Striking a chord

Striking a chord

Eclectic lot

Striking a chord

It was the vision to explore regional music with international grooves that led to the birth of ‘Sangeetha’s Groove Kafe’.

The band, which comprises the bubbly Sangeetha Ravindranath, playback singer in Sandalwood, and four young musicians — Avik Lahari (on the bass guitar), Arijit (on the lead guitar), Arun Sivag (on percussions) and Sujith Kumar (on the drums) — dish out vintage Kannada songs with world percussion and give it a whole new dimension.
In a candid chat with Tini Sara Anien, the band shares their journey.

How did the members come together?
Sangeetha: This band got together a couple of months ago. I always wanted to do something different. I met Arun at one musical show and we discussed about the possibilities of doing something unique together.
That’s when I heard that he was involved with world percussion and we planned to bring Kannada songs and Latin and African grooves together, to make something absolutely new.

What is the inspiration behind the band?
Sangeetha: The inspiration behind the band is our love for music. We all met at the right time and it just happened. I’ve always loved African and Latin music and I wanted ­to see how it would sound mixed with regional music. We create fusion like none other.

The journey has been...
Sangeetha: The journey has been good. Jamming with the band is just like any professional performance. We are all very dedicated, yet we have a lot of fun.
Our favourite song is a self-composition that we have, ‘Amma’. Every time we all hear a song about motherhood, it’s about all the sacrifices she has made and is in sad tone. But this is a very happy song that celebrates her. This song will be released soon and there are many other compositions in the pipeline.

What are the varied influences?
Arijit: All of us come from different cultures and our inspirations are varied. I am from the North-East and I’m more into Western music, while Sangeetha has more of a classical musical influence.

How does ‘Sangeetha’s Groove Kafe’ stand out?
Arun: Many bands perform covers and film songs, but this band tries to contain all the sentiments of the songs. In some bands, they do own compositions and others just play covers.
We have played self-compositions and also revamp old songs which have gone to the background.
These songs have beautiful and meaningful lyrics which make it exclusive. The audience already feel connected to these songs, but we give them a fresh take.

Which gig has been the most rewarding one?
Avik: Though this is a relatively new band and we haven’t done many performances, a gig at the Palace Grounds, where we played at a wedding, is one of my favourites.
There were a lot of people there and they were enjoying our songs. And the glee on their faces is what every musician wants to see.

Experiences from this band...
Avik: I have been performing with other bands, but this mix and enthusiasm is like none other. All the musicians are very good, matured and inclined to reach the vision behind the group. We bring in different elements and arrangements in the songs we play. We practise a lot and it’s a very enthusiastic bunch.
Sujith: The experience is different and the music played is very soft. I have learnt a lot of new things with this band and we continue to grow as a team.