The Shor Bazaar Blog

Monday, March 17, 2008

The MidDay article

Sweltering in the sun, heaving up the whole of the 'instrumentation' that we have with us to pose for the photo shoot seemed like overkill. But yesterday, lazily sifting through the e-pages of the e-paper we read, we realized that it had ended well. But all things that end good needn't have such a torrid beginning.

Thanks of Fashutana Patel and Fotografer Ashish Rane from MidDay who actually managed to work with us during this seemingly innocuous (but intensely arduous)task of interviewing/fotografing Shor Bazaar.

What’s that sound?

It’s all about adjacent careers with Shor Bazaar, who sing with Hindi vocals but play western instruments.

THEY came up with their name over chicken soup. Comprising of JD (Jayajit): song writing and lead vocals, Joy: lead and rhythm guitar with backing vocals, Robin: lead guitar, rhythm guitar, keyboard with backing vocals, Sumit: drums and KK (Krishna): bass, Shor Bazaar attributes their name to “The noise inside the head that finds its way out through music.”

Even though their instrumentalisation is primarily Western, JD sings in Hindi. He wonders why he should sing in English that too in accent alien to him. “I want to sing in a language that I’m comfortable with; even if I do sing in English, I’ll sing it like I speak it” he says. Sumit, a selftaught drummer, didn’t expect to be part of a Hindi band, “Then KK told me about the band — not many have Indian roots.”

All five musicians love music from Hindi films of the 70s.

“Basically, we all realised that we had everything but music in our lives,” says Joy. All of the bands members work on the side or have taken sabbaticals from their respective jobs, except for Robin, who’s still studying. Adept with both a scalpel and strings, KK is also a surgeon. Robin and JD have both taken breaks from their jobs, while Sumit simultaneously works and plays with the band. “I played for an English band earlier — it was mostly Western music — but after I started working, I lost touch with music.” says Joy, who met JD after putting up a classified on a website. “JD was in Silvasa at the time, he used to come down to Mumbai on weekends and we used to jam, come out with new melodies, not entire structures. We wanted to start a band that played Hindi music, realising the future was in it.”

Joy’s brother Robin, began with playing keyboards, “I started out by playing Salman Khan songs,” he says with a smile and then picked up the guitar; KK and Sumit joined Shor Bazaar soon after, “We officially began as a band in December last year — ythat’s when we decided to give it an honest attempt,” says Joy. Their songs are an “Urban take on love — it’s more rowdy than mushy… I think people have had enough of mushy love songs,” says Joy about their song Rasili. “Work posted me all over India and I saw a lot of different settings — I tried to express myself in any way that I could. My father was a writer, you could say it’s in my genes,” JD says about his songwriting abilities. “There’s this illusion of work: a great career and life,” he explains when asked why the shift from regular 9-5 jobs to the assuming life of musicians.

“It was difficult, there were times when we didn’t think it would work out, people told us that it seemed like a snap decision and that music does not have fixed paths,” says Joy. “But people are becoming much more receptive to original music. We’re not yet completely satisfied with where we are — you have to keep

Shor Bazaar has created three songs as of now: Rasili, Nahin Achha and Khamoshi. They sent their demo to a radio channel, and were chosen for the regional finals and went on to compete in Delhi. “Bands are being given the chance to get into mainstream rather than being restricted to college circuits,” says Joy.

“A band is only as good as its audience. If the audience does not understand what the band is playing — then there’s no point in playing that. We want to be big, we want critical acclaim, but we don’t want to be niché,” says a confident JD.

  • PS1 : The photo looks incredible. Seriously so! We look weird in that. Actually we aren't weird like that. We are even weirder.
  • PS2 : My bass guitar is not bent like that. It's an optical illusion.
  • PS3 : Sumit doesn't play the drumset with the cymbals so far away from the rest of the kit. That was a Photoshop trick!


zari said...
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Anonymous said...

wat abt the third song u had on the was quite nice!

lol @ jd saying he doesnt like to put on an angrez accent while singing english songs...nobody likes it wen he does :))

Vector said...

Check this out. Looks like something you can leverage.

Dr. Kay said...

@Zari - even if hindi is not easy, it's cheaper to provide Hindi to English dictionaries than the other way around. We factored in that before we decided on our language.

@Anonymous - La Ilaj? We, like the Australian Cricket team, believe in preventing 'burn out' and use the songs on a rotation basis. The last time I heard from it, 'La Ilaj' was suffering from a calf strain and is undergoing training under a physio in South Africa.

@Vector - great stuff! We'll look at it and see.

(PS: I survive on humor. Forgive the sarcasm!)

zari said...
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zari said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
zari said...
This comment has been removed by the author.