My first Sofar show: sensational or sixational?

As a new entrant in the Sofar Sounds Delhi- NCR, I was stoked to be a part of the show as one of the crew members. My favorite part of the whole set-up was putting it all together, from the decor to making sure everything is in sync (pun intended)!

There was so much thought put into every aspect of the show; from the artsy poster to the fund-raising poster, everything was well thought out. I guess when you’re creating an experience to remember, all of the little things make up a good time.

The Sofar Sounds team is resourceful, to say the least, and meeting them was so comfortable. The young team is different in their choice of music, personality, and even talent, but the love of original music brings us all together.

What surprised me the most was that everyone was making time for this, despite their jobs which give them monetary support and also recognition; but paraphrasing one of the posters- “You can’t buy love, but you can help create an intimate Sofar experience.”

The show took place in a beautiful house in B Block, Greater Kailash part-1. The evening started with an opportunistic move from the team bringing on board a group of traveling musicians from the US, The Bluegrass Journeymen. They were traveling to India to spread the ‘Bluegrass’ culture and landed up with us on their last night in the country.

Interestingly, the band was only formed for this tour but they plan to take the whole project forward. The band played in various places around the country including making a trip to Shantiniketan and playing with Baul folk musicians from there which they mentioned as a highlight before Sofar Sounds show.

During their performance, they spoke a lot about the similarities that the Baul folk music has with Bluegrass. The band comprised of Mandolin, Banjo, Fiddle, Guitar and Bass, this kind of a band that Delhi was not well versed with but the crowd took it in very well and enjoyed to the best. During the performance, we all learned it was George, the Banjo players birthday and the entire audience sang the Happy Birthday song for him.

The next act was an act to remember; Rishabh Seen who is a sitarist enthralled the audience with some metal on his instrument of choice. Everyone remained skeptical of his metal ability until he showed them that head banging is literal when it comes to expanding your horizons with music. Seeing Rishabh Seen on the lineup poster had excited many from the audience that enjoys Heavy music, for he has many fans. The 20-year-old spoke of his dark days that inspired him to write his music and played his popular song Calypso and a beautiful song that he wrote by himself at home on an old keyboard called Remember Why. His performance ended with a question and answer session by the host and questions from some fans in the audience which included questions about his contact with his idol Tosin Abasi from Animals and Leaders and his work with prog lord Steven Wilson.

We ended the night with another traveler, Phillip “Brail” Watson known to all as Brail, who was here in India to shoot a music video for National Geographic Channel. Amongst his many travel stories, Sofar SoundsDelhi NCR became the story to end his stories about his first visit to India, hopefully with much more to come. Brail not only sang like a dream but got the entire audience on their feet which was needed as the weekend was coming to an end.

He walked onto the stage and sang a song out of how to follow him on social media. Once Brail began, the audience started singing and dancing in no time. The Sofar core team mentioned that in 6 months they never saw such a receptive audience. The dancing went on for a whole hour after show with many from the audience, team, and artists dancing together.

Sofar Delhi NCR show #6 was like an intimate family gathering in a beautiful house with beautiful hosts and some really amazing and diverse global music. It was almost as the world of music was in there right then.

Goes to show that anyone can really play at a Sofar Sounds Delhi NCR show, from indie-Indian talent to international acts. So stay tuned for #7 on the 16th of April in South Delhi!

You can sign up here to attend the show, volunteer, perform or host a Sofar Sounds Delhi NCR show: http://www.sofarsounds.com/delhi-ncr

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