Pesega students enjoy sweet music

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints College at Pesega had the privilege of enjoying the Samoana Jazz Band’s live performance in their school hall yesterday. 

Sponsored by the United States Embassy in Apia, Samoana Jazz Band is in Samoa to perform a concert in tribute to the late Mavis Chloe Rivers, who has Samoan roots, and was once referred to by Frank Sentra as “the purest voice” in jazz. 

The Embassy’s public affairs assistant, Pere Siaosi said the band performed at Pesega College because all other colleges had their final exams this week, and it was also fitting for Pesega because they were concluding their semester with a talent show. 

In an interview with Year 12 student, Aliitasi Sua, she said: “Music is my life, music runs in the family; I have brothers and sisters who play instruments and sing. 

“Ever since Year 10 I have been taking music, but there is so much to learn in music and my hopes are to pursue music after graduating next year.”

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For Aliitasi, to know that local artists also make it big in the entertainment industry is an inspiration. 

“From her (Mavis’s) experience it really shows me that I can do better. 

I mean for a local girl like me from a small island it means a lot to have people like her make it in the big industries that one day I could be like her,” said Aliitasi.

Leading the Mavis Rivers Tribute Band is La’auli Matt Catingub, who is Mavis’s son and Grammy award winning musician and composer, and three U.S. musicians, Steve Moretti, Kevin Axt, and Christina Souza, along with two New Zealand musicians, Mike Booth and Andrew Hall.

La’auli encouraged young music artists and musicians to “be true to your heart and definitely do not take the easy way out”.

Mavis was a very passionate singer like many other artists around the world. She had pursued her dreams by leaving the shores of Samoa and becoming the first Pacific jazz artist in the world. 

She had signed in with iconic industries like TANZA and Zodiac to becoming a Grammy Award nominee.

Samoana Jazz Band will be performing at the Taumeasina Island Resort this evening to honour Mavis. The band is in Samoa until November 11. 

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