Thursday, May 28, 2015
Tags Posts tagged with "dira"



“Alhamdulillah (Praise to God)..”, that’s the word appeared from the whole Indro Hardjodikoro & The Fingers and the management after getting the confirmation to perform in 3 cities in Russia right after we enter the new year of 2012: St Petersburg (January 13), Protvino (January 14) and the capital and the most populous city of Russia, Moscow (January 15). We just heard the news from Indro’s wife Muna Bunayati (Naya) who also stands as the manager of the band about this happy news. Just several hours from now they all will be leaving to Russia for this very special trip.

It’s not often for us to hear a jazz band from Indonesia gets the chance to go far abroad twice in a very short time, in just 7 months to be exact. Indro Hardjodikoro & the Fingers came for the first time to Russia last July 2011 to play at two festivals, Petro Jazz Festival in St Petersburg and MuzEnergo Festival in Dubna. (Read the exclusive report from that trip here: ). At that time, the representative of a Russian event organizer asked the crowds whether they want to see Indro Hardjodikoro & The Fingers again or not if they come back to Russia. The crowds responded enthusiasticly to that idea. Looking at that positive response, the event organizer worked fast in arranging a tour for this band visiting 3 cities. Having a foreign event organizer create a tour for Indonesian band is of course something special, and that could stand as a solid proof of how this band has captured the hearts of Russian music listeners as well as showing that they are indeed a high quality band.

Unlike 7 months ago when Russia was having a summer season, this time they will play in very cold weather that can reach -20º Celcius (approximately -4 ºF). With that climate it won’t be possible to have them play outdoor. Therefore this time the band is set to play indoor. The first gig will be at Djarum Black Petro Jazz Winter at St Petersburg, located about 650 km from Moscow. They will be accompanied by some Russian bands in this event. After that, they will go back to Moscow by train and continue their trip to Protvino (100 km from Moscow) and then back to the capital for Fusion Day at Music Town Club.

It’s awe-inspiring to see a band that was formed not too long ago can go this far. Other than the talented and experienced musicians inside it, this band also has a unique concept. This idea came out right after the first Indro’s solo debut album “Feels Free” was done. Indro has tought of using two bassists as the concept for a long time because he believed it would be cool to have two bass guitars at the same time. “Somebody can take the rhythm while I’m running freely with my bass, vice versa. That’s why it’s going to be cool.” he said. “Other than that, something new can appear when two bassists fill in each know, exchanging the expression, responding to one’s play and so on.” he continued. So two bassists are standing in this group, Indro himself and his former student Fajar Adi Nugroho. After that, a specific drummer would be crucially needed to bring out this fusion concept with two bassists. Yesaya (Echa) Sumantri was chosen to fill up this part. Unfortunately he’s unavailable for this trip due to some reasons. But no need to worry, because another very talented young drummer who has worked often with Indro named Demas Narawangsa is ready to replace him in this Russia tour. Last but not least, Andy ‘Gomez’ Setiawan is completing the group as the keyboardist. What’s even more interesting is they bring two guest stars for this trip. Kendangist Ade Tumbrink will add more traditional spices into the music concept. This become important since Indro Hardjodikoro & The Fingers will play “Panon Hideung”, a Sundanese song that has similiar melody with a very famous Russian folk song “Ochi Chorne”. Like that’s not enough, the soul powerhouse singer Dira Sugandi is also joining them. Looking at this winning team, we know that Indro Hardjodikoro & The Fingers will give something new to the Russian audience while still keeping all the ingredience that loved by them from their first visit.


35 years in business, 65 produced albums and 45 solo/group albums. Not many artists can have these numbers in their spanning career inside this globe while still being highly productive and fresh at the same time. Look now, we do have one in Indonesia, and that’s the former wonderkid who shocked the music industry in mid 70s and now emerged as one of the most respected names, the source of inspiration, the jazz icon, the one and only, the legendary Indra Lesmana. Since the mid 70s he never stopped placing up his tremendous works of art in every decades.  Now in the second decade after the millenium, Indra Lesmana once again makes a surprise. He teams up with two potential young musicians, Barry Likumahuwa and Sandy Winarta. Started from a series of meeting and jamming since the beginning of 2010, they decided to go on further, no longer as three great musicians jamming together but as one solid unit called LLW which is taken from the first letter of their family names, Lesmana, Likumahuwa and Winarta.

They made their first public appearance at the first ever Mostly Jazz in April 21, 2010. At that time they were still using each of their names. It might look like an occasional team up, but we sensed something even from that moment. An iconic legend with two of the most shining young players? That must be something and will lead to something. That’s what we thought back then. This move was relevant to Indra’s decision to lead the Indonesia’s Jazz Movement which began in the early 2010 with a regular jam session at Inline Music every Friday. It was on November 2010 when we met them again, this time they have officially established themselves as LLW.  One more appearance at the first Mostly Jazz in January 9, 2011, that’s when we heard of their plan to make an album.

Not long after the tremendous showcase at the Java Jazz Festival 2011 the boys landed on Rock Auditorium (Suntec) Singapore for Jazz Up! Reload joining Boy Katindig from Philippines and Scott Henderson Trio from USA. This triangle performance became the first international journey of LLW.

Two months later, finally we heard the great news of LLW’s album titled Love Life Wisdom that uniquely will form LLW too if we take the first letters for each word.  Just like what we’ve seen in some of their previous gigs,  the album featured four other great artists who created wider musical territory with their touches. Dira, Indra Aziz, DJ Cream and Kyriz Boogiemen brought the out-of-the-world Modern Jazz pattern a la LLW into the Urban and Soulful side. This magical combination proved to be spectacular. Not only for us, but for the whole world as well. This album was firstly appeared in the shape of digital mp3 format, released in some international online stores such as Itunes, Amazon and Reverbnation. Quickly they gained attention and made a remarkable leap such as being listed as no 1 Jazz Artist in Reverbnation for Indonesia region and no 41 worldwide, reaching the top 18 Jazz Best Sellers on iTunes in just a couple of week. “We were side by side with John Coltrane’s “Love Supreme”, and that was unbelievable!” said Indra Lesmana proudly. This achivement continued on with being chosen as Indonesian representative of 15 World Playlists from LA Times Magazine.

There are so many things to talk about this group and their phenomenal achievement with the first album, but we will talk about it later in the review section. For now, let’s focus on the special event which we all should celebrate, the official launching of LLW – Love Life Wisdom with one special concert as the featured group of Mostly Jazz XXIX edition.

Many medias and fans arrived at Red and White Lounge long before the official press conference started. Widyasena Sumadio as the MC for tonight finally invited the whole artists behind LLW including the co-producer, EQ Puradiredja and music expert Dennie Sakrie. The complete lineup took the seat, except Indra Aziz who had to miss this event due to his father’s health condition. He had to fly to Singapore early in the morning to be  with his father. Indra Lesmana led everyone to send prayers to his father and also for Utha Likumahuwa who’s currently not in a good condition too.

At the press conference Indra Lesmana explained that the process of making this album from the beginning has all been natural. “It all started from the jam session at Inline Music.” he said. Barry and Sandy were two of the musicians who often joined the jam session from the beginning.
Indra Lesmana soon found the chemistry with these two young guns and thought they could actually do something further together. “From the jam, soon after we found our own color through a very natural process” Indra added. And the rest is history. The preparation for the album was started at the end of 2010. It was actually planned to be released before the Java Jazz Festival, but due to Indra Lesmana’s health condition back then they had to posponed it. Lucky for us we didn’t have to wait too long. From the mp3 formats which gained praises from all around the world, now came the physical CD. At first Indra actually planned to make it in vinyl, but due to massive request from the fans, he agreed to release the physical version of that mp3 format in the shape of CD. The CD will soon be available at our online store in the next couple of days.

The family connection played an important part for both Barry – Indra connection. No wonder they found the chemistry fast. And Sandy is one of the most ready modern jazz drummer of Indonesia today, as Indra Lesmana stated.  So again, it’s a natural choice. What’s also important to talk is the role of EQ Puradiredja in joining the scene. Being a long time friend of Indra Lesmana and a partner in crime, he threw the idea of adding up more surprising elements into the trio. “It’s time for us to make our own’s time to make something new.” he said.  He has worked with DJ Cream, Kyriz Boogiemen and Dira for Urban Jazz Crossover, so he absolutely know the capability of these three artists in creating the whole different game. Again, it was a natural process, as stated by both EQ Puradiredja and Indra Lesmana. So, DJ Cream, Kyriz, and Dira, plus Indra Aziz joined in as the featured artists. The result was sensational. It’s a shocking surprise for us and probably for all the jazz lovers or even music fans in general to see this kind of combination.

What kind of jazz is it? You asked. It’s the kind of explorative and explosive Modern Jazz in the hand of three jazz artistes with urban and soul flavor. It’s the kind of jazz that brings the joy of spontaneity in wide spectrum of colors. In simple words, it’s like a Modern Jazz landed in the ghetto and soulful land. How could this be possible? By the perfect blend of the best ones in their each respectable fields, and of course the brilliant ideas. It’s the kind of dream team we might not even dare to dream, but yes they are real. Now we can listen to them as many times as we want simply by purchasing the CD.

About half an hour after the press conference that revealed everything about the past, present and future of LLW, LLW reappeared on stage and directly played the “Morning Spirit” as the opening. This landscapic fresh morning tune with a little folkish touch was soon filled with Indra Lesmana’s streaming melodies from the keys and lovely touches by Barry and Sandy. The natural and freshness of jazz as the spirit behind LLW was felt right away through this song. It was also great to see how much fun Barry had with the upright bass. Huge applauses were given several times during the song. The boys continued with “Friday Call” which was inspired by their regular Friday meeting (jamming). The first ever song made by Indra Lesmana for LLW called “Back Into Something” followed and again made the crowds popped. A surprise came after that. Barry introduced the song that actually meant a lot to him since his high school days, and it was the monumental song of Indra Lesmana’s JavaJazz entitled “Bulan di Atas Asia”. The crowds were very familiar with this song and they cheered big time when Indra started the well known lovely melody on his piano. The combination of these three musicians managed to bring this song appeared ellegantly just like the JavaJazz version but now in a new, more energetic version. The audiences exploded after the song reached the end.

It was time to bring the Modern Jazz deeper into the ghetto. “Stretch and Pause” was soon carried featuring Kyriz Boogiemen and DJ Cream joined in. This is one of the song that shows how well Indra could adapt with the modern urban sound. It’s amazing to see that Indra, Barry and Sandy can still enjoy themselves with pure jazz while being infused with the underground ghetto atmosphere at the same time. Only one word, amazing!

Dira joined in right after and brought “Blue in Green” for her first presentation. We don’t have to say anything with this teamings, but if we have to, let’s say that they brought it classy, smooth and relaxin. Dira’s golden soulful voice flew beautifully over the pouring melodies of the boys. Then came the moment when all blended in. The hell broke loose when Indra Lesmana, Barry Likumahuwa, Sandy Winarta, DJ Cream and Dira brought the climax with the title track, “Love Life Wisdom”. It was crazy and unbelievable. With this song the special LLW concert reached the end. DJ Cream stood behind his turntable set and carried on his act as the DJ playing so many great Soulful tracks from his collection, while the whole crowds mingled nicely all around the venue. Some fans took the time to meet the artists and had them signed the CD.

There were so many jazz artists and celebrities came to celebrate this very special moment. We spotted Riza Arshad, Beben Jazz, Iwan Hasan, Tompi, Indrawan Tjhin, Indra Dauna, JMono, Dimas Pradipta, Fanny Kuncoro, Dezca, Rio Moreno, Ramadhan Handy of Soulvibe, Monita, Gerald Situmorang, David Karto and Robert Pelenkahu of Demajors, Iwa K, Farhan, Nicholas Saputra and many more. All looked happy and full with smile. Like a big family reunion, they all went here and there chit-chating to one another, or even played pool together. Just as we predicted, Red and White Lounge suddenly became the miniature of jazz city full with the jazzin’ lifestyle and spirit all over. It was a big party for everyone, especially for the LLW with their phenomenal breakthrough.

The experience, the energy, the passion, and the Love, Life and Wisdom, all are the essences that shine inside the stunning LLW trio along with lovely contributions of four special guest stars who have added more tonal colors into the already lively colored modern jazz pallete. For us, this album marks Indra Lesmana’s path into the 2010s and the new dawn for two great young jazz musicians, Barry Likumahuwa and Sandy Winarta to have an awesome journey throughout this decade. Each of them are remarkable musicians, but they become lethal and dangerous when join forces as one rock-solid unit. A perfect combination resulted a spectacular outcome. LLW has successfully broaden up our horizon by flipping us up from one side to another inside the jazz borderline, even daringly bring us across the border if they have to. It’s so challenging and mouthwatering, it’s unpredictable and explosive. Such  brilliantly creative jazz group like this will surely bring our jazz scene moves far forward from the current standing place. From Indra Lesmana himself we got the news that they are actually planning for a tour around Asia and Middle East all  the way to reach Australia too. We sincerely hope everything will go exactly according to the plan.

What an edition of Mostly Jazz it was. Kudos to LLW, congratulations for the new CD, good luck with the preparation for Asia-Middle East and Australia trip, and we wish you all the best in everything! God bless you all!

See more pictures:

[flickrset id=”72157627039413741″ thumbnail=”square” photos=”” overlay=”false” size=”medium”]

Reporter: Riandy Kurniawan
Photographer: Agung Hartamurti Wirawan


For three years Universitas Padjadjaran (Padjadjaran University) has been painted Bandung with jazz, thanks to The Student Executive Board of Law Faculty who worked year by year to bring it real. Here comes the fourth edition, the Kampoeng Jazz 2011. The preparation has been made since several months ago. That includes building on interesting lineup. Now everything is final, and the list looks very tempting. If last year we got one very popular group from Philippines, MYMP completing the selections from our local source (check out the report here), this year we’ll have another popular artist especially among the youngsters from Philippines. It’s the lovely girl who blessed with angelic smooth voice that knows how to cover the well known songs beautifully into her own acoustic style, she’s Roli Alexandra Orial, better known as Sabrina. Besides Sabrina, there’s another famous international group from France to land on the Kampoeng Jazz 2011. Let’s welcome the indie group from France, Tahiti 80.

This Year’s Theme

Kampoeng Jazz 2011 comes with the theme of “Jazzolution: Where Music Impacts Society.” This theme shows their mission to fight the proverty and to push the importance of earlier education toward children much forward. “By using the tagline, we try to make jazz as a solution. Jazz unifies everyone to show our concern to the humanity, such as the poverty that is actually tightly related to the educational impact.” said the committee. This annual jazz event will be held at Padjadjaran University in Bandung just like before, and surely this will give considerably good enough impact to all the jazz lovers who reside in Bandung, Jakarta and beyond, even to reach the music lovers in general.

The Lineup

sabrina, tahiti 80, kampoeng jazz 2011

Let’s see the performing bands for Kampoeng Jazz 2011. First of all, let’s take a look at Tahiti 80. This group which has a thick synth sound on their indie pop style was established in 1993 in Rouen and Paris. The group was founded by Xavier Boyer, Pedro Resende, Médéric Gontier and Sylvain Marchand. At first it was Boyer and Resende who formed the pop combo sharing their passion of indie music style with touch of new wave and sixties pop nuances. The name Tahiti 80 uniquely was taken from a souvenir t-shirt given to Boyer’s dad in 1980. Not long after, Gontier and Marchand joined in completing the group. Throughout their songs you can still feel the touch of 80’s new wave and some vintage sound, but on top of that, their tasty indie synth pop is the main ingredients that have brought them many faithful fans from all around the world. The recent formation of Tahiti 80: Xavier Boyer, Médéric Gontier, Pedro Resende, Raphaël Léger and Julien Barbagallo will all be there to merry the Kampoeng Jazz 2011.

For you who love easy listening/acoustic pop with lovely female voice should already be familiar with Sabrina. 4 albums has been released by this beautiful young girl where she managed to deliver her intimate interpretations of our favorite hits. Her self titled album, “Sabrina”, “I Love Acoustic”, “I Love Acoustic Too” and “I Love Acoustic 3″ were filled with all the well known hits that reappeared with her simple but lovely renditions. It’s not difficult to figure out where she got her talent, since she was born from singing parents. Not only her, but her siblings sing too. She did a nice duet with Calvin Jeremy in taking Bruno Mars “Just the Way You Are”, and now at Kampoeng Jazz 2011 she will collaborate once again with Calvin Jeremy. One thing for sure, just like how she brings all of her albums, she will build up an intimate moment to her fans.

kampoeng jazz 2011, dira, esqi:ef, syaharani and the queenfireworks, yovie widianto fusion, tesla manaf effendi ft mahagotra ganesha

From the local resources some of the top group will join in. The girl with amazing black vocal who has acclaimed herself internationally Dira Sugandi will be there. It’s a nice chance for us to listen to the songs from her recent debut solo album “Something About the Girl”. The always pleasuring and fully interactive Syaharani and the QueenFireworks (ESQI:EF), Yovie Widianto‘s action packed fusion group: YWF (Yovie Widianto Fusion), the combination of explorative guitar with Balinese gamelan Tesla Manaf Effendi ft Mahagotra Ganesha will also participate. 4 winners of Kampoeng Jazz 2011 Band Audition are set to perform: Road Stone (blues), Stereotitude (indie groove jazz), Soul of Magnolia (soul/groove) and KPH All Stars (fusion). The winner of last year’s band audition Royal Flush, then DJ Arya (in collaboration), Project Three and Musisi Anak Jalanan are all included on the lineup. All these great performers are ready to blast this year’s Kampoeng Jazz 2011 to be one big jazz festival in Bandung.


The moment we jazz lovers have been waiting for, Java Jazz Festival 2011 has started! Several stages were on almost at the same time. We got Suddenly September as one of the first performing band. Suddenly September is one of the band that successfully reprise their role at the Java Jazz Festival for 3 years in a row. And that’s no surprise, since they carry on soulful pop groove with a touch of funk, RnB and other current musics. Formed in 2005 after two years of shaping up their identity in music, Chewy Dilmy (vocal), Barry Maheswara (drums) and ‘Andin’ sistha Anindya on Saxophone are still commited to deliver us something fresh and soulful along with their entertaining stage act.


Meanwhile we have the lady with a very powerful voice with a thick soul touch. Dira Sugandi is one of the frontliner in our music scene. For having a very special voice, it’s not difficult for her to grab her aoudiences hearts. The A3 BNI Hall, the venue she performed were crowded. It was one of the great show to start the first day of Java Jazz Festival 2011. Tonight she included songs from her debut album that was released not long ago in England and Japan.

Aditya’s debut single of “Be Mine” placed him as one of the currently rising star in Indonesia. With a pop-jazz and catchy lyrics, he caught many attention from the youngsters that can relate to the music. His performance tonight with his charming personality, he sang his debut single and his popular songs that made everyone sang along.


Known as contemporary jazz instrumental duo, Acoustic Alchemy was formed in England in 1981 by Nick Webb and Simon James. Their specialties in playing acoustic jazz has been the main power that brought this group to jazz stardom. Along with 14 albums plus 1 greatest hits compilation and a live acoustic recording, Acoustic Alchemy has been through many personnel’s changes. The original frontman, Nick Webb, passed away after the success of Arcanum (1996, GRP), a semi-discography re-recorded with some new tracks. Now, the duo contains of Greg Carmichael (the guitarist Webb found in a London pub band) & Miles Gilderdale. Though so, they never left too far from the former style of Webb & James, where the pioneering sound of nylon-steel dueling has created a remarkable sound of jazz guitar. They played such classics as “Jamaica Heartbeat” to “Playing For Time”, two new songs incl “Marakesh” from their upcoming album titled “Roseland” and ends the show with the most well-known “Lazees”. Presenting their roots on that beautifully intense nylon-steel duels, Gilderdale’s scat together with the crowded audience had attracted a ‘screaming for more’ reaction to the encore. Acoustic Alchemy always stands as a picture of British contemporary jazz scene and it’s always wonderful to listen and watch to. Hundreds more coming up, stay tuned at Jazzuality for more real-time update on Java Jazz Festival 2011!

Danjil (8)

Here’s a talent from Netherland who is actually still related to us. Danjil has a Maluku (Moluccan) blood inside him from his father, Marcus Tuhumena. Born 38 years ago, he already tasted the real life of stages performance at a very tender age when his father started the family band named “The Family Song”. He was a drummerin there, and he was still 3 years old. Later on he taught himself to play other instruments like bass, keyboard and guitar, the instrument he’s heavily involved with today. He was once active in a band named Djanecy that made its way to reach the Java Jazz Festival 2008. Sadly the had to put it to rest in 2009. The good thing is, it was just the band, because Danjil still continues his journey alone. His debut solo album is expected to come on September 2011, and before that, we got the chance to see him first at Java Jazz Festival once again. He showed his nice touch of jazz with R&B and soul by pinning songs from famous legends such as Michael McDonald, Michael Jackson and others.

See more pictures:

[flickrset id=”72157626068758661″ thumbnail=”square”]

Reporter: Riandy Kurniawan, Ata Michaella, Daniel Irawan, Ardhi Saputro
Photographer: I Putu Surya KB, Dwi Ratri Utomo, Omar Arif Maulana

aditya, dira, acoustic alchemy suddenly september

So Java Jazz Festival has started! Several stages were on almost at the same time. We got Suddenly

September as one of the first performing band. Suddenly September is one of the band that successfully

reprise their role at the Java Jazz Festival for 3 years in a row. And that’s no surprise, since they

carry on soulful pop groove with a touch of funk, RnB and other current musics. Formed in 2005 after

two years of shaping up their identity in music, Chewy Dilmy (vocal), Barry Maheswara (drums) and

‘Andin’ sistha Anindya on Saxophone are still commited to deliver us something fresh and soulful along

with their entertaining stage act.

Meanwhile we have the lady with a very powerful voice with a thick soul touch. Dira Sugandi is one of

the frontliner in our music scene. For having a very special voice, it’s not difficult for her to grab

her aoudiences hearts. The A3 BNI Hall, the venue she performed were crowded. It was one of the great

show to start the first day of Java Jazz Festival 2011. Tonight she included songs from her debut album

that was released not long ago in England and Japan.

His debut single of “Be Mine” has brought him to the next level. With a pop-jazz and catchy lyrics, he caught many attention from the youngsters that can relate to the music. His performance tonight with his charming personality, he sang his debut single and his popular songs that made everyone sang along.

Known as contemporary jazz instrumental duo, Acoustic Alchemy was formed in England in 1981 by Nick Webb and Simon James. Their specialties in playing acoustic jazz has been the main power that brought this group to jazz stardom. Along with 14 albums plus 1 greatest hits compilation and a live acoustic recording, Acoustic Alchemy has been through many personnel’s changes. The original frontman, Nick Webb, passed away after the success of Arcanum (1996, GRP), a semi-discography re-recorded with some new tracks. Now, the duo contains of Greg Carmichael (the guitarist Webb found in a London pub band) & Miles Gilderdale. Though so, they never left too far from the former style of Webb & James, where the pioneering sound of nylon-steel dueling has created a remarkable sound of jazz guitar. As far, Acoustic Alchemy has created many hits including “Mr Chow” that blends Chinese touch with a little reggae, “Lazees”, to the luxurious “Playing For Time”. Acoustic Alchemy always stands as a picture of British contemporary jazz scene and it’s always wonderful to listen and watch to.

Stay tune at Jazzuality for more real-time update on Java Jazz Festival 2011!


The year 2010 has gone, we welcome the new year of 2011. We set the new phase of every aspects in life. Some people have their new year resolutions. It could go up to a very long list or a the most simple one, but no matter what you write in there would be something to work out for the better. Here we have the fast growing jazz community consists of dozens of highly skilled musicians across ages carrying the Jazz Movement. In it we have the newcomers, the rising stars up to the experienced seniors and even legends. The Inline Jazz Community has become a home for everybody who has the same vision and dreams. They go on uniting their perception and “jazz dialect” in harmony by doing regular free-for-all jam session every Friday night. At Inline Music, Indra Lesmana and his dear wife Hanny T Lesmana or better known as Honhon let every musicians to unleash their “demons” together in the squared circle. As the result, anyone inside that room will feel a very strong presentation of jazz spirit, something that we don’t experience so often. As the time goes by, the community grows significantly. More and more musicians join in, getting all the experience and knowledge from the seniors who have been living in the jazz scene much longer than them. Not only from the host Indra Lesmana, but the frequent appearance from his colleagues such as Riza Arshad, EQ Puradiredja and many other seniors have helped the young guns to find their prime faster than they’ve ever thought. You can tell if a fruit is really ripe just by tasting them, the same thing goes to some of the young community members. Quickly they ripe to reach their top forms in no time. As a result, now we have long list of quality jazz players more than ever. And the good news is, it’s far from over.

MostlyJazz-IV (14)

Moving the closed for public Inline’s Friday Jam Session to reach the audience was indeed a brilliant decision made by the leaders. Now the jazz aficionados can also feel the strong jazz spirit we’re talking about. They still go on doing the jam and mingle every Friday at Inline until dawn, but now they rise the intensity in open for public cool exhibition. Red and White Lounge has chosen to be the place for it and named it Mostly Jazz. Take a time to see it with your own eyes, you will know the future of jazz history will be writen all over this place.

MostlyJazz-IV (62)

When we arrived in the venue, we saw something that actually more than just live music. We saw something massive that Widyasena Sumadio said as jazz jamboree. Both of musicians and the jazz enthusiasts blended together in one jazz-mosphere. We approached Honhon and here’s what she said: “What we have in here is something actually big than just watching the (live) music.” Yes, that was the impression you’ll get when you come into the place. For us it’s like watching the humanism side of jazz, the kind of feeling you get when you know that you can get a lot more than just music and performance. The view was incredible. This proved one thing, jazz is not just a music anymore, but it’s become a lifestyle, or even the life itself.

MostlyJazz-IV (1)We truly believe there will be future legends coming out from this movement. Not only we see the emerging stars, but we also see the birth of new groups. One of them involved Indra Lesmana himself, who found a magical chemistry with two of the fast-rising jazz stars today, Barry Likumahuwa and Sandy Winarta. They started several months ago at the very first Mostly Jazz in the other venue, now they are standing stronger as ever as a unit. This is indeed a magic blend, and for sure we can hope so much from such a trio like this. They called themselves LLW, stands for the abbreviation of their family names (Lesmana, Likumahuwa and Winarta). They have been making a lot of progress together. They dare to go boldly exploring jazz to the limit, even to cross the borders if they have to. MostlyJazz-IV (22)The trio is playing more intense recently for many reasons. Besides they are going to perform at the Java Jazz Festival 2011 and in the process of making an album, they are surely having streams of ideas that really need to be let out. More new songs, more new arrangements, more explorations. There’s no way for you to hear them playing the same twice. The last Mostly Jazz featured a surprisingly unique combination by having the soulful lady with unbelievable voice Dira J Sugandi and the man who change the game with his turntable skill, DJ Cream. This collaboration proved to work amazingly like a newfound formula, and that brought them back again as a team. If that’s not enough, the incredible human beatboxer Indra Aziz was here as well, along with other musicians that often connected to the Inline Community. MostlyJazz-IV (17)Look at who we found among the crowds. There were Tompi, Karty Rosen, Benny Likumahuwa, Iwan Hasan, Sandhy Sondoro, Elfa Zulham, Ramadhani Syah, Chandra Chasmala, Johanes Radianto, Donny Joesran, Gerald Situmorang, Fanny Kuncoro, Gugun, John Armstrong a.k.a Jono and Bowo from Gugun and Blues Shelter, Monita Tahalea David Karto and Robert Pelenkahu from Demajors and many, many more, including a very special guest, Mrs Nien Lesmana, the mother of Indra. It turned out as a big jazz fest out there, something that you would rarely get from any other jazz gigs at cafes.


When we first heard about the open jam session happened every Friday at Indra Lesmana and Hanny T “Honhon” Lesmana‘s studio Inline Music, we knew that something big would appear from there. Imagine loads of musicians, they young ones and seniors, from the newcomers to the legends all had a lot of fun uniting their jazz souls in the free for all jam session. We were there a couple of times watching them, and the jazz spirit could be felt so strong. So strong, because it brought the real nuance back again, as authentic as how it was created. The spirit were all over the room, it gave you goosebumps right after you stepped into the room. For us it was like watching the history in the making. We truly believe there will be many big stories to come from this very room. As the time goes by, more and more musicians joined in. They learned how to unify the perception or “dialect” from the experienced jazz greats in Indonesia. Indra Lesmana put himself on lead, while he got massive supports from other caring seniors such as EQ Puradiredja, Riza Arshad and more. The room of Inline Music became a magical playground for them to unleash their demons, and it could happen from midnight until dawn.

If what’s been happening at Inline are closed for public, since two months ago Indra and Honhon has decided to bring the situation to reach the open public. They chose Red and White Lounge as the venue, and quickly made it as twice a month event. Mostly Jazz who was started first several months earlier in another cafe now become a regular event. If you wonder how the magical jazz spirit feels like at Inline, now you can feel it by yourself at Mostly Jazz.

mostly jazz, LLW

It was meant to be big, and now we have seen the fruits coming from this Indonesia’s Jazz Movement. Not only we see some relatively new artists grow faster than they’ve ever thought, we also see some of them find out solid chemistry to one another and build their own group right after. This also happen to Indra Lesmana, who has now officially came out in the formation of trio. Joining him are two of the fastest emerging young jazz musicians, Barry Likumahuwa and Sandy Winarta. LLW, that’s what they call themselves as, coming from the abbreviation of their family name. This trio has been doing great from the start, now they are looking to go much further together. At the last Mostly Jazz for 2010 they have shown it (check out the report of Mostly Jazz, Dec 4, 2010 here), and now they are going to show their awesomeness once again. Soon they will also appear at the upcoming Java Jazz Festival 2011, so it will be cool to see the progress of this interesting unit before that. If each of them is already amazing individually, imagine what kind of thing will come out when they join forces together. Yes, that’s what you’re going to see at this edition of Mostly Jazz. LLW is coming back to knock us out with new songs and new arrangement, watch out for that!

Some other great artists are joining them too. Take a look at the poster, you will also see the soulful lady with awesome vocal quality Dira J Sugandi, the man who can make a difference with his unelievable skill on turn table DJ Cream, and the incredible human beatbox,  Indra Aziz. All these great artists with international reputations will join the LLW trio. The collaboration between LLW, Dira and DJ Cream was amazing last time, this time they will surely bring it into the new height. As usual, there will be many surprising artists to come giving up their spontaneous touch in the open jam session.

Unreleased songs, new arrangements and cool musicians, that’s the least you will get from this event. It’s going to be one magical night with lots of actions all over. It’s our chance to see how far they explore jazz without limit, this is our time to experience how far jazz can go in the hands of these highly creative and talented stars. It’s the  Make sure you won’t miss it!


LLW (Indra Lesmana, Barry Likumahuwa and Sandy Winarta)
Dira Sugandi
DJ Cream
Indra Aziz
and many more


What we learned at school is that, chemistry is a scientific study of interaction between chemical substances, constituted of atoms or subatomic particles. We could also say that chemistry is a study about transformation as a result of interaction between matter and energy.

When a musician plays, he or she brings out different energy that’s distinctively different from one to another. It’s like each one of them has their own unique ‘voice’. Taking this concept further while keeps relating to the chemistry, we could say it’s about the interaction between musicians and their ‘voices’. When musicians play together and get ‘clicked’ with one to another, that means they have good chemical reaction, or in another word, they have good chemistry.

Mostly Jazz-LLW-Dec12 (1)

Now, to know how the interaction goes, we must have a test. While labs have experiments, musicians have jam sessions. Yes, this is what Mostly Jazz is all about, bringing you the new experience of the jam session magic. We call it magic because it can go really wild, unpredictable and full of surprises when these amazing musicians unleash their energy, heart, mind and soul into hundreds or even thousands of notes. It can be streaming like a river, it can appear like raindrops. It can be fast like a bullet, it can be tender, caressing softly like a morning dew. No matter what it appears as, it always brings magic. This is the essence of jazz that always has the door open for improvisation. Such a kind of magic which is hard to find in other musical style.

Mostly Jazz-LLW-Dec12 (5)This is the year of Indonesia’s jazz movement. The time is now. We see jazz starts appearing everywhere, not only in the capital but also throughout other cities of Indonesia. Jazz communities are growing rapidly with more and more musicians joining in, and what makes it even better is the fact that the music lovers have actually been responding very well. One of the hottest flame comes from Inline Community, where Indra Lesmana and his dear wife, Hanny T “Honhon” Lesmana take charge on leading the young guns to gain more and more experiences from the battle field. What’s more interesting is to see some senior musicians even legends are joining this movement as well. Indra Lesmana has been doing remarkably well, but no matter how good he is, he can’t do it all by himself. A good team is needed to make the movement grows more than we could ever imagine, and thank God, Inline has it. Some highly influential seniors have their own parts too, like EQ Puradiredja, Riza Arshad and so on. They all mingle very well, supporting one to another, marching together to bring this movement up, and so far we have seen the fruitful results of this fine teamwork, a start of something big, the new dawn or the next chapter of Indonesian jazz history.

This community has been intensely held their regular “meeting” every Friday at the Inline Music. They fill each session with explorative and innovative jam session. They could go on having fun in there until dawn. We’ve been there several times and we always feel the strong jazz spirit inside. Since November 14, 2010, they have decided to bring this movement out from the Inline’s Friday Jam Session ritual to reach the public. Red and White Lounge is the place where we can see the movement appears in various shapes. (Check out the report from the first and second Mostly Jazz at Red and White Lounge).


The Indonesia’s Jazz Movement continues on. After the previous one held on November 28, 2010 which featured Jeffrey Tahalele, Monita, Johanes Radianto and Sandy Winarta on the spotlight, the two weekly event Mostly Jazz is coming back again this Sunday. This time Indra Lesmana will bring his new trio back in front. If you remember back on last April of 2010, Indra Lesmana surprised everyone with his memorable collaboration with two of the fast-emerging young guns, bassist Barry Likumahuwa and drummer Sandy Winarta in the first ever Mostly Jazz. It was highly entertaining, full of twists and turns, as Indra Lesmana brought Barry and Sandy to the edge, pouring everything they could in a blazing jam session together with many other great jazz artists including Andien, Nikita Dompas, Ali Akbar, Indra Dauna, Dira Sugandi, Indra Aziz, EQ Puradiredja, Aditya Bayu, Sandy Sondoro and Riza Arhsad. Since then, the trio has been doing something together, and now we will have the chance to see their current progress as a unit.

If you look at the e-flyer above, you will see the interesting logo of LLW, stands for Lesmana, Likumahuwa and Winarta. Imagine when the living legend Indra Lesmana teaming up with two very skillful young musicians who know how to bring their instruments alive. The explorations can be unpredictable, the outcome will be surprising. This trio will be joined by two other stars, the internationally acclaimed vocalist Dira Sugandi and one of the best DJ’s of Indonesia, DJ Cream. Dira‘s powerhouse-vocal has stunned not only the local music lovers but also the internationals. She even launched her debut solo album which produced by none other than Incognito‘s Jean Paul “Bluey” Maunick in Japan and England first. The album got a good appreciation world wide, and here she’s rising fast with more and more appearance on stages and tv shows. As for DJ Cream, he’s undoubtedly someone who can add up a different color and taste with his touch. He has bagged many achievements during his illustrious career. Winning the “Indonesia’s Best DJ” in 2006 and “Best Sub-Genre DJ” in 2009 are just some of the remarkable ones. He has worked with many international stars such as Brian McKnight, Craig David, Ja Rule, The Prodigy, Naughty by Nature, Jazzy Jeff and Grandmaster Flash just to name a few. Bringing the urban scene into the project he’s been with has helped many musicians to rise up their musical concepts into another level. With the magic of his turntable action he can bring delicious taste to fit just about any kind of genres. The LLW trio, Dira Sugandi and DJ Cream‘s collaboration will surely give something different unlike what you have seen or heard before.

It’s time for us to witness once again the Indonesia’s Jazz Movement served at the Mostly Jazz in the cozy and homey Red & White Lounge. There will be many surprising guests as usual of course, since this Inline Community consists of many amazing talents from the legends, seniors and fresh but skillful new talents. We invite all the music lovers especially the jazz enthusiasts to be the part of this progressive movement. Witness the history in the making, and let’s cheer together for the building process of our jazz future.


A very soulful RnB singer in Indonesia with the name Joeniar Arief presented a nice performance Soulnation festival this year. His name has no doubt is already popular amongst the music lover as he was one of the vocalis of Tofu – Indonesia Leading electronic band. He then quitted from Tofu and made a solo career with his first single “Rapuh” that came out in the year of 2008. Tonight he teamed up with Lala Suwages the lady of nu soul and Soulmate in a group called Soul D’Soul.

Soul D'Soul (9)

Soul D'Soul (5)Meet the lady of nu soul, Lala Suwages. She’s been active in the music scene ranging from jazz, soul to pop for the last ten years the least. Having a very soulful voice is not the only talent she has, because she’s also gifted in song writing. She started her professional career in singing by joining “Tabitha’s Friends”. She participated in International Festival 2003 and grabbed the Major of Almaty prize winner “Voice of Asia” in Kazakhstan, Russia. From there she got many chances to perform in prestigious festivals such as Java Jazz and JakJazz. She has released two audiophile records, “Devoted to You” and “I Love You This Much”. Both album showed her simple, soulful and chill out music style. These albums were published in Singapore with the distribution covSoul D'Soul (4)erage went far to reach Hong Kong. The latest album “Langkah Baruku” was the first one released in Indonesia. The single “Tanpamu” became a hit in some major radio stations. The album also featured one classic song of Fariz RM entitled “Nada Kasih” which she sang together with Joeniar Arief. Continuing her journey on big festivals, now Lala has landed at the Java Soulnation Festival 2010 with him. Together they gave a heartwarming performance taking on songs from their sides. Joeniar Arief brought his famous hit “Rapuh” and with Lala sang the classic “Nada Kasih”.

Dira J Sugandi (6)

Dira J Sugandi is one of the fastest rising star in Indonesia. Today she has gain such a remarkable popularity not only by getting many appearance time on TV and stages around Indonesia, but she also heard internationally as well. Born in Bandung on July 29th, 1979, she has been with music since she was a child. Taking her first vocal lesson at Elfa Music Studio, and now she is a solo singer with the amazing talent. She has performed with many local musicians in Indonesia such as Rieka Roeslan, SOVA, Imam Pras Quartet and also experienced in international class performance as she collaborated with many artists like Yellowjackets, Keith Martin and of course Incognito, who she’s been touring with across the world. She has performed in so many festifals such as Java Jazz Festival, Bali Jazz, JakJazz Festival and now landed for good at the Java Soulnation Festival.

Dira J Sugandi (14)

She gave some sweet teaser taken from her debut album such as  “Inside Love” and “Essentially Yours”, who was made by Bluey that inspired by Tamia‘s “Missing You”, the song that Dira likes to sing. The band with Nikita Dompas (guitar) and Ali Akbar (keyboardist)  supported her big time on stage. Tonight was quite emotional for Dira, she even sobbed on stage because these past months has been really difficult for her. “But because of all your support, I manage to stand strong.” she said. Dira, we know you can make it. Keep the spirit, and be strong, we believe in you.

Calvin Jeremy (5)

The more the merrier. That can also be said to the dynamic music industry. Let’s give a warm welcome to the young and multi-talented musician, Calvin Jeremy who is considered as a breakthrough in the music scene and a singer who offers something fresh to it. Influenced by John Mayer and Jamie Cullum, Calvin Jeremy has chosen pop jazz as his style, because he believes that pop and jazz listeners can be united in one genre without any gap. To him, jazz is not always a segmented music only for high class listeners, but jazz certainly has a place in everyone, regardless of the gender, status and age. Calvin Jeremy’s just started. With the delightful jazzy tunes he has, we are sure he will rise fast in no time.  Tonight he brought some songs including Ne-Yo‘s “So Sick”.

See more pictures:

[flickrset id=”72157625272107468″ thumbnail=”square”]

Reporter: Riandy Kurniawan, Ata Michaella, Ardhi Saputro, Muhammad Fadhly
Photographer: Omar Arif Maulana, Febrian Dirga


Imagine this: hosting two international music festival in just a month. How that could possibly be? Java Festival Production proved they could. Their experience for the last 7 years has made them able to work in harmony to beat the odds. Java Rockin’Land was just over less than 3 weeks ago, now prepare yourself to get deep with the Soul and everything related on it. Yes, AHA Java Soulnation Festival 2010 will happen today!

Java Soulnation Festival - Press Conference (2)

A press conference was held just a day earlier at the Airman Planet Lounge, Sultan Hotel Jakarta. EQ Puradiredja, Paul Dankmeyer, Dewi Gontha and the representative of AHA (Bakrie Connectivity), Rita Purnani were there to give the good news. The press conference was also attended by some of the performers, among them including Soulvibe, Ecoutez, Tangga, Sandhy Sondoro, Relax, Akil and Louis Logic. The theme this year is: “Your Souls Like It”. It might look simple, but actually there are many things behind it to talk about.

Java Soulnation Festival - Press Conference (5)Unlike last year when they concentrated more on rap and hip hop, this time the Java Festival Production has decided to rise the game, strecthing up wider to reach other genres like soul, R&B, electronic, pop, jazz, blues, funk and even rock to join the rap and hip hop style. Just by looking at the lineup we could clearly see that it’s a lot more colorful this year than ever. Not only the full variety genres to enjoy, but also there will be many interesting collaborations to check out. “This year’s preparation has been really cool”, said Widyasena Sumadio, mainly because it’s going to be presented just 3 weeks after the big rock festival, Java Rockin’Land.

Java Soulnation Festival - Press Conference (6)For this third Soulnation, there will be no less than 30 bands participating. Eight of them come from overseas: Les Nubians (France), Coolio, Raul Midon, Relax (Nethelands), Akil and the MC from Jurasic 5, Tambuco (Mexico) and of course the biggest highlight this year, the legendary British soul band Simply Red in their final farewell tour. Joining them are some of the fine groups in Indonesia, with some groups has planned to appear in collaborating with other artists. Pandji Pragiwaksono will bring Angga from Maliq n d’Essentials, Iwa K, and Sutha AFI. Soul ID will perform with Monita Tahalea, Iwan and Lita Zen, Ruth Sahanaya, Sweet Martabak and many more and Barry Likumahuwa‘s most recent project, “Tribute to Motown Music” in which he features many stars including Sandhy Sondoro, Dira J. Sugandi, Bayu Risa, Soulmate, Matthew Sayerz and Aiko. Besides these interesting collaborations, there will also be Drew, SABA, Lala Suwages, Joeniar Arif, Bayu Riza, Gading Marten, Eno ‘Netral’, Soulvibe, Jemima, Rafi & The Beat, S.O.B, Romero, Indonesian youth Generation, Guntur, Ecoutez, Yacko, Tangga and many more.

Java Soulnation Festival - Press Conference (10)

Looking at the rainbow-like participating artists and collaborations, we can have a hint that there’s something different this year being added up in the concept. They are not trying to make the festival bigger with more artists or more stages, but they are focusing on more details in every artists’ performance by giving a bit longer duration for each group or trying the unique collaborations on stage. Louis Logic said to us: ‘This is my first time in any asian country and for sure I will bring something amazing for you people. I love it here in Jakarta and I dont wanna go back.” Akil with his unique style said, “It’s amazing how I can share my music.” At the end of the final conference Sandhy Sondoro took his guitar and played a song entitled “People” which he dedicated to all the victims of the natural disasters who occured in several parts of Indonesia recently. “Let’s pray for Indonesia”, he said, before presenting the song.