Mangaluru’s bands are stayin’ alive and spreading their wings
By Likhith Shenoy | Express News Service | Published: 18th June 2017 04:35 AM |
MANGALURU: Kudla is rocking, like never before. While Dakshina Kannada has had a vibrant music band culture since the eclectic 80s, spooling in several genres like jazz, country music, pop, Blues and so on, the attention and adulation was limited to the region. But now some of the bands, comprising young talents, are finding their voice on a national platform and spreading wings.
Bands like Aroha, Prophecy, C7, Rhapsody Out Loud (ROL) and many more have felt the pulse of their audience and served them what they demand.
With the mushrooming of talent shows and more access to little-known music on social media, the bands have found a wider platform and recognition. Like ROL, which is equally comfortable with Indian and western numbers, saw its popularity surge after performing on the India’s Got Talent show.
Ashish Palanna, singer-guitarist of ROL and an entrepreneur, said, “We have a commercial approach with latest upbeat numbers. We present our original compositions as well. Our intention is that people should own it. We follow Kurt Hugo Schneider, Vidya Vox, Sanam and others.” There are a lot of artistes all over the nation with immense talent, but it’s just that a right exposure is required, he added. Being in Mumbai for the past couple of months for the reality show has helped. The band has got several offers, including from abroad, to perform.
C7 (an abbreviation for Sea Seven) is another band that has managed to hold its own for the past decade, which is a rarity for a band. The band has gone beyond Mangaluru shores to Hyderabad, Bengaluru and Mumbai. Founder Sanjay Rodrigues, an entrepreneur and music composer from Mangaluru, has been in the field enough to see changes, some of them rapid and some of them unwelcome. Gigs at high-profile weddings and ceremonies are the ones that keep most city bands going, as live shows are few.
Rodrigues says: “According to my experience, the city is not ready for change yet. It’s still too old-fashioned. Locals like upbeat numbers and because of the low investment, renowned artists do not come down.
The categorization of artistes needs to be removed. Bollywood songs are the most liked numbers. There is more scope for DJs than live music.” He adds that it is too expensive to host live band shows in a city like Mumbai, which is why they opt for DJs. “Here there is money, but they still go for DJs. The attitude of the people is such that they just come in for a programme and go without even appreciating the efforts of the artists,” he says, adding that if one were to start a music production house, one would go bankrupt.
But there’s no bankruptcy of ideas where the bands are concerned. “We fill our performances with surprise elements,” says Sanjeeth Rodriguez, drummer of C7. Perhaps reason why the band is booked for a year for performances across India.