'We are a confluence of elements'

'We are a confluence of elements'

'We are a confluence  of elements'

City-based folk-fusion band ‘The SaMaRa’ loves experimenting.

The band comprises Prasanna Keshava (on the vocals), Manoj Tamang (on the lead guitar), Vivek Govindaraju (on the bass guitar and keyboards) and Rahul Shivakumar (on the percussions).

In a candid chat with Tini Sara Anien, Prasanna and Rahul shed light on their music and more.

How different is ‘The SaMaRa’ from other bands?

Prasanna: In the age of contemporary music, we stand apart as a fusion band which makes soulful music. We blend folk songs with rock tunes where we conglomerate our expertise as individuals to make something beautiful. We are
all from different backgrounds but together we are trying to create magic.

Can you elaborate on your music?

Rahul: We are a confluence of elements. We have different flavours in our music, ranging from the North East and Afro to Latin percussion. We are also influenced by Arabic and Brazilian music.

Contemporary music is quite popular now. Do you feel accepted?

Prasanna: As a group, we have performed in many interesting spaces like Studio Bar in the city and worked on videos for regional channels. We consider this encouraging enough and understand that people are interested in our music.

What are the different instruments used in your music?

Rahul: Apart from the guitars and the keyboards, we include a lot of percussion like the drums, djembe, rhythm pad, khanjira and darbuka. We have also brought in the wavedrum from Germany which is used to create sounds like the chirping of birds and gurgling of rivers. Our instruments add the colour to the music.

The artistes who have inspired you.

Rahul: A R Rahman, Vijay Prakash and Raghu Dixit.

Prasanna: All of us are influenced by film music from Dr Rajkumar’s movies and songs by S P Balasubrahmanyam.

Tell us more about your originals.

Rahul: We are working on five songs at present. Most of them have folk tunes in them.

Can you recollect any memorable incident while performing?

Rahul: Whenever we perform, children in the audience get excited about the instruments we have and curious about the sounds they create.

Prasanna: In our earlier performances, we used to sing songs by saint Santa Shishunala Sharifa, whose compositions of ‘tatvapada’ in Kannada are well-known. The audience used to love it. But once, someone walked up to us and told us that the songs should be sung as they are. Thankfully, another person chipped in by saying that music is evolving and that one should evolve with it.

Something we don’t know about the band...

Prasanna: The band’s name, which actually means war, is derived from our names.

As a band, what are your strongest traits?

Rahul: The enthusiasm, energy and expertise of the band members are our strength.

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