The story of jazz in Nepal cannot be told without the story of Cadenza. Cadenza started experimenting with jazz in 1998 while playing regular gigs around Kathmandu Valley, breaking the mold in a city then dominated by rock bands playing popular covers. As the house band at Jazz Upstairs, Kathmandu’s first jazz club, the band evolved from a jam band experimenting with jazz to a mature collective of musicians whose influence and teaching has been seminal to Kathmandu’s improvised-music scene.An eclectic mix of Jazz, Afro–Nepali funk, and Nepali folk influences drives the band’s sound. Cadenza is also famous for spearheading musical collaboration between Nepali classical and international jazz musicians. The band has continued to evolve and mature over the years with new personnel, new travels and new musical collaborations adding ever more diversity to their unique sound. This year Cadenza Collective was nominated in 5 categories for the Nepal Hits FM Music Awards, and won Best Pop/Rock Composition for their song “Namaste”, and Best Pop/Rock Album of the Year for their album, “Back to the Roots”.One of the most unique and eclectic bands from Kathmandu, Nepal, Cadenza Collective led by drummer and composer Navin Chettri seamlessly blends Jazz, Afro-funk, and Nepali folk into an irresistible sound for your ears and booty.

They have performed in many international musical festivals and venues including the Palmer Street Jazz Festival Australia, ELB Jazz Festival in Hamburg Germany, RSJ Festival in India, La Baiser Sale and LaTimbale in Paris, Klunker Kranich in Berlin, and prestigious jazz clubs in Copenhagen and Brussels to name a few.

Navin Chettri
Rajat Rai
Pravin Chhetri
Inap Raj Shreshta
Samir Chettri



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We head out into the rain looking for another bar. Another upstairs room, another live band, a packed, smoky club, and this time the band doesn’t sound half bad. Any band is only ever as good as its drummer, and this one is surprisingly good. In the bio i pick up from the table he lists Vinnie Colaiuta, my erstwhile trapsman, as his main influence. I am duly impressed. The jazz-funk of the five piece vibes up the room nicely, and after a few Nepalese vodkas I am in the zone, although one of my fingers of my left hand is throbbing painfully.

Sting, Mens Journal 2003

‘Navin Chhettri seems a quiet, unassuming man, wearing his stocking cap, soft goatee, and wide-eyed but laid-back expression. But talking about jazz lights a fire in his eyes, and he could go on all night. This burning passion shows in his work. Navin is not only the sole remaining founding member of Kathmandu’s premier jazz ensemble Cadenza; he is also one of the main moving forces behind Jazzmandu, the yearly festival that has put Kathmandu on the jazz map of the world.’

Susal Jane Dunipace, ECS Magazine Aug.23.2010

‘Cadenza sure know how to have fun. Anyone familiar with Nepal’s first consistent jazz band will testify to the group’s ability to concoct the sublime out of the ordinary. It is their energy that has conceived a jazz scene in Kathmandu and given Nepalis opportunity to be within touching distance of greats like Trilok Gurtu and Ari Hoenig.’

Sunir Pandey, Nepali Times 21 – 27 February , 2014,1148

‘Few people in Kathmandu listened to jazz before the arrival of Cadenza.Little by little, this band has won over fans from all walks of life, and today enjoys a considerable following among locals and expatriates alike. It can be said that Cadenza brought jazz to Nepal in the true sense of the word.’

Roshan Gurung, ECS Magazine Jul.20.2010

“Cadenza converts new people to the joys of improvised music that’s both funked up and cerebral.” –Nepali Times, Nepal, 2001

Scintillating Acid Jazz by a cohesive group” –NQC Jazz Inc, Australia 2000

“Cadenza, in my opinion, revived jazz to our side of the world” – Tsering Choden, Wave Magazine, Nepal

“These guys can outfunk and outjazz anybody on the planet.” – Rock Street Journal, India