Mushrooming music festivals, unusual collaborations, unique sounds on the gig circuit and more — it really does seem like the era of indie-music in India. Not to be left behind, television shows are in on the action as well, giving you a behind-the-scenes look at your preferred artistes. Season two of The Dewarists premiered last weekend, while the week-old Thank God It’s Rock on Friday (TGIRF) already seems to be making some noise. Here’s getting you up to speed:
During season one of The Dewarists, an initiative by whisky major, Dewar’s, indie-music fans around the country were glued to the telly every Sunday, to watch artistes from the likes of Grammy Award-winner Imogen Heap and hit duo Vishal-Shekhar team up to create a unique strain of music. So it’s no wonder then that season two of the part music-documentary and part travelogue format show is all set to be pencilled into calendars once again
“So far, season two has been an epic experience. We’ve shot in places I’ve never explored, and with musicians who are new to me, which is always an opportunity for me to learn, and be back in a sort of life school that is an ultimate blessing,” says singer-actor Monica Dogra, the show’s host. And it’s clearly become more than just a show. “When I went to the Bacardi NH7 Weekender last year, I walked onto The Dewarists Stage and I was mobbed. For sure it was this show that sparked a sense of community amongst all of the outliers. TV is one of the most powerful mediums. When it’s used beautifully, the impact on the nation culturally can be astounding,” she says. Acts to look out for this time include Dualist Inquiry, Anoushka Shankar, Thermal And A Quarter and more. The show that premiered on October 28, airs every Sunday on Star World at 8 pm
Meanwhile, in what is supposedly a first-of-its kind show in India, TGIRF is giving viewers a day in the life of their favourite rock artistes and bands. So in effect, you get to see them offstage, and in a completely different avatar. “That’s what’s so great about this show. It’s basically a ‘rockumentary’, where instead of a quick interview, you get an in depth look at the band, at their inside jokes, and the history behind their — and your — favourite songs,” says Nitin Malik, frontman of veteran rock act Parikrama, which was featured on the opening show.
And why does it work on a channel that is not music-centric? “Well, shows like American Idol and America’s Got Talent, which have produced some amazing musical talent, are usually aired on channels that aren’t all about music — and that’s because they haven’t caved into the standard Bollywood pattern,” he replies. Other acts you can look out for in the series are Raghu Dixit, Indus Creed, Motherjane and more.
The show airs every Friday at 9.30 pm on Big CBS Spark.