All posts filed under: MUSIC

Explore Local Musicians and their Music

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A Blossoming Crowd at the International Cherry Blossom Festival Shillong,2017

  Not long after the first International Cherry Blossom Festival pulled in almost 30,000 tourists from the nearing states to Shillong last year, Meghalaya yet again geared up for the second international cherry blossom festival. It was held at different locations across Shillong from the 8th November – 11th November 2017 to commemorate the cherry blossom spread through out the state. A quick look back!  The Himalayan cherry blossom grown wild in Meghalaya has long been associated with Japan. This annual festival is a reminiscent of the local heritage with its white and pink blooms all over the hills of Shillong. With around 5,000 trees planted along the Umiam Shillong road, Mawphlang and Ward’s Lake, the government of Meghalaya further targets to plant 20,000 trees by the festivals’ 50th anniversary. Day One of this years’ event kicked off at the 5th Ground, Polo Grounds, Shillong hosted by the Meghalaya Minister for Forests & Environment, Clement Marak. The opening day was marked by a pleasant painting and drawing competition followed by story telling, local folklore and fashion show accompanied by a great display of lights at …

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On Following Your Dreams And Becoming a Full-Time Musician : Jonathan Yhome

They say dreamers can be dangerous men. The world fears them for they, more often than not, act on their dreams with an intention to succeed at all costs. Jonathan Yhome followed his dream  and became a full-time musician. At Nagaland’s business town, Dimapur, Yhome strives everyday to reach his goal of becoming a successful musician. This is his story. Will you be releasing an EP anytime soon? I have not released an album or an EP yet, but I have officially written songs that have been featured as OSTs for movies, for example, ”Something New” was featured in the movie ”Nana – A Tale of Us” by Dreamz Unlimited. A song I wrote for my parents called‘‘Send Me Away’‘ was featured on The The REC.urrent.  I’ve also released a single called ‘‘Before We Know” and Sofar Sounds featured another single of mine called ”Go Tell Your Mother”. What sparked your interest in this field initially? I started my musical journey when I first joined the Nagaland Conservatory of Music in 2013. Ever since I was a kid I …

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Catching up with Pop/Rock Indie Band : Avora Records from Mizoram

With successful singles like “Sides” and “We Happy Few”, Aizawl-based pop/rock band, Avora Records has come a long way since they were just a couple of friends jamming together in 2013.  An all-boy band creating quite the rave with their fun, upbeat J-Pop/rock and Indie music, this local-gig-favorite band from Aizawl, Mizoram, has shown the crowd that they are here to stay.  Avora Records was one of the many artists that performed at the Bacardi NH7 Weekender this year in Meghalaya. Here is an excerpt from their interview with our R&L member, Lisa. Tell us how you guys got together? How did you come up with the band name? It started off as just a couple of friends hanging out recording songs in a studio back in 2013. Our first live gig was in 2016. The name of the band, Avora, is in honor of our producer and founder of the band, Mamaa. What’s your inspiration behind your music? What kind of music do you make? We try to make our music sound clean and honest. We …

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In Conversation With the Reggae Band from the East- Dewdrops

Dewdrops is a roots reggae/ska/dub/rockers/rocksteady band, hailing from Rymbai Village in the Jaintia Hills of Meghalaya. The band came together with one common interest to share- music and to promote the message of love, peace and brotherhood through their music. The band comprises of Rowynk Dkhar as the lead vocalist, Leonard Dkhar as the guitarist and vocalist, Eglancis Dkhar as the lead guitarist, Daioh Lyngdoh on the electric bass, Manavon Massar on keys and Doni Ksih on drums. R&L’s Lisa, caught up with the band members for a quick chat during one of their sessions, to talk about the band, their musical style, inspiration behind their music and thoughts on the music scene in the northeast. Tell us how you got together to form the band? We are from Rymbai Village and are hugely influenced by the legendary artist, Bob Marley. In the beginning, we would get together for  jam sessions and play mostly Bob Marley’s reggae songs. Then later, we formed our band in 2007. In fact, our band name, Dewdrops is inspired by one of his songs. The name ‘Dewdrops’ came …

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Exclusive Interview with Rudy Wallang and his Guitar Jamboree Group

“The Rudy Wallang Guitar Jamboree” is a group of 8 guitarists from Northeast, India curated by SOULMATE‘s guitarist and song writer, Rudy Wallang. He shared the stage this year at the NH7 Weekender, Meghalaya along with 8 talented guitarists from Northeast- Cornelius Kharsyntiew , Aribam Uttam Sharma, Arenlong Longkumer , Gyt Artha , Ztpa Rokhum, Sonam Lachungpa and Takar Nabam R&L ‘s Lisa recently sat down for an interview with the members to talk about their act, how The Rudy Wallang Guitar Jamboree came together, their music, and the music scene in the Northeast. So, tell us how you guys got together for “The Rudy Wallang Guitar Jamboree”? Rudy: This whole idea behind the Guitar Jamboree started when OML contacted my brother, Keith about 3-4 months ago, to curate a guitar gig. They wanted a series of guitar acts leading up to the main act- Steve Vai, one of the headliners this year.  So I got in touch with a few guitarists from the Northeast and eventually, this crew came together to form the “The Rudy Wallang Guitar Jamboree”. …

Representing Our Blood Line, Our People- Khasi Bloodz from Meghalaya

“Here’s to the heartaches that pulled you through/Here’s to the walls you built to stop them coming back to you/Here’s to the bad times you’ve been there before/ And oh your feet are sore and you can’t do it anymore…”  – A verse from their song ‘Don’t Stop’ Khasi Bloodz is a hip hop group from Meghalaya. The group, which started in late 2009, is the first Khasi hip hop group. Their music is influenced by Old School music, Hip Hop from the 90’s, Jazz and Rock. R&L member Lisa caught up with the group during one of their rehearsals. Hi there! Tell us how you got together to form a band? We started off with six of us but a few months back, new members have joined the crew and our family has gotten bigger and better. Initially, our band was called ‘Khasi Blood’ as we wanted to represent the blood line of Khasi’s but later added the Z to make it sound more Hip Hop. What kind of music do you make? And what is your …

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Interview with Triau Trackx Band from Mizoram

Triau Trackx is a pop-rock band based in Champhai, Mizoram. They released their self-titled album in 2015 and are currently recording their next EP.  Lisa, from Roots and Leisure, recently sat down for a quick chat with band members, Ramenga(drummer), Ruatfeli(vocalist), Ate-a(guitarist) and Lalthazoa (Tz’a) (Bassist), before their performance at the Bacardi NH7 Weekender, Meghalaya. Here’s an excerpt from the interview as Triau Trackx tells us about their music style, thoughts on the Northeast music scene and their message to the R&L community. Tell us how you guys got together to form the band and the origin of your band name? It started out as a project to promote local artists based in Champai, Mizoram. There is a river called ‘Tiau’ which flows between India and Myanmar, which is near Champai, the people there used to call us Triau Trackx and that’s how the name of the band came to be. What kind of music do you make? We make different kinds of music, sometimes ballads-working with only a piano, and other times it is grunge music, …

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Platforms like NH7 Can Play a Big Role in the Indian Rock Music Uprising : Thaikkudam Bridge

Kochi-based folk metal collective, Thaikkudam Bridge is synonymous to versatility and unprecedented innovation in remaking classic melodies. The band has been ruling the roost in terms of gaining massive fan-following right from the first time its music was aired on TV. The recognition has translated itself to a gradually growing number of shows booked apart from collaboration offers from established international names in the industry. This year the sprawling 18-member band will be performing at the multi-city music festival, NH7 Weekender that begins at Shillong, Meghalaya this weekend. We chatted with Anish Krishnan, one of the latest addition to the band’s vocals team, who couldn’t hide his excitement to watch Steve Vai perform live at the event. Shweta from Roots and Leisure interviews the Kochi-based folk metal collective band. Hey Anish! How excited are you about performing at NH7 Weekender? Yes, this is our first trip to Shillong and we’re very excited about it. After a delayed flight, weather scare, and a day layover at Bangalore, we have finally arrived to Shillong to give our share …

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It Took Us 28 Years to Reach Shillong : An Exclusive Interview with Indian Ocean Band

India’s happiest music festival is here! Music fans across the country have been eagerly waiting for Bacardi NH7 Weekender. And this time around, the festival is back with more exciting artists that promise action-packed performances. The multi-city music festival, which has previously played host to stellar performers like AR Rahman, Mark Ronson, Vishal Dadlani and Nucleya among others will be starting off at Shillong (27 to 28 October) again this year and will have its final showdown at Pune (8 to 10 December). As the marvelous musical weekend nears, Shweta from Roots & Leisure sat down to speak with members of Indian Ocean, a band that has been a staple at NH7 Weekender for a few years now and is a phenomenon in itself. Amit Kilam (drums, percussions and vocals) and Nikhil Rao (lead guitarist) tell us about what’s in store for their fans in the 2017 edition of one of India’s largest music festival. Photo : Indian Ocean What are you looking forward to the most about performing at NH7 Weekender this year?   Amit …

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Interview with Polar Lights Band from Nagaland

Nagaland in the North East region of India is an artist hub. Unlike the place which is mostly an unknown corner in the country, artists from this part are often one of the most recognized in their fields – especially musicians. North East region produces the country’s best original music artists. Today we are sitting with Mar Jamir – the lead singer of the super talented band from Nagaland – Polar Lights. Meet Mar Jamir from the band ‘Polar Lights’. Formed in the year 2013, they have come a long way. Hello Mar so good to be having this chat with you! Tell us about your band “Polar Lights”  Polar Lights came together back in 2013. We’ve always been avid music enthusiasts, so when the opportunity came for all of us to get together and write music, we gave it a shot and 3 years later, we’re still here – writing music and doing what we love doing the most.  So it was definitely worth the shot. We’ve had a couple of lineup changes since our inception but …