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New Gig Series Generation WHY to Launch in Mumbai This Week

The independent music property seeks to introduce audiences to artists from multiple genres

Riddhi Chakraborty Jan 02, 2017
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Generation WHY's entire concept is built around encouraging people to find new music through the genres they already love.

Generation WHY’s entire concept is built around encouraging people to find new music through the genres they already love. Artwork by Reva Sarma

While the number of independent artists in India is always on the rise, they’re often eclipsed by the mainstream, crowd-pulling worlds of EDM, Bollywood and pop. Perhaps  the eclipse simply comes from the public’s reluctance to explore the world of the unknown indie artists and their capabilities. Aftab Khan, former Programmer/Events Executive at Hard Rock Café India, is hoping change this pattern. His upcoming independent music property Generation WHY is about helping people discover music they normally wouldn’t explore. “Being a fan of a lot of different genres, the idea was to have a showcase for people with an open mind,” explains Khan who has curated the entire show.

Scheduled for January 5th at the Hard Rock Café Andheri in Mumbai, the entire concept is built around encouraging people to find new music through the genres they already love. The lineup for Generation WHY’s debut edition will feature Mumbai-based multilingual hip hop crew Swadesi, Pune-based post-rockers Cat Kamikazee, pop-rock band The Ryan Victor Project and Mumbai-based psychedelic act MILK - all musicians who are vastly different from one another. “If someone comes to see hip hop from Swadesi, they might watch Cat Kamikazee and end up liking them,” says Khan. “At least that’s what we’re hoping for.”

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Khan has chosen artists based on the genre they represent and how good they sound live. He also adds that all of them are bands he genuinely loves. “I saw Swadesi at the Hip Hop Homeland gig at Antisocial and I’ve known Ryan [Victor] for a while — I saw him perform at Hard Rock, I’ve programmed him before and he’s actually my senior from school,” says Khan. He goes on to say that he discovered MILK when they applied to Hard Rock Café India for a competition, while Cat Kamikazee is a relatively recent discovery.

For the next edition set to happen in March, Khan says he wants to explore a whole new set of genres to keep the variety of the series going. “The plan is to have one progressive rock band, a jazzy soul band and I’m also keen on exploring live electronic acts which I can’t really do at Hard Rock, which is why I need to move to a different venue,” he says. He adds that punk and metal are future paths he wants to walk down and give as many people as possible the chance to discover something they didn’t expect to. “There is something or the other you’re going to find which you will really love,” he promises.

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Generation WHY ft Swadesi, MILK, Cat Kamikazee and The Ryan Victor Project takes place on January 5th, 2017 at Hard Rock Café, Andheri in Mumbai. Event details here.

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