ANNIVERSARIES can be tricky for musicians; late bloomers don't have much of a history to celebrate, while prodigies sometimes leave their best years behind them.
Jeremy Monteiro, however, has had both early stardom and staying power. His 1988 Montreux Jazz Festival performance catapulted him onto the world stage early. But he's never rested on his laurels - which is how, two years ago, he became the first Singaporean to release an album, Jazz-Blues Brothers, on the legendary Verve record label.
That's why his Jazzy Business concert on September 30 shouldn't be missed. It's jointly presented by Monteiro and The Business Times, in collaboration with Esplanade - Theatres on the Bay, to celebrate the cultural medallion winner's fourth decade in the music business, and to celebrate BT's 40th birthday. The programme will be a decade-by-decade retrospective of Monteiro's career, and none of it will be filler.
Hong Kong singer Frances Yip will anchor the 1970s segment, along with Rahima Rahim and local songstress Jacintha Abisheganaden.
A big part of the '80s segment will be paying tribute to Monteiro's Montreux band. But equally interesting will be Monteiro's jazz-rock fusion outfit Jeramzee, which will showcase a genre that's fallen out of the jazz mainstream globally in spite of its energy and diverse influences.
Some will likely buy tickets just to hear Grammy-winning international stars join Monteiro in celebrating his '90s era. Guitarist Lee Ritenour and saxophonist Ernie Watts are jazz stars and electrifying performers.
The Count Basie Orchestra's Carmen Bradford will bring some serious vocal prowess to bear as the programme pivots into the current millennium.
International stars aside, the concert will be also be an excellent showcase of local and regional talent. Singer Melissa Tham and percussionists Tama Goh and Mohamed Noor will showcase some of the best Singapore has to offer. Hong Kong guitarist Eugene Pao, Thai drummer Hong and Filipino saxophonist Tots Tolentino were part of Monteiro's Asian All-Stars Power Quartet. A total of about 25 musicians will be part of the concert.
This sort of diverse and star-studded concert programme would not have been possible without the generous support of sponsors such as Mapletree, City Developments, OCBC Bank, Keppel Corporation, StarHub, DHL Express (Singapore), Frasers Hospitality, American Express, YCH Group, and EFG Bank.
"The show has really come a long way from our initial plans, and it's evolved into something I'm so proud to be part of," said Monteiro. "Working with all the partners has been invigorating and exciting," he added.
Tickets for the Jazzy Business concert at the Esplanade Concert Hall on September 30 at S$40-S$100 are available from Sistic, with discounts for students, seniors and NSFs. Limited Esplanade Box and Premier Box seats are also available at S$120, and include a copy of Jeremy Monteiro's upcoming album, Montage, as well as a S$10 F&B voucher redeemable at the Esplanade Concert Hall Foyer Bar. Book now at: bt.sg/jazzybusiness