During the day, the 37 year old Sivabalan Shanmuga works as a pharmacist. During evenings and weekends the accomplished mridangam and kanjira player leads AkashA, one of the leading world music acts in Malaysia.
AkashA Malaysia (popularly known as AkashA), based in Kuala Lumpur is an acclaimed band that plays world fusion music with a Malaysian twist. Using various instruments, the band combines many different genres, from Malaysian concepts of Chinese, Malay and Indian music into the ‘Malaysian take’ of different forms such as blues, bluegrass, latin, bossa nova, Middle Eastern, classical, Old Western, Irish, African highlife, Qawwali, etc..
AkashA is multi ethnic representation of Malaysia, consisting of Jamie Wilson on acoustic guitar; Greg Henderson on acoustic bass guitar; Mohd Nizam Shah on percussion, rebana, gendang; Kumar Karthigesu on sitar; Sivabalan S. Shanmuga Sundram on mridangam; Eric Li on keyboards; and Vick Ramakrishnan on tabla. Together with sound engineer, Ravi Shetty, the team is an 8 member traveling band.
AkashA’s awards include VIMA 2011 award from Best Instrumental Act, VIMA 2011 award for Best World Music Act, VIMA award for Best Instrumental Act 2010, BOH Cameronian Award for Best Original Composition ‘ Bourbon Lassi”, Anugerah Industri Muzik (AIM) 2010 Best Engineered album, Into AkashA.
More at www.akashamalaysia.com