Hi everyone. Many many things going on in my life at the moment, but music is always there and when I’m playing or working on music, I am able to center myself.

Here is my upcoming schedule of November! Please do come to some very special show I’m hosting!


1 November (Sat)
L.A.B (Listen And Believe) at SingJazz Club

This is the first time we are presenting ourselves at SingJazz Club!
We will be bringing you rather acoustic and Jazz inclined selections from our songbook.
Please come and witness how we do it!
Here is the ticket link :

10689883_10152810691594727_5045045173702509749_n Official Facebook invite

3 November (Mon)

Erik Satay & The Kampung Arkestra at Blu Jaz Cafe 
[as part of Jazz Composer’s Series For LARGE Ensembles]

The Kampong Arkestra is an ensemble of creative sound makers, dancers and actors from diverse cultural and performance backgrounds residing in Singapore that will be SOUNDPAINTED in real-time by Head of LASALLE music Tim O’Dwyer – creating sound & movement collages of dynamic, humorous, and gigantic proportions. For their first performance we will be presenting a stella line – up of scintillating performance makers:

Soundpainter – Tim O’Dwyer
Actor / Voice – Adam Marple
Actor / Voice – Sangeetha Dorai
Dancer – Julius Foo
Guzheng / electronics – Natalie Tse
Strombophone (electronics) – Dirk Stromberg
Guitar – Bani Haykal
Keyboards/ electronics – Aya Sekine
Saxophone – Teo Boon Chye
Trombone – Michael Cartwright
Tuba – Fujita Hidehiro
Drum Kit – Daryl Ervin

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November 5 (Wed)

Orgo Bar & Restaurant (Esplanade Rooftop)

Magical Jazz Trio : Dawn Ho (vo) Aya Sekine (piano) Shawn Letts (sax)

We have played at this amazing venue for almost 2 years, and it’s time to move on. This will be our last performance at starry Orgo Bar, so we hope to see you. Thank you for supporting us for so many Wednesday!


November 8 (Sat)
Halia Restaurant at Raffles Hotel
Anne Weerapaass (vo) Aya Sekine (keys) Ben Poh (bass)


November 14 (Fri)
Axis Bar and Lounge (Mandarin Oriental Singapore)
Trio jazz with Rob Collins(vo) & Eddie Jansen (bs)


November 18 (Tue)
Axis Bar and Lounge (Mandarin Oriental Singapore)
Solo piano


November 21 (Fri)
Blu Jaz Cafe (ground floor)
Ayaschool VS. SA Trio (Andy C./Natalie Alexandra/Sheryl Ong) with special guests


November 27 (Thu)
SUS SESSIONS Vol.4 (presented by Bon Goût Music & L.A.B)
as part of SAIGENJI Singapore Tour 2014
together with KAYE (Darker Than Wax) and many special guest musicians! SAIGENJI Singapore Tour 2014

This is a really special occasion for me, being the executive director of the whole event (by my organisation Bon Goût Music. Saigenji is my absolute favorite artist and I have always made effort to invite him, and this is the 4th time. Hope you can catch the show with us! L.A.B’s been working pretty hard on our new material, and we’re happy to share :)

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Venue : Blu Jaz Cafe (11 Bali Lane)
Tickets : $35 incl. 1 drink
Event details :

and you can buy your early bird ticket right here, right now!

Partners :

Official Media – J+Plus FM96.3 SMILE WAVE (COMM Pte.Ltd.)
Venue Partner – Kizuki+lim / Lithe Paralogue (Museum of Independent Music, Singapore)
Marketing Partner – Spoonful SG
Liquer Partner – Epicurean Nomads – エピキューリアン ノーマッズ
Equipment partner – Vivid Creations / Hummingbird Concepts

Design : Kiat (System Sovereign)

Design : Kiat (System Sovereign)



Hi everyone! So sorry for not being able to ‘bilingualize’ my tour report… I only owe you an apology dearest non-Japanese language experts. The infamous Google Translator that would give you about  20% of what I’ve meant, is also useful just to guess.

Now I’m a little more than half way in completing my Tour Report, but I would like to take a break and let you know about few gigs. I do that on my official  Facebook Page but it wouldn’t hurt to consolidate all of the information here. I am expecting my brand new website to launch soon as well.

I am back at Orgo Bar and Restaurant every Wednesday with The Magical Trio. Please do drop by for a starry evening on the rooftop view of Marina Bay :)



July 16, 23, 30 (Wed) 8:30-11:00pm
Orgo at Esplanade Rooftop(4th Floor)
Magical Trio feat. Dawn Ho (vocal) Shawn Letts(sax) Aya Sekine(piano)

*Daniel Wong (trumpet) replaces Shawn this week on 16th evening.


July 18th (Fri) 8:30-11:00pm
Café 21 Living Room – Aya Sekine & Maya Nova (as part of ‘Jazz In July’) 
Concourse (Esplanade)

Maya and Aya or Aya and Maya… which ever the order is, we are back in the hood! We are presenting our original compositions, favorite standards which are arranged and sorted out just for this particular evening. Hope to see you all!
No cover charge, free seating :)

Time :
(1st set) 7.15 – 7.45pm
(2nd set) 8.15 – 8.45pm
(3rd set) 9.15 – 9.45pm

More details and info :

Jazz In July full line-up: 


July 19th (Sat) 6:45-9:30pm
Raffles Hotel Lobby
Solo piano


July 18th (Fri) 9-10pm
The Metamorphosis by Regi Leo (as part of Late Nite Series)
Esplanade Recital Studio


Regi Leo’s music is enriched by the many influences that have permeated his 27-year-long career. While rooted in jazz and blues, he takes from all genres of music to form his own style. 

Protégé of renowned guitarist Vivian Nonis, Regi is adept at jazz, latin jazz, pop and rock. He began his career in pop but soon found himself searching for more depth to his music. Smitten by the tunes of Charlie Parker, Chet Atkins and Joe Pass, it was in jazz that he found his true love before discovering fusion and modern jazz. 

Regi has played alongside many internationally renowned artists including jazz musician Nester Torres; pop legends England Dan and Lobo; and Asian singers Jam Hsiao and JJ Lin . He performs at regional jazz festivals, on television programmes as an acoustic and electric guitarist, and represents Singapore for its cultural showcases overseas. 

Regi’s passion spurs him to constantly evolve and search for new sounds, harmonies and techniques. He believes that music is not only about sheer technical prowess or advanced harmony, but rather a beautiful blend of melody and arrangement that immerses the audience in a journey. 

Presenting original compositions and unique arrangements of music by some of his favourite artists, Regi will take you through the last decade of his career and share the diverse styles and genres that have impacted him. Everything you will hear this evening represents a different side of Regi that adds to the talented and multi-faceted guitarist that he is.

Regi Leo (guitar),
Tony Makarome (bass)
Lester Ang(woodwinds)
Aya Sekine(piano&keyboard)
Rizal Sanip(drums)
and Wayne Sandosham (vocal)

Details & information :

Buy your tickets now : S$25




August 6, 13, 20, 27 (Wed) 8:30-11:00pm
Orgo at Esplanade Rooftop(4th Floor)
Magical Trio feat. Dawn Ho (vocal) Shawn Letts(sax) Aya Sekine(piano)


August 15 & 16th (Fri & Sat) 9:30-1:00am
Aya & Maya 2 days with Special guest bassist : Joseph Lepore (Italy/NYC)
Blu Jaz Cafe : 11 Bali Lane  (

We will have completely different materials on Friday and Saturday. Friday we will present our favorite Jazz standards, on Saturday we will play original materials. It will be very very fun. We are working on it already, having great time picking songs and brainstorming! I’m so happy my ‘musical twin’ Maya is back in Singapore temporarily. It’s always a great catch up when I’m with Maya. We welcome a wonderful bassist from NYC – I had pleasure of performing with him when I visited the City last year in 2013. Very excited to have him here in Singapore!

Maya Nova
Joseph Lepore


★And here is a very special concert where my composition will be performed by amazing quartet, one and only The Pipa Quartet! There will be many other great composers. This is the first time in my life I am commissioned to write, so I am very excited.

August 22nd  (Fri) 7:30m
The Pipa Quartet in Concert: 品 Pǐn  

Venue : SOTA Concert Hall
Duration : Approx 1 hr 30 mins, including an interval of 20 mins
Tickets : $25 (Standard), $10 (Student)


With the support of the National Arts Council’s Creation Grant, The Pipa Quartet presents its first full concert in Singapore, premiering original works by Aya Sekine, Bani Haykal, Chow JunYi, Jeremy Wong, Jordan Wei, Mark John Hariman and Samuel Wong.

The Pipa Quartet is led by artistic director and award-winning pipa player Dr Samuel Wong and is the first of its kind in Southeast Asia. Their past engagements include a tour of Singapore’s major education institutions and public spaces, and a Thailand tour, where they performed at Silpakorn University, Patravadi High School (Vic Hua Hin) and the Bangkok Art & Culture Centre to standing ovations and critical acclaim. They were also invited by the Singapore Tourism Board to present their music and open for the Singapore Arts & Entertainment Showcase in Damansara Performing Arts Centre, KL.

The Creation grant supports the creation, adaptation and re-development of distinctive artistic content. Through a rigorous creation process, it seeks to expand the canon of Singapore-made works that engage audiences at home and abroad.


Dr Samuel Wong
Goh XueQi
Jeremy Wong
Ivan Chng

Buy your tickets now :


I guess this is it for now. There might be more performance added later on, so do check back here, or my Facebook Page for fresh updates. I do have a Twitter that is linked to my Facebook, so that is also a place that you can check my schedule without being on the Facebook, where I usually post my schedule and everything as it’s public and I don’t need to ‘friend’ anyone to come check out my world. You are all very welcome!

Re-present. Re-create.

I’m only ‘re-presenting’ what’s already been out there. I’m open enough to sense, catch the vibration/frequency of whatever the music I’d like to work with, which touches my soul.

Sometimes they go through me leaving no trace, sometimes it gets struck. I’m no creator in that sense, but I am an open vessel/pot I’m able to compile, mix, season them to re-create my own. I could say, my creativity is my blender. It’s the processor.

Finally a progress.

Been neglecting blog post. Too many things to accomplish this week, but why don’t I share some since I’m writing a journal for school anyway. I have been sitting here at home for hours ever since and I just accomplished somewhat presentable piece of music, so I’m going to take a break and write a bit.

So the semester has began, and on top of all the school work, I’m officially involved in Lasalle Theatre production, Romeo And Juliet by William Shakespeare. I’ve been sitting in the theatre rehearsal whenever I can. So far I’m loving it.

It was a tough decision to make to accept this position due to overwhelming amount of schoolwork even without it…(3 professors smiling and convinced me somehow) but I thought it is totally new for me and out of comfort zone, so I took it. I would love to see what kind of music I will write and also theatre is something very different from any production I’ve ever involved in (it’s always been dance, musical or concert). So as a big fan of productive uncomfortable zone, I had no other option for me.

Anyway, the class is wonderfully led by Adam Marple, the Lecturer of BA Acting at Lasalle. The class has such diverse characters and I love watching all of them hanging out. Very interesting mix of origin too. Very Singapore.

The play has a collaborative parts, and there is one scene that music needs to be done ASAP. The Ballroom Masquerade party at Capulet’s (that is Juliet’s house) will have dancers from dance department. They need to choreograph and start rehearsing.
So yes. The pressure is on.

I’ve been really struggling last few days (I’m not talking about home issues here).
I just couldn’t go beyond 25% with my ideas.
I had many, and none came through. I seriously didn’t know what to do.

I had this idea of writing a Drum’n Bass (call it DnB) tune for the Masquerade at Capulet’s, and I had some nice ideas around it.  So I started to make beats and bass lines.  Some came 25%, which was a lot compared to other pieces of ideas which were mere 5%…. the dance class lecturer Melissa was also cool with having DnB for her class to dance for this scene, but somehow the music didn’t flow.

During Christmas time last year, I also did have a bit of pressure writing arrangements for Naughty ‘Noor’ Nice, and I learned to ‘switch’ off or be ‘away’, just make sure not staying at the same mental space – so when I couldn’t go beyond certain point, I decided to leave DnB for a while. I’ve been off Facebook lately, but I just went to browse around, and first thing I saw was artist/illustrator Mike Mindflyer uploaded his homage to YMO (Yellow Magic Orchestra), and a small lightning in my head – I got a spark of inspiration.

I was ready to take a break and chill out, but I didn’t want this spark to leave me, so I went right back to my workstation, and started recording a totally different music!

So now 75% done… I think it’s good enough as a draft. Will submit like this and fix it.

First composition for Romeo And Juliet is New Wave Techno Disco(with some weird elements that came out of no where). I don’t know if this is acceptable for the dancers but I made it to make sure I can dance and party. I do have undone draft of DnB version and it’s totally different, so I shall continue from time to time to finish it.

Now I can finally get to other assignment….trying not to panic here.

A rare ‘reflection’ entry.
Hope I can upload the track when it’s mixed (another journey).

A week of great concerts.

I am in the middle of semester final at the moment.  I have finished one of the biggest exam past Monday, left with one recital to end the semester.  I have worked frantically last few weeks, so I am giving myself a breather, and went to see some performances…let me share a few.


The other night I went to listen to my composition professor John Sharpley’s concert at the Artshouse.

It blew my mind.  To hear his compositions that was directly inspired by Khalil Gibran’s The Prophet – I knew about this infamous novel, but I have not read it and as he shared bits prior to his performance, I was already very moved by the words (now I’m going to get this book!!) and he sat down to play.  I really don’t know how to explain, but because I have his lesson every week and hear him talk about music, life, and everything and as he calls music as ‘biological (and also he refers it as quantum physics at times)’, and to hear his music being exactly so fresh, raw and yet so thought out and complex… a depth stroke me every single note he played.  He has invited vocalist Reuben Lai (tenor) to sing the songs and not only I enjoyed the music throughly, I was touched and my senses were stimulated. I am so inspired to know more about the music, and feel extremely fortunate to have a mentor who constantly pushes my boundary and to make me question where my music is, without fail.  He has shown it to me just like that.  Truly a platinum level artistry, which is not easy to find these days, especially around where I am.


Right after this concert, I headed over to see one of my favourite young bassist around the globe, Tim De Cotta who is also my band mate of L.A.B. (Listen And Believe).  This super talented cat, he has just launched his single ‘RIO’ (which I have also played with him before) and he is in the middle of a launch celebration tour ‘The Warrior’s Hall‘ in Singapore with some of his favourite bands around.


First of all, here is the song. Simple song but throws me into unlimited imagination :

I am always so amazed by how talented he is, and I rely on his talent a lot.  The joy of playing music with someone who can hear what I can hear, and have another angle to it… it’s a blissful feeling. Though we make music together in the same band, it was my first time to see his concert with all his own material.  He is also a talented vocalist (he sings harmonies with Michaela in L.A.B.) and one of the most grooving bass player, and has big big ears to hear ‘music’.  You might think ‘oh, sure we all hear music’… not really.  Amongst so many musicians I know and I’ve played, some people only hear music as notes and sounds. That is ok too (you will not believe, some don’t even hear other people’s notes) but when making music, we need to have ability to hear the whole thing, or should I say ‘where it may go to’.  I’m now talking not just about Timmy, but here is how I felt after 2 shows I experienced that night.  Again quoting John Sharpley : ‘music is biological’ – there is no better way of saying it. Music is alive, and we musicians must know it….

If we keep listening to what’s happening at the moment, the music will stop right there(well, sometimes you don’t even hear ‘what’s happening at the moment’, sigh…). We musicians, especially when we are involved in improvisational or soul music (Jazz, blues, tribal, and if you are a composer), we are driven by music.  I don’t believe we are the original creator, for thousands of years the music has been composed, played and sang.  Every possible thing we hear has been done.  So… the originality of what we have is, that we living in ‘now’, we are vessels to be filled up and music goes through us we need to catch.  We are processors, who create from what we hear.  That means you need to be open and be lean enough to catch what goes through us. I think this is the most important but tough part.

I think we can all play with our egos, but then still, in order for music to sound how it sounds, you need to accept and open to egos, which eventually means ‘no ego’!

This year I’m a student at a college again. This doesn’t only means I’m a college student, but I’m back to square one. I’m so happy to let go my recent experience of being a professional musician, though I still am an adult and at times need to have certain responsibility to play music, but I’m now back to ‘not ready’. This ‘not ready’ part of me is working hard to refine the art from taking few step back… I’m still struggling to play purely from the heart due to too much experience of performing in so many situations, but it’s getting better.  Because I cut down performances, I can finally see my habits and tendencies… when in the practice room, I feel my habits and it’s sometimes painful and I go into dilemma and even small depressions, but I take them all as blessings. I do criticise myself a lot, but I also have an ambition to make true music for me, so it is a worthwhile pain!

Getting a little too philosophical in this anatomy, but I really enjoyed both concerts that night of pure original music. Extremely different, but the common part is me, who knows both :)  I’m the lucky one.  My life is happening like this.


This is Timmy and I from one of our gigs last year.  We are playing tonight at Blu Jaz Cafe as L.A.B.!

Hope to see you all there!

From one of our performances last year :) He is the younger brother I don't have!

From one of our performances last year :) He is the younger brother I don’t have!


P.S.  I am jamming/rehearsing with my new project with Angie Seah and Ian Woo. This is completely experimental and improvisational one. Hope to let you know soon when our performance will be :)


The Night Festival is over! Thanking everyone.

Hello everyone, good morning!

The Night Festival has ended.

The Night Festival

I’ve had wonderful sleep and I really needed it!!!  Last night at the end of the night, I was literally falling apart decomposing…. etc. Haha!

Normally I get so hyper 30min before, during the show(some of my friends imitated me – yes. Too much energy coming out of me!) and about an hour after I’m still hyper like a little kid, and it starts to drag me down to my actual state, which was far beyond exhaustion this time. I’m so lucky I didn’t get sick this whole week! Successfully carried out my mission! And I’m very happy that our set went so well at The Night Festival, both night… let me officially do this :

Thank you DJ KoFlow, for inviting me once again for your grand ‘In The Groove Project’ – I respect and love your everlasting curiosity, intuition and inspired soul to make music. Guys, he is not only a DJ. Please understand. He is a music maker and a true artist (and he also knows the dark side of music industry, believe me) and I’m always up for collaboration. I really need this DJ in my life for my music!


We have done numerous projects over the years and this time, actually everytime it has never been easy or smooth, we always have discussions, meetings, rehearsals and talks and messaging about our projects.  Countless communications until the show, but we always have fun and make it ’til the end! Thank you for counting me as one of your collaborators, it is a pleasure to work with you, KoFlow!

We were a wonderful ass-kicking band this time – the usual suspect for Ayaschool as well. We were reunited – Richard Jackson(vocal), Casey Subramaniam(bass/vocal), Mohammed Noor(drums/percussion).  Absolutely stellar & strong ensemble to make music with. Familiar faces but we always push the edge.  These are my real brothers of music, and we are a great team.  We spent so many hours making this show into a successful fun time!  Thank you for your professionalisms and I’m glad we could work together after so many months of not even seeing each other!  How much fun did we have 5 of us, even just to hang out before/after the show ?!!! :)

I’d like to also thank all the people who came out – everyone in the audience took part, waved hands, shook your bodies and screamed and danced with us! On stage we have great time too, but when we see you happy, it is a pure joy and feels so wonderful.  It’s a group effort to have a good time.  Hope we made it easy for you!

Not to forget, thanks to the sound crew, festival crew and other musicians/bands on both nights!  It was lovely to catch up with old musician friends, met some new fresh faces, and listen to all the bands. I admit I was on the edge due to overwhelming lack of rest due to multi-tasking whole week, but again, it was so worth it and I’m so relief I didn’t break down or get sick!  There were some shaky moments but music and friends/professors understood and supported me so much.  I’m so bad with pressure at times.

The Museum in the Night Festival

Charlie Lim at The Night Festival

I only have a good feeling today. Oh, and after the show, we all went to Blu Jaz Cafe to check out Bani & Regi’s Hendrix tribute feat. Wei Xiang and Aaron Lee! It was soooo loud and rockin’ it blew few things away, especially the stress :) I played with this band quite few times, but this time it was so great to enjoy it. Thanks for the great music!

Bani & Regi's Hendrix Tribute!

Believe it or not, I have to do my homework for tomorrow’s class now, but I think I can handle it.  It’s a fun homework though a lot of thinking and arranging… but it’s all for great music :)

From tomorrow, I’m back to a normal student with occasional gigs but not too much.


I thank all of you who are reading.


Have a great Sunday!



More live updates here :

Lincoln Center : New York Philharmonic : Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis

I went to see a show for the first time at the Lincoln Center! When I lived in New York, I didn’t do this. I wanted to and I was intimidated… So this time I was very excited to see New York philharmonic conducted by Alan Gilbert + Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis collaboration.







Recording done! レコーディング無事終了!

Album recording done, back in Kyoto. I’m very happy about this recording in many ways. I have to thank you again and again, Matsuoka san & Goto san – I’m fortunate to know them and I thank all elements of our friendship. We individually talked about recording at Matsuoka san’s place before, but the time came earlier than we thought, and the timing ended up being perfect – it fell on public holiday in Japan. There were absolutely zero traffic where AMZ Piano studio is, except occasional drizzling and birds chirping – which Mr.Goto and I did let them chirp away and we didn’t stop. Some of the tracks have tiny trace of lovely sound of the nature.


The recording team was perfect. The situation was perfect for capturing myself through the piano…at least it gave me all the freedom. I don’t know if I could use it as much as I could, but I played whatever I felt and heard. I did listen hard, lots of things pleasantly distracted me in the trance of my improvisation, but they were all part of me and my ‘listening’. Exactly 10 years ago I recorded “Inside, Out!” which was rather harsh, rough and cutting…it was destructive and I was in the middle of depression. This time, I have been feeling rather somber and at times even negative, I have been going through a lot of resentment and pain at times with all kinds of ugly human emotions…but what came out was sort of, softer and milder version of myself. I was a bit taken back, but as I played I began to relax… The perfectly tuned Steinway & Sons type B took me to different places, and the whole built up – first of all I was sick in ‘futon(not bed at my parents place)’ for good 3.5days since I arrived in Japan, and was still in the recovery stage. While at my parents’ place my growing nephew Tao (almost 2years old and the same birthday as me!) were making me happy and entertained the whole time. He showed me all kinds of positive side of the universe and humour, music and ideas… what an amazing creature, human babies are!


Anyway I was beyond who I thought I was at the recording session. In a way disappointing, in a way relieved…in a way…confused. That’s exactly who I am at the moment I guess.

I want to know what I want to say, and through music I want to say it. I want that ‘say’ to be different format at times – this time was ‘recording of me at the moment after moment’ but I do compose (meaning, I write and play according to my own chart) too, and I would love to keep doing both ways…and maybe more. I will find out. Just excited I got this document done.


津山でのレコーディングを無事終え京都に帰って来ました。色んな意味でとてもハッピーです。出来映えは「その時のわたし」を録ったものなので聴く人それぞれだと思うけれど、私個人的には「まあいいのではないか?」というのが率直な感想です。 それは恐らく私が今自分のことを「まあいいのではないか?」と思っているからです。。。、実は数週間ほど自分のことを「低俗で高尚両方の考えを持つ、いや、とにかく醜い奴」と思ってたのでその部分を捉え、ギトギトの即興がしたくもあったのですが、いざ弾いてみると結構穏やかで音楽的だったんですよ。。。(と私が思ってるだけかもです)凄く面白いアルバムになるのは解っているのですが。と言ってもまだやらなければいけない作業が一杯あるのです。これからエンジニアである五島さんと遠距離で連絡を取り合うといった感じです。チーム3人でかなり出来具合が楽しみだね、と話しています。














April 2013 SCHEDULE


Hi everyone! Here is my schedule for April. Sorry for the delay, as usual!

April 2(Tue) 1pm
“The Fold”
Lunchtime Concert with Tim O’Dwyer Ensemble

SIA Theatre, Lasalle College Of the Arts



April 3 (Wed) 8:30-11pm
Orgo at Esplanade Rooftop(4th Floor)
w/ Dawn Ho (vocal) Shawn Letts(sax)



April 6 (Sat) 9:30-1am
Ayaschool @ Blu Jaz Cafe
Oliver Von Essen (organ)
Darren Moore (drums)



April 10 (Wed) 8:30-11pm
Orgo at Esplanade Rooftop(4th Floor)
w/ Dawn Ho (vocal) Shawn Letts(sax)



April 1 (Thu) 8:30-11pm
3 x 3 | Three Piano Trios
@ Blu Jaz Cafe 3rd Floor

3 pianists :
Alina Ramirez
Mei Sheum
Aya Sekine

3 bassists :
Tony Makarome
Hiroaki Maekawa
Jonathan Ho

1 drummer *Special guest :
Rodrigo Villanueva

3 x 3 Official Facebook Event :

3 X 3 | Three Piano Trios

3 X 3 | Three Piano Trios


April 12 (Fri) 9:30-1am
Ayaschool International Quartet @ Blu Jaz Cafe

Feat. :
Tim O’Dwyer (Australia / alto & baritone saxophones)
Aya Sekine (Japan / keys)
Christy Smith (USA / double bass)
+ Special guest : Rodrigo Villaneuva (Mexico / drums)



April 13 (Sat) 9:30-1am
L.A.B (Listen And Believe) @ Blu Jaz Cafe

Feat. :
Michaela Therese De Cruz (vocal)
Aya Sekine (keyboards)
Timothy De Cotta (bass/vocal)
Teo Jia Rong (drums)

L.A.B Official Facebook Page :



April 14 (Sun) 7-10pm
w/Beverly Morata (vocal) Rob Collins(vo) Colin Yong (bass)


April 17 (Wed) 8:30-11pm
Orgo at Esplanade Rooftop(4th Floor)
w/ Dawn Ho (vocal) Shawn Letts(sax)



April 17 (Sat) 9:30-1am
Ayaschool @ Blu Jaz Cafe
Anne Weerapaas (vo)
Brandon Wong (bs)
Oswal Gonzalez (drums)



April 24 (Wed) 9-12:30pm
Kind Of Blu Jam Session @ Blu Jaz Cafe
*Jam Session*
House band :
Eddie Layman (drums)
Christy Smith (bass)


And I’m off to a mini-vacation to Japan, which includes my recording session ( ), and after that I will be back for few weeks, and off to big trip to NYC! I’m excited :)
You all have a great weekend. See you tomorrow at Blu Jaz 3rd Floor, ok?

March 15th morning thoughts

‘Refined’ is the word, after listening to Magos Herrera last night.

She displayed her life, passion and love through music and that became ‘artistic presentation’, which I think is one of the biggest ‘job description’ of any artist.

Her craft was well maintained and gave me comfort and joy to listen to. She stretched her voice with love, so she can simply express herself completely. What an amazing vocalist! I was completely mesmerized. She was music herself.



Esperanza too gave almost a shock to me how amazing she could sing like… THAT! Another level of artistry.

These are the people who are making music for life, life for music. I was so inspired. For me it was greatest source of inspiration to practice basics and sound of instrument, on top of pure joy to listen and enjoy! They expressed themselves totally differently but both in complete control, solid delivery :)

Not to mention her great band- Alex Kautz, wow, what an amazing drummer! Dynamic and sensitive. Also wonderfully refined sound with great discipline while supporting…! Our brother Christy Smith kept it steady but his flexibility complimented Magos vocal so well! His listening ability and the spontaneous reaction based in Jazz tradition and roots is so valuable especially here in Asia…a treasure bassist. And Kerong Chok was so fantastic in all his elements! What a beautiful pianist. What I love about Kerong is he paints his own picture. The boy hears beautiful music and he delivers.

Great ensemble indeed.
I was happy.

Even through that table of 4 whom kept talking so loudly through the whole evening even after 2 requests from Magos for silence and announcement by Christy.

The club is shared by artists and audience. These people clearly violated others who were all paying. I was offended and hurt but still, had to keep it calm. Other listeners and Magos band remained centered as well. At a music centered venue why would you prioritize your conversation?! Why did you pay to come in?! These type of nuisance got to be controlled. If it was my club, I would ask them to leave even if they paid and bought loads of expensive drinks.