KUCHING, May 18: One of Southeast Asia’s longest running international jazz festivals, Borneo Jazz Festival (BJF) welcomes back a diverse international mix of talented performers in its ‘Jazz in The Jungle’ themed event happening from June 24 to 26 at Coco Cabana, Miri in a hybrid format.
Sarawak Tourism Board (STB) said this year, the list of confirmed artists will be a rich, multi-layered musical affair with Afro Asia featuring Steve Thornton performing a fusion of all things jazz with a unique sound backed with uplifting and infectious beats.
Thornton, born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, has played with some of the most important names in jazz history including Miles Davis, Dizzy Gillespie, McCoy Tyner, Roy Ayers, Grover Washington Jr, Tania Maria, Herbie Hancock, Sadao Watanabe and David Sanborn.
His influences in Latin, Jazz, R&B, Brazilian and African music deeply influence his work and is prominent in Afro Asia’s sound that combines jazz with Afro-Caribbean rhythms, playing Rumba, Guaguanco, Samba, Calypso and Salsa while featuring sounds of percussion instruments from the regions of Latin America, Africa and Asia.
“To add to Afro Asia’s melodious dissidence of international sounds will be Kamrul Hussin on Malay percussions along with Sesatre Bansuri on Indian and traditional flutes.
“The group’s performance will also feature Asia’s brightest jazz trio featuring pianist Eric Li, bassist Rozhan Razman and drummer John Thomas,” said STB in a statement today.
Performing at the 17th Borneo Jazz festival is also the talented ‘Queen of Southeast Asian Hip-hop and Reggae’, Singaporean-Canadian rapper Masia One.
She is also an entrepreneur, songwriter, and arts educator. As an artist, she draws inspiration from the Caribbean where she spent a significant amount of time.
Masia has impressive credentials having worked with a slew of great artists from Pharrell, Dr Dre, The Game, RZA (Wu-Tang Clan) and John Frusciante (Red Hot Chilli Peppers), to even Hong Kong actor and pop star Edison Chen.
No stranger to music festivals, Masia has headlined festivals such as Burning Man, Laneway, Ultra Music Japan, Pink Dot Singapore, Inside Out Australia, and Singjazz Singapore where she opened up for Lauryn Hill.
Her latest full-length album titled ‘Far East Empress’ was released in 2018 and is her first release album as an artist based out of Singapore titled ‘Time Wastin’.
The festival will also be joined by performers from countries namely Singapore, Japan, France, Switzerland, USA, Hungary and India.
It will also be providing fun and educating fringe activities open to the public such as Eco Art Project, Borneo Boat Lute Exhibition, Miri Sape Movement – ‘Evolution of the Sape’, Wellness Programme and Artisanal Craft Bazaar. — DayakDaily