Rhythms of the World
We played a fantastic gig in Kendal in a small room at the ‘Brewery Arts Center‘ and were really pleased with how things were going as we drove back to Manchester where we were staying over for the night.
It was a nice and easy start to the day where we finished our breakfast and reached Hitchin just after lunch. The bright sun bathed the beautiful festival grounds in the middle of the most quaint town in a warm glow and made the vibrant colours of revelry in the festival look incredible!
There were bursts of rain, but that didn’t dampen anyone’s spirit. It was fascinating to watch people just pull out their umbrellas and collectively wish the clouds away and as if they had no other option, the clouds moved along, making the vibe just … perfect!
Its not easy being a headlining act when you are sitting back stage and seeing how well each act is being received, there is that little bit of extra pressure to ensure that you live up to your slot! The same set gets elevated by a tiny notch!
The backstage crew took extra special care of us, and before we knew it, it was for us to get on stage and move an entire stage backline up there and do a line check, all in 15 mins. Please do bear in mind, this is everything from the drums to the amps to everything! For people in India, that is what our sound guys usually take a good 3 hours to do at our shows back home!
We managed some sort of a line check, and then a quick ‘hope it goes well’ wish to the powers above, and we were on! Halfway through the first song, it was just sounding magical on stage! the stage sound guys and Gary at the helm were milking every bit of juice from the sound system in place that night and I can only imagine how beautiful it was outside!
Raghu was his charming best, holding each and every audience members hand and taking them along with us on this crazy journey of a show. Gudugudiya, with Bhaskar’s touch on the violin just gently stirs your soul, just as Raghu’s heart and soul in ‘No Man will ever love you, like I do’ just tugs at the strings of your heart, the crowd joins in to make ‘Lokada Kalaji’ a beautiful experience, we all go jumping along to ‘Mumbai’, all of us rock out to ‘Kodagana Koli Nungitha’ and before you know it, we are 40 mins into our set and ready to play ‘Har Saans Mein’.
The stage manager orchestrates an encore for us and in what must be the loudest ‘ONCE MORE!’ that we have heard in a while, we are delirious back stage! We came back out to play an insane version of ‘Mysore se Aayi’ which had the entire field jumping along and suddenly, it was done.
But I can guarantee that we haven’t felt that good after a gig in a while as well. Our first time headlining, was clearly a resounding success. Our dear friends, the Twilight Players, who run Hitchin (or so we were told) were absolute stars for coming in the most formal of attires, straight from a wedding, driving across the county and then taking us for a fantastic Indian meal!
By the time we tumbled into our van and headed back to London, there was a feeling of calm and a smile on each of our faces for another magical night on the road!
Like the good book says, ‘Heaven is a touring musician!’
PS: Thanks a ton, Srini, for all the help and for these fantastic pictures!