Saung Jazz Presents: Tulus : An Introduction – The Report

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Bandung should be proud for always having a lot of concerts in variety. In this September, Saung Jazz hits the ground of Bandung by presenting a special show called TULUS: An Introduction. Saung Jazz was made by Centre Culturel Français (CCF) Bandung to answer the needs of regular jazz events in the city. In fact, public had missed it after ‘a two month break’ during fasting and Eid. Now the show’s back! Muhammad Tulus and his band, open it with a solo concert. He is supported by some young musicians, that fused by himself into a band, and named it “Tulus”. Of course we still remember his last gig at Braga Jazz last weekend, because that has given us a bit description about the taste of music on his next concert in CCF.

Tulus is known as a talented young crooner, something that this nation doesn’t have too many anymore today. Previously he joined a groovy-funky band, called Sikuai, where we bumped with him for the first time. With the band, he had gotten the chance to introduce himself to the audiences by performing on many stages. When he decided to continue his career as a soloist, and performed at the first time in August 2010, his vocal technique was getting more mature and better shaped. What’s good about this is the fact that he has a lot of friends who are more than happy to support him. His gentle, cotton-soft tender voice is really suitable to sing numbers of swing jazz, just like most of the songs he had done before. Whether with full band or minimalist acoustic, his music is still comfortable to listen. He also found that sing with honesty is the key to put a loveable performace at the first place. And that’s why he looks so sure to bring relaxed atmosphere to the stage and to the crowds as well. If you want to know his profile, please refer to our first info of this event: http://jazzuality.com/jazz-events/ccf-presents-tulus-an-introduction/ .

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In several occassion when he performed in the regular Sunday Jazz with many other bands, he managed to grab more and more fans from the audiences. We’ve been hearing lots of things about him, either by giving a positive  feedbacks or questions of how to get his album, the album was officially launched today in this concert . We will have it soon at our online store. Looking at the positive progress, it’s about time for him to hold his solo concert. Saung Jazz knew it too, and here at CCF Bandung Tulus finally got his shot.

[flickr id=”6192258415″ thumbnail=”small” overlay=”false” size=”small” group=”” align=”left”] For his first solo concert, Tulus was supported by some of his closest fellow musicians. They are Fuad Rudyan (drums), Shindu Banyusekti (bass), Anto Arief (guitar), Yonathan Godjali (grand piano), Ivan Jonathan a.k.a AJ theREAL (keyboard), three backing vocals: Grace Sahertian, Lukman Hakim and the backing vocal of Sarasvati, Marshella Safira, Brury Effendi and Matt Asworth on the brass [flickr id=”6192258527″ thumbnail=”small” overlay=”false” size=”small” group=”” align=”right”]section and last but not least, ex member of Homogenic who’s now doing great in her solo career, Risa Sarasvati (Sarasvati‘s album “Story of Peter” is available at our online store: http://store.jazzuality.com/products/cd/sarasvati-story-of-peter/).

Just as we predicted, the ticket was sold out before the concert started. All the seats were taken by the guests from teenagers up to the adults. Some were even had to stand for not getting any seat. The crowds popped when the concert was finally started. He opened up the show grand by a fresh upbeat “Teman Pesta”, served in Motown style. Tulus kept the joyful mood in the next song, “Crazy” . Some hysterical cheers were thrown at him before he continued a song in more relaxing jazzy smooth groove, “Jatuh Cinta”. This song would already be familiar to his fans since he already had it in his website http://musiktulus.com for quite a while. The horn section consists of Brury and Matt Ashworth did very well in making up richer tones. He carried on with other song in the album, “Teman Hidupku”. This song delivered beautifully in romantic jazz mood. “No matter what you’ll never alone..someone, somewhere out there were already made for you.” he said, sharing the inspiration of the song.

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Then came a song which also already famliar to us, a song that he wrote about seven months ago called “Tuan Nona Kesepian”. The crowds clapped their hands together enjoying the lovely ambience created by this song, this time presented in new arrangement with full band. In this one he gave space for some solo runs so he could introduce the band one by one. Next came a song entitled “Diorama”. This song was presented in ‘cool-cat’ style with some bluesy pattern from Anto Arif’s guitar. Huge applause once again awarded to Tulus and the whole band.

Everyone left the stage, leaving only Tulus and Yonathan Godjali. Tulus asked Ari “Aru” Renaldi, his producer to officially launched the album. Risa Sarasvati was called to the stage, and together they did a really connected duet with “Oh I Never Know”, arranged a little bit more jazzy than the original which can be heard in Sarasvati’s album. After this song, Tulus brought a ballad that in his opinion is the biggest ballad ever. “I’ve wished to bring this song live, and now I got the chance”, he said before singing  Adelle’s “Someone Like You”  only accompanied by Yonathan.

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Then came the time for us to taste his crooning voice covering a famous swing standard from Ella Fitzgerald’s songbook, “Please Don’t Talk About Me When I’m Gone”. Brury and Matt joined Tulus and Yonathan in creating such a swingin’ vibe. How often we listen to this song only with piano, saxophone and trumpet? But now we got it from them in a very lovely package. Yonathan was great in playing the vintage ragtime style. [flickr id=”6192775482″ thumbnail=”small” overlay=”false” size=”small” group=”” align=”left”] They carried on the swing time with another standard, “All Of Me”. Again the acoustic combination between Yonatan and Tulus poured some love from the stage, and yes, once again the 17 years old Yonathan did remarkably well in this song.

Right after giving away two CDs for the lucky guests and sang some lines with his adorable little nephew, it was time for him to sing his single, “Sewindu”. This song is still climbing the top charts in several major radio stations and become more and more often getting an airplay in those radios . The smooth, ear catchy melodious tune and storyline that many people experienced in their loveship makes this song stands as a winner. Tulus spent some times to give thanks to everyone who have supported him and also this concert. “Kisah Sebentar” then brought in multi flavored style, from samba, big band, rock n roll and so on. Other than the previous songs, this one is brilliant in capturing so many delights inside a single song. This song became one last party for everyone. With this song as the climax, Tulus and the whole gang of Musik Tulus wrapped the whole show. The applause exceeded the roof, some even gave a standing ovation for one successful solo concert.

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What a nice-flowing concert it was. Tulus showed that he isn’t only good in singing standards in swing, but he can fit his voice very well outside it too, even in the independent music platform just as good. Again we saw him being all comfortable on stage and being delighted by the huge amount of audience. No doubt, Tulus is climbing another higher step with this special solo concert and looking straight to a bright future. We know the passion in him, we know he really wants this, and with all the gifts he has within, we’d say why not. He’s proofed it tonight that he was born to sing. Personally for us, since we have known him for some years since he was just started, we’re happy to see him standing in such a state right now. This concert marks a start of something big for him. With consistency and persistency, he will soon achieve everything he ever dreamed on. Congratulations Tulus. Thanks for a very beautiful concert. Also thanks to all the performers, to Saung Jazz, CCF Bandung and everyone else supporting this event. May Saung Jazz keeps on being the home of rising stars and a place for us to enjoy young but highly talented performers. Hope to see you again in two months. Merci beaucoup!

See more pictures:

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Reporter: Riandy Kurniawan, Bintang Steffy Tania
Photographer: Kurnia Bayu Aji

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