of the city got heavy rain, but we all kept warm inside the mall with colourful jazz. This is the report of Braga Jazz Walk #22 where vibrant colors of jazz were found, brought by all young musicians.

BragaJazzWalk22-AndreArizky (2)We started with pop approach brought by a man who has been in many talent search programs, Andre Arizky. This pianist with baritone voice is not a stranger to this event. He has played several times including a special tribute to Elton John, in special Christmas Edition 2015 and in a couple of jam sessions. Recently he’s building his career in a new acoustic group Tiganama.

Andre took some songs from his long list of repertoire for this edition, and gave the theme ‘galau’ (in English: mellow). He began with John Legend’s “All of Me” with an excerpt of a famous song from Judika, “Aku yang Tersakiti”. Then he sang a popular song not many people sing anymore today, “What About Love” from Lemar. A slower, smoother version of “Englishman in New York” and then his ‘themesong’ for Braga, Elton John’s “Rocket Man” before closing his session with Tulus’ brand new song, “Pamit”.

BragaJazzWalk22-AndreArizky (5)Whether in group/band or solo, Andre Arizky always knows how to entertain. Thick baritone voice, good piano playing skill and charming while performing are always a catch. Playing and singing top 40s which are familiar to everyone’s ear gave a warm start for the Braga Jazz Walk #22. You may succeed in your career thoguh talent search programs, but even without it you still can have success if you are talented and serious in building your career. Andre Arizky has it all, so we have no doubt that he will go higher and higher.

BragaJazzWalk22-MarissaWigunaBand (6)Exactly on the same date of this event, April 21st, Indonesia commemorates the Kartini Day, referring to R.A Kartini, a prominent national heroine from Java that’s known and widely respected as a pioneer in women’s equal rights especially in education. The fruit of what she fought for can be felt even until now, including a young girl we featured in this edition, a cheerful 22 year-old girl who’s really good in drumming. Her name is Marissa Wiguna, and the band is simply named Marissa Wiguna Band.

We first found Marissa Wiguna when she was still a teenage girl serving as the drummer of praise and worship in church. Knowing that this girl has the X factor, we brought her to the secular world with a band called Out of 7. If before she was more into rock, in Out of 7 she digged more styles including jazz, soul and funk. While the band is currently paused, she found a breakthrough by being selected as the drummer of Singapore senior rock guitarist, Mr Moliano Rasmadi who’s famous with his band the Lovehunters. With this new band, Moliano in Rock, she aims an international career playing classic rock.

Still, we think she serves tasty jazz beat. As she is still in young age, we encouraged her to establish her own trio where she could gain better attention. Then the band was born. Joining her in this band is her own husband Widiyanto Sutanto and a bassist/multi-instrumentalist/composer, Farhan Faikar. They played together for the first time in a jam session at our event Javana Jazz Lounge last year (http://jazzuality.com/jazz-event-report/javana-jazz-bistro-3rd-edition-the-report/). Realizing that they like playing together, they formed an alliance as a band.

BragaJazzWalk22-MarissaWigunaBand (4)Her trio turned out to be ferocious right from the start. Taking Coltrane’s “Mr P.C.” enabled them to do a lot of manouvers, including a tasty drum-bass battle between Marissa and Farhan. They carried on with a swing standard “All the Things You Are” in boppin’ mode. A surprise came when they took “Ibu Kita Kartini” to celebrate Kartini Day which has been rearranged totally different in free jazz and once again gave a fully loaded action. Then, they hit the climax big time with a very difficult song to play, Chick Corea’s “Got a Match”.

Throughout the songs the players were really on fire. Widiyanto showed his fast piano playing using both keyboard and piano. Farhan did many delightful fast walking bass as he teased his team mates several times whenever he could. As for the band leader Marissa, she was captivating. This trio managed to catch the attention of mall-goers and dragged them to watch the performance. Complex compositions served mercilessly took people to the edge of their seat. Speaking of the letting out the passion in madness, these three stunts did it all.

Indonesia is fortunate to have a couple of great lady drummers throughout the years. But not many step forward to establish their own band. We think Marissa Wiguna should do it, and yes, turns out we are right. Whether it’s rock, disco or jazz, this young girl can serve lively beat. Good tempo, good control, good skill and the x factor, she should get good recognition she deserved.

BragaJazzWalk22-Continuum (2)The third band is a band with unique jazz, Continuum. This band was born a year ago in Bandung. Some of them are working in Jakarta, but they still come to perform frequently to Bandung. Starting as a trio, lately the band has added a vocalist. Continuum are Willyam Yuzaq (drums), Hajar Asyura (guitar), Dyva (bass) and a young lady with smooth but mysterious vocal tone, Mirna Nurmala. We have invited them to our other event in Bumi Sangkuriang, but it’s time to have them tasted the Braga stage.

Continuum started as a jazz trio, playing a song from the guitarist of Esperanza Spalding, Matthew Stevens titled “Woodwork”. Hajar stood tall and strong in front on this one. Mirna joined the boys shortly after and sang “Nakamarra” from Hiatus Kaiyote’s collection. The eerie version of Sundanese classic “Bubuy Bulan” gave a strong statement of how noir can they go. Then, “God Bless the Child” came in a different way. To seal their gig, they chose a song they played so well from The Jongens Quartet, “Miss Jones”.

BragaJazzWalk22-Continuum (6)On the surface it seems like they are playing standard, but if you listen carefully you will get the impression that they actually have some more nuances in their music which gives contribution in building a strong musical chararcter. While Mirna works well in front to paint strong color, Willyam Yuzaq who is also the drummer of Radhini gives sharp beats. Hajar is a great jazz guitarist graduated from Venche Music School up to the advance class and Dyva is essential on bass. A good jazz band like this should keep their existance, which becomes one of the reasons why we are proud to bring them in to this event.

BragaJazzWalk22-5Petani (1)The jazz scene in Bandung is currently in great weather. There are many jazz communities appear everywhere with loads of talents. What’s good about this is that the communities are not competing with one another. As one of the clear evidences, here we invited a very good band from Butterfieldjazz Society to play for the very first time. The name is 5Petani (in English: 5 Farmers).

5Petani consists of 6 personnels: Gerson Valdo Siahaan (keyboard) Frank Navayo Pattinasarany (guitar), Fauzan Rijal (bass), Yoga Wardana Kusumah (acoustic guitar), Athina Niassrin Muhamad (saxophone) and Arbi (drum). Occasionally they have two additional players: Hilmi (percussion) and Sidix (flute/bamboo flute). All personnel agreed that agriculture is the prime mover of the Indonesian economy, and farmers stand at the tip of the spear, that’s philosophy that the “5Petani” hold in mind in sharing their heart and soul through music to their audience.

They were formed just two years ago, in mid 2014. But they do move fast. They have performed at the Java Jazz Festival and currently aim big especially after releasing their EP. We planned to invite them since at least 6 months ago, but only now finally we got the chance to do so.

BragaJazzWalk22-5Petani (3)The complete ensemble of jazz farmers took their position on stage, as we interviewed Angga Wardana, the curator of Butterfieldjazz Society. This band played all original songs in light fusion with splashes of ethnic from the sound of bamboo flute. “Pelangi” was the first, which immidiately showcased their awesomeness as both individual and unit. After this fresh-feeling song they carried on with another cheerful arrangement, “Anak Petani”. Eight young musicians were having fun on stage. Not only they played their instruments, they were playful too all over the stage. The third song was their single “Matahari” that went with a bit of Sundanese nuance, and then for the last song 5Petani played a composition made by Frank titled “Zefania”.

Just like land, music has to be culvitated to bear good fruits. So we like the philosophy this band has. The way they play and the music style brought us back to more than 20 years ago when Karimata was born. At that time, Karimata also consisted of talented young musicians who played light fusion with some ethnic musics involved. Now, 5Petani brings back to the joy. We wouldn’t be surprise if some dacceds from now they have the same success story. May success be upon you guys! And kudos to Angga Wardhana and his Butterfieldjazz Society. Man, what a band!

BragaJazzWalk22-JamSession (2)As we still got a little time left, we directly opened the jam session. The 9 year-old Nadine was the first to take the chance. We have featured this little girl a couple of times before. Now she already has two own songs and currently working on establishing her own trio. Joining her was Farhan Faikar (bass), Frank Navayo (guitar), Athfy Fadhlika Shafa (drums) and Erick Gabe (vocal). Together they gave a final blast with “Route 66”.

BragaJazzWalk22-PhotoGroupBraga Jazz Walk #22 turned out to be a very interesting edition courtesy of all young players. We thank all playing musicians who put up a good show, and certainly we thank everyone who came. We will be back next month on the third Thursday with fresh batch, including a pianist from Jakarta graduated from Groningen. Stay tuned for the complete info, see you then!

Watch the highlight of Braga Jazz Walk 22

See more pictures:

Reporter: Riandy Kurniawan
Photographer: Riandy Kurniawan, Agit Kamil

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Bumi Sangkuriang Jazz Night #4: The Report http://jazzuality.com/jazz-event-report/bumi-sangkuriang-jazz-night-4-the-report/ http://jazzuality.com/jazz-event-report/bumi-sangkuriang-jazz-night-4-the-report/#respond Mon, 18 Apr 2016 05:37:23 +0000 http://jazzuality.com/?p=16716 BumiSangkuriangJazzNight4We started the Bumi Sangkuriang Jazz Night with simple intention: to bring jazz back at home. This old building with vintage, grandeur ballroom has a long history of jazz ever since it was built in 1957. Jazzuality.com is partnering with the pioneer of jazz school in Bandung, the Venche Music School (VMS) creating the event titled Bumi Sangkuriang Jazz Night in January. We are happy with the result. We got more and more people came to the event. Long story short, we now have come to the 4th edition.

Like in the previous ones, we invited the jazz greats from Jakarta to join the ensamble of musicians and bands from local scene.We actually invited only Johanes Radianto as mentioned earlier, but we are fortunate this time, because Johanes actually brought his buddy from The Jongens, pianist Dhani Syah. So, we got two great jazz musicians graduated from Klaus Prins Conservatorium in Groningen for this edition. Here is the coverage of the Bumi Sangkuriang Jazz Night #4.

BumiSangkuriangJazzNight4-MichelleEfferinandFriends (1)We are happy to have the founder of a well-established music school in Bandung who also has jazz in their curriculum. The name of the school is M.E Music Centre, established in 2006 by Michelle Efferin just a year after she graduated from Australian Institute of Music. As this school which is based on Encore Music Education for its curriculum is commemorating its 10th anniversary, we think it’s a perfect time to have them celebrating it with the public.

As usual, she performed under Michelle Efferin & Friends. Joining her are her long time partners: husband Richard Sirait (drums), Oggie Samuel (guitar) and Iwan (bass). Plus a beautiful young girl with delightful jazz voice, Celline Indrawirawan. What’s also important to mention is that this band is no stranger to this venue since they were heavily active years ago in the past community event held here. So in a way, it is like bringing them back home.

For this special moment, Michelle decided to go back to her first love, one name who made her fall in love with jazz for the first time, Bill Evans. “Bill Evans is my inspiration in piano playing.. I love his simplicity, beautiful melody, rich harmony and voicing”, she said.

BumiSangkuriangJazzNight4-MichelleEfferinandFriends (3)Right after we introuced her, she started grand with a song listed in Bill Evans’ album in 1961, “The Boy Next Door”. Right after that, Celline joined them on stage and got huge applause with a song everyone know, Etta James’ “At Last”. Celline is the kind of singer who breathes jazz within her voice. “Summertime” brought without Oggie, then the complete group sealed their appearance in happy mood with “Take the ‘A’ Train.”

M.E Music School has introduced so many kids to jazz and taught them how to play jazz right and fun. We have seen so many good talents coming from this school and we believe they will keep on making jazz singers and musicians in the future. Lovely package served humble but grand by Michelle Efferin and Friends. We enjoyed their presence during the 2008-2010 period in this ballroom, we love them more now. Such strong unit serving jazz in beautiful way. Happy 10th Anniversary, M.E Music School! We hope to see more fruits coming from you!

BumiSangkuriangJazzNight4-KrishnanMohamadProject (5)The second performance also shared history with the past regular community event hosted by Klab Jazz. It’s a senior classical guitar teacher Krishnan Mohamad. Although he is a great teacher and guitarist in the classical scene, some of his soul and spirit belong to jazz too. Just like Michelle, Krishnan Mohamad was active in community jazz events back then. We haven’t heard much from him lately, so we are happy when he’s willing to grace the stage again under the same name, Krishnan Mohamad Project: The Jazz Trio.

For this gig Krishnan brought in two young jazz lions: Samuel Andrean (drums) and Steven Anthony (bass). Krishnan started with solo guitar playing “Route 66”. Then the boys joined him playing more songs, from Jobim’s classic “Wave”, standards “All the Things You Are”, Another song from Bill Evans “Waltz for Debby” and then his own composition which kind of blends jazz and classical, “February”.

BumiSangkuriangJazzNight4-KrishnanMohamadProject (4)The structure of jazz is pretty much different than classical. But then, usually when we see a classical musician plays jazz, we enjoy seeing how they build a solid structure over the liquid jazz concept. It always gives us something different. We knew Krishnan as a good jazz fusion player based from what we saw before, but now we see his cool ability to play pure jazz with some classical touches here and there. Steven and Samuel did well, including some solo runs given by Krishnan in some parts. In the spirit of bringing jazz back home, We are happy to bring Krishnan back home to Bumi Sangkuriang.

BumiSangkuriangJazzNight4-NewEquinox) (4)Then New Equinox got their chance. Speaking of this band of youngsters, they have been shaped as trio since a few years ago. In 2016 they marked their comeback and keep their existance by involving various players. For this edition New Equinox consisted of Aries Ardiansyah (bass), Alman Naufal (drums) and a stunning pianist resides and studies in Singapore but currently enjoys his holiday in Bandung, Jason Limanjaya (keyboard).

Surprisingly this band of youngsters bagged the loudest applause and cheers. They began with a famous tune of John Coltrane, “Giant Step” in faster tempo. Then they took Miles Davis’ gem “So What”, went swinging with “Beautiful Love” and “All the Things You Are.”

BumiSangkuriangJazzNight4-NewEquinox) (6)Alman was on fire, playing like tranced and that forced the audience to applause loudly. Aries as usual served strong, essential rhythm. As for the self-taught pianist Jason, he was impressive. Not only he got good skill, he’s sharp too. His facial expression caught our attention as well, making his performance even shinier. At the last song he injected deadly dose of funk on a song composed by Pee Wee Ellis and made famous by Jaco Pastorius, “The Chicken.”

This new combination of players actually worked really, really well. Jason adapted fast with the other two, probably because he often jam in Singapore. Only a couple of practice, he said, but they quickly clicked and as the result, we saw a potential new trio. Maybe it would be difficult since Jason will soon be back to Singapore, but who knows. One thing for sure, they have chemistry, are able to build solid compositions and entertaining as well.

BumiSangkuriangJazzNight4-JohanesRadianto-DhaniSyah (2)For the last session we featured a great jazz guitarist from younger generation, born in Semarang but now resides in Jakarta, Johanes Radianto. He graduated from Prins Claus Conservatory in 2007 and Koninklijk Conservatorium in 2009 in Denhaag then moved back to pursue his career in his homeland. Soon after he started getting busy in the national jazz scene, playing in many musical events in the capital and elsewhere, from small gigs to prestigious festivals including frequent appearance at the Java Jazz Festival.

Speaking of bands he is in, he’s currently a member of The Jongens Quartet which has released two albums so far: The Selftitled (2014) and Industri (2015). You can buy the album at our online store here: http://store.jazzuality.com/product/the-jongens/ and http://store.jazzuality.com/product/the-jongens-quartet-industri/. Step aside of The Jongens, Johanes has also locked in some projects like a interesting guitar-piano duo with Dhani Syah.

BumiSangkuriangJazzNight4-JohanesRadianto-DhaniSyah (1)Dhani Syah, as we mentioned earlier also came to play. Dhani fell in love with jazz after listening to jazz giants like Wynton Kelly, Charlie Parker, John Coltrane, Miles Davis. Like Johanes, he graduated from Netherlands. While in there, he was featured in Kestutis Vaignis Quartet’s album, “Gypsy Nature”. He received “The Artistry of Dick Oatts and Young Jazz Musician” award and became the member of Re-Bop Unit, a jazz group consisted of selected students from different country by Dick Oatts. Later on, he went on tour for promiting the album around Europe. Nowadays, other than playing with The Jongens Quartet, he is working on a new project, Dhani Syah Trio. We are going to feature the trio next month in Braga Jazz Walk, stay tuned for more details.

Johanes and Dhani were assited by two of New Equinox, Alman and Aries. This time Aries changed his gear to contrabass. They took “The Nearness of You” as the first song followed by Charlie Parker’s “Anthropology”.  After “I Remember You”, Johanes led the group visiting Elis Regina’s song from 1974, “Brigas Nunca Mais”.

BumiSangkuriangJazzNight4-JohanesRadianto-DhaniSyah (5)From there, they bopped again with “Billie’s Bounce” and then repainted a ballad from Billie Holiday, “I’m a Fool to Want You” beautifully. They sealed up their performance as well as the event cheerfully, swinging with a popular standard from 1926, “Bye Bye Blackbird”.

Nutricious collaboration was served chilled by Johanes Radianto, Dhani Syah and two New Equinox members who never met and played together before. Johanes and Dhani have added the coming of great jazz musicians particularly guitarist to shape up the quality of Bumi Sangkuriang Jazz Night. Ellegant and stylish, these two artistic jazzmen made it looked simple yet stunningly beautiful. Alman and Aries did well in accompanying him. The photo session became the very last meal as usual.

BumiSangkuriangJazzNight4-Tidbits (3)Hopefully from now on, you will already know that jazz will be available to enjoy at Bumi Sangkuriang every month on the second Thursday. Variety of jazz that are still rooted to the origins hopefully will give benefit to the jazz development in Bandung and compliment to the fans. We send respect to all playing musicians, the sound operator, the supporters, everyone involved and of course, the enthusiastic audience. Hope to see you again next month!

BumiSangkuriangJazzNight4-PhotoGroupSee more pictures:

Reporter & Photographer: Riandy Kurniawan

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6th North Sumatra Jazz Festival 2016 http://jazzuality.com/jazz-events/6th-north-sumatra-jazz-festival-2016/ http://jazzuality.com/jazz-events/6th-north-sumatra-jazz-festival-2016/#respond Sun, 17 Apr 2016 15:27:00 +0000 http://jazzuality.com/?p=16735 northsumatrajazzfestival2016Once known as the rock city, Medan, the capital of North Sumatra has been showing its jazz face clearer and clearer for the past several years. It has jazz community where many young talents grow in, they have regular jazz events, and probably what’s amazing is it does have its own annual jazz festival. The name of the festival is NORTH SUMATRA JAZZ FESTIVAL (NSJF).

This festival was presented to the public for the first time in 2011. The main idea was to provide jazz event in the form of festival, but with specific and unique shape which embraces the local wisdom. The organizers persisted that it has to be different than the jazz festivals elsewhere which are coming more and more in the past 5 or 6 years.

While some of them fail to keep their existance, this festival in North Sumatra is still alive. It even grows bigger and better, thanks to the hard work and effort of the initiator Erucakra Mahameru with his Waspada eMusic in cooperation with indiejazzINDONESIA. They realize they have to keep fighting in order to keep its existance at the best they can.

Five editions passed, now here is the 6th NORTH SUMATRA JAZZ FESTIVAL 2016. It’s right around the corner, ready to bang the city big on May 4, 2016 at the ballroom of Santika Premiere Dyandra Hotel & Convention Center (SOCC) Medan.

You must be curious to see the lineup for this year right? First of all, we said this event will bang the city big because there will be some big bombs to explode. That, and eruption too. Speaking of eruption, the supergroup, megaband, the legendary, the one and only KRAKATAU is confirmed to pour its fusion magma. For you who have been following the music scene since the mid 80’s until 90’s, your heart should be filled with joy whenever you hear this band being mentioned. They did have some formations throughout the active years, but the most famous one probably is the third formation which comprises of Donny Suhendra (guitar), Dwiki Dharmawan (keyboard), Gilang Ramadhan (drum), Indra Lesmana (keyboard), Pra Budidharma (bass) and Trie Utami (vocal). This formation produced so many hits who are still popular until now. This formation placed itself at the top of the list since their first selftitled album in 1987. The huge success story continued on with more albums until 1990.

There are many factors that make this band amazing. True, they have jazz/fusion gods inside. By having such unit, their on-stage performances are always a bomb. Some mentioned it complicated, against the main stream, tough, explosive, powerful with many magic moments. The band played sharp jazz with thick rock nuances in the layers. But what’s unique is that in recordings they knew how to make it more ‘pop’ without having to loose the identity and true-self of Krakatau. In total, this third formation managed to sell almost 5 million cassettes (!), which should place them as the most phenomenal group in Indonesia’s music history.

But then, storm was hitting the band as they were experiencing partial dissolution. While the Krakatau still carried on by some of them and went more to fusing deeper into traditional ethnic music, this third formation was out for no longer than 25 years. In 2013 a shocking news appeared. They decided to reunite and used KRAKATAU REUNION as the name. Since then,  the band has been showing increasing ‘seismic’ activity. In just two weeks from now, Medan will enjoy its eruption. The complete third formation will all be there, so make sure to dip into the fusion lava.

Next, the festival is welcoming back the Korean jazzman/drummer, Chairman of Yongin Global Jazz Festival (YGJF) and CEO of Global Green International Jazz & Cultural Exchange Center (GIJCEC), Phil Yoon and his band, Phil Yoon Group. This Berklee College of Music alumnus is ready to reprise his great performance from last year’s edition. What’s different is that he is bringing diferent troops. Joining him this time are Jonghwon Lee (saxophone), Jinho Heo (bass), Myoungguh Lee (piano) plus a beautiful female vocalist Ahhye Cho. In the midst of K-pop fever all over the world, Medan will once again find out that jazz is still pulsing strong in Korea too. Let’s call it K-Jazz, Phil Yoon Group will show you how it is.

north sumatra jazz festival 2016, north sumatra jazz festival 2016 lineup, jazzuality

The initiator Erucakra of course will have the stage too with his band, Erucakra C Man Band. Just like Phil, Erucakra is also an alumnus of Berklee College of Music. With his C Man Band he explores challenging music that on the surface might refer to fusion. But if you listen carefully, you will get that they don’t just play normal fusion. Erucakra likes it more to call their music as NeoProgressive Jazz. Other than Erucakra himself on guitar and vocal, the band consists of Omar (lead vocal), Heri Syahputra (keyboard), Rusfian Karim (drum), Brian Harefa (saxophone) and Radhian Suhada (electric bass). The band just got a big chance last November to perform at the 1st Yongin Global Jazz Festival 2015 in Seoul, South Korea under the invitation of Phil Yoon (http://jazzuality.com/jazz-news/erucakra-c-man-to-blast-the-1st-yongin-global-jazz-festival-2015-seoul/). As they had a blast there, it’s time for you to guys in Medan and nearby to feel and find out why this band is listed in ‘the most extraordinary bands from Indonesia’ by Phil Yoon.

Recently more big names are added to the lineup! Java Jazz Festival Hall of famer, the ‘in-house residence’ of the fest who’s widely known as a jazz master who brings elements of funk, R&B, rock and electric jazz as he helped pioneering the genre of fusion is confirmed. He is none other than Jeff Lorber! For almost 40 years he’s been nourishing the music particularly jazz with his magic touch. After enjoying his essential supports for many years of Java Jazz Festival in Jakarta, we are excited to have him pushing the jazz forward in the city located on the upper side of Sumatra. Since he was also from Berklee College of Music, it’s going to be a nice reunion for him too with Erucakra and Phil. You love fusion, smooth jazz, R&B, with funky chops and bites? Jeff Lorber is the man.

Three considerably young talents who are listed among the nation’s top musicians are just in. First, the funky bassist Barry Likumahuwa. Who doesn’t know him today? He reached huge success with his independent debut album Good Spell in 2008 followed by the first album with his famous band, Barry Likumahuwa Project (BLP) 3 years later. Other than these two moves, he has made several side projects too and let’s not forget his contribution in LLW where he’s in for several years, also with papa Benny Likumahuwa, Like Father Like Son and Barry Likumahuwa Experiment among others. He played alongside Joey Alexander before this magic kid moved to USA, and recently he just released his solo album, “Octonary” which for us contains high dose of funky jazzploration in the hiphop urban world. Now his fans in Medan will have he chance to watch him in person.

The saxophone corner in Indonesia got enhanced by Ricad Hutapea. Playing mostly tenor and soprano, this man is highly capable in giving up a merciless sax attack in order to funk you up. When he’s going soft, his sax lines are seducing. He has released his debut “Jalan Pertama” two years ago and highly active too as a sessionist/sideman. The last time we met him was when he performed in our own event, the Bumi Sangkuriang Jazz Night #1 in January (http://jazzuality.com/jazz-event-report/bumi-sangkuriang-jazz-night-1-the-report/). Medan will be happy to welcome this North Sumatran native back home.

The last name we should mention is also a young musician who uniquely is listed among the great skilled and highly experienced ones: Yesaya Wilander Soemantri, better known as Echa Soemantri. Born in 1989, he has started playing drum since he was still 2 and a half year and claimed to receive the first lesson from Jesus. When he turned pro, he became the drummer/involved in recordings of so many big names, starting from Marcello ‘Ello’ Tahitoe to Erwin Gutawa Orchestra, Yovie and Nuno, Tompi, Agnez Monica, Rio Febrian, Glenn Fredly, Base Jam, Dwiki Dharmawan, Dewa Budjana, Matthew Sayersz, Balawan, Indro Hardjodikoro & the Fingers, Tophati, Trisum, Abdul and the Coffee Theory and Iwan Abdie, just to mention a few. Today he is active in Abdul and the Coffee Theory, Dewa Budjana Quintet, Echa Soemantri and Friends, Erwin Gutawa Orchestra, NEWB, Trisum and some others.

With so many stars having their own distinctive jazz style, this year’s North Sumatra Jazz Festival 2016 should not be missed, especially if you live in Medan or other cities nearby. The organizer promises to give you one of the most exciting experiences you will ever have. After five previous editions, this year Medan will go jazz, big time. Make sure to be a part of it!

North Sumatra Jazz Festival 2016

Date: Wednesday, 4 May 2016
Open gate: 6:00 pm
Location: Ballroom of Santika Premiere Dyandra Hotel & Convention, Medan

Ticket price:
Diamond: IDR 1 million
Platinum: IDR 750k
Gold: IDR 500k
Silver: IDR 250k
Festival standing: IDR 100k

Get your ticket at:
Harian Waspada
ET 45 Sun Plaza
ET 45 Mangkubumi
Rajakarcis.com (http://www.rajakarcis.com/2016/04/08/north-sumatra-jazz-festival-2016/)

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Braga Jazz Walk #22 http://jazzuality.com/jazz-events/braga-jazz-walk-22/ http://jazzuality.com/jazz-events/braga-jazz-walk-22/#respond Fri, 15 Apr 2016 10:04:14 +0000 http://jazzuality.com/?p=16719 bragajazzwalk22-webThe Braga Jazz Walk began its service in September 2014. We carried what we have started at the previous venue, that is, to contribute towards the regeneration of jazz musicians in Bandung. Bandung has been exporting so many famous stars over the decades, filling up any genres including jazz. Mainly we feature young talents and bands who has some amounts of jazz inside their blood. But along the journey, we are happy to see that many successful ones, even some international musicians came to join the party. We say it’s been a blessing for us to see this regular monthly event keep walking on and growing up.

Now we are ready to showcase Braga Jazz Walk #22. Following the formula, we are going to feature 4 bands and serve the jam session, open for everyone if there’s still time. This 22nd edition will come soon on 21 April 2016 at Braga CityWalk, starting from 7:00 pm. If you haven’t been there and don’t know, it’s totally free of charge and open for public.

5petani, jazzuality

First thing’s first. Let’s welcome the band representing fellow jazz community in Bandung, the Butterfieldjazz Society: 5Petani. This band was formed in mid-2014, originated from the personnel’s regular meeting and jamming in regular program implemented by the community.

5Petani in English means 5 Farmers. They chose this name because one of the personnel, Gerson Valdo Siahaan (keyboard) is studying at the Faculty of Agriculture, while the guitarist Frank Navayo Pattinasarany studied at the engineering faculty of Chemistry. The other personnels are Fauzan Rijal (bass), Yoga Wardana Kusumah (acoustic guitar), Athina Niassrin Muhamad (saxophone) and Arbi (drum). Occasionally they have two additional players: Hilmi (percussion) and Sidix (flute/bamboo flute). All personnel agreed that agriculture is the prime mover of the Indonesian economy, and farmers stand as the tip of the spear, that’s philosophy that the “5Petani” hold in mind in sharing beautiful jazz tones to their fans and listeners/audience.

Speaking of style, 5 Petani theme music inspired from great ones, ranging from Pat Metheny, Casiopea, Oele Pattiselano, Dewa Budjana, Tohpati, Accoustic Alchemy, Robert Glasper, Indra Lesmana and Indonesian young musician Gerald Situmorang, Andre Dinuth just to mention a few. They are moving fast in the recordings. They already have their first EP with singles “Sawah Impian”, “Pelangi” and “Matahari”. They had a blast last March landing big on the Java Jazz Festival.

5 Petani is a band representing the other jazz community in the city. We are proud to invite them as well as letting you guys know of this community, because other than we want to show everyone that we are not competing but instead working together based on the same mission and love of jazz, this is a really good band that everyone should know of. Butterfieldjazz Society is doing great in creating some bands, and this is only one of the ready ones. We will invite the rest of them in times, but for now, let’s enjoy these five farmers in their first attempt to cultivate our ground.

continuum, jazzuality

The second band to introduce is a band whose philosophy is to keep going, changing steadily over time in continuous sequence. It’s Continuum. This band was established February last year, at first comprised of guitar-bass-drum connection. Since they performed at our other event, the Bumi Sangkuriang Jazz Night two months ago (http://jazzuality.com/jazz-event-report/bumi-sangkuriang-jazz-night-2-2/), they added in a vocalist who they met at one jam session not long before. So, the most recent lineup are Willyam Yuzaq (drums), Hajar Asyura (guitar), Dyva (bass) and a young lady with smooth but dark-ish vocal tone, Mirna Nurmala.

Basically they are rooted in modern jazz and love to improvise along with cool solo run. But what’s interesting about this band is that they actually give birth to a slightly different jazz color in playing naturally. From what we heard, they can go with some new age and even sense of healing music. It can be noir and mysterious, although they don’t make it too dark. Yet, you will clearly know that they play jazz the right way. So it is interesting, it is different. They have played in our other event, now it’s time to bring them gracing Braga Jazz Walk.

marissa wiguna band, jazzuality

Indonesia is fortunate to have many great drummers. Like in any other places, men dominate the number, but let’s not forget that we do have some ladies who could produce tasty beat just as good as men, if not even better. And that has been going on throughout generations.

Speaking of female drummer, allow us to introduce a young girl Marissa Wiguna and his brand new unit, Marissa Wiguna Band. She’s previously known as the drummer of Out of 7, also once found in a band of youngsters Final Script. While the Out of 7 is still paused, she is still serving regularly in church, something that she has been doing for at least the past 4 years.

This cute girl has a cheerful, energetic personality. But once she’s placed behind the drumset, she can wow you instantly. Powerful beat, rich in variation give soul to any song she plays. She’s an all rounder too that can play any genre just as good. What’s great is that she is still 22 year-old, meaning she still has a lot of time to grow.

Recently she got a big break by joining the new band of Singapore’s senior rock guitarist Moliano Rasmadi. Moliano is famous for his band Lovehunters, but now he’s establishing a new rock trio called Moliano In Rock, where Marissa is the current drummer for the band. Their debut concert which took place in Bandung a couple of weeks ago was a success. They are aiming more gigs elsewhere outside Indonesia which will make her go international. But in the mean time we encourage Marissa to establish a band of her own, a band where she can show her true-self especially accomodating the jazz part of her.

She won’t be exposed at max if she’s just playing as a member of a band. So, here she is, answering our wish to push her forward. In this Marissa Wiguna Band, she’s accompanied by husband Widiyanto Sutanto and. the bassist/multi-insturmentalist, Farhan Faikar. A cute looking young girl, cheerful but also powerful and deadly when she’s using her lethal weapon, that’s a unique combination that won’t fail to get the attention. She is an amalgam of feminine and masculine, it’s time for us to push her much forward.

andre arizky, jazzuality

Last but not least, let’s once again welcome a man with cheerful personality who has delightful baritone voice, Andre Arizky. This man has placed himself in many tv’s talent search shows  from Rising Star Indonesia 2014, StarVoices and X Factor Indonesia 2015. Although he hasn’t won any of it, we never doubt his talent at all. This man is ready to play and sing at any time.

As one of an active members of the community, not only he came often but he has performed several times too. For example when he gave special tribute to Elton John, one of his sources of inspiration, also when he brought in many friends to have fun with him in Christmas edition last December 2015. When he’s not scheduled to play, he’d happily join the jam whenever possible.

He was inside several bands before, like the blues band Royal Flush around 4 years ago and the later one, Moses Band. He established a harmonious duo with Indonesian Idol alumnus Ayu Sara and performed in online UVER. Today he’s active in his new acoustic group, Tiganama. Step aside from that, he’s still willing to perform on his own. With his ability to sing while playing piano at the same time and with the charm that he possesses, it’s not a problem for him to entertain people eventhough he’s all alone on stage. By having many songs in his repertoires, we don’t know what song he will take. But no matter what, we know that he will bring some pop with bluesy and jazzy touch to make the event merrier. It’s been 4 months we haven’t featured him, it’s time to bring him back.

The event will begin around 7:00 pm all the way until the mall ends its service hours at 10:00 pm. So if all the bands finish before the closing hour, we will open the stage for jam session. Everyone can join in. Other than piano and drums, do bring your instrument and have a good time with us.

Alright, all said. Mark your calendar from now so you won’t miss the date! Hope to see you there!

Braga Jazz Walk #22

Date: Thursday, April 21, 2016
Time: 07:00 – 10:00 pm
Location: Braga CityWalk
Jl. Braga 99 – 101, Bandung



:: 5 PETANI ::
Gerson Valdo Siahaan (keyboard)
Frank Navayo Pattinasarany (guitar)
Fauzan Rijal (bass)
Yoga Wardana Kusumah (acoustic guitar)
Athina Niassrin Muhamad (saxophone) Arbi (drum)
Hilmi (percussion)
Sidix (flute/bamboo flute)

Willyam Yuzaq (drum)
Hajar Asyura (guitar)
Dyva (bass)
Mirna Nurmala (vocal)

Marissa Wiguna (drum)
Widiyanto Sutanto (piano)

Andre Arizky (piano/vocal)

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