Calling All Bathroom Singers - The New Indian Express

Calling All Bathroom Singers

Published: 08th December 2013 06:00 AM

Last Updated: 07th December 2013 11:20 AM

Have you ever heard of singers progressing from behind the shower curtains to the stage curtains? Well, here is one man on a unique mission in Bangalore who has put many a nervous crooner before the studio and stage mike. 

Sunil Koshy’s concept ‘From Mug-to-Mike’ wherein even bathroom singers get an opportunity to sing on stage has reverberated and generated interest as far as London and Berlin. In fact, as he says, “Anybody who can speak can be trained to sing well,” shows the utter confidence of this man who along with his wife Archana Hallikeri has held 25 music workshops, recorded songs of 300 bathroom singers in the studio and put 24 of them on stage.

Chucking a well-paying job as a software engineer to take forward this concept from Bangalore to Kochi, Sunil, 36, is providing a platform for hundreds of people who never had a chance to record their voice in a studio. “There is a big segment of people, many from the corporate world who would really like to sing and so do it at karaoke clubs, annual functions, parties, get-togethers. They need help to hone their skills. After days of brainstorming with my wife, I started Mug-to-Mike inspiring bathroom singers to come out of the closet and display their talent. A Facebook page was created where I urged people to join this workshop. There is no age bar and anybody can sing a song of their own choice and language. To participate in the workshop, you need not be a good singer; all you need is a passion for singing, and yes, the experience in bathroom singing is a must,” he says. “In the last six months, since we started, the response has been overwhelming,” he adds.

To begin with, participants get a chance to record their voice in a high-end studio. “To understand the singer’s voice, we record without any accompaniments,” explains Sunil. Later their recording and a detailed analysis of their singing is mailed to them. The session costs `500. This is followed by an advanced session at the couple’s home. “We demonstrate and teach voice exercises focusing on the improvement areas as well as accent and pronunciation.” After the advanced session, a free follow-up session is held. “I encourage them to sing along with music and advise them to buy a keyboard or harmonium. In fact, this was followed by a stage show in Bangalore in August which was received very well.”

Sunil started learning music only at 22. Honing his skills, he went on to learn music from 50 gurus beginning with R R Keshavmurthy, the renowned musician who used to play the seven-stringed violin and including Pandit Venkatesh Godkhindi, the senior most flautist of Karnataka, and Ustad Faiyaz Khan, the well known Hindustani classical musician.

“I am a vocalist and have recorded for a few albums and TV serials in Malayalam, Kannada, Hindi and Tamil,” says Sunil. “I sing Indian pop, classical and melodies. Initially, I started with cover versions of known singers and later graduated to making an original song,” he adds.

Reboot, a 40-minute audio film was his original work comprising six songs that told the story of a techie who graduates, gets a job and goes to the US. Some of the best musicians have played for this film including Keith Peters, Maxwell, Alwyn Fernandes, Ustad Faiyaz Khan and popular lyricist Jayant Kaikini.

Do you like to sing? Here is an exclusive opportunity to record your song in a studio and learn the art of singing.

Write to reboot.suko@gmail.com to attend the Mug to Mike workshop.

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