Two music festivals—the very Indian-sounding Baajaa Gaajaa and the annual eclectic jazz and rock fest One Tree Music Festival—will take place in Mumbai and Pune this coming weekend. We give you the lowdown on these events.
An archival photo of the Society of Indian Record Collectors on display at Baaja Gaaja.
Tabla virtuoso Aneesh Pradhan and vocalist Shubha Mudgal patronize and promote Underscore Records, a label for indie music groups and musicians in India. Perhaps indie music is yet to become a full-fledged industry, but there are many musicians and movements that are creating new, experimental sounds and are waiting to be heard. To celebrate five years of its existence, Underscore pays tribute to indie musicians with this three-day music expo that includes performances in the evening.
Curated by Pradhan and Mudgal, the festival seeks to highlight the diversity of the Indian musical tradition. “To acknowledge the many agencies that are involved in the music-making process, we decided to invite instrument makers, dealers, archivists, universities, and audio and video manufacturers,” Pradhan says.
Throughout the day, there will be seminars, symposiums and interactive sessions, which are free for all and the evening concerts will have ticket-only entries.
The first evening’s concert is a tribute to the contribution of music clubs and circles to the learning and performance of music. “We have sought to recreate the first jalsa or concert that was hosted by the Parsi Gayan Uttejak Mandali in April 1871. The Mandali was one of the first formal music clubs in Mumbai, which was a vital participant in the history of Hindustani music. The concert will discuss history, performance practice of those times, and yet provide a contemporary interpretation to the music of the past,” Pradhan says.
Archival photo exhibitions and archival music listening sessions will be a part of this festival. “It is necessary for musicians to know what has transpired in the past for them to understand their own situation better,” he adds.
Some seminars will focus on areas that concern the business of making music. Intellectual property rights, financial issues related to musicians and craftsmen and other information will be discussed by experts in these seminars.
At Ishanya, Pune; from 6 to 8 February. For details, log on to www.baajaagaajaa.com
The One Tree Music Festival, sponsored by Johnnie Walker is in its fourth year. In keeping with tough times, this year’s two-day festival is much smaller in size, but it promises to be what it has always been—eclectic, and only for the serious jazz, funk and rock afficionado. Performers in earlier years of the festival include Jose Feliciano, Jean Luc Ponty, The Allan Parsons Project, Uriah Heep, Kool & The Gang and others.
Bernard Allison will play on 7 February at the One Tree Music Festival.
The first day’s performance is by American blues guitarist Bernard Allison, son of the legendary Luther Allison. Like his father, Allison junior combines blues with rock and funk for the unique sound of his seven-piece group. Allison’s first solo album, The Next Generation, came out in 1990 and he has followed that up with many experimental albums including Kentucky Fried Blues, the highly personal Higher Power and Energized, a live recording and DVD from a 2005 show.
The second day is dedicated to Latin music, with frontman of the legendary band Gypsy Kings, Chico, leading a seven-member group of guitarists. They will belt out all the classic Gypsy Kings numbers.
Chico and the Gypsies will play on 8 February at the One Tree Music Festival.
At Taj Land’s End grounds, Mumbai; on 7 and 8 February, at 7.30 pm. Tickets are priced at Rs1,500 for entry on both days and can be booked at www.bookmyshow.com