Beats of the South

Beats of the South

VIBHA DHWANI

Beats of the South

The concert was a fundraiser for an organisation called Vibha, which works for the rights of underprivileged children.  La Pongal, a Chennai-based band, was the first to perform on stage.

As the members of La Pongal played Tamil folk songs in a style of their own, even those who did not know much about Tamil folk music started appreciating their performance.

They started off with the composition Yeleah Yeleah and moved on to Vandiyila Nellu Varum, a song sung by farmers during the harvest season. This traditional Tamil folk song got a contemporary touch thanks to the members of La Pongal.

Another song Kiliamma, which described the charm of a rural woman, got a roaring applause from the crowd. ‘I am the Macho Man’, a song inspired from the Tamil folk tradition Kuravan Kurathi Aattam, was also enchanting. They ended the show with Koopitadhu, a racy folk fusion song.

“We were not sure of how the Bangalore crowd would react to our music, which is fully Tamil folk. But as we started, the audience encouraged us by waving their hands and dancing. Now, we feel really good about reaching out to a new audience. Besides, we are doing this show for a good cause. So we are thankful to Vibha for giving us this opportunity,” said Shiva, the vocalist and guitarist of La Pongal. Apart from Shiva, the La Pongal team consisted of Pradeep on vocal, David on drums and Pankajan on thavil and Vikram on guitar.  
  
The next band to come on stage was the City-based Agam, a contemporary Carnatic rock band. They began their performance with an invocation Om Gananam Tva and Guru Brahma. One of their biggest hits, Raag Dhanashree, was their third offering.

The crowd enjoyed their popular compositions like Rudra and ‘Boat Song’ (inspired by the picturesque beauty of Kerala). Vocalist Harish, lyricist and keyboard player Swamy and drummer Ganesh were at their best.

The last band to perform was ‘The Raghu Dixit Project’. Eager to watch Raghu live, the music-lovers remained glued to their seats. Accompanied by some new members, Raghu treated the audience to a wonderful mix of folk fusion by singing the songs of saint poet Shishunala Sharif, and many new compositions without including any of his film hits. “We are pleased to be teaming up with Vibha for a good cause. Thanks to Vibha, we got a chance to do our bit for the society,” he said.

“All the three bands, which performed today, have popularised traditional Indian music among youth. So with their help, we tried to reach out to the youth and involve them in our cause,” said Vikar Kapoor, a volunteer with Vibha.
 

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