Yamaha Creating "Kando" With Key Players From The Music Industry

Yamaha Music Malaysia is committed to help develop the talent and experience of all levels of musicians in Malaysia – be it young children embarking on their musical odyssey, or seasoned professionals with international acclaim. In recognition of this, Yamaha Music Malaysia recently signed Ambassador agreements with notable Malaysian and Malaysia-based musicians, each supporting the development of the musicianship landscape right here in the nation.

Yamaha Distributors Network

Held at their recent Distributor Network Conference at the Sepang Gold Coast, the signing ceremony involved the musicians outlining to the distributors why they were behind Yamaha, followed with a short performance by several of these talented individuals.

Kando, signifying an inspired state of mind, embodies Yamaha Music Malaysia’s philosophy to enrich the quality of lives for people around the world via their high quality products. This pledge to improve and inspire music enthusiasts everywhere was highlighted at the endorsee agreement signing ceremony held at the luxurious Golden Palm Tree Resort.

Yamaha Music Malaysia aspires to support all levels of musicianship, and they intend to do this by collaborating with passionate musicians whose influence would arouse and motivate budding virtuosos to create music—all with the help of some very high quality instruments. Draped in the pink and lavender hues of the evening as twilight sets in, the ceremony witnessed a gathering of prominent artistes including keyboardist Aubrey Naga Suwito, guitarists Jamie Wilson and Aznan “Nan” bin Alias, drummer John Ashley Thomas, bassist Halizor “Fly” bin Hussein, and representing independent rap-rock band Pop Shuvit, members Jeddiah “JD” Wong and Nazrin “AJ” bin Mohd Nasir.

Fly and Jamie entreating audiences to an upbeat performance

Aubrey Naga Suwito has been actively involved in the music industry since 1988 as a songwriter, producer, music arranger, and music director to some of the nation’s most distinguished performers such as Dato’ Siti Nurhaliza and M Nasir. Malaysians would be familiar with his tour de force Gemilang that he wrote for Malaysian Idol winner Jaclyn Victor in addition to his involvement with sensational reality television competitions—Akademi Fantasia and Jangan Lupa Lirik, to name a couple— which earned him nationwide fame and recognition. But Aubrey Suwito’s achievements do not end with the local scene, for his music arrangements can be found in the albums of international performers, namely Jacky Cheung, Sandy Lam, and Tanya Chua.

Hailing from down-under Australia, Jamie Wilson is a resident guitarist who has performed alongside music legends such as Joe Walsh of The Eagles and Clarence Clemes from Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band. Having studied classical guitar as a child, he made his first formal appearance at the Sydney Opera House at the age of 16, then moving on to win the title of “Australia’s Best Young Guitarist” at MTV Australia National Guitar Challenge two years later. In Malaysia, Jamie Wilson is one of the region’s top session guitarist to have worked with the likes of Richie Ren, Eason Chan, Wang Lee Hom, Fann Wong, Afdlin Shauki, and many more.

“This event is great, I mean, I get to see all these people who appreciate music as much as I do and I love Yamaha’s guitars. They’re really comfortable to play with and I must say, one of the easiest. I felt completely at ease with them,” he remarked.
 
Mr. Okazaki welcoming guests

Aznan bin Alias, affectionately known to his admirers as Nan, is frequently spotted hitting the local music scenes with his prowess playing the guitar. Sporting an affable demeanor, he is easily approachable by friends and fans alike despite having performed alongside big names in the music industry, most notably Fish Leong and Ella. In addition to his love of performing, Aznan has also been a music director to M
Nasir since 1997 and produced albums for Dia Fadillah, Amir Yusoff, and Coda.

John Ashley Thomas kick-started his career on the drums at the tender age of 8. Since then, he has toured with the Blue Note Circuit in Japan with Mowtown legends The Three Degrees and collaborated with Grammy award-winning flautist, Nestor Torres. A frequent player at numerous jazz festivals (Arts Alive, Jarasum International Jazz Fest), John Thomas has performed with premier jazz-Latin-funk musicians like Steve Thornton, Jiro Okada, and Yu Quan. A formidable percussionist, he has been acknowledged as a promising musical talent by Malaysia’s Ministry of Cultural and Arts.

Aside from being a lecturer at ASWARA, Akademi Seni Budaya dan Warisan, Halizor “Fly” bin Hussein has been rocking the bass for RTM Orchestra and the Petronas Performing Arts Department Concert. Halizor has been associated with a myriad of local artistes like Anuar Zain, Zainal Abidin, Misha Omar, and Faizal Tahir while also being actively involved with international music festivals. His latest project is his own jazz-fusion called “The Phunk Mob Experience,” conceived with John Thomas, Tok Khon and Wan.

Pop Shuvit is a Malaysian independent rap-rock band, comprising Moots! (vocals), JD (guitar), AJ (bass), Rudy (drums) and Uno (turntables). Having already established a sizable fanbase in Asia—notably in Malaysia, Japan, Thailand and Singapore—they are known for their adrenaline-packed live shows and eclectic
blend of hip hop and rock. It comes to no surprise then that they are being touted as Asia’s leading Hip Hop Rock band. Their debut album Take it & Shuvit broke new ground when their first single Skaters’ Anthem was released exclusively on the Internet and became one of the most downloaded local songs in Malaysian music history. The hype and street buzz from the track caught the ears of ESPN, who in turn licensed the track for use in their Summer X-Games broadcast that hit millions of households worldwide. As further credit to Pop Shuvit, ESPN played their music videos and tracks off the album throughout the duration of competition.
  
Managing Director Mamoru Okazaki addressing to the guests and the media

“The great thing about Yamaha is that it’s very accessible,” commented JD, present alongside AJ. “Sure, there are many other brands out there that supply musical instruments. But none of them, I think, accommodate both entry-level players and professionals quite as well as Yamaha.”

The Yamaha Corporation in Japan has grown to become the world's largest manufacturer of a full line of musical instruments since its genesis in 1887. In addition, Yamaha is a leading producer of audio/visual products, semiconductors and other computer related products, sporting goods, home appliances and furniture, specialty metals, machine tools, and industrial robots.
 
The various heads of Yamaha in the company of talented musicians

With 94 subsidiaries and representative offices in overseas markets—in addition to numerous related companies in Japan—Yamaha continually promotes and supports music education amongst aspiring musicians, and this is reflected in the establishment of the Yamaha Music Foundation in 1966. Since then, Yamaha Music Malaysia has spread its philosophy in music education throughout the nation by means of its music schools, nurturing the young and fostering positive growth.

*Press Release from Yamaha Music Malaysia*


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