Sunday, the 3rd of January 2010, the courtyard at the home of jazz was sparking with enthusiasm, excitement and the hope that every New Year brings with it. After offering Goa a great musical buffet in 2009, Heritage Jazz was set to begin with a bang, and a bang it surely was!
The Gonsalves Mansion reverberated with the sounds of Western jazz and Indian classical; a fusion like never before. Known always for their unique concepts and one-of-a-kind events, this show not only lived up to the standards but went beyond, sending the audience into a musical tizzy.
MoonArra (Three Streams) is something of a musical journey where musicians from different styles and approaches meet to explore sounds and influences from jazz to Indian Classical with a strong leaning towards melody and a jazz-like improvisation in its compositions and interpretations of others’ songs and tunes.
Each musician of this five member ensemble displayed talent, vibrancy and an electric charge. Jagdeesh M.R. led the band on the lead guitar, supported well by Prakash Sontakke on the Indian slide guitar with rich Indian classical sounds and a voice to match. While Madhuri tantalized with her deep, husky vocals, Kenneth Wilson entertained on bass guitar while Karthik Mani kept rhythm on the drums. MoonArra were joined by quirky jazz trumpeting whiz Matthias Shriefl from Germany who floored the audience with his impromptu performance.
While Prakash was a strumming sensation on the slide guitar, Jagdeesh synchronized beautifully with him on the lead, producing amazing guitar magic that had the audience at the edge of their seats. Shriefl sizzled on his trumpet, picking up on the guitar fusion and translating it into some terrific trumpeting.
The band was highly expressive and interactive with their audience, communicating frequently as they introduced their songs and fellow members, sprouting grand applause from the delighted listeners. Each of these musicians mixed about, enjoying friendly conversation and a few laughs with the people, during the breaks; it seemed like a get together of a bunch of friends.
Heritage Jazz events are and have always been precisely this; bringing people together, sharing good times, making great music and greater memories all for the love of Goa. The past year had us thoroughly entertained with a musical buffet from Jazz for football and Jazz Nirvana to sensational Dutch musicians and our beloved Konkani Rocks; what an amazing array of concepts and shows. This show was a preview for the rest of the year and Heritage Jazz promises, the best is yet to come.
The small gathering leant forward with wide eyed wonder at the sheer talent and rich nuances of these performers and refused to let them leave the stage, begging for several encore performances; the show crossed the set time limit, almost kissing the midnight hour. This fantastic fusion with sure took everyone present to the moon and back during those few hours in the Jazz courtyard. Simply fantabulous! Heritage Jazz began the New Year with a bang! Cheers to 2010 – The year of Music.