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Dutch/Kiwi Genre-Hoppers My Baby In India This Week

The trio talk about performing at Glastonbury, why they aren’t boxed in by labels and their upcoming record

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Anurag Tagat Jan 28, 2020

Dutch/New Zealand trio My Baby. Photo: Sanja Marusic Photography

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Psychedelic, blues rock and everything in between, Dutch/New Zealand trio My Baby aren’t really trying to show off when they reel off the kinds of music they take to. Drummer Joost van Dijck says, “At the moment we are listening to ancient apocalyptic folk ballads. They seem more relevant than ever.” 

Ahead of their India debut — Piano Man Jazz Club in Gurugram on January 30th and SulaFest in Nashik on 2nd — vocalist-bassist Cato van Dijck shares that they had visited Goa a couple of years ago. She adds, “There has always been an interest in and influence of Indian music. Both Indian classical music and contemporary folk in particular. Daniel [Johnston, guitarist] for instance has been influenced by Indian slide guitarist Debashish Bhattacharya.”

Formed in 2012, My Baby have gone on to perform at music festivals across the world and head on to Johnston’s native New Zealand for a tour following their India shows. The trio employ a slow built movement from ambient to all-out psychedelic at their club shows and often harness a festival crowd’s energy, but My Baby have also been prolific in the studio. With four albums to their name, one EP and a fifth record in the works, there’s no slowing down for now. Joost says, “It’s always a challenge to defy genre tags but you can’t get around it totally. It’s what we strive for, you want the feel of the album to outweigh what ever genre the listener might think suits the music.”

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Johnston points out that with their roots and blues background, My Baby fits right into blues and jazz fests but also an electronic music festival, “because we are known to emulate something akin to an electronic dance set but then with live instrumentation.” The flexibility has seen them take over festival stages such as WOMAD and U.K.’s Glastonbury. At the latter in 2015 — their breakout year in Britain — they performed seven times. “We played the smaller stages that year and it was a wild ride, because you are so up close and personal with the crowds,” Joost adds.

It’s part of what they’re looking forward to in India, with a bigger wishlist to perform at festivals such as Bacardi NH7 Weekender and Magnetic Fields. Until then, their priority remains finishing their fifth album and an upcoming North American tour. Johnston adds, “We’ll be voting for Bernie (Sanders) even though we’re not eligible! It is an ongoing adventure and invigorating process of having to constantly recreate and redefine yourself and your music. And such a privilege to be able to share that with people around the globe.”

Mixtape Presents My Baby, India 2020 

January 30th – The Piano Man, Gurugram

February 2nd – Sula Vineyards, Nashik (at SulaFest)

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