Leaving for Singapore, I had only one mission that is to discover if music is my real true vocation. I really needed to know if I had the ‘calling’ to do well in music. Up until then, I only had a hunch that music is something I could excel in but I needed to be more self-assured. I felt that by being part of a music community with high caliber musicians would I find my answer.
Seeking out and getting to know the musicians there, jamming with them and having them as personal friends did have a big impact on my musical development. I was finally able to find like-minded musicians who shared the same passion in music to ‘talk-shop’ with. By being around them, my overall musical experiences accelerated even more and I felt musically lifted to a different level. Some of these friends are icons of jazz music in the region.
The musical inspiration that I felt drove me to explore more music and to practice at the piano as much as possible. There was much to study and I was fortunate to receive help from my musician friends. I attended the jazz jams every Sunday without fail to listen to and jam with those great musicians. All the wonderful things I was experiencing affirmed my decision to study jazz.
Finally, the day came when I called home to announce that I have made up my mind to study jazz at Berklee. My dad asked me two simple questions: Do you have what it takes to study jazz and do you think you are good enough to get into Berklee?
Well, I do not know but I must believe in myself that I have what it takes to enroll at such a prestigious institution. So, I set about applying to study at Berklee and waited anxiously for the reply. Anxiety did hit me, as I got quite worried that if I get rejected, I do not have Plan B at all. My mind was only set on jazz at Berklee.