First up, I know I'm about a week and a half late posting this. *grins* I have just uploaded the pictures. Here we go then.
Miri International Jazz Festival. One heck of an event to put my beloved Miri on the map! Aside from the international groups from all over the world coming to perform and entertain, there was also a local jazz group, which I'll get on with later. It was an awesome event, lasting 2 nights (from 11th to 12th May) at Park City Everly Hotel's Beach Pavilion. There were over 4000 music lovers (or pretending to be music lovers) there and it was seriously a night to remember.
The night featured 4 bands, David Gomes Jazz Sextet, KCP4, Lluis Coloma, and The Dirty Dozen Brass Band. I knew only the third group, the Catalans from Spain, as I saw them in last year's Jazz Festival and they rocked the house.
The David Gomes Jazz Sextet were Malaysian musicians (based in KL) with a Filipina vocalist. She was good. Their drummer was a big hit with the girls. He was pretty good and apparently a looker too. I have no comment on that. The bass player was pretty cool, and so were the saxophone players. I got to know the bass player after the show and he was real friendly. Vincent Ong, and he even told me to give him a call when I'm in KL so he could show me around gigs. Nice fellow. *smiles*
KCP4 was an Indian/German group, and frankly, I didn't really listen to their music. I kind of thought they were a let down, but fortunately, they were the only let down of the night.
Lluis Coloma from Spain is actually the band's pianist. He's like the God of Piano, believe me. He's that good. Their bass player and drummer were awesome too. Their bass player was apparently a professional music dude in Spain, and Vincent Ong of DGJS told me he helped set up the double bass for all the other bass players. What a guy. However, the saxophone player of this group was having a rather large erection that was horrifyingly obvious. Okay, stop thinking about it and read on.
The last group, ah, the last group. The Dirty Dozen Brass Band of New Orleans. Now, wmost of us know that New Orleans is like the jazz capital. It's no surprise then that these guys became quick favorites with the crowd. They were awesome musicians playing awesome music insanely well. To say more would probably do them injustice so if you were there, you'll know what I'm talking about.
There was also this chic who went crazy on the stage.. *hmm* That's another story.
The 2nd night was almost like the first. 4 bands once more. This time it was Orak Naa Naa, George WashingMachine Quartet, Habana Sax, and once again, The Dirty Dozen Brass Band.
Orak Naa Naa were 2 guys from Germany and Morocco. Jazz experts say they were good. Those experts were morons. Case rested.
George WashingMachine is actually the band's lead musician, on the violin (like the Lluis Coloma group) and he wasn't really playing jazz. He's a swing musician. If you don't know what swing music is, sad sad person you are. Swing equals cool, at least back in the Roaring 20s, and these guys were cool. Rest of the band were just alright.
Next up was the Habana Sax, a quintet group from Cuba. These guys were possibly the most popular amongst the ladies, because their percussion and sax player were typical Latino good looks. To their credit, they were awesome musicians, but you wouldn't expect anything less from them. For Pete's sake, they're Cubans.
Once again, The Dirty Dozen. One word: GREAT. They kept the crowd dancing, and everyone rocking to their cool jazz. Even obviously uptight people were getting into that hallowed place we musicians call groove. *smiles* Crowd went nuts when they ended, with screams of "We want more!" ringing around. They gave it to us. *grins* I had a talk with their trombone player after the show. He had the improbable name of Revert, and the even more improbable nickname of Peanut (as his grandma couldn't pronounce Revert). He celebrated his 35th birthday that night, and I must say, he's one friendly fellow. He lost everything because of Katrina, so he's staying in Mississippi now. I'll find them when I go there. =)
For the intervals, there was this group called Son2nos, and they comprised of a Venezuelan percussion player, 2 British brothers on the keyboards, and a Filipino guy on the electric guitar. They played salsa and Latin jazz, and the Brazilian babes at the hotel sure made my eyes water when they danced. *big grin* Brazilians. =) However, their guitarist was probably the most annoying musician I've ever seen. *grr* I hated his shades, his stupid pants, his stupid hat, and the stupid way he gyrated on the stage. Horrible.
All in all, Jazz Festival 2007 was a terrific experience, and there was no repeat of the incident which befell me last year and which I refuse to repeat here. Some memories are better left forgotten. Ahaha..
See you next year.
PS. Pics on next post.