Just made my first trip to the far east to play at the contemporary music festival in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. What an incredible place! Reunited with my old friend, the saxophonist Greg Lyons, we performed on the 26th November at UCSI University on a hot, humid and steamy night. A great band included bassist (and houseplant) Dudley Phillips and drummer Nic France. As you can see below, we looked pretty wiped out after playing in such high humidity. The parts and pretty much everything else was hot and soggy…… Even the cymbals had a sheen of moisture over them!
A positively surreal soundcheck had us set up in a slightly rock and roll configuration (including drum riser)and the strange sight of a 9ft Kawai grand warapped in clingfilm to protect it from the moisture! Definitely a night to remember, and great to play with these guys again.
Music was only part of the experience out there. Some of the best food on the planet – and super cheap at that. Incredible chinese food, thai food and southern indian food (served authentically on a banana leaf) One of the advantages of being with a local who loves his food was that we completely stayed away from any of the tourist traps and ate at real local places. I don’t think we saw a single menu all the time we were there – and every meal seemed to be one the best we had ever eaten. Our favourite places were:
Zin Sin – a modest looking but absolutely incredible chinese, full of locals and their families
All in all an amazing time – I even got used to drinking beer with ice (and out of small glasses) which is pretty sensible when the temperature is around 32. Massive and heartfelt thanks to Greg and June for looking after us in such a royal manner!
Now looking forward to the next batch of gigs in Indonesia,Vietnam, and China with Maria Pia de Vito next week……Full details here: