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After Nearly a Hundred Livestreams, Oorali Hit the Road for Goa Tour

The Kerala folk band will perform five shows for the first time since the pandemic began

Anurag Tagat Nov 25, 2020

Thrissur, Kerala folk rockers Oorali at Ziro Festival of Music 2018. Photo: Shiv Ahuja

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Soon after landing in Goa from Thrissur, art-rock band Oorali were quick to acquire some beers and get acquainted with the territory they were touring for the first time. Guitarist and composer Saji Kadampattil says, “It’s another scene here in Goa.” 

Playing five shows between November 25th and December 3rd, Oorali called on former bassist Jaijea Kuruvilla to put together their Long Time, No Sea tour. Saji says, “Jaijea moved to Goa and he has a background in the tourism industry. He’s trying to create the music scene there and called us over. It’s like a family get together, work and pleasure.” 

Their first shows in front of an audience since March, Oorali have been hosting livestream performances nearly daily out of their home setup in Thrissur. It started with about 30 people tuning in to now drawing over a thousand viewers watching live. “It gave us a taste of the digital medium,” Saji says. While the arresting theatrics of frontman and vocalist Martin John Chalissery was adapted to a virtual format — and he was often scrolling through comments and responding — Oorali were also changing up their repertoire to include Spanish, Tamil, English, Bengali and of course, Malayalam. They also dove into film, drama and traditional folk songs to add to the setlist, as well as stories and poems. 

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For their current Goa tour, there’s also Goan songs that they’ve picked up. Known for their striking storytelling format at gigs, Saji says the first show on the tour will decide how they’ll perform. “We try to customize our shows to the place we play in,” he adds. 

Saji notes that while they adapted to the situation with digital gigs, Oorali wants to get to another level in terms of technology, ticketing and more. “Otherwise it’s only benefitting Zuckerberg,” the guitarist says with a laugh, referring to the Facebook founder. 

Plotting out special shows for their 100th livestream concert once they are back in Thrissur, Oorali also have three albums’ worth of material and are working on an integrated website to consolidate a digital audience. “We’ve tapped in how to interact with the algorithms,” Saji says. 

Long Time, No Sea Oorali in Goa Tour

November 25th – Groove 42, Vagator

November 27th – Sensistan Art Museum, Vagator

November 28th – Guru Bar, Anjuna

December 1st – Wild Flower Hostel, Arambol

December 3rd – Gaia Hostels, Anjuna 

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