RWMF given top marks by foreign performers

A BIG HIT: Enthuasistic crowd of revellers pack the Sarawak Culture Village even before the concert started.

KUCHING: Musicians from abroad yesterday touted the Rainforest World Music Festival (RWMF) as one the best festivals that highlight and dignify their art.

Grammy-nominated band Lisa Haley and the Zydecats, for instance, said that the RWMF is one of their favourite festivals to perform in due to intense positive energy from both performers and audience.

“The festival is amazing and it’s one of the most inclusive festivals we’ve performed at,” said Haley, the vivacious Louisiana native at a press conference yesterday.

Many musicians have also described the RWMF as an excellent venue for them to share their passion of keeping traditional music alive.

“There is a particular thread we all share and that is to keep our traditional cultures alive for the future generation,” said Haley.

Victor Valdez from Mexico, who echoed similar feelings, said performers and audience at the RWMF feed on of each other’s energy to create synergy and inspiration.

“We love playing at festivals such as this one because it provides us with an opportunity to be creative and inspires us to continue doing this kind of music,” said Valdez.

The press conference was held for the first-day performers which comprised Startijen (France), DuOud (Tunicia/Algeria), The Shin (Georgia), Lisa Haley and The Zydekats (USA), Kissmet (UK), Victor Valdez (Mexico) and Blue Canyon Boys (USA).

Some of the music played by performers such as Lisa Haley and The Zydekats has been around for more than 140 years.

Most have influence from cultural roots such as African Blues, Hatian, French Celtic, Jazz, Scat, Funk and Cajun.

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