Saturday, July 21, 2012

Rainforest World Music Festival, RWMF- Day 1- The best is still unwritten.

After the media briefing yesterday, we all knew that today is going to be a loooongggg day~
So i brought along two big bun, only to found out that foods and drinks
were provided to all media. Some more is buffet dinner~
What a noob~~!


We met up with Garner at One Hotel Santubong, collected our wristband
and caught on a shuttle to the cultural village.
Few guys were already in the van and i later learnt that
they were the performers for tonight show.
The guy sitting beside me was Thierry from La Zikabilo.
He played the saxophone and he told me they'd been doing the sound check, planted
some tree yesterday and he's going to be a translator for the workshop later.

Lindy collecting her wristband.

The shuttle van dropped us at the staff entrances and there's goes
the beginning of the day. Look like is a good start anyway~
Since, we were all attracted to different workshop, we decided
to split up and meet back during dinner time.

Garner and Lindy, both fan of Zee Avi went for her workshop at Dewan Legenda
while i went to check out the "Exotic & Evocative" workshop
held at The Iban Longhouse.

This workshop is to highlight the zithers from the Far East.
Chovjoo, the Mongolian zither player from Khusugtun
and Lee (Korean) from Hata will be there to explain to us their instruments.

I reached there about 1.30pm and since the workshop is only to begin at 2pm
I took the times to study the crowd of peoples there.
Most of them appeared to be in a good mood. Relax. Happy. Excited.
There's family, old couples, group of students, reporters, UCSI student looking for
people to fill up her survey form etc~

A man sitting beside me was already beginning to talk about zither.
Questioning his fellow friends regarding the zither.
Yeah, I'm eavesdropping on peoples. Haha~!

In order to get good photo, i seated myself just right in front of the musicians.

By 2pm sharp, both the musicians were here and Chovjoo began by
explaining her zither in the Mongol language. She told us about the differences of
Mongol's zither compare to the Chinese's zither. Personally, i see no different in the appearance for both
zithers. It look just like the gu zheng to me. The different only lies in the ways both ethnics
choose to play the instrument. It does adapted some of the common tactics used for the chinese zither.

"We pluck and we don't use the fake nails when we play." 

Chovjoo also demonstrated some tactics used in resembling the sound of the wind, horse etc.
I just couldn't stop wondering how she gonna reach the last string on her zither given the posture
she played in. Anyway, she does have a good strong biceps!!! If i were to sit and play in this posture,
i guarantee i won't be able to raise my hand up for the next few day~
After Chovjoo has done with her part, Lee from Hata introduced herself and her instrument
called the 'gayageum'.

"This is my instrument. Is called the ga-ya-geum and is made of leather. Leather.'"

I'm not sure whether i've heard her correctly or did she just say it is made out of leather??
 but i do believe my ears that i have heard her say it is made out of leather.
(Since she repeated the sentences twice)
Too bad there isn't any translator around. Or maybe she only meant that certain part of the instrument was made out of leather.
Anyway, the gayageum is a beautiful instrument. Very feminine instrument~
Hehe~! I wonder is there any guy out there who played this~

Lee played us the Korea Arirang (traditional folk songs of Korea).
Same as the Mongol zither, it was played by plucking the strings.
The new thing i've learnt from her is that this zither can be tune during play.
Haha~ how does that sound?
An instrument that you tune while you're playing?
New stuff right?
But there's no such thing as not tuning your instrument before you play
so let me just clear you out on this.
Do you notice the three bridges at the far end of the zither? (Photo above. Scroll up. Dude~!)
This three bridges are all movable (Actually all the bridges are movable).
When Lee played, she moved that three bridges depending on the note she wanted.
Is part of the tactics. Which is quite interesting to me and which i knew you were bored reading.

So to cut thing short.
Both of them collaborated on another piece of Arirang
and then is the time for the Q&A~~!!!

Two questions were directed to Chovjoo. One lady asked about the number of string and
the same lady asked another one i couldn't recall. Anyway, since times were running out,
the emcee helped with the answering by just replying 'Yes'. Nice one. Haha~!
After this workshop, i headed to the Dewan Legenda to check out the 'Thunder In The Jungle'
I tell you what~~! This is probably the best workshop i'd been to for all 3 days.
By the name of the workshop, you probably have figured out that it got to do with
percussion instruments~ and Yes~! Is all about drums and more percussion instruments,
some i've seen before and some i don't know even knew of theirs existence~!

I felt that the emcee of this workshop did a good job on keeping our interest high.
I later learnt that she's a volunteer of this event.
A volunteer get to do an emcee?
Wow~! That's cool~! Now who want to be a volunteer for the next year?

So, here's how the workshop goes.
There's like 11 or 12 musicians (lazy to count) demostrating us their instruments one after another
and then they collaborated together at the end of the workshop.
I couldn't talk much about the instruments, there're just too many to register.
The one i found interesting was this ball-like instrument which
according to them was called the Calabasse/ talking drum.

 This was interesting too~!!
Not the drum but the black guy there.
He's cute~!
Jumping up and down when he played~~! Just like a kid~!

Here's a complete picture of how it looked like~~

Musicians versus the audiences~!

Look at the crowd of peoples~!!

She's one active veteran i'd seen dancing at the front row for all three days!!!

Proud owner of Samsung Galaxy Tab~~!

I didn't stay until the very end. I went to check out the workshop at the Iban Longhouse which is about
bow instruments. Two members of the string sisters were there playing. They're cool but i'm just too late for
the horse head fiddle and the er hu. Too bad~!

So, they played us a few tunes from their origins. I must say is very lively~~!!!
Here's the video~ a short one, just to give you guys an idea.

~to be uploaded~(lazy to the max point)

After this, i went to the theatre to learn more on our local music.
'Heartbeats of South East Asia'
Comparisons of Malay rhythms with other Asean ones

The theatre is like Heaven~~!!!
Once i got in, i don't felt like going out~ Haha~
The air-con and seat was just so comfortable ~
Don't get me wrong. I'm really there to learn~ not because of the air-con~ haha~!

This workshop was lead by Karim from the Diplomat of Drums.
He introduced us to the percussion instrument known as the 'Inang'
a framed drum made out of synthetic skin. I knew there's a Malay folk dance also known as Inang,
but i still believe my ears. That's what they said~ Haha~ If anything wrong, look for them.
Then there's this Zapin from Indonesia or Arab influences. I know there's also another Malay folk dance called Zapin. Like i said, look for them. That's what they've told us~

Anyway, they compared the 'Inang Melayu' to the 'Inang Cina' and also the 'Inang India'....
'Inang Melayu' is more slow and lay back~
while 'Inang Cina is must more faster and joyous~

They also played us the song 'Zapin Bunga Hutan'
and showed us the gopah thing~
I'm not sure how to explain this gopah thing~
Is like everyone is playing the inang or zapin (I've forgotten)
and somebody shouted "GOPAH" and everyone would then played on a much faster rhythmic.

After the workshop, i left to look for Lindy and Garner.
Both of them seem out of fuels~~ yet they were both happy.
Especially Lindy, she's still dancing when she walk~

I'm going for the Kwasa~ Kwasa~ dance tomorrow~~!!

 Look like the Brazilian dance workshop really is a hit~!
Too bad i couldn't split myself~

We went to check out the Damai beach and have our dinner there
Turned out there's also this beach party going on~

And here's the camp site you get to rent and camp for the rainforest festival.
Rm50 per night~

I used the main entrance to get back and guess what?
I have to go through some sort of airport security check up~!
There're police officers standing guard and i'm also asked to open my bag for check up~
Wow~ they are real serious about security issue here.
 Seeing this. I knew we're all in good hands~!

The police dog on standby~

Part of the photos uploaded here were credited to Sarawak Tourism Board

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Rainforest World Music Festival 2012. Is the Last! ~~~So, Move! Baby, Move!

The one good thing on the last day
is that you get to watch more performances and there's this grand finale!!!
The time when all the performers will be on stage to celebrate the closing!!!

Neh~ speaking as if i've stayed for the finale.

Substituting gong for drum, we have
'Drums of Malaysia' to boost the audiences' adrenaline levels tonight.

There was local dance and drum players 
playing among the audiences similarly to previous night.
As for me, i'm finally chasing the little drum players because
they were showing me theirs butts
theirs costumes were quite interesting. 

#1 The drummers~~!

#2 Young drummers

I didn't managed the first row tonight because Garner donated my space to his foreign friend
=___= after i went to the washroom. Blame it on too much can drinks~~~
not forgetting Garner.
I still get good photos though so i'll forgive you. Eisek~

While chatting with the Turkey guy in front of me, the emcee came on stage
and introduced HATA to the stage.

HATA started off with a chanting-like kind of music
which i personally think it kinda match with the rainforest theme.
However, is not the kind of music which drives people to jump high and low 
so there's a temporary silent moment circulating the crowd of peoples.
Good thing is that there's the dae-buk to spark our interest.

#3 The first HATA player to performed

#4 Followed by the zitther player

#5 The huge drum, dae-buk
*Photo credited to Sarawak Travel

HATA to me is pretty unique.
Theirs music is spiritual at first and slowly evolved to a more joyous end.
They are like a classic cocktail with music flavours from around the Eastern world.
Personally, i felt that their musics were much more influenced by the Korean culture.
I didn't know much about Korean culture and to be frank
this is my first encountered with their traditional music. What a shame~!
They does have good flute though.

I believes they performed us for like 5-6 pieces. Some pieces intervened with solo performances from
 the er hu, oud, zither, drum set, sitar and flute.
Ah~~ the flute~
I would say its pretty emotional and close to the sound of nature.

#6 Spiritually beautiful

#7 The Korean flutist. Great skill.

#8 The percussionist of HATA He borrowed Harry Potter's spec.

#9 The keyboard aka Oud player

#10 The er-hu player from Hata

#11 This is the prove of me cabut-ing to another stage.

After the HATA, is the only show which i've been anticipating for since day 1.
Unlike all the previous performers, they played an instrument that is nearly
extinct through times. I first learnt of this instrument few years back in an article i read about.
So, it was like so hard to believe that i'm gonna see and hear it live~!
 Oreka Tx from Spain and they play the txalarpartas which is an ancient
Basque instrument originally used as a communication device.
They played this video during their performance.

Check it out people~! Is cool stuff you should not miss~! Trust me~!

#12 Stone made Txalarparta

#13 The Bouzouki player

#14 Yes, is a plastic tong. No doubt about that.

#15 Anything that generate sound can be used in the art of txalarparta. Used here was the makillak.

#16 The wooden txalarparta

# Joined by Khusugtun. A surprise for all~!

I likes the way the two musicians played.
 Energetic, strong and very joyful~!
I felt happy by just watching them play.
It really felt like they are communicating through music.

Part of their performance, just to give you a brief idea.

Other performance of the night included Mamadou Diabete's Percussion Mania, Samuel Dass & Prakash,
Rhythm of Borneo, Carimbo Drums, Native Chanting, Sape & Warrior and Kanda Bongo Man.

I'm already back to city center for the above mentioned. 
Let's just hope that other bloggers may cover the show above.
Oh ya! 
You may use my photos but do link me back~! Thank~

One Direction- What makes you beautiful

This is what i've been playing recently~ Ha~ Though of sharing it here~ The Piano Guys are the greatest!

Weekend coming up soon~~~ Yosh~!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Saturday. Rainforest World Music Party Bash!!!

I believe million of peoples were here tonight.
Given the number of times i was stepped on the feet!
It's just so crowded that no matter where i went
there will be peoples.

Unless you have a media pass with you.
Then you'll have access to goyang kaki at this place.

#1 Call me a big show off~~ Muahahahaha~~~Wuahahahaha~~hehe~ no lah

Anyway, just remember to watch your footstep~!
I spotted a lady fallen from the walk path and got stuck.
You wouldn't want to end up like her.

By the time i made my way to the jungle stage, it was already packed with peoples.
I still managed to be at the first row though. *Proud face

The first to performed for the second night was 
'Gongs of Malaysia'

Instead of limiting the performance to the stage, the organizers merged 
the players with the audiences.

Excited faces were seen chasing around the gong players.

Okay, now i sound like i'm writing my lab report.

Some was taking photos while some was getting a hands-on experience with the gong.
I felt like chasing them too but given where i was, it would be better for me to stay on the spot.

#2 Traditional graceful dance

#3 Gong players from different ethnics and different ages.

#4 Young gong players

The gongs have done it part and the next performance is what i've been
anticipated for~

#5 'Khusugtun' from the Mongolia

I've watched their performance in Youtube previously
before coming for the real show and i can assure you that
it is really a different story to watch them performing live!
The throat singing was really amazing and i just can't stop myself
from mimicking the way they do it. Although i sounded like a pervert.

Throat singing is what we called the Humai (呼麦) in Mandarin. 
Basically, is like humming with two pitches,
producing two key notes at the same times,
one at a higher pitch and another one at a lower pitch.
They played few songs which truly symbolical to its origin.
Many peoples gasped when they opened their mouth to sing or should i say throat?
Is really something you don't get to see that often 
What more? You get to hear them live!
#6 The only female Mongolian Zither player of the Khusugtun, Chovjoo.
#7 The woodwind aka percussion player
Seriously, i want this guy to be my sifu~!!!

#8 Other instruments played

#9 Their hairstyle was really interesting~

Drifted back from Mongolia, up next was 
'Danyel Waro' from the Reunion Islands.

I got to say the lead vocalist was pretty cute in a way.
Peoples were dancing and moving around and he followed suit.
The more peoples danced, the more energetic he was.
Is truly a moment where the audiences were enjoying the music and
the performers giving theirs best to the show!
We were all hyped!

#10 The veteran vocalist sang in the Creole language.

#11 He's really good at shaking~

#12 Interesting bow shaped one string instrument

Now, have a look at the crowd.
Sorry for the blur head, he jumped too fast.

After Danyel Waro, i was blew away by our local musicians.
The 'Diplomats of Drum'

#16 The tin whistler player

Hands up peoples! Is party time!!!!

I left before the end of their performance and was stuck in a massive jam for like an hours ++
because some morons inconsiderate peoples parked the car right on the road
which totally blocked the path. In the end, i only reached the city center at around 12.30am.

*Part of the photos uploaded here were credited to Sarawak Tourism Board

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