You have got to hand it to Deon Toh and his merry band DEON. For the last couple of years, the singer-songwriter has built a steady following at home and made a life for himself and his band as touring musicians. Read what Deon has to say about his latest adventure in Toronto.
When it comes to sharing his opinion about the local music scene, singer-songwriter Nelson Tan does not mince his words.
“The local media, be it TV, radio or print, needs to get out there and feature more local content and talent, instead of the same old few over and over and over again,” Tan declared, “we have many many good songs and great bands made in Singapore that deserve airplay and I feel that we have to give ourselves a chance to appreciate what we have here, not just the familiar names.”
At last year’s Singapore Writers Festival (SWF), the organisers – in collaboration with The Esplanade – produced a unique event Dimensions & Demons, which featured a ‘crossover’ of literature and music combining the talents of local authors and musicians.
Chances are if you are a fan of music made in Singapore, you would probably gravitate towards either one of two opposites poles – mainstream pop (that includes jazz-soul, indie-folk, pop-punk, hip-hop & indie-pop) or heavy rock (which includes various hardcore punk & metal sub-genres) – therefore, the unlikeliest middle ground remains the pop-rock/rock ’n’ roll arena.
But who are the artists toiling in this ‘neutral zone’ of melodic tunes and rock groove? Let’s find out!
Pioneering musician. Award-winning filmmaker. All-round loveable guy. The local music, movie and creative scenes were devastated when, on 14 June, influential DIY figure, Abdul Nizam Hamid, unexpectedly passed away from liver, lung and pancreatic cancer. Nizam, as his friends called him, was only 50. Bonded in grief, his friends have come together to organise a special tribute concert and fund- raising commemoration to this singular, inspiring and dearly missed man.
Fronted by Cherie Ko and Ted Dore, TOMGIRL is a dark-noir rock duo based in Singapore/Melbourne. The band has been working on the album for the past one year and it’s finally done! The first single “Darker Now” was released July 1 together with a music video. And there’s more.
Thus far, we’ve played at three different venues in Tokyo. It has been a real eye opener. Each venue brings a different vibe, and they specialise in different genres. We are lucky to carry the indie rock/pop flag; which has been suitable for the venues so far.
So stoked that the first day of Baybeats Open Stage went swimmingly! Thanks to The Esplanade, the wonderful crew, Josh and Jaz, the awesome artists and everyone who turned up. One more time today from 5.30pm!
Deon Toh is back with more thoughts about his time in the Land of the Rising Sun…
Support. When touring, my group tries our best to research on Singaporean music acts performing within our vicinity. We’ve played to venues packed with strangers cheering for encores; and also played quieter shows in venues with a little less than 10 people. Singaporean support remains valuable in foreign territory – whether it is to assist other acts with their merchandise sales, transport, loaning and sharing of equipment, or just to add warm bodies to the crowd; having a touch of home can make or break performances, and have a drastic effect on tours.