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"The Anthem" by SMU City Samba Alumni Group

16 Dec 2017

By Samuel Heah Tian Song

The anticipation, the drop, the swagger of a groove and the infectious dance party.

Words fail to translate the aural delight that you'd experience listening to The Anthem first hand, but they get the job done in pushing you to the edge of your seats, ears wide open and waiting for the next gig that features City Samba’s first original.

The piece serves as our ideal set-opener, introducing our various instruments layer by layer, slowly adding more sounds into the mix.

Keep your eyes peeled as we visually draw your attention across the bateria, shifting the spotlight from the biggest of surdos to the smallest of agogo bells.

Our process of producing The Anthem was an arduous one, which was carefully composed over six weeks and eight sessions and in consultation with a curated panel of esteemed percussionists.

Except that it was not.

Instead, it would be much more fitting to describe The Anthem as a by-product of jam sessions among a small group of city dwellers (pun intended), after our creative juices have seemingly run dry and we begin squeezing out fractions of the last bar that we could possibly string together.

Out of that last push of defiance, with a touch of serendipity, and resigning to purely what feels right and what grooves tight, The Anthem was born.

Our hands and feet itch for the next opportunity to raise our standard again and perform for you. We are sure that by the end of it you’ll be on your feet standing (and dancing) for The Anthem.


Samuel Heah, fondly known as "Heah", graduated with the BBM Degree in 2016, and is currently serving as the Music & Training Director of the SMU City Samba Alumni Group. The Anthem was first performed at the group's inaugural Christmas busking at Clarke Quay on 16 December 2017 which caught hundreds of passers by grooving to the beat. A total of 25 alumni & students were involved in the busking. 

Catch a glimpse of their performance here.

Last updated on 07 Feb 2018 .