Archive for October, 2002


Saturday, October 26th, 2002

Wednesday 30TH October 9.00PM @ NO BLACK TIE RM20 per cover

The Songwriters’ Round performance format was made famous at the legendary Blue Bird Cafe in Nashville. It subsequently spread outside of Nashville, and has now become a popular means of showcasing works of songwriters all over the world.

The idea behind the Songwriters’ Round is simple: four performers sit on stage at the same time and take turns to play. The performer is encouraged to chat a little about his or her work before s/he performs each song. After the song ends, the next performer would follow, and so on. Thus, round and round it goes, as original songs are performed in an environment that is more reminiscent of a chatty living room than a concert stage.

Planned as a series of concerts, the Songwriters’ Round is a platform for local or visiting songwriters to showcase their work. The selection criteria of the producer will not be based on reputation or genre, but only that the music performed should be good original compositions, and that people would have a good time listening to them.

[Producers’ Note] Since Pete is busy in the studio recording his first solo album, the task to uphold the construction man’s good work has fallen upon Lorna and me (Jerome). The next Songwriters’ Round is a rather special affair, bringing together 9 of the performers who caressed, brutalised, nursed and then loved you with their songs and voices. They will be singing their original songs and also, if you’re lucky, perform their own versions of their favourite songs.

Think of it as a little reunion. Awww… It reminds me of that Round when I drank too much and tried to seduce one of the chairs. The good old days. Sigh. But think of it also as a great sampler of ‘killer’ local talents and highly impressive original work.

In Pete’s words, please put your hands together for …

Pete Teo

Pete is the producer of the Round. Having made two records in Hong Kong, he began playing ‘live’ in Kuala Lumpur not long ago and has established a reputation as a songwriter of immense talent. He was invited to play at the ‘Global Media & Entertainment Summit’ in New York earlier this year. As you are reading this, he is doing his best to hold the boat and crew together as he delivers his new CD to us across the perilous seas of “Oh my God, it’s an Iceberg that’s bigger than my ass!” Everyone loves Pete.

Julian Mokhtar

This man needs little introduction. Julian is a virtuoso guitarist of considerable repute. He has played in blues clubs around the world and alongside legends such as Buddy Guy and Joe Satriani. His debut solo album ‘About Time’ is a fine mix of delta blues, reggae, bluegrass, jazz and southern rock. Apart from being one of the most accomplished musicians in Kuala Lumpur, Julian is also a keen supporter of the arts.

Jason Lo

Here’s a little about Jason. First Malaysian to reach the top three on Pepsi Top 20 International charts. Regional air play on both MTV Asia and Channel V. Nominated for 6 AIM Awards. Nominated for MTV Viewers Choice Awards. Winner of Asian Peoples Choice Award for Much Music Asia. Winner of Malaysian MTV Music Video Awards. Not enough? Well, he also opened for Big Country, Deep Purple and shared stage time with some of the biggest names around. Still not enough? He’s got a new album out entitled ‘Firefighter’. Take a bow Jason.


Sherry busks for a living and is a bit of a legend in that world. Slight of frame and quiet of disposition, he is one of those musicians you don’t get to see often. First spotted at one of Joe Kidd’s ‘Unclogged’ gigs and verdict: this guy is special. He was playing Van Morrison, Led Zeppelin, Bob Marley covers that night, but everything he played was re-interpreted with intelligence and belief. The quiet intensity he held himself was magnetic, his 12-string guitar full, and his voice as brittle as the songs he sang. He switches from songs full of sardonic humour to those full of indignant rage and plays the guitar in a way that belies his musical roots in rock and blues.


Perhaps due to a childhood spent in tranquil Tonga, Sasha is one of those rare songwriters who sounds special without even trying. I first heard her on a tape of a recorded No Black Tie late night jam. Her voice was smooth but edged with an intimate darkness reminiscent of Fiona Apple and PJ Harvey, her guitar playing was raw but effective, her words were vulnerable, intense, and beautifully crafted. Buy her a tequila because she likes them. Just like you’ll like her. Guaranteed.

Tan Sei Hon

First spotted at one of Joe Kidd’s excellent ‘Unclogged’ gigs. Although largely unknown to wider audiences, Sei Hon is a charismatic performer and a talented songwriter, with songs touching upon politics, religion and an illusive thing called love. He is a lecturer of art history and art theory at a local college. He spends most of his time painting, but performs music occasionally at indie gigs in town. A man of principle, he makes it a point never to disappoint.

Mei Chern

Mei Chern first sent an email to Pete, asking if she could play open mike at the July Round. Pete replied, ‘Of course!’ She duly obliged with her trusty guitar on the night. When it was her turn to play, she sang a number which charmed us all – sensitive words with a sweet sweet melody that reminded Pete of Suzanne Vega. Mei Chern was a psychology graduate in the UK, but at the Round, she’d be a sweet lady armed with vulnerable songs and an introspective voice.

Ariff Akhir

When he wasn’t belting out Rolling Stones, Guns & Roses and Aerosmith covers, Ariff used to make the girls swoon with Frank Sinatra classics in the student union bar at his university in the UK. Since coming back home in 1999, however, he has spent all his spare time writing original songs and making DIY recordings in his bedroom. Ariff writes songs about love, friends and all things good and nasty.


Jerome is first and foremost a poet. But don’t worry, he’ll only be singing. (Everyone sighs with relief.) Please buy my CD “Pink Spirit”. Please, please, I’m begging you…

Open Mike: How you like to perform your original songs at the Round? We welcome new, old, or otherwise non-professional songwriters, and will open the floor to those who wish to play after the main acts are done. Please bring your own instruments if you can, and talk to me ahead of time on the night. You can also contact me in advance at [Erased]. Unfortunately, due to logistical limitations, the open mike is for acoustic solo performers only and we are not able to accept bands.

Contact Info & Road Directions:

27 Jln.Mesui Off Jln.Nagasari (behind the Istana Hotel), Bukit Bintang, KL. TEL: 03-21488110 Email:

[Make a left at the slip road right after the Istana Hotel on Jalan Raja Chulan if you are heading away from Shazhan Towers. Then the second right turn takes you to Jalan Mesui. Its the building with loads of plants growing all over it on the left.]