Shot by Sachiko Asada
Nengah & Nanda are a duo comprising vocalist Nengah Krisnarini and guitarist Achmad Ananda. The two met in 2006 and collaborated in several occasions. Nanda also lent a hand when Nengah produced her project’s (Sister Duke) debut album, Highlight of the Day. It was until September 2010 that they decided to form the duo, blending Nanda’s jazz feel and Nengah’s soulful voice wrapped in an acoustic mood.
Their minimalist concept does not hinder them in delivering a full and lively musical experience, while their musicality exploration adds their own distinctive flavor to each cover song they perform.
Each of them has extensive performance experience, including Java Jazz Festival, Penang Jazz Fetival, opening for Monday Michiru’s showcase in Hard Rock Hotel Bali, and a fund-raising event in Melbourne, Australia. Besides their passion for music, the two has one more thing in common: both are Bachelors of Engineering (Electrical).
Nengah was born at the end of 1981 to Balinese-Minangkabau parents, Nengah Krisnarini discovered her passion for music at an early age. In middle school, one of her classmates recognized her soothing yet strong voice and asked her to join his band. In 1997, she won the best vocalist title in Tawuran Musik Levi’s, a band festival held by a very famous radio station in Indonesia. She also received similar title during her study in Australia from “Terbaik”, a band competition for Indonesian students in Sydney.
After gaining her bachelor degree and got back to Indonesia, she decided to take her passion, music, seriously. She then formed “Sister Duke”, as an expression for her penchant for Nu Jazz and Soul music. The young talented keyboardist Doni Joersran and rising young jazz star Barry Likumahuwa are some of the names involved in the project. Sister Duke’s debut album, entitled “Highlight of the Day”, that she produced, was met with numerous glowing reviews, including from Rolling Stone Indonesia who regarded it as one of “20 Best Indonesian Albums of 2008”.
With her unique and soulful voice, Nengah captured the heart of some artists who invited her to collaborate with them such as Larry “SOVA” for his single “Light of My Life”.
Nengah has performed in various events such as Java Jazz Festival, Jakarta Crossover Jazz Festival, Jak Jazz Festival, JGTC, Soulnation, Monday Michiru’s showcase in Bali, ISA Melbourne University’s Jazz Night, Indonesia Song Festival, and many more.
Nanda (Achmad Ananda Indra Purnama) was born in 1975 in Jakarta. He is one of the few young guitarists in Indonesia’s current jazz scene, probably the most promising.
He started playing guitar at the age of 12. In 1997, at the age of 22, Nanda discovered the challenge and the beauty of playing jazz when he met the great indonesian jazz pianist Idang Rasjidi. Short after that, he studied with the great Oele Pattiselano and Denny Tr, followed by taking classes from the German jazz master Günter Weiss, a guest professor at Jakarta’s Institut Musik Daya.
In 2000 Idang Rasjidi asked him to join his band which gave him the opportunity to get deeper into the music and to develop his own unique style.
Another milestone in his career was when he met John Stowell and Japanese guitarist Hideaki Tokunaga. John’s lessons had a major influence on his view on either playing guitar and music in general.
At present Nanda is a regular featured guest on many jazz festivals in Asia (Penang/Jakjazz/Javajazz/Singapore) and abroad. In 2004, he was invited to perform at the Indonesian embassy in Norway.