With great pleasure, I would like to inform you that I am FINALLY leaving for the US for my further studies in Music... and YES, it's finally confirmed! It has been a long wait, as it had been a very long process to come to this juncture, but it has finally come to fruition. I will depart for NYC this Wed, Jan 16th.
Overall, I'll probably be away for at least 2 years, for the duration of my study. What happens after graduation still remains to be seen, depending on the opportunities I can source out there. If there's a possibility of me working a lot overseas after my studies, then I will probably remain overseas for a fairly extensive period of time. However, I do hope we can keep in touch, whether its via email, MSN and/or Yahoo! Messenger, iChat, Skype, etc. As much as I wanted to go overseas, I'm very much fond of home in Malaysia, and it will still remain home, until by some unforeseen circumstance it will cease to remain so. As such, I would like to be very much kept posted on what happens back home.
To cut to the long speech: I have to say the last seven to eight years have been really great for me, especially in music. I have made a lot of friends and business associates, and I have been enriched by that friendship. And this is just and addition to the great friends I've already had before that. My career in music in Malaysia had been such an amazing experience, good and bad ones included, and I've had the opportunity to do so much and work with so many great people in the business and I've learnt so much with each job or project or performance that I had done. I would like to extend my gratitude to each and everyone of you for that.
Anyway, without making it sound like a presidential or Grammys speech (it probably already does!), I would like to mention and extend a special "Thank You" to the few key people who have in many ways helped me to get to where I am right now:
My family - Mom, Dad, and my brother Gavin for such tremendous support and love, no words can express my gratitude and my feelings for them! If not for them, none of this would have been possible.... EVER!! I am definitely an extremely blessed person to have been born into this family with these great parents and siblings! You understood what being real parents are, and I really hope I have done you proud, and I will continue to do so. I hope with music, it can show some of it, if not all!
My grandma - I think there's where the gene came from, however recessive it might had been!
Kay Ti - my childhood BEST friend.. you're probably more than that... a more equivalent of a brother! I really appreciate the friendship and the brotherhood we have since as long as I could remember, as well as the fact that we have maintained it still. I cannot even say in words how much you being in my life mean to me. You were always there as a second head for me, whenever I somehow lost mine along the way, with your amazing knowledge and wisdom despite at such young age, being such a guiding light.
My KKFC brothers - you guys are the support pillars at home for me! Your unending and unconditional friendship reminds me at all times where home is (even though some of you ain't in Kajang no more!). You guys are ALWAYS there whenever anyone of us is in need. I will miss those night-outs with you guys, snooker, Half-Life, and nightly mamak sessions, and the occasional outings to Genting, clubs, etc. I've had some of the best memories with you fellas (and some pretty icky ones *wink*), and I will cherish them all.
Thomas Theseira and Greg Lyons - my saxophone (and more!) mentors, and most of all, you're my great friends! You have helped me make a dream possible. You have showed me that there is hope that one is able to achieve something one never thought would've been possible. You have helped paved a road for me which was previously non-existent, and that I can go to this road and with that, experience something I wouldn't have been able to experience otherwise. You have also showed me what it means to be a real musician, to tread the path less taken, and the life that comes with it. And most importantly, you have shown me how to be a real person in this path I have taken.
My closest bandmates and musician brothers and sisters - Eddie, Justin, AJ, Charles, Cher Siang, Vincent, Martin, John, Eric, Fly, Rozhan, Tok Khon, Gigi, Chee Meng, Benjamin and more. I have had the opportunity to play with some of the best young musicians in KL, and I learnt a whole lot, bit by bit, from each time I get to play with them. Not only are they my bandmates, but my good friends. Being on the bandstand with them did not only mean just getting together and just playing our instruments, but sharing and feeding off each other's positive energy. Being off the bandstand, they're like my second family. I definitely have made some of the best music with you guys!
David Gomes and Junji Delfino and the fab five - for welcoming me into your extended family, and not just in music. I've learnt so much from playing and hanging out with you guys, not to mention laugh a whole lot!! And thanks for being one of the few people who showed me the art of soul in music, you guys just give out so much in each performance!! And I'm glad I had been part of it over the last several years!!
My other musical seniors and mentors - Michael Veerapen, Farid Ali, Jose Thomas, David Yee, Aubrey Suwito, Mac Chew, Jenny Chin, Acis, Jonathan Lee, and practically everyone I've ever worked with. Thank you for your patience and your guidance. I've had the best time working with all of you guys.
Jazz venue people - Evelyn from No Black Tie, Elyna and Kor Shing at Bangkok Jazz, Groove Junction, Rick's Cafe Casablanca, Top Room (too bad it's gone). Thanks for having my play at your places, it has been such a great learning experience!
My music juniors, y'all know who you are, keep up the work and the passion. Thanks for the opportunity to work with you fellas, too. We'll play together soon!
Last but not least... God.. for the Gift that The Almighty has blessed me with.
I might have missed some people out, or rather a whole lot, but my gratitude extends to all of you as well.
Anyway, I'm not leaving for good or anything, but I will be gone for quite a little while. At the moment, I reckon I'l be back during this summer holidays as I'm working on a project which I hope will take off. Please do keep in touch. I would love to hear from you all every once in a while. If you're in MSN, or Yahoo, or GTalk, or Skype and don't have my contact, send me an email, and I'll give you my IDs for all of them.
I will be updating my blog sometime when I get there, and probably will have the opportunity to update it more often. So if you want to keep tabs on me, log on to my blog: http://jcsax.blogspot.com. Of course I won't tell EVERYTHING but most of it, at least the one I want to say anyway! Heh heh.
Last but not least, if you're on Facebook, then you've probably been invited. So, I'm cordially inviting everyone to my farewell gig this Sunday night at Bangkok Jazz.
One Night Stand with JULIAN CHAN featuring BOPLICITY and HAPPY PEOPLE QUINTET
Venue: BANGKOK JAZZ, Chulan Square, Jalan Raja Chulan Time: 9pm onwards. Cover Charge: RM15 (sorry lah, still gotta make some cash, right?? New York weii.. very the ex..) For more info, check out www.alldatjazz.com. Thanks!
PS: Wish me luck!