Java Jazz Festival Unites Us All

LARASATI OETOMO on ART & CULTURE, 05/03/19

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For the 15th time, BNI Java Jazz Festival returned to unite music lovers in the name of jazz.


Starting from 1 to 3 March 2019, the 15th edition of BNI Java Jazz Festival was held at JI Expo Kemayoran, Jakarta. The star-studded events are graced by special stages from R&B artists H.E.R and Raveena, as well as legendary rock group TOTO. At least ten dozens of artists filled the line-up across eleven stages.

Despite the rain on the second and third day, at least 7,000 audiences attended the biggest jazz festival in Indonesia each day. The outdoor shows went on, accompanying those who spend time together with loved ones, enjoying snacks and drinks from food trucks and pop-up bar. There are also several spots commemorating Java Jazz’ 15 years of journey where people took group selfies. Unlike in the previous years, this year’s Java Jazz Festival emphasized more on security and access check. Audiences, VIPs, medias, and sponsors are all given different access in attending stages.

On the first day, regulars like Afgan, Dewa Budjana, and Dira Sugandi swayed the audience. They are accompanied by newcomer Ardhito Pramono, legendary Parkdrive and The Groove, as well as Tribute to Dian PP who passed away in early 2019. The international line-up consists of Jeff Bernat, GoGo Penguin, and many others. H.E.R. appeared to satisfy her fans’ longing for her soulful vocal on the special stage.

Things got hotter on the next day. Andien, Rendy Pandugo, Sore, and Yura Yunita led the local artist line-up while Sinead Harnett, Ron King Big Band, and Mac Ayres proved that jazz is for all. Special performance from MLDJAZZPROJECT featuring Iwa K, Adrian Khalif, and Adikara Fardy created a progressive harmony across genres.

TOTO closed the festival with nostalgic hits from late 70s to the 80s. The line-up consists of legends like Akustik Tohpati feat. Sheila Majid, Harvey Malaihollo & The Millennials Sing Motown, Idang Rasjidi, and Kahitna. Projects and younger artists like Danilla Riyadi, Monita Tahalea, Isyana Sarasvati, and Sony Music Project feat. Jaz, Ardhito Pramono, and Rendy Pandugo joined the show. Trapjazz artist Masego and blues-jazz group JMSN gathered a lot of crowd to dance together.

PHOTOS Isnu Dwimartanto & Febi Ramdhan