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An evening of jazz with Pak-US fusion

An evening of jazz with Pak-US fusion

LAHORE: The Ari Roland Jazz Quartet and Pakistani musicians sent the audience into a transcendental high at the Ali Auditorium.

Before the live concert, organised by the US Consulate General Lahore and Foundation of Arts Culture and Education, US Consul General Zachary Harkenrider introduced jazz having been born in the cosmopolitan US city of New Orleans where people from different cultures lived together and eventually became deeply influenced by each other.

In the first set, flute maestro Akmal Qadri, Asad Ali of the renowned Sachal Orchestra on acoustic guitar and Kashif Ali Dani on table performed three pieces, including Nusrat Fateh Ali’s ‘Dum Mast Qalandar’, Dave Bruebeck’s ‘Take Five’, and folk standard ‘Dama Dam Mast Qalandar’. The trio played folk music but continuously delved into jazz melodies.

The second set was a performance by the Ari Roland Quartet. The line-up was Ari Roland on bass, Chris Byars on tenor sax, Zaid Nasser on alto sax and Keith Balla on drums. Dressed in suits, the quartet played quite a few numbers starting with what Ari described as a “dancing song”.

“Jazz is a very flexible genre and has the capability to encompass all kinds of music,” said Roland. “It has been evolving over generations and even today it is continuously evolving and new styles are born. Even then there are still many old school players.”

The quartet pleased the audience by playing jazz renditions of Pakistani pop songs ‘Dil Dil Pakistan’ and Awaz’s ‘Tere Bina Dil Na Lagay’. They also played Louis Armstrong giving tribute to the well-known jazz artist.

The Ari Roland Quartet then welcomed on stage Asad Ali, Kashif Dani and Akmal Qadri. The performance then became a colourful fusion of two styles. While every musician was a pleasure to watch, one of the highlights was the ‘battle’ between the drum and tabla.

Published in Dawn, February 20th, 2016

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