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Parikrama: Deconstructing Change

Keyboardist Subir Malik talks about how music has changed over that last two decades, what’s coming next for Parikrama and what he’s expecting from this year’s edition of Jadhavgadh Music Festival

Rolling Stone India Sep 24, 2014
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Courtesy Parikrama

Parikrama | Photo: Courtesy of the artist

 

When Parikrama formed in 1991, the airbag had just been invented and the internet had been made available for unrestricted commercial use. Twenty three years is a long time and it’s sometimes easy to forget what it took to make the New Delhi-based band the rock veterans that we know them as today. Says keyboardist Subir Malik, “It was a different era then – we’d have to go to PCOs to call colleges to try and get gigs, or hope people heard about us through word of mouth. We’ve done it the hard way but we’ve treated every show the same way, whether it was for 40 or 400 people.”

Today, with audiences growing increasingly fickle, a combination of hard work and innate talent have made sure that Parikrama are still on the map. Says Malik, “We still talk about our performances every time we get off stage. If someone comes up to you and tells you that you weren’t good, as musicians we should be able to accept it and try harder the next time. Openness is very important for a band to survive.” Parikrama performs anywhere between 60 to 150 gigs a year ”“ and while they do have their reservations about where and when they play, it’s a hectic tour schedule at best. In just the last five years, they’ve performed tours of North America, England, Indonesia, Vietnam, Laos and of course, India. Adds Malik, “This year we refused a lot of shows and we took a break for four months, that’s the most time off we’ve ever had.” Regulars at every major venue, music festival and college event that one can think of ”“ Parikrama’s fan base has been steadily growing over the years, a feat that they again attribute to being open to criticism. Says the keyboardist, “Twenty three years ago, there were maybe 10 good bands in New Delhi ”“ now there’s probably 2000. We think it’s fantastic that there’s so much young talent, but it’s also harder to be visible among the clutter.”

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Parikrama is already working on new material, which they will begin performing live next month, including tracks such as “Life Is Certain” and “Screaming Town.” The band is slated to perform at the second edition of Jadhavgadh Music Festival this year, along with electro pop act Shaa’ir and Func, fusion band Swarathma and more. Organized by the Genesis Foundation, the festival will be held on September 27th, 2014, at the idyllic 18th century Jadhavgadh Fort in Pune. Says Malik, “When we were called, we agreed to perform before even discussing the details. Genesis always has great content, plus I don’t remember the last time that we got to play in a fort. Who wouldn’t be excited?” Last year’s edition of the festival featured acts such as jam band Something Relevant and Mumbai singer-songwriter Akshay Deodhar.

 

 

Parikrama On Demand
Here’s a list of 10 most-requested tracks on Parikrama’s setlist:

 

“Open Skies”

“Tears Of The Wizard”

“Vapourize”

“R N B”

“Xerox”

“Am I Dreaming”

“But It Rained”

“In The Middle”

“How Do We Decide It?”

“Sweet Ass Sugar”

 

Jadhavgadh Music Festival 2014 Lineup

Geetu Hinduja
Atul Ahuja & The Band
Parikrama
Swarathma
Shaa’ir + Func

 

The Jadhavgadh Music Festival by Genesis Foundation and Jack Daniel’s takes place at Fort Jadhav Gadh Hotel, Pune on September 27th and 28th, 2014. Donor cards available for Rs 3,500 per person and Rs 5,500 for couples here.  Event details here.

 

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