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Nagaland Musicians Hop on a Tour Bus to Raise Social Awareness

Rock artists Alobo Naga, Polar Lights, singer Virie and more are traveling to schools and colleges over the weekend

Anurag Tagat Jun 10, 2016
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(far left) singer and multi-instrumentalist Sunep Oz on stage at a school in Kohima on the first day of Indibus. Photo: courtesy of Sunep Oz.

(far left) singer and multi-instrumentalist Sunep Oz on stage at a school in Kohima on the first day of Indibus. Photo: courtesy of Sunep Oz.

When Nagaland hosts its annual culture and music festival Hornbill in December each year, there’s always a cross-section of all ages showing up to cheer and raise their horns to bands performing and competing. Turns out, there’s a large section of fans in high school who are the new target audience for the state’s artists.

For its first outing, the traveling gig series called Indibus features the best of the state’s established and emerging talent ”“ from Alobo Naga to electro pop/rockers Polar Lights and singers such as Virie Kuotsu and Sunep Oz [from Kohima indie rock band Making Merry] and hip hop producer Rhokuosie ‘Rugks’ Ngouri, among others. Supported by gig organizers Life Inside and the state government-supported Music Task Force, Indibus is organized by online music store Indihut, which launched in 2013. The lineup is completed by electro pop producer Shalo Kent, singer Metet Jamir and singer-songwriter Zaza Bangs.

The Indibus rolls out on the road today to Mezur and Fernwood schools and Sazolie College in Kohima and will visit schools and colleges in Dimapur as well this weekend. The music on the Indibus tour comes with a message, to raise awareness about everything from fair elections to the environment. Says Indihut founder Yanpvuo Kikon, “Currently, our political and electoral system is fucked up. The most corrupted and wealthy politicians buy votes from the middle class to turn democracy into a ”˜Demockcrazy’.”

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He adds about Indibus, “It was a pretty random concept which popped out while trying to figure out the low attendance in live gigs with local indie artists. Instead of working like an ass trying to get the crowd to our event, I decided we take our event to the crowd by targeting schools and colleges. Because we all know that the school/college kids are the ultimate consumers of pop culture and the energy levels are epic.”

Although the tour extends to the weekend, Kikon adds that Indibus is currently in its pilot phase, with plans to regularly tour the state still in its formative stage.

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