5 Minutes With John Dip Silas

Do you remember the first time you performed in NBT and how that experience was for you?

It was back in late 2010, when I had just come back from Australia. I had never visited or played in a jazz club in KL before because I’m from a different state and my first exposure in performing happened in Australia. I saw that WVC was doing a gig there and I had heard of and seen video clips of Tay Cher Siang playing on YouTube and really wanted to check them out. Met him for the first time at that gig and he very graciously let me sit in with the band for a couple of songs. Evelyn also happened to be there and we exchanged hellos. The rest is history! So I definitely would say it felt like I was in the light place at the right time!

What do you love most about performing in NBT?

I love the freedom I’m given there to express my music. It’s probably one of the few places where people don’t really feel the pressure to play what would please a crowd. It’s been a place where I can be refreshed musically and I also see it as an avenue for me to refresh others with my music Definitely feels like home in more ways than one.

How long have you been interested with music? Has it always been jazz or do you listen to other stuff as well?

Well music has been so much a part of my life that I don’t even remember a time when I didn’t play music. I started out going for classes at age 5 and eventually transitioned to playing in church, which I still do quite actively today. Performing it on a stage however, only came when I was 18 and it was from then that I started to really develop a deep interest in it.

Though it is now, jazz was never my main preference of music as I only got exposed to that at uni. I try to listen to as many musical genres as I can, however I think my interest now tends to be more in how the music makes me feel more than how it sounds. In the recent years I’ve found that music can be a great avenue for people to experience hope, joy and life. A lot of music I listen to today are spiritual in nature and focus on God as the theme. This has even affected other areas of my life in a very affirming and optimistic way. This also leads to me trying to create music that has the ability to duplicate my experience in others.

Where do you hope to be (as an artist) in the next 5 years?

Well after producing and releasing Eager Expectation (my first EP), I feel like I’m once again a student of the art, back at the thawing board to relearn, unlearn and recreate music that will give people a fresh perspective on hope, life, love and just the beauty and joy of things that fill our every day. Apart from recording and putting more albums out there, I would also like to be able to travel and play my music abroad as well as getting opportunities to meet and share the stage with like minded musicians from all around the world. My desire is to continually find new sounds in music that can release to the general public for their enjoyment.

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