Thursday, November 27, 2014
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indra aziz


Jazz speaks thousand words! That could very well be our impression after watching the first ever JazzSpeak Festival in Bandung. The name might come from the initiator, TreeSpeak Production in cooperation with Institut Français Indonesia (IFI) and its regular concert Saung Jazz, but from what we saw, we could clearly see that jazz did speak loud in this event through the superb young musicians.

As a new home for all musicians to motivate their creativities and skills, JazzSpeak Festival is here in Bandung to offer new ideas in making up a festival. Some of you might have read the announcement of the event, here: Not like the ordinary events that only represent stage performance of the huge incredible guest stars, JazzSpeak comes forth differently by adding educative sense of jazz with two workshops. That is why, we love JazzSpeak so much. After we had enjoyed and reviewed the festival, this is what we are thinking about in our special words and warmest regards. Do not close the tab because we just start it now. Let’s speak it all loud, Jazzuality Readers!

On this Saturday, October 27, JazzSpeak Festival was officially launched, spreading the great news and new spirit to Indonesian youngsters and all jazz aficionados in general. Start from 2 p.m. at Auditorium IFI Bandung, Jl. Purnawarman No. 32, we proudly amused by the magnificent seven elements. They are Indra Aziz’s Vocal Plus Workshop, Indra Perkasa’s Film Scoring 101, Tasla Manaf Quartet, Duo Project of Dhani Syah and Johanes Radianto, David Manuhutu Trio, Julian Marantika, and Indrawan Tjhin Group in the rundown.


The festival began with the duo-Indra educative jazz sessions. Vocal Plus Workshop of Indra Aziz was well-done with all the things he told this day, very motivated and inspiring.  Started with the basic by saying jazz is not merely a music style but most importantly a tradition, he revealed the importance of hearing, phrasing, breathing  and practicing the right articulation. From crooning, vocalese to improvise, which he described as nonsense sylable. “It is important to use each sylable as a part of lyrics, with the right phrasing.” he said. Speaking of crooner, he mentioned that Frank Sinatra is the master jazz phrasing, and it’s best to listen to him at least 2 hours a day in order to learn crooning. The audience responded very enthusiastically by questioning scat-singing method and other questions relating to vocal improvement.  He invited some of the audience to try it on stage and the result was magnificent. Other than that he also urged everyone to be original. When we approached him after that, he said that the voice range can be widened and the variety of vibration is something that can be learnt. “Control plays a very important role in it.” he said. Such a nutricious seminar we should say  With Indra Aziz no one should be scared to sing anymore. “Singing jazz should be very, very easy”, he said, of course if we know the way, and Indra Aziz will always ready to build you.



Where were we all in 1988? A question that everyone has a different answer to. Well, as for Jakarta International Jazz Festival, there was one. It was the birth of a music event that has resounded through time and emerged clearly in Indonesia’s music development. And until now, Indonesia’s participation in the globalisation era of music has reached to another step and keeps getting better. After it’s warm and delightful welcome since years ago, The Djarum Super Mild Jakarta International Jazz Festival 2012 is back and is ready to fulfill your jazzilicious cravings. For the thirteenth time, this three-day event (19,20,21 October 2012) held at Istora Senayan Jakarta holds the theme of “Jazz The Way You Are” and marks another history in the national and also international scope. This event prepares the finest artists and performers from a variety of backgrounds uniting with one vision to deliver a great passion towards music highlighting jazz as it’s main course. With eight stages of amazing showcases, this event will surely get you up and going in enthusiasm to satisfy your wants and needs for jazz.

Jazzing up this fine friday evening, opening performances started off on separate stages with The Doctors, Time Warp, and Karim Suweileh & Friends. What words come instantly in your mind when you hear the word “The Doctors”? If you ponder about a bunch of medical professionals, you got it exactly right. Instead of only discussing a range of various health-related topics, they also teamed up to share their passion in music. Yes, this is a music community whose members are genius, talented doctors. A group that has “Music is the Medicine” tagline consists of dr. Noel (vocal), dr. Bram (piano), dr. Yassin (keyboard), dr. Fariz (gutiar), dr. Rizky (bass), dr. Hery (guitar) and dr. Bima (drums). It’s their fourth time performance at JakJazz and they brought an instrumental of “Perjalanan Panjang“, “Lupakan Diriku” by Noel feat Nina and continued with G Voice’s “Capacity of Love” and “Masihkah“. Then there was “Hanya Bayangan“, “Is It You“, and “You Make Me Feel Brand New“. Their last numbers ended with “September” and the maestro Gesang’s “Bengawan Solo“.

Using Time Warp as a band name? Why not. This band of expatriates from USA, Australia and UK together with some Indonesian suit the word if we take a look at the concept. They play infectious road blues really well, but they move on by opening various dimension through time and space by infusing jazz, funk, classic R&B and soul (sound of Motown) all the way to rock and roll and stuff. In the end, it’s like having a wonderous party over some eras, just like riding into a time warp. They delivered a few songs such as “Peter Gunn“, “Cant Turn“, “Everybody Needs Somebody” and “Sweet Soul Music“.If they claimed to be the South East Asia’s premier Blues Brothers revival band, they really do, because their act and song choices always remind us of the legendary Blues Brothers. They also jazzed away with “Respect“, “Hold On I’m Coming“, “Funky Nassau” and “New Orleans” A whole lotta fun indeed we got from their stage.

We saw Devian at JakJazz 2008 (that time featuring Dina Mariana) when it was served big. Now we watched him again at this edition. Yes, we finally got the chance to see the great saxophonist Devian coloring the jazz sky above Istora Senayan. Playing at Anggrek room at night, Devian once again saw that he can play more than just pop and smooth jazz. He explored jazz in wide perspective view, making the audience drown in extacy. Joining him on stage were Triono on piano/synth, Faisal (guitar), Fajar Adi Nugroho (bass) and Dezca Anugrah Samudra (drums). We digged his show as much as we loved his action 3 years ago at the same event.

This event also includes mini-workshops, performances and Coaching Clinics by IMI (Institut Musik Indonesia) on all three days of this event. And on the first day there was a vocal session by Indra Aziz who is a well known vocal coach for most of us. He is also known for his skill and ability to compose songs, and play the saxophone. This clinic featured Anjuan Julio for the guitars.


Syaharani and the QueenFireworks or mostly known as ESQI:EF is a group who certainly knows how to entertain the crowd. It is because that they are not only presenting ear catchy songs but also by involving their fans into their performance. Syaharani, the queen herself positively enjoys about how she communicates to audiences, both on and off stage. A very delightful group to watch and listen. ESQI:EF appeared right here at JakJazz along with Donny Suhendra (guitar), Kristian Dharma (bass), Sirhan Bahasuan (drums) and the backing vocals. As how we predicted, they gave a highly entertaining performance which a real satisfaction for the crowd. There’s nothing better than serving a party with songs like “Say A Little Prayer” and an acoustic version of “Anytime” and “Kiranya” with a beautiful French nuance. There was also a special touch of accordions by Andy Gomez. It was truly an act the way we expected from ESQI:EF. Way to go!

There was also DAC, Emerald Bex and another Clinic by IMI from a guitar session with Andre Dinuth. DAC or short for Dynamis Action of Chord which describes their music concept of jazz fusion/pop group from Semarang with Momo (Guitar), Dudut (Bass), Aditya (Drums), Iga and Atok (Keyboards) and Shanty (Additional Vocalist). They have been around since 1987. If you’re an adult jazz fans who had listened to jazz albums in the 80’s, you might remember them. They’ve also released an album in 1989 then stepping into hiatus for quite a long term. They came back in 2010 on Fusion Nite 80’s at Jajan Jazz Teras Kota BSD City. Fusion flowed thorugh our ears as they let their fresh modern touches tingle too. The 80’s fusion hype with some fresh and modern treatment was the menu that enjoyed by many of their fans and the passers-by.

Also from the same era and fusion jazz is Emerald Bex, which was formed on the 11th of July 1986. They are Iwang Noorsaid(Keyboards), Roedyanto(Bass), Morgan Sigarlaki(Guitar) dan Inang Noorsaid(Drums). Both these groups, entered the Band Explosion (BEX), a music competition held by Yamaha. Andre Dinuth, yes a guitarist you might remember from several groups such as Tohpati Band, Magenta Orchestra, Erwin Gutawa Orchestra, Indro Hardjodikoro Band, Glenn Fredly Banda and Rio Febrian Band. With his guitar he’s travelled from one stage to another and this time he gives out more than just the music. With his experiences also as session palyer for various artist and recording guitarists, who doesn’t love a plus on the guitar and the jazzy side of it. The Emerald-BEX is the embryo or the earliest formation of the band. We didn’t hear the band at all since that hey-day, but then they decided to come back since last year for good. If you love them back then, you’re going to love them even more today. Why not? Wild exploration of jazz-rock, fired-up stage action, all wrapped with the experience, passion and love make this band stands in the different fusionesque corner. The setilst such as 11 July, Altimeter and Night Walk became the benchmark of people’s expectation watching this group. In the end you’ll find out that you’re not watching a group of musician playing their instruments anymore, it’s become a show where the jazz-rock comes alive. Oh yeah, before we forget, the young man named Muhammad Iqbal did very well too in providing the raunchy beat over the drums.


The Quatro consists of musicians who have appeared often in jazz festivals in Indonesia. They are Eka Dewanto (bass), Hosdiman (saxophone), Donny Prasetyo (keyboards) and Hanli Saputra (drums). This circle of friends decided to form the band to fulfill their passion and simply chose the name based on the number. In this gig The Quatro got empowered by two vocalists, Sherly’O and Hans Bartelz. Resides in Bali, Sherly’O made her solo album entitled Pop Jazzy in 2007 which got good response from the market. She also participated in Akordeon and Totong Wicaksono’s albums. About Hans Bartelz, this guy has the kind of soulful voice like black singer and labeled as Phil Perry from Rote/NTT. Showing an appreciation for this fest, they made a special instrumental song named “Song For JakJazz“, written by Donny Prasetyo. “A Night in Tunisia” and “Sexy Back” was sung by Sherly’O before Hans joined her for a duet on the evergreen “Moody’s Mood For Love“. Hans carried on right after by groovin’ the audience with Al Jarreau’s “Boogie Down“. To close this session grand, Sherly’O came back to do another beautiful vocals on “Every Breath You Take“. Carrying well known song in pop jazz tunes like this including “Don’t Ever Wonder” delivered by Hans, made the audience could sing a long merrily, it was nicely done and entertaining.

There was also Higher D and another Clinic by IMI from Willy Haryadi with the keyboards who majored in Film Scoring with emphasize in computer music techonolgy. Fascinated right? Well he let out his knowledge of tips and tricks with his incredible fingers tapping the notes. His proffesional experiences are worth double thumbs up being a composer and music programmer for tv shows and movies including international movie “The 1985″. A glimpse of where passion can take you. Higher D went on stage with their colorful costume. They presented their “Album Maluku” by recycling “Ayo Mama” and “Tanase“. There was also an appearance from Danila which also completed a unique performance. Their energetic aura and colorful costumes lit up the atmosphere. With different voice ranges, they created a beautiful harmony in delivering their sweet Ambon songs.

Talk about a lady who’s done a tremendous job in many fields, the name Yuyun George should always be the perfect role model. She’s highly experienced in the music scene since she plays saxophone and sings really well, she’s great in composing/arranging, a standout band leader and also teach. Off the stage, she’s a full loving and caring wife and mother, not to mention that she’s warm hearted and very friendly as well. Her family supports her fully, that should be one of the factors that enable her to give her best in multi-roles. Yuyun George & The Jazmint Band is her brainchild that was formed in 2000. Starting only with 6 musicians and pop singers, it kept growing both in experience and creativity. Swingin’ jazz appears grand from this band and seemed set to give a joyful entertainment to the audience. No matter how often we cover her gig, she never fails to surprise us. Some classics from the American and Indonesian Songbook appeared beautifully from Yuyun and the band. To complete the vocal position, there was Grace Simon with her first song Ismail Marzuki’s “Kopral Jono” and Titiek Puspa’s “Kupu-Kupu Malam“. She also let the crowd sing along with her making it an interactive performance while Yuyun blew away the saxophone elegantly. Nunus Utomo with his musky rocking voice singing songs taken from the Rod Stewart versions with “What A Wonderful World” and ” I Love You for Sentimental Reasons“. Yuyun Jazzmint also made a different arrangement with George Irfan singing “Bujang Dara” a number from his album The Indonesian Songbook. Really nice!


Some people would refer Jeff Lorber as a fusion jazz respected artist and one of the smooth jazz pioneer. For us, Jeff Lorber is someone who has contributed many things for passion and his eternal love of music. He has become a prominent figure in the movement of jazz fusion. Jeff himself performs regularly at the  Java Jazz Festival, or what we usually call it better as “In-House Residence”.  Tonight at JakJazz, Jeff Together with (his band or some other artists) they treated our thirst for jazz. This is his project which first honed their craft in the Portland, Oregon Club scene and rapidly expanded their aim for national and international audience. Their formation of Jimmy Haslip (bass), Eric Marienthal (saxophone), Vinnie Colaluta. They have just came back from Manila, Phillipines. While the strong fusion smell attracted the fans like having the best coffee beans to sip joyfully, the all-star casts in this session really brought something great yet natural. What a challenging stage we got, we are happy to have Jeff Lorber Fusion at this JakJazz 2012.

A senior fusion guitarist formerly known as the member of Cannizaro and Canzo, Totong Wicaksono continued his participation after the Road to JakJazz 2012 held several months ago. Just like at that time, he delivered the kind of classy 80’s jazz fusion with some Latins and jazzy pop. His Hollow body guitar and the classical acoustic nylon guitar are his favorite weapons that he believes can represent his musicality at best. Some songs from his solo project album were played nicely too at this festival.

Well they say, two is better than one. But three makes the musketeers. Dewa Budjana, Balawan, and Tohpati are known as guitar virtuosos in Indonesia. Normally guitarist at this level would prefer to play alone, but that’s not the case of these masters. They surprised us some years ago by joining forces and called themselves as Trisum. What’s even more surprising is they can actually blend harmoniously with high tolerance guide to one another. The first album received huge success, the second one received the same acceptance from the market. They synchronize each other to create a whole new world of music, they rock the jazz like no one have done before. Three wizards showed us how far guitars come in handy entertaining us, courtesy of these masters. Unpredictable twists, heart-pounding manouvers, acrobatic improvisations were all over their stage, all thanks to the harmonious connection between them. Eventough they busy with their own agendas, we hope it won’t obstruct them to make another album after “Five in One” and participate in more events in the near future. Kudos to Trisum for making such an unbelievable show. Tonight, accompanied with Muhammad Iqbal (drummer), they played “5 in1″, “Bubi“, “Keroncong Kemayoran“, “All You Can Eat“, “Guitar in the Midnight“, “Saka/Lukisan Pagi“, “Pulang“, and “Rahwana” to entertain us.


One Man Acapella Boris Savoldelli, vocal performer from Italy just has no limits in learning. He’s been singing through classic, rock-funk, avant-garde and yes, jazz. A list of albums such as “Biocosmopolitan”, “The Miss Kiss”, “Protoplasmic”, “Insanology” and a vocal solo arrangement of The Beatles’ classics “Get Back Evolution”. Many fans who hadn’t known him before were pleasantly surprise with the treat. The concept had A Capella in it, but still it wasn’t like the way a capella we used to hear. Imagine a singer who does more than just singing, instead he used his voice as the whole ensemble roled as one. He placed the base, the rhythm, the backing vocals and then he put his singing on top of them. What a miraculous work, something that might seem impossible came true through his voice. As the title of these followong songs appeared, the Mexican-feel “Mindjoke“, then “Blue Child” that he played in the name of remembering his grandmother not in sad but sensitive way, Monk’s “I Mean You“, Miles Davis’ “All Blues” and no forget to mention about cover of one Beatles’ song “Tomorrow Never Knows“, all in a way no one ever did before. Talk about unique, you gotta see this man. He’s like having the whole instruments in his throat while he also used his whole body as a part of the ensemble. On top of everything, this is the man that strecth out the concept of ‘having-fun’ on stage to the max. Man, you gotta see to believe.


Like a mix of everything with toppings of each? Jazz funk, soul jazz, nu jazz and acid jazz, you have it. It’s all there in Incognito! You know the names, yeah, Jean-Paul Maunik, a.k.a Bluey (Guitar & Vocals), Matt Cooper (Keyboard), Pete Biggin (Drums), Julian Crampton (Bass), Jamie Anderson (Saxophone), Sid Gauld (Trumpet) and Alistar White (Trombone). Arriving from the United Kingdom, they have flew in to Jakarta to greet the crowd. This legendary band never fails to create a communicative interaction with the crowd making it such a welcoming atmosphere. Their positive vibes in songs such as “N.O.T“, “Still a Friend of Mine“, “I’ll be Loving You Always“, “Always There“, “Colibry” were delivered on stage. Bluey’s introduction to the next song started off with “Larc en Ciel”. Bluey called his bestfriend, our lovely Indonesian diva: Dira Sugandi and rock the stage with “Talkin’ Loud” surely with the high tone of her voice, flawlessly powerful. No need to wait longer, another surprise came up suddenly, each of the personnel switch their role in playing musical instrument and had Bluey as the main vocalist within the song.There were many great moments such as when there was a saxophone moment which amazed the crowd. There was also a duo double session by the percussions and drums. With eyes closed they just flowed with the rhtyhm and the beat. At the end of their performance,


It’s a pleasure too watch Dixieland Crackerjacks, why? Because we can ride the time tunnel to visit the early jazz scene around the early 20’s and enhance our lore about the jazz history. From its name we know that this group played dixieland music, an embryo for jazz musical. This genre really close with swing, one of the earliest styles of jazz that is still known by the jazz fans. For you who are still unfamiliar with the name/style Dixie, this genre born from combining the early blues and ragtime which is believed as the root of the modern jazz. This Netherlands based band formed in 1994 and still goes on strong up to this day. What’s unique about Dixieland Crackerjacks is that the band  can change the formation/member, from small combo to supersize orchestra, depend on the event they participate.Lodewijk Johannes Bink, Michael Bruno Wijnand Muller, Arend Gerard Huisman, Anne Van Der Wal, Lielian Tryfena Tan were the ones behind this amazing band. This unique formation also affect they musicality, therefore they can play a lot of jazz genres no matter the classics or the modern ones.


Appeared in unique vintage Happy-Dixie outfit they added up the color to this JakJazz Festival 2012. With loads for song list from the past including “Maskrut Rumble“, “Bourbon Street Parade” and plenty of other classic songs like “Basin Street Blues” and so on. We have been waiting long enough to have a Dixie style in jazz festival in Indonesia. Finally we got one, and that’s from one of the best in today’s jazz scene, thanks to JakJazz. We hope their appearance can stimulate the Indonesian bands to form a dixie groups, because, no matter what, Dixie is one of the most important legacy we have to preserve. Dank u wel Crackerjacks Dixieland, it was like riding a time tunnel to see where jazz started came from.

About a month ago, Rio Moreno, a keyboardist we first knew as the Cherokee member released an album entitled “El Montuno”. Here in this album he poured his passion which seems to be rooted in jazz and Latins, like samba and salsa, something that we can always clearly discover from him. At this year’s JakJazz he appeared with that concept, playing the songs from the album and also the popular ones such as “Moliendo Cafe” and The Beatles’ “Come Together“. Something that no many knows, he also did a good dance. As the album is still new, it’s good to see him introducing the music of the album by playing live in front of the audience. Rio Moreno is a great keyboardist that can play as good as his idol, Arturo Sandoval and Michel Camilo. We hope the best for you guys and the newly released album. Long live Rio Moreno and the El Montuno!

And then there was Manna which name comes from the combination of the two personnels who established the group, the legendary bassist A.S Mates and superb guitarist Achmad Ananda plus the power rockin drum beats of Jessi Mates and vocalist/rapper Fajri Rusani. They deliver their music through the eye of progressive rock jazz yet also having a touch of blues and funk.

So from the era of flashbacks to the present, from fusion to blues, from instruments to education, Djarum Mild Jakarta International Jazz Festival 2012 Day one gave it all to you, but there’s still heaps more names and performances you just don’t want to miss. National, international, you name it! See you on day two jazz lovers!

See more pictures!

[flickrset id=”72157631806800004″ thumbnail=”square” photos=”” overlay=”false” size=”medium”]

Reporter : Riandy Kurniawan, Khairiyah Sartika Syofian, Dwi Ratri Utomo, Ata Michaella, Apey Idris, Ghea Sagita, Novan Yahya Renatal
Photographer: Praditya Nova, Omar Maulana, Bayu Warjiyo, Wowo Wahono, Akhmad Ikhbal


Don’t you realize that jazz fortune in Indonesia is jolly well-heeled of qualified youngling musicians these days, not only recognized in domestic but in foreign also. Noticing that very positive progress, it’s about time to provide them a nice home where they can pipe their creativities and boon skills to improve our music growth. For that reason, Treespeak Production together with Saung Jazz, a jazz society in Bandung facilitated by Institut Francais Indonesia (IFI) – Bandung, are ready to serve a nutritious meal of jazz festival namely JazzSpeak Festival 2012. The festival will come off on October 27, 2012 and get going from 2 afternoons until 9 evening at Auditorium IFI-Bandung, Jl. Purnawarman No. 32, Bandung (right in front of Bandung Electronic Center – BEC). God give you speed!

The most alluring and eye-catching of this JazzSpeak Festival 2012 than others is its way of serving, why? Because it is not only serving a yummy jazz performance of overachiever musicians, yet also serving a heavenly workshop and seminar which is good for your maw and brain, yes? Then, for your little information, Almira Sarimaja Joesoef, a Treespeak Production founder and director, said that the event is not merely indicated for audience’s amusement, but importantly for educative goal as well. That occasion back grounding the workshop and seminar presence as integral slice of JazzSpeak Festival. Several months ago, seven session of five artists/groups and two workshops had optimally prepared to carrying the tasty concept of this freshly festival for the first time. As the spoiler, there will be Tesla Manaf Quartet, Indrawan Tjhin Group, David Manuhutu Trio, Duo Project: Dhani & Johanes, and Julian Marantika, whereas for your hungry brains, there will be Vokal Plus (Vox + ) Workshop by Indra Aziz and Film Scoring 101 by Indra Perkasa. Good event for good jazz people, therefore don’t be one of those unlucky people skipping this opportunity to taste the communication in jazz that some people couldn’t have sensed it. Little bit more, you can also taste and jump into the youth spirit of Jakarta and Bandung youngling musicians. It is very teasing!


Here is your important nutrient of the stars.


For those who have been to the legendary Jazznights at Eastern Promise there is good news! After three years of silence there is a new place for outstanding jazz music in Jakarta. Double Doors Bar & Restaurant, located in Puri Indah, just across the street from RS Puri Indah and next to Puri Indah Mall is opening its doors for jazz and is going to host again what used to be Jakarta’s leading jazz jam session. EP Jazznight’ now reloaded and reappear as Puri International Jazznight. If the name feels too long, you can also refer to it as PuriJazz.

‘Indonesian Idol’ vocal coach Indra Aziz at Puri International Jazznight

puri international jazznight, stefan thiele, indra aziz, doni sundjoyo, deva permana


The first Puri international Jazznight features ‘mr jazz-man’ Indra Aziz, currently the vocal coach of Indonesian Idols, proud son of Indonesia Deva Permana, one of the finest drummers the Australian capital Sydney has to offer, Doni Sunjoyo, even though he is still young, he is probably Jakarta’s most wanted Doublebass player, and Stefan Thiele. The german Jazz pianist is known from various concerts on the world’s biggest jazz festival, Java Jazz Festival, the man behind ITMOS together with guitarist Achmad Ananda (ITMOS is available at our online store, click here to buy:  as well as being the brain and host of EP Jazznight.

Having fully experienced multi-national stars who are still connected/related to the nation will surely be perfect to launch the premiere of Puri International Jazznight in grand.  Having these boys on stage promises one thing: five-star jazz gig with unpredictable twists, spins and delightful extacy. Amazingly they don’t charge anything for this show at all.

After the opening on this Wednesday (September 5, 2012), PuriJazz is going to be a regular event on wednesday night

In the good tradition of EP Jazz, PuriJazz starts at 8pm. From 10:00 pm the stage opens for the jam session. So if you’re a musician, bring your instrument and blow. For you jazz aficionados in Jakarta and beyond, do come and get ready to have your mind blown.

DD Puri International Jazznight – First Edition

Indra Aziz (Indonesia)  – vocals
Stefan Thiele (Germany) – piano
Deva Permana (Australia) – drums
Doni Sundjoyo (Indonesia) – contrabass

Date: Wednesday, September 5, 2012
Time: 08:00 pm – onwards (Jam Session starts from 10:00 pm)
Location: Double Doors Bar & Restaurant
Sentra Niaga Puri Indah. Jl. Puri Indah Raya, Kembangan Selatan., Jakarta, Indonesia 11610



Across the echo of mountains, “Welcome to the highest jazz in Indonesia!” was exclaimed from the founder of Jazz Gunung, Sigit Pramono to Jamaah Al-Jazziyah (a name used to refer to the audiences at Jazz Gunung). This year is the first time Jazz Gunung is presented in a two-day show which is held on Friday 6th and Saturday 7th of July 2012 with a wider composition and range of performers.

According to Sigit Pramono, this event is held as a way of rebranding Bromo to attract more tourists. The revitalization of the Bromo area (between the 3B areas that has been through many disasters lately) compared to Borobudur and Bali is considered going through the slowest fase. Jazz Gunung lifts a theme of ethnic jazz with touches of collaboration. It is an event held with a bunch of super spirits and a gathering bond that does not hold on to a business priority. With the existence of Jazz Gunung, there are high hopes of being able to brighten up the economic conditions of the society around there. Such a beautiful site in a very different climate and surroundings we must say, that created a whole new experience in enjoying jazz.

Jazz Gunung 2012 is held on two days, so we will have a separate report on what happened on each day so you don’t miss those delicate details! So what did we have on Day 1 and what did 1200 pair of eyes get to see that day?


As a characteristic opening for the event, a traditional art performance of Jathilan and Jaran Bodhog from Probolinggo made an eye-catching attraction outside the venue, welcoming the people who came on the first day. While inside the arena, Gita Taruna Probolinggo played the traditional music with a tickle of jazz in it. This group is an arts group from the local government of Probolinggo where many young people gather and play these instruments specifically from Probolinggo colored with an ethnic jazz nuance which is very unique and different.

They started off with Glipang music followed by a composition called “Sasasa” which means washing clothes that was inspired by the activities of women in Bromo. A folksong from Madura titled “Tanduk Majeng” was the next composition, and arranged with an interesting and dynamic interpretation. The last composition from them was “Sekar Gunung Bromo” which delivered a romantic smooth jazz creating a magical scene. This title of the song comes from the unique things of Probolinggo which is ‘Sekar’ that means flower.


Is it difficult to hold a regular good quality music event? We would agree that it’s not easy, since obstacles can come from everywhere. But we can learn from the spirit of Beyond Productions that has been consistantly serving Interlude as a two monthly event, presenting nothing but the best from the independent world without favoring any single genre. With limited budget they manage to bring two bands in almost every edition since 2011 and surprisingly still able to launch it with a very affordable price. Since the word ‘freedom’ plays a big deal in the indie scene, we often see the bands creatively creating something new by blending many musical elements, styles and colors. Jazz as one of the most popular genres who is always shows its flexibility to fit, join or enhance other musical patterns are often used in the indie scene too in various portions. So, aside from supporting this unique event, Interlude has become a ‘window’ for us to see how jazz is doing in this particular scene.

For this April 2012 edition once again Beyond Productions presented groups with high musicality and creativity that were really worth to check. Interestingly here we experienced two bands that combines jazz with other strong music flavors, hip hop and ska. The blendings between jazz and hip hop and ska might be not new out there, but it certainly is in Indonesia. Plus the way they continuously break boundaries between well-established genres and endeavor has created new hybrids of music, something that contributes values to the Indonesian music scene. The joy of bop inside beatboxin’ hip hop was respresented by Beatbop Project, while Sentimental Moods dipped one of the popular genres in the 90’s ska into jazz.

For the first time Interlude was held at Chico Hindarto‘s Q Smokehouse located at Senopati area, South Jakarta. It was our first time to visit the place too, and we think this place is big enough to accomodate such event. While the venue is owned by one of Beyond Productions’ own men, Dharmo ‘Masmo’ Soedirman who also stands in this production house was ready to deliver some madness together with his compatriotes in Sentimental Moods. So it was going to be a special night, both for them and us.


8 Episodes, more than a dozen brilliant performers. That’s how the Interlude has been doing up until now. Holding a mission to provide an alternative show for our pleasure by presenting independent bands who don’t like to stay in single particular genre, this event now has become one of the most awaited show for the music lovers in Jakarta and nearby. Last time Beyond Productions presented the high-dopin’ avant funk Tomorrow People Ensemble and the rich mixture of music owned by a band with young members, Kosakata that rocked the house on February 23, 2012. (Read our coverage here ). After this fully mind-blowing edition we might wonder who will be next. Now here comes the answer. It’s confirmed that Interlude 9 will be held on April 12, 2012 at a new venue, Q Smokehouse in Kebayoran Baru, Jakarta featuring two unique groups: Beatbop Project and Sentimental Moods.

Beatbop Project

The joy of artistic, modern vocal percussion manouvers by doing drum beats, rhythm and music using a person’s mouth known as beatbox has been going on for many years now in US, at least since the early 80’s. Many people related it to hip hop, and that’s not wrong. Though we should consider that it’s not limited only to that. The question is, can it be mixed with the boppin’ jazz? This might come in mind since jazz also has the kind of ‘vocal manouvers’ too called scat-singing. Of course. And we can be even more sure since Indra Aziz (vocal, looper, sax) together with his compatriotes Riza Arshad (Fender Rhodes), Indra Perkasa (Double Bass), Billy Tamnge a.k.a Billy BdaBx (Vocal, Beatbox, Korg Kaoss Pad) and Jevin Julian (Vocal, Beatbox, Korg Kaoss Pad) started to bring this unique blending starting 3 years ago. Beatbop Project, that’s how they called it, shows how harmonious the sound can appear when 3 beatboxers collaborate with double bassist and keyboardist, resulting an electrifying hiphoppin’ beat over boppin’ tunes.

beatbop project, jazzuality, interlude

We have seen them several times from the first one at Serambi Jazz 2009  up to Surabaya’s Just Jazz Festival 2011  and the most recent one at the Java Jazz Festival 2012, and still amazed everytime we got locked with them. The idea came from the frequent rehearsals between Indra Aziz and Riza Arshad back then. The way jazz musicians experimenting with DJ’s sampling machine in the 80’s like Branford Marsalis and Herbie Hancock did could be the source of inspiration, plus the combination of beatbox and jazz have been going on for quite some times too out there. But in Indonesia, Beatbop Project is the one who started it.

This is not easy to do. One has to have special skills to be able to do that. Imagine a vocal technique that can resemble the sounds usually out from the electronic equipments such as synthesizers or turntables. So now you should be able to imagine how cool it’s going to be when the beatboxers go out and fly over the bop tunes.

Sentimental Moods

It should still clear in our mind when ska became highly popular among youngsters in Indonesia during the 90’s. Then some of us might enjoy the sound of ska in nutricious blendings, including with jazz, brought by bands such as St Petersburg Ska Jazz, Big Bad Voodoo Daddy, Tokyo Ska Paradise Orchestra, The Skatalites, New York Ska-Jazz Ensemble and so on. These bands are the source of inspiration for Beni Adhiantoro and Daniel Sukoco (both from The Upstairs) to do their own stuff based on their passion towards ska about 3 years ago by forming Sentimental Moods.


“YES WE CAN ! Surabaya is really something!” That’s what Kika Dhersy Putri, the Creative Director of Think Tank and the Director of Just Jazz Festival 2011 said in her twitter after the whole jazz fest was wrapped. That’s how she expressed her happiness and excitement for having a huge success in the first attempt. We share the same feeling too after we experienced another big jazz blast hitting Surabaya, taking place in a very cozy and beautiful landscapic surroundings of Ciputra Golf, Club & Hotel last Saturday, December 10, 2011.

Yes, Jazz has finally came back alive in Surabaya. The Just Jazz Festival 2011 has strongly proven that Surabaya is worthy of being called the city of Jazz in Indonesia other than Jakarta and Bandung. Just in two weeks this capital of East Java held two big scaled jazz festivals, something that doesn’t happen often in Indonesia. The first one was Jazz Traffic Festival 2011, and now The Just Jazz Festival once again treated the jazz lovers reside in the city with a classy, high quality and action-packed jazz fiesta. The Just Jazz Festival brought the jazz out of the small sized cafes or halls into the fresh, new and unique concept in much larger open space. Having the show ran at the Driving Range with the green area of Ciputra Golf on the background, this event has given us the new experience of enjoying jazz.

The weather was perfect about a couple of hours before the show, but then the stormy rain suddenly occured, forcing the show to start later than the schedule. People started to worry whether or not the show could go on, but around 7:00pm finally the show started exactly when the audience began to get into the venue. There were still some drizzling rain, but that didn’t stop the attendance to come to enjoy the jazzy atmosphere that night. In fact, we got some positive response that the rain was like a blessing in disguise, since then they could enjoy the whole show in much cooler weather, and that even created a romantic atmosphere. We saw many couples stood by holding hands or hugging each other while enjoying each and every minute of the show. That was really a lovely view.

The original trio from Surabaya consisted of Yason Gunawan‘s students including Taufik, Yoga and Reiner started the party. They brought the standard “There Will Never Be Another You” and “All The Things You Are” nicely. The vocalist Hariono joined in and sang “Summertime” and “Singing In The Rain.” The atmosphere got even hotter by the presence of Yason Gunawan trio consist of himself, his partner in crime Benny Chen, and Indra Perkasa. These three senior jazz musicians played some more standards such as the 1926’s “Bye Bye Blackbird” and “Alone Together”.

If we want to talk about the Surabaya Jazz Development, the name Yason Gunawan and Benny Chen (C&G Project) have to be included. They have been fighting over the years with everything they have to keep the jazz on in the city. Aside from their role as teachers, they have been commited to run the Jazz Legacy series followed by Jazz Time which was launched for the first time earlier this year. They must have been happy to see the scene now, especially by being involved directly in this festival. Yason’s studio was used by the artists to rehearse, his students got the chance to add their experience by performing in the festival, plus along with his trio, he also stepped on stage himself. “This is cool..especially with this unique concept.” he said to us when we met him after his session. By having over 40 students, he also stated the importance for them to experience the feeling of playing on the big stage, and the existance of festivals would surely give a lot of benefit to the students.  We are happy to see that these Surabaya jazz heroes got involved in this festival. As for the Jazz Legacy and Jazz Time Series, Yason told us that the next editions will come around March and April of 2012. Stay tuned for more infos about these events.

They passed the torch to Yudi Barlean Trio who kept the audience dipped in jazz. The crowds were happy with it. If before they could only enjoy this kind of jazz occassionally, now they got it fully under a different ambience. By this time the rain had completely stopped but still left the scent of wet earth. Add that with jazz being poured from the stage, you can imagine how nice the atmosphere was in the venue.


Feel the vibe and enjoy the atmosphere! This is our report from the 34th Jazz Goes To Campus which was presented under the theme of “Jazz The Way It Is”. This long running jazz event in Indonesia was finally held at Campus Ground FEUI on Sunday 4th December 2011. Prior to the D Day, the three sequences of pre event were held in welcoming this main event, JGTC Charity as the form of awareness from the organizing committee to the society and also JGTC Roadshow in Bandung, and Lampung as the contribution of jazz development in Indonesia. In that way, JGTC Competition that became the channel of the young talent to show their capability in jazz, have three winners who also performed today like Sailendra Sextet (1st winner), Mildness (2nd winner) and Revival (3rd winner).

Got underway at 11.00 under the sky in the suburb of Jakarta, this event divided its stages into three parts based on the main sponsor. Through the path of walk, the guest found Levi’s stage, Ford Fiesta stage and the last one was the prominent stage on Jazz the Way It Is stage. As the teaser for the whole blast today, each of the gig warmed up the crowd with its own way. We got the hot deals with the newcomers and also the advances in jazz inside the lineups for this afternoon. First we got to sneak peek to Tribute to Level 42, Caniday, Projecthree, BSO Band and The Extra Large which were on the Levi’s Stage. They fulfilled this afternoon with their own concept or with the arrangement of top 40’s songs. “Love in A Peaceful World” and “Forever Now” were some of the chosen songs taken from Level 42’s songbook. Other songs with influence of dance instrumental and fusion from another band really grooving the mood of the attendance to prepare them self in get going to the upcoming shows.

Move to another center stage, we could see the turn from Easy Tiger, Stereotitude, Drag Jam and Halfwhole Project from KlabJazz Bandung and also Indra Aryadi on Ford Fiesta Stage. “Chicken” and Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit” from Halfwhole Project (with the formation of Christ Stanley, Kenneth Timotius Djaja, Edward Manurung and Ilham replacing Gallang Dalimunthe on bass) and the upcoming strings were streaming from others’ set in this stage but still on their own consistency of playing their role. Stereotitude came with complete formation including Barsena Bestandhi (vocal/flute), Izzan Bacharuddin (guitar), Abel Peridoti (keys), Utha Ramadhan (bass) and Fuad Rudyan (drums) plus AJ The Real a.k.a Ivan Jonathan on additional keyboard just like how they played at the JGTC Roadshow at ITB two weeks ago. The other group from KlabJazz was Drag Jam, featuring great young female talents such as Adhisty Zulkarnaen (drums), Dyah Sekar (piano), Derry Novalia (tenor sax), Syifa Nurtari Ulfah (alto sax) and a promising young boy from Fifteen Plus, Hizkia Natanael on bass. They all are still considerably young, but they can already bring a set of good songs in post bop style.

Recognizing to the deed of Indra Aryadi, the songs from his album in title of Duniaku are really get into multi-ethnical configuration and he really did the implementation of his music today which can be considered by us as different color of the series in this edition of JGTC. One album has been released so far by him entitled “Duniaku” (available at our online store: click here to purchase where he opens up his world for us all to enjoy. Big applause were flooding along this stage, not only because the distinct music style presented in ear friendly way but also to let us know that now we have another great guitarist in our music scene.

By the side of the third level, Voyage Quartet, Kuno Kini, Audiensi Band, FEUI Reunion Project, Andre Harihandoyo & Sonic People were on the Jazz the Way It is Stage. For this bash, Audiensi Band was coupling with our powerful vocalist from Krakatau, Trie Utami and senior saxophonist Didiek SSS. It really constructed great show and boosted up the flavor of the ambience. FEUI Reunion Project also get its dual impact as the performer and also as a circumstance to gather the alumnus from Faculty of Economics Universitas Indonesia to jiggle up together especially in “Hymne UI” and feel the sense of being reunite in the form of flash back to their time when they were students. It is awesomely cool when seeing a music festival as their trademark tradition every year having duty in different form to congregate all the batch as one family.


“It’s sad to see that many jazz festivals being held in Jakarta, Bandung and other cities, but when will we who live in Surabaya can have our own jazz festival too?” This is a statement from one of our readers  a while ago that represented the wish of so many other jazz fans in Surabaya or in East Java in general. We’ve heard many similiar comments too from time to time. We feel them, especially since Surabaya was once a big jazz city in the early days. Many legendary jazz musicians came from this region in the old days. Unfortunately most of them chose to move to Jakarta where they could find a better environment to grow. Today Surabaya still have many great jazz musicians who stay and try to do everything to bring the jazz scene back again just like in those good old days. And let’s not forget that there are many of jazz fans too living in this big city. Well, Surabaya jazz lovers, hear this out. Your wish has come true! A big jazz festival will be held soon in your city! Get ready for the Just Jazz Festival 2011 (Saturday, December 10, 2011), presenting many stars both from the capital and your own land in a seriously cool concept. Keep reading, we are going to tell a lot more about this.

“It’s going to be the first jazz festival in Surabaya, served with different ambience! It’s jazz under the star!” promised the Just Jazz’ committee that can be read clearly in their official website.  As for the theme, this year’s Just Jazz Festival has “A Tribute to Indonesia” as the theme. This suits their mission to bring the jazz back home to Surabaya. Presenting jazz standard with Nikita Dompas as the music director and special arranger Indra Perkasa, they plan to bring jazz with authentic Surabaya taste in one very special session called the All Stars Session. Another thing we also have to mention is this festival is made in conjunction to the anniversary of Ciputra Golf, Club and Hotel, where this event will be held.

It all began when Khun Wiryasaputra (founder), Kika Dhersy Putri (executive producer) and Rafael Rio Ariwibowo (project manager) noticed the lack of jazz events in Surabaya, especially those that can be a home for jazz musicians in their city. They started with making three single events simply called Just Jazz #1, #2 and #3. These three pre-event was also meant as a tryout to see how big the market of jazz in Surabaya really is, and how the reactions are going to be. Looking at the positive response, they finally decided to move forward with even bigger plan: making a jazz festival with the whole different approach. A couple of meetings were held, and finally they came out to the final decision as what you read in this article. It’s not easy of course, but they are still eager to do that. Why? “Because jazz is a never ending addiction!” said them.

just jazz festival 2011, surabaya

Now let’s look at the participating artists in this very first jazz festival in Surabaya. Just Jazz Festival will present the collaboration of Indonesian young jazz stars and the local heroes on one stage. There will be the powerhouse soul sister Dira Sugandi, the Indonesia’s sweetheart Andien, the interesting project of the jazzman Indra Aziz called Indra Aziz and the Beatbop Project wtih the keyboard wiz Riza Arshad in, the new group of Barry Likumahuwa, the Barry Likumahuwa Quintet, The Jongens, local Surabaya jazz sensation Benny Chen Quartet (ft Yason Gunawan), Yudi Barlean Trio and many more. All of these great stars will perform in completely captivating atmosphere. Imagine this: the beautiful green grass under our feet, stars up on the sky above our head, surrounded by the trees plus a lake, that’s the scene that you will get in this festival. If that’s not enough, electro music collaboration ala jazz house presented by DJs from Solid House Community Surabaya will add a new sensation into the event. “A Jazz Rave”, that’s what they called it.