Wednesday, July 30, 2014
Tags Posts tagged with "Tohpati"

Tohpati

15

tohpati-tribaldance-rwjazzlounge

 

“Too many notes inside my head waiting to be expressed. I couldn’t wait anymore longer to record this album.”

An excellent answer from one of the most prominent Indonesian jazz guitarists, Tohpati, when we asked him about the short-gap between his last album, Song For You (September 2013), and the newest one, Tribal Dance (April 2014).

 

 

Tohpati chose Red White Jazz Lounge to be the place to officially launch his latest work, Tribal Dance. By making it in this so called Jakarta’s hottest jazz club, Tohpati made a grand launching by not just making a press conference but also a concert in conjuction to this new album. At the press conference held just a while before the performance, Frans Sartono, a senior music jurnalist from Kompas was there too accompanying Tohpati. About Tohpati’s high productivity, he also said that it’s interesting to see the fact that Tohpati actually only needed a couple of hours to complete the recording session for one album. “If usually it takes a long time to make an album, he did it just in the matter of hours.” He also mentioned Tohpati as an all-round guitarist, full of creative energy.

 

 

Jazz is about momentum. There is no repeatable moment in jazz. Tohpati said, “If this album were to be postponed, it would not sound the same as it is now. This is the sound I want to hear for the album.” No surprises if we see jazz musicians with their countless albums, because it is all about unrepeatable, undelayable momentum that they do not want to miss.

Tribal Dance is Tohpati’s latest work, which was recorded with Jimmy Haslip (bass) and Chad Wackerman (drums). You jazz aficionados would know that Haslip is no stranger in international jazz scene. He is an ex-Yellowjackets’ bassist and had played with Allan Holdsworth, Pat Metheny, Michael Franks, and many other well-known musicians, while Wackerman is known as Frank Zappa’s drummer and Allan Holdsworth’s. Both are highly in-demand jazz and fusion sessionists, and both are Tohpati’s personal favourite musicians since he was very young.

 

 

Tohpati got Eric Marienthal to play for his first album in 2002. In his Ethnomission (2010) album, he got Bob Mintzer to record a song. And last year, he got the whole Yellowjackets to record one song in his album Song For You. Has not this proven enough that Tohpati can be equated with those highly-internationally-renowned musicians?

15

simakDialog-GKJ-April2014

 

As Indonesia has cultural diversity, the music scene demonstrates the same too. If you look at today’s trend, you might find mostly pop influenced by foreign music dominating the scene, from the Western to K-pop, then on the other hand dangdut and pop melayu are still having many loyal fans. But there are many, many musicians that chose to answer their callings by going against the mainstream. They go on transforming whatever they have in mind and producing it for us to experience. They can be still influenced by some already-known genres, but their creativity enable them to craft a new musical hybrid, opening new terrains, exploring new horizons in open minded perspective. So there’s a commercial side of music, but there’s also stuffs that go more into the artistic corner. What’s amazing is to know that some geniuses can live and breath inside this sphere, stand the test of time and still being productive despite of what the recend music trend is. The cross ethno-progressive ensemble simakDialog should always be one of the most valuable respresentatives for that. The ensemble which is led by key-wiz Riza Arshad has been active for 21 years and still counting. They still have many ideas, wishes and dreams to achieve and up to this time they never loose their passion. A concert held a couple of days ago (April 3, 2014) at the monumental building of Gedung Kesenian Jakarta contains many stories to tell, either from the band’s history related to past, present and future and as a gift from the Indonesia’s creative side to the world’s musics and arts.

Not many bands dare to take the progressive jazz inside the road that leads to the mystical, magical Javanese/Sundanese ethnic musics, and the number decreases even lesser when we talk about never ending and continuous research and observation which has been going on for 2 decades. But simakDialog (in English means “to listen to dialogues carefully”) does it. If you listen to their album from the first to the latest sixth album entitled “The 6th Story”, you will certainly find all the band’s progress of sound development being recorded inside. For us, simakDialog means an ongoing process of studying further measures and possibilities towards perfection. And if you wonder why this becomes so important for them, one of the reasons is because they decide to replace the role of drums with traditional Sundanese set of kendangs. Without any intention to choose either the modern Western or traditional South-Eastern types of music to be in front, they are setting up their course into the new sonicscape. What they have been doing has successfully gained critical acclaims and respect internationally. That’s made possible by being available in the international market through US-based label, MoonJune Records since the fourth album, “Patahan”.

 

 

Perhaps it’s important to explain how they build their concept by utilizing kendang set. While ago Riza Arshad told us that in simakDialog kendang isn’t used only as an addition but really as the ‘backbone’ rhythm, which, in this case, has more vital role to be the ‘time keeper’. “Just like Ravi Shankar and Zakir Hussein did by introducing Indian instrumentation in Western music. It’s not an easy task to place kendang into the progressive jazz pattern especally if one wants to have the best result, mainly because both corners have their own distinctively specific pattern. That’s why they need to do some observations, researches and studies, which has been going on for many years until they could finally find the most comfortable way to play it.

Now let’s go back to the simakDialog’s concert at Gedung Kesenian Jakarta as a part of its April program. If somehow you thought they were going to promote their most recent 6th album which was released last year, you’d be wrong, because in this concert simakDialog actually decided to go backall the way to their first album “Lukisan” (1995). This is a very important, if not crucial, step for them to make. Why? Because if you haven’t followed them from the start, Lukisan was made by still utilizing drum in normal quartet formation. Thus, since they are no longer use drum, it’s important to ‘complete’ their story by revisiting the earliest works and bring them into the the current concept.

11

simakdialog-GKJ-April-2014

 

The historical Gedung Kesenian Jakarta (Jakarta Art Building/Jakarta Playhouse) which was built during the Dutch colonial period (known as Schouwburg Weltervreden at that time) consistently presents variety of showcases which are related to art, culture and music every month. Either as stand-alone program or regular annual events, you can always find something interesting in their program. The rich variety of Indonesian cultures, Indonesian bright artists, or even if you want to see what’s going on in the cultural world from the other part of the globe, you can find it there from time to time.

Entering the month of April, Gedung Kesenian Jakarta (GKJ) has announced three interesting concerts. If you are into classical piano recital, the young pianist/future maestro who won the 2002 Abilene Collegiate Orchestra Concerto Competition in Texas USA, Mario Santoso should be interesting to catch. He will bring some of the well known masterpieces from legendary composers on Sunday, April 6, 2014. Then if you’re into the sound of guitar, your need will be filled fully by Jakarta Enam Senar (Jakarta Six Strings) concert, coming to you on Wednesday, April 30, 2014. The theme is: “Maaf Kami Lupa” (“Sorry, We Forget”). All the information needed for these concert can simply be found by looking at the poster above. The only one we haven’t mention is related to jazz, especially if we talk about the most important bands/figures in our own jazz historical timeline. It’s an group of geniuses that likes to mention itself as Cross Ethno-Jazz Progressive Ensemble. It’s a unit that has redefined the jazz-ethnic hybrid by fusing the Western progressive jazz with our own traditional music (most especially Sundanese) approach. It’s the ‘A’ team that’s decided to replace the role of drums with never-ending exploration of kendangs. It’s a band that has shown its strength by withstand the test of time (21 years and counting). It’s none other than simakDialog.

 

simak dialog, gkj, jazzuality, tohpati, riza arshad

 

For many, music might be just a source of entertainment. But to others, music can give much more meanings or values of life. Music provides unlimited space for exploring ideas, freedom of expression and everything comes out of our mind. The geniuses inside simakDialog (in English means “to listen to dialogues carefully”) seems to realize it and know that they can do so much more than anyone would ever think of by embedding themselves totally inside the world of music. The intensive exlporation, trying and research that has been made for almost 2 decades should be able to give you clue of how different they are, conceptually speaking. MoonJune Records, US called them “a legendary psychedelic/gamela-jazz/world music phenoms who has the spirit of pioneering excellence, presenting progressive jazz masterpiece as an astounding work of uncomprimising excellence.” Too much? We don’t think so. Imagine how difficult it is to use kendang as the ‘backbone’ rhythm and vital role as ‘time keeper’, replacing the role of drums in normal bands. But they have intensely studied, examined and analyzed the long play system for years to find the best click. Imagine when there are musicians who are so much into jazz but still wish to utilize their own traditional instruments in order to compliment the treasury of world’s music. The super team of Riza Arshad (piano), Tohpati (guitar), Adhitya Pratama (bass), Endang Ramdan (kendang), Cucu Kurnia (kendang/metal toys) and Erlan Suwardana (kendang) have been marching on wildly  into the unknown-world, opening more and more ‘sonus’ terrain, and they always invite us all to go along.

SimakDialog is set to hold their concert in Gedung Kesenian Jakarta on Thursday, April 3, 2014, 8:00 pm sharp. You can already start securing your seat from now on by simply contacting the GKJ (find the phone number/email below), but before that, we think it’s important to let you know about what they are going to bring this time. And if you still don’t know so much about them, we think it’s necessary to share their story too, especially since this concert is tightly related to their history. Buckle up, here we go.

 

simak dialog, lukisan, first formation, riza arshad, tohpati, arie ayunir, indro hardjodikoro

 simakDialog’s formation in the first album, Lukisan

 

The simakDialog history started way back 2 decades plus one year ago in 1993 as the brainchild of Riza Arshad and his musical soulmate Arie Ayunir. In our exclusive interview with Riza Arshad (http://jazzuality.com/interview/exclusive-interview-with-riza-arshad/), he explained that they were inspired by the monumental English progressive rock group YES among other influences, such as Weather Report and Pat Metheny for example. With the first formation: Riza Arshad (acoustic piano, snyth, bass synth), Arie Ayunir (drums/percussions), Tohpati (acoustic/electric guitar) and Indro Hardjodikoro (electric bass), the launched the very first album in 1995 titled “Lukisan” (Painting), containing no less than 9 songs. You can see that simakDialog actually started with drums.

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Serambi_Jazz_IndraLesmanaGroup_

 

2009 is the year when Serambi Jazz began its service. This is the program of Goethe Institut was made to invigorate jazz events in Jakarta and some other cities, also to strengthen the mutual friendship between two great nation, Germany and Indonesia. It’s been held every two months (except some special editions/occasions) presenting the highly talented artists/musicians who have contributed big deal towards the regional or even worldwide jazz development. Most of the performers were taken from our own soil, but in each year, at least two German jazz musicians or groups be included not only for playing in live concert but also to share their knowledge to young talents. This program quickly gained attention from the jazz aficionados in Jakarta and beyond. Not long after it was launched, this regular event became one of the most awaited concerts in Jakarta. The jazz lovers can expect a good quality show, presenting variety of jazz played by great musicians in every edition. Surprisingly, all free or charge. The success story doesn’t happen only in Indonesia, this program also becomes one of the most successful overseas program of Goethe Institut. Riza Arshad has been in charge as the curator from the beginning and proved to be a perfect choice. He knows how to keep the program running in excellence, rich in colors, variations and artists’ selections.

In 2013 Serambi Jazz made a new breakthrough by creating two projects which involved artists from two nations. The first one is the curator himself with his team (Endang Ramdan, Erlan Suwardana and Cucu Kurnia on kendangs and metal toys) in collaboration with German guitarist Kai Brückner and bassist Paul Philipp Kleber http://jazzuality.com/jazz-events/serambi-jazz-2013-kai-bruckner-and-riza-arshad-project/, then the last one is the project of Aksan Sjuman and the Committee of the Fest with contrabassist Henning Sieverts and saxophonist Christian Weidner http://jazzuality.com/jazz-event-report/serambi-jazz-2013-henning-sieverts-and-aksan-sjuman-project-report/). As we already entered 2014, some of our readers asked about the continuation of Serambi Jazz. We’ve been asked whether the program be continued or not, will they visit Bandung again like before, will there be collaborations to come, involving who and so on. We still don’t know how exactly their plan for this year yet, but one thing’s sure: Serambi Jazz is still running. It’s confirmed that they will launch the first edition of 2014 on February 6, 2014, presenting the iconic Indra Lesmana with his Group tributing one of the most important men in jazz history, Chick Corea.

indra lesmana group, jazzuality

 

indra lesmana group, jazzualityThe Indra Lesmana Group Tribute to Chick Corea is actually started last year on May, 2013 as one of the program of Indra and Honhon Lesmana’s Red White Jazz Lounge. It went very successful not only beause it gave tribute to the living jazz giant but also since Indra Lesmana created a very strong team consisting guitar virtuoso Tohpati and amazing young guns such as Shadu Rasjidi (bass), Ricad Hutapea (saxophone) and Demas Narawangsa (drums). It looks very promising, but Demas decided to continue his study to USA. Somebody has to take over his position behind drums. But who? Indra Lesmana asked Shadu to look around, then they found three candidates. Indra carefully examined each one through their performing videos on Youtube and finally made his decision. He found a new drummer to replace Demas, his name is Dion Subiakto. He’s a rising star we’ve been keeping our eyes on, at least since he stands as one of Balawan Bifan Trio and later joined Indro Hardjodikoro and the Fingers. So now, the Indra Lesmana Group is complete, filled with the combination of senior/iconic musicians and amazing younger talents.

Speaking of Chick Corea, most of his compositions (or maybe even all) have high degree of difficulties. Not everyone can play them in the way they were made. If we take a look at Chick Corea’s monumental group, the Chick Corea’s Elektric Band, this band also consisted of players who are capable to create magic in every line despite of their ages. We see the same spirit brought by Indra Lesmana in building up this group. Corea is not only a jazz musician but he is also into classical, enjoying the musics of Bartok and other contemporary classical music. Chick Corea once took up drums, something that later influence his piano playing style especially when he improvises. No wonder his compositions always rich in harmony, often appear in complex notations, and the best way to play it is by full discipline and accurate precision tempo.

indra lesmana group, jazzuality

 

The idea of this tribute came when Indra felt the need to go back to the influential things in his career. Chick Corea gave strong influence to Indra’s journey in 1981 to 1988. The idea of making this tribute was supported by Tohpati, a guitar maestro and music producer who also grew in that era. Indra Lesmana has listened to Chick Corea’s songs since he was still a 12 year-old boy. When he moved to Australia he got the chance to watch Corea’s live show in Sydney, and even better, he met Corea in person on backstage. He’s impressed by Corea’s humbleness. Then they met again in 1983 when Indra went to Los Angeles. He recorded one album in Chick Corea’s studio, The Mad Hatter and released it under the title of “For Earth and Heaven”. Indra had also joined Chick Corea Elektric Band during the 80′s, for example when they visited Indonesia during the Asian Tour in 1986.

indra lesmana group, jazzualityAs someone who know Corea in person, Indra should have known how to bring his masterpieces alive in perfect way. Plus, he has four amazing compatriotes with special abilities. So all’s set, all’s perfect. According to Indra, this project is not simply to play Chick Corea’s songbook, but more importantly to convey the information to the young musicians.

From what we’ve seen, the group could really make this concept alive. You will see everything you wish from jazz in this show. The showdown of skills, the magic of improvisations, the tight chemistry, the fine work as one unit, the joy of playing, cool adaptation and so on. If you miss their previous appearances, it’s time for you to catch them. If you have already watched them but wish to get another turn, this is your golden ticket. Thanks to Serambi Jazz and Goethe Institut, this show is provided FREE from any charge.

indra lesmana, jazzuality

 

If Indra Lesmana appeared in Serambi Jazz with LLW two years ago, this time he’s back with a fine new team to honor Chick Corea and his amazing compositions. So what are you waiting for? Make sure to clear your agenda on February 6, 2014. Ask your friends and family to come along and get ready to experience the madness. Since it’s quite difficult to bring Mr Corea and his team to Indonesia, this show will answer that wish, because they can really play it just as good. Look forward to a special evening concert. Even if you are not yet familiar with the name Chick Corea, it’s your chance to get deep with his mindblowing compositions presented by ‘the ‘A’ Team’ who understands the best way to bring it all alive.

INDRA LESMANA GROUP are:
-Indra Lesmana (keys)
- Tohpati (guitar)
- Shadu Rasjidi (bass)
- Ricad Hutapea (saxophone)
- Dion Subiakto (drums)

SERAMBI JAZZ 2014 February Edition: Indra Lesmana Group – Tribute to Chick Corea

Date: Thursday, February 6, 2014
Time: 7:30 pm – onward
Location: GoetheHaus, Jl. Sam Ratulangi 9-15, Menteng, Jakarta

FREE EVENT

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Jazz-Buzz-Indra-Hanuraga

 

After four previous showcases (First week: Nita Aartsen and Nial DJuliarso http://jazzuality.com/jazz-event-report/salihara-jazz-buzz-2014-nial-djuliarso-interpreting-american-masters-and-nita-aartsen-from-baroque-to-romantic/ then second week: Glen Dauna and Indro Hardjodikoro & the Fingers http://jazzuality.com/jazz-event-report/salihara-jazz-buzz-2014-glen-dauna-the-little-wing-of-jimi-hendrix-and-indro-hardjodikoro-and-the-fingers-this-is-only-the-beatles/), the annual program of  Komunitas Salihara, the Salihara Jazz Buzz reached the third and final week with two shows. One was about two pianists Sri Hanuraga and Adra Karim taking on Thelonious Monk’s Blue Note and the other was Indra Lesmana Group told stories about Chick Corea through adventurous jazzploration.

Let’s see what’s happening on the 4:00 pm show first. Having two jazz pianists in one show is not something we see often, especially when it gives tribute to a jazz legend like Thelonious Monk. But two young but very talented pianists, Sri Hanuraga and Adra Karim gave us that kind of ride in a very different way.

 

If you’re into jazz, then the name of Thelonious Sphere Monk should be familiar. As one of the founders of Bebop, Monk is widely known as a pianist with dramatic improvisation. His vision was uniquely ahead of its time but still deeply rooted in jazz tradition. At the time when most of the pianists played sparse chords in the left hand while fast streamy notes were given by the right hand, Monk showed that both left and right hand can go equally active in reaching the whole keys along the piano. He got different phrasings, didn’t like to make ‘unnecessary’ notes, he could even give space and silence a new meaning. For those who have watched him play, he’d be remembered as a tall, bearish man (often) with hat and glasses that loved to be eccentric both in real life and on stage. He swayed back and forth, from one side to another, with feet that flapped on the floor. For us, he’s like an eccentric Jazz Architect that knew how to build an interestingly unpredictable structure in economy. Every note he played, every pauses and stops he made had reason. He has given enormous contribution towards Jazz and the modern music as well as inspiring uncountable musicians around the world, including Sri Hanuraga and Adra Karim who paid their respect to the master in this show.

Both of them have encountered piano from their young ages. Aga; that’s how Sri Hanuraga’s friends call him; was graduated from Conservatorium van Amsterdam majoring Jazz Piano, Adra carried on in ArtEZ School of Music and Prince Claus Conservatorium Groningen, Netherland. Both of them have gained experience internationally. Aga even builds his career in there and has a multi national band named The Brag Pack but occasionally back to his own land and always loves to grace up various events whenever he’s around. Adra spent a couple of years in that part of Europe but still managed to keep his band Tomorrow People Ensemble (TPE) alive. TPE is a band that loves to funked up our ears with their intoxicating avant funk that can make the fans or whoever listen to them get high and stoned without having to take any drugs.

9

simakDialog-The6thStory

 

It’s important to be ‘fluent’ in ‘speaking’ jazz, but we shouldn’t forget that we can also create a new way to enjoy it by involving our local-traditional cultures. The nature of jazz which has freedom and openness provides unlimited possibility, and that’s a very interesting playground for creative musicians.

SimakDialog has been walking in this particular field since 1993. It was founded by key-wiz/composer Riza Arshad and his music partner Arie Ayunir in 1993. From using drums, Riza took a daring move by replacing it to sets of Sundanese (West Javanese) kendangs and metal toys, opening a whole new soundscape that only a few dare to visit. As a band of six members featuring virtuous keyboardist/composer Riza Arshad, all-round guitarist Tohpati, bassist Adhitya Pratama and three musicians who master the traditional instruments, Endang Ramdan, Erlan Suwardana and Cucu Kurnia on kendangs and metal toys, this ensemble play music that’s not only for entertaining purpose, but also produces something that we can study and be proud of. This is reflected in the group name, which in English means “To listen carefully to the dialogue.”

simakdialog, the 6th story, jazzuality

 

The last album of simakDialog was released 4 years ago titled “Demi Masa”. Since this album goes internationally through the US label MoonJune Records, this cross ethno-jazz progressive ensemble gained a lot of critical acclaims worldwide. Since then, Riza Arshad and the team has been working for another step, from making new compositions, establishing new concept to continuing the research of fusing the traditional Sundanese rhythm into the modern jazz.

As the magical simakDialog celebrates its 20th anniversary, they are happy to inform you that the 6th album with the title of “The 6th Story” is ready to launch. Following the first promo concert at Gedung Kesenian Jakarta in December 2012, now simakDialog is set to make the second concert. SimakDialog ‘The 6th Story’ concert will be held on May 17, 2013 at GoetheHaus Jakarta, starting from 8:00 pm til finish. If you attend the concert, you will receive the simakDialog’s new album and listen to the songs through live performance, all for only IDR 50.000.

Through endless reseach over the years simakDialog has successfully replaced drums with Sundanese kendangs and metal toys. It’s not an easy task, but as time goes by, the ensemble can deliver it comfortably. They have fun in playing the music, we have fun in enjoying well-executed magical masterpieces. They bravely use kendang as the backbone rhythm, much further also utilize it as the time keeper. Last month we attended Riza Arshad and Kai Brückner collaboration as a part of Serambi Jazz program in Bandung where Riza brought his traditional rhythm section into it. At that time we approached Brückner and asked what he thinks about kendang. Can it be used in jazz, replacing the role of drums? “Yes, absolutely. It can fit the jazz concept perfectly.” he said. (read the article here: http://jazzuality.com/jazz-event-report/serambi-jazz-kai-bruckner-and-riza-arshad-project-the-report/).

simakdialog, jazzuality

 

For The 6th Story, Riza Arshad and the band is focusing on the harmony/structural wise than some tracks in previous albums. “For instance – I used more ‘common’  harmony approach almost in each composition in order to make listener pay more attention on the band’ rhythm section, and hope that they would experience with this ‘new approach’ concept and begin to get familiar to our music that based on traditional Sundanese terms.” says Riza.

So, it’s time for you to see where the invention stands today. The new crafts of simakDialog which all listed in the new album can soon be yours, as well as enjoying them through a live performance, simply by attending this concert. Only a few days left, make a reservation now so you won’t miss it.

SimakDialog ‘The 6th Story’ Music Concert

Date: May 17, 2013
Time: 08:00 pm – onward
Location: GoetheHaus, Goethe Institut Jakarta
Jl. Sam Ratulangi 9-15, Jakarta

IDR 50.000 as a payment of the new CD

For reservation, contact : Andi +62 816197777
or email: roulllandi@yahoo.com

29

Ubud-village-jazz-festival

 

If you ever been to Bali, Ubud should be one of your most favorite destination. This town is surrounded by rice paddies, creek with steep, located in the central foothills of Gianyar. For more than a century Ubud has been popular as a large tourism site since there are many fine arts, dance, music and other forms of cultural can be found throughout the place, not to mention so many sacred nature reserves like Ubud Monkey Forest, temples, cave or even art/painting museum. Now think of this. What if this land with beautiful nature surroundings adds its charm by serving jazz, not a single show but festival, for two days? That sounds great, right? Well, that’s what going to happen. Here comes the first ever International Jazz Festival ever held in the heart of Ubud-Bali, the capital of Art of Indonesia by the name of UBUD VILLAGE JAZZ FESTIVAL 2013.

The idea of this event was triggered a musician/composer/teacher and the founder of Underground Jazz Movement Yuri Mahatma and the director/owner of ANTIDA Music Productions, Anom Darsana. This is a new higher step for them after partnering for some regular jazz concerts that has different themes in every edition. The idea of making up a community concert came in the early 2012, but then it rolled bigger by having the involvement and support from majority of community artists. Hence, the concept of hosting a community concert in this unique village was born.

The Ubud Village Jazz Festival 2013 is created in medium size with around 20 performances, involving about 100 musicians (local and international) for two days which will be divided into 2+1 stages (two main performers and one stage for amateurs, new talents and music students). As how the jazz festival normally goes, you can find plenty of jazz forms to choose. Just in case if you’re hungry and thirsty during the event, the event also provides variety of best food in the culinary section. Other than live performances, Ubud Village Jazz Festival also facilitates workshop of local and national music educators to investigate ways of getting more people to be interested in playing jazz. The festival will be held on August 9 and 10, 2013 at the 5-star Arma Museum and Resort, Ubud, Bali.

 

ubud village jazz festival, lineup, jazzuality

 

Now let’s talk about the artists. As we have mentioned earlier, the lineup consists of local, national and international stars, either with their own groups or through special collaborative acts. Representing Netherlands is Peter Beets, a world-acclaimed pianist with classy, infectious swing. Then look at the combination of Mexico, Japan, England and Malaysia under the name of Diego Maroto and No Black Tie Artists. From Japan comes an interesting ensemble Yokohama Association of Artist Orchestra also known as YAA. After visiting many Asian regions like Korea, now they are going to expand their coverage area by playing in Bali.

6

 

21 December was believed by many people as the doomsday. That was based on the Mayan calendar. But as later it was denied and said to be just the end of 13 bak’tuns or the cycle of Mayan calendar system, we now know that the prediction is totally wrong. The earth still exists and we are still breathing in it. We never believed it, nor simakDialog and Gedung Kesenian Jakarta. They had prepared this concert to launch exactly on that day without a doubt even for a second. Who’s simakDialog and what’s so special about it? For Gedung Kesenian Jakarta (GKJ), this ensemble seems important as they have presented the ensemble several times before. If  the people of GKJ is proud of this band, we should be proud of it too, since this long-time-running team is very distinctive in concept and based on the creative brains that never stop evolving. Many things can be told, we are going to spread them out along with this report article.

19 years of action and still running. Not many bands can endure that long, but for the leader Riza Arshad and the whole simakDialog team, it means more possibility and chance in bringing their musical creativity as well as digging deeper in creating their crafts. There are many reasons for us to say that simakDialog should be listed in the Indonesia’s jazz history, not only by looking at their masterclass playing and loads of achievements, but also to the way they invent something different through continuous research. They have been intensely studied, examined and analyzed the long play system, involving traditional instruments like kendang and metal toys for years. Talk about the role of kendang, Riza Arshad decided to leave drums, replacing it to kendang players. As a result, the sound of simakDialog is built into something more exoticly mystical, that said without leaving the form of ‘fine art’, the way Riza Arshad described about jazz to us two years ago.

 

SimakDialog used kendang for the first time in their 2002 released album, Trance/Mission, played by Jalu G Praditina. From there they chose to build the concept with kendang inside. Since kendang player Endang Ramdan joined in for the preparation to peform in Nepal in 2003; drums has been out from simakDialog about a year by then; the intensity rose higher. The arrival of Erlan Suwardana as the ‘contra’ kendang for Endang and Cucu Kurnia on metal toys has given more tighter rhythm pattern, more complete and added the unique color of simakDialog’s sound. Their album “Patahan” caught the attention of USA based label MoonJune Records who decided to sign them in. After many critical acclaims from international medias on this album, they continued the success with “Demi Masa”. It was in 2009. Three years’ passed, they are facing another challenge in creating the concept for the 6th album. This time Riza Arshad decided to make less complicated music, harmony/structural-wise speaking than some numbers on Patahan or Demi Masa. “For instance, I used more ‘common’  harmony approach almost in each composition in order to make listener pay more attention on the band’ rhythm section, and hope that they would experience with this ‘new approach’ concept and begin to get familiar to our music that based on traditional Sundanese terms.” he said. What he means is that for us to focus on the role of kendang as the ‘time keeper’ like the common role of drums, just like what Ravi Shankar and Zakir Hussein have done in introducing the Indian instrumentation in Western music.

 

While waiting for the album, simakDialog held a concert near the end of 2012, taking place at the historical Gedung Kesenian Jakarta.  As usual, they came with complete team, featuring virtuous keyboardist/composer Riza Arshad, all-round guitarist Tohpati, bassist Adhitya Pratama and three musicians who master the traditional instruments, Endang Ramdan, Erlan Suwardana and Cucu Kurnia on kendangs and metal toys. Not too many crowds, most probably caused by the Jakarta street jam at that time which said to be one of the worst. Nonetheless those who came showed their high interest in simakDialog’s unique and distinct musicality. They were ready to watch and hear the unexpected.

As we predicted earlier, here simakDialog gave first bites of their new songs which will be included in their upcoming album, “6th Story“. That was shown right from the start. Right after they stepped in, the ensemble played “Stepping In”, followed by “Lain Parantina” Both songs were written in 2010 by Riza Arshad and soon will be available in the new album. The result of their continuous efforts in tuning the role of traditional kendang players into jazz were all paid off. Not easy and took long, long years to establish, but they brilliantly did it.

 

The song from the album ‘Baur’ which then retouched for ‘Patahan’ entitled “One Has To Be” became the next presentation from them. If in Baur they still used drums for this song, in Patahan the kendang beat has replaced it in providing rhythm. This time with more blended result, the shimmering, beautiful melodies of this song should now stand as one their masterpiece.

Up to that song, the audience should already be able to notice that kendang can actually replace the drum function in perfection while also creating the different nuance at the same time. But simakDialog was far from over. They carried on with playing the song written in 2011 entitled “For Once and Never” and “What Would I Say”, both will be listed in the new album. The kendang beat opened up the next song that the fans have probably known very well, taken from ‘Patahan’, “Worth Seeing.” Here the audience could experience simakDialog’s ability to tell a musical story by changing its pace and path several times to create an interesting story line. Tohpati got his space to run his fingers freely above the fretboard. The combination of bass and two kendangs plus the metal toys sound blended as one solid unit which added more magic into it.

For the next track, simakDialog took Riza Arshad’s composition from the album ‘Trance/Mission’, written in 2001 entitled “All in a Day”. Just to inform you, the album ‘Trance/Mission’ mostly spoke about how they felt of being in the moment of transition, which was reflected into original meaning of the title, ‘Transition Mission’. The last song that sealed the concert was again a new song, “Five Six” where they poured the rest of their energies creating a perfect ending.

 

The unique ‘Sundanese drums system’ created by the kendang players really hitted the point. It opened up our eyes that there are many possibilities can be created in jazz, or in music in general by the creative brains backed by the wide knowledge about music, the mastering of instruments and passion. The rhyhtm pattern which could be unusual for the common contemporary music listeners now can be easily accessed, thanks to this rare cross ethno-jazz progressive ensemble. More and more masterpieces are thrown, hence we have more alternative in listening to variety of music. Jazz can always be the perfect media to pour out creativity, no matter how impossible you might think.

SimakDialog has shown that there are still many doors to open, as well as proving that kendang indeed can replace the role of drums inside a jazz ensemble to deliver another dimension of sound. What’s great to know that they are not done yet. Believe us, they still have many things to share, making up more inventions to surprise us all as time goes. What a perfect jazz concert to close the year of 2012 for Gedung Kesenian Jakarta in style, thanks for that. 2 decades for them soon over, they will enter the third decade of career in solid style. We wish simakDialog the best for preparing the new album and for having more years of excellence. Maybe more international gigs after Berlin and Nepal would be perfect, so more people around the world could listen to the distinct sound they bring. We do need the kind of bands like simakDialog to keep introducing our rich traditional cultures to the world, and since they are doing it, we should be proud that it’s presented in worldclass act. Hope to see you again soon, keep wowing us with more surprises!

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Written by: Riandy Kurniawan
Photos: Mia Damayanti (courtesy of simakDialog) and GKJ Documentation

7

 

For human, 19 years old is considered the best age for many, where life becomes even more interesting. It can be the same for a band when it still stays strong for that long. 19 year is not a short while. There can be many thing happen during those years, it could be very fruitful with lots of achievements that often surpass the members’ expectation. Let’s see the case of simakDialog, which celebrates its 19 years anniversary in service. Born into this world as the brainchild of Riza Arshad and his musical soulmate Arie Ayunir in 1993, simakDialog has been progressing far to where it stands today.

SimakDialog now exists as 6 piece band, featuring virtuous keyboardist/composer Riza Arshad, all-round guitarist Tohpati, bassist Adhitya Pratama and three musicians who master the traditional instruments, Endang Ramdan, Erlan Suwardana and Cucu Kurnia on kendangs and metal toys. Look closer to the music instruments they are using, you might wonder why drum is not listed. That’s the way simakDialog build their concept. Instead of using drum, they decided to utilize kendang as the ‘backbone’ rhythm, which, in this case, has more vital role to be the ‘time keeper’. “Just like Ravi Shankar and Zakir Hussein has done by introducing Indian instrumentation in Western music”, explained Riza Arshad. What’s good about it is that simakDialog never stops observing. For years they have been intensely studied, examined and analyzed the long play system, also to explore the possibility of composing something different. Riza Arshad told us, “We often make some changes in preparing or deciding the compositions until reaching the best result according to the concept.” That should be able to let you see how serious they always are in creating each of their craft.

Eventhough the band has been running for almost 2 decades, by having a solid ensemble Riza Arshad feels that he still has many things to try and share. “I like working on this band – it’s sort of gives me pressures to do more and keep trying new thing,” he said. The new album has been in making for two years. Riza Arshad said that the innovation won’t be as deep as the previous one (Demi Masa, 2009), but while the musical concept’s growth will still be felt, they are focusing in letting us feel the wider role of kendang inside a musical ensemble. (Read two articles of simakDialog’s upcoming album here: http://jazzuality.com/jazz-news/simakdialogs-upcoming-6th-album-first-announcement/ and http://jazzuality.com/jazz-news/simakdialogs-upcoming-6th-album-the-second-letter-from-riza-arshad/).  In Riza’s own words, he described it this way: “This time, I make the music less complicated in armony/structural wise than some numbers on Patahan or Demi Masa – for instance – I used more ‘common’  harmony approach almost in each composition in order to make listener pay more attention on the band’ rhythm section, and hope that they would experience with this ‘new approach’ concept and begin to get familiar to our music that based on traditional Sundanese terms.”

Being distributed internationally by MoonJune Records and so far gained many praises and critical acclaims from all over the world, the band has also extend its journey to reach the far away lands like Berlin and Kathmandu, Nepal.

16

 

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!

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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