mumbaiboss.com, 31st Jan 2011BAAJAA GAAJAA
What: The annual music festival held by Indian classical musicians, singer Shubha Mudgal and tabla player Aneesh Pradhan.
Where: Pune, Ishanya Mall, Yerawada. When: Friday, February 4 to Sunday, February 6.
The line-up: In addition to two stages (devoted to Indian classical, folk and traditional music) that will host performances through the day, there will be amphitheatre concerts every evening, including one by vocalist Papon of the group East India Company, sitar player Niladri Kumar and tabla player Satyajit Talwalkar, the three of whom will collaborate with flamenco guitarist Juan Diego and percussionist Israel “Katumba” Mera. Highlights this year include a concert of ghazals and nazms in Urdu, Dakkani (a dialect of Urdu spoken in South India), Hindi and Marathi by Hariharan and Suresh Wadkar, and “Stories In A Song”, a performance directed by theatre veteran Sunil Shanbag that will bring together “music, theatre, [and] historical and literary accounts of music making in India”. See the full schedule here.
The audience: Indian classical and world music practitioners and fans, including but not restricted to pensioners.
What to expect: Baaja Gaajaa is more than just a festival, it’s a seminar, where unlike most other music conferences, a large part of the focus is on Indian classical and folk music. In addition to concerts, there will be panel discussions (“Presenting India Abroad” “Film making and Music”), film screenings (including the premiere of Spandan Banerjee’s You Don’t Belong, which examines the migration of music and the issue of intellectual property rights vis a vis traditional and folk music), and lectures (topics include Bhakti poetry and Japanese music).
Tickets: Entrance to all events is free. Passes, issued on a first-come, first-served basis, are required to attend the amphitheatre performances. For further details, visit baajaagaajaa.com.SULAFEST
What: The annual wine and music festival organised by Sula Wines.
Where: Nashik, Sula Vineyards.
When: Saturday, February 5, from 12.30pm. The line-up: SulaFest has become one of the country’s best-known indie festivals, attended by people who don’t typically show up for Indie indie gigs. Previous editions have featured Shaa’ir + Func, Jalebee Cartel, The Raghu Dixit Project and Ankur Tiwari and the Ghalat Family. This year, there’s Pentagram, Midival Punditz, Petri Dish Project (featuring guest spots from Monica Dogra, Anushka Manchanda and Suman Sridhar), Something Relevant and Tough on Tobacco. The audience: Hipsters, Page 3 peeps and Nashik locals (not all of whom come for the music).
What to expect: The folks at SulaFest strive hard to create a festival-esque ambience—there’s grape stomping, tarot card readers and tattoo artists, food and shopping stalls. This year, fire spinners and interestingly, lavani dancers will add to the carnival feel. The spotlight of course is on the wine and the music and for the 2011 edition, they’ve tied up with chocolate makers Cadbury to conduct Bournville and wine pairing tastings. Just in case you get tired of drinking Sula, a “Cointreauversial” bar will sell cocktails made with Cointreau liqueur. The bands perform at an outdoor amphitheatre, where dancing is encouraged (foot massage booths will be at hand for those who dance too hard).
Tickets: Rs800 per head. Available at bookmyshow.com and Rhythm House in Kala Ghoda, Santé and The Bagel shop in Bandra, Landmark in Lower Parel and Andheri and Godrej Nature’s Basket outlets across the city. For further details, call 90044 93976, 6128 0606, (0253) 223 0575 or visit sulafest2011.com.MAHINDRA BLUES FESTIVAL
What: The inaugural edition of Mumbai’s first blues (and blues rock) festival. Where: Mumbai, Mehboob Studios, Bandra (West).
When: Saturday, February 5 and Sunday, February 6. The line-up: A mix of Indian and international acts. The Luke Kenny Jukebox (from Mumbai), Shemekia Copeland, and Jonny Lang perform on Saturday; The Saturday Night Blues Band (from Kolkata), Soulmate (from Shillong), Matt Schofield and blues legend Buddy Guy will perform on Sunday. Schofield will also conduct a guitar playing workshop on Sunday morning for 75 people; email firstname.lastname@example.org to register.
The audience: Baby boomers, Page 3 peeps and folks from Mumbai’s music fraternity, with some overlap between the three groups. What to expect: First things first, Buddy Guy’s performance will not feature any “special guests” (read Milind Deora). This will be the second big public event to be held at Mehboob Studios, after the Anish Kapoor exhibition. The advantage it offers is of course one of space, and there will be three indoor stages (two for the performances, one for the workshop), though oddly they will be used at different times. Guy and Lang, the two most well-known acts on the bill, will perform on Stage No.3 while the rest—including rising stars, British guitarist Schofield and American vocalist Copeland—will play Stage No.1.
Tickets: Priced at Rs2,000 per day and Rs3,000 for both days. Available from bookmyshow.com and at Rhythm House, Kala Ghoda, and Costa outlets in Juhur, Khar, Lower Parel and Powai. For further details, visit mahindrablues.com.