Jazz from Indonesia comes visiting

Himalayan News Service


Simak Dialog, which means “listen carefully to the dialogue” is a seven-member band from Indonesia. They were formed in 1993. Riza Arshad on the piano, Aditya Pratama on the bass guitar, Yasar Arafat on the Malaya percussion, dumbab and traditional flute and Endang Ramdan on the Sundaneese.

Their music can be categorised as contemporary jazz. They are influenced mostly by European jazz with a mixture of Indonesian music that blends well with acoustic and electric idioms. They share that they solve conflict amongst themselves via music. In a year they do an average of 50 concerts. “We are excited to be here and participating in Jazzmandu. We are learning about music and look forward to participating next year too,” they state.

Riza started playing the piano when he was six. “I started with classical music and when I was 12, I met a jazz pianist Aris Dauna and was determined to be a jazz performer some day.” He does not have any formal music education and shares that what he knows now is because he tried hard.

When Aditya Pratama was 14, he started to play the bass guitar and what he learned himself. “If you want to play music just play it with your heart.”

Yasar was inspired by his father to play music. He received formal music education from Indonesia Institute of Art — Stsi University. “If you want to know music then you’ve to be eager to learn and practise.”Endang says that he was inspired by Agus Super and Ade Rudiana to play the drums. He started playing drums at 10. “I first learned by myself and then I learnt traditional music and so many things from other musicians.”