UK-based folk band Kan can be aptly describes as a melting pot. The four-member outfit is known for their ingenious melange of folk music traditions from England, north of Ireland and Scotland. Brian Finnegan (flute), Aidan O’Rourke (fiddle), James Goodwin (drummer) and Ian Stephenson (guitar) are also known to pull in the crowds thanks to their sprightly melodies.
Tonight, they will perform a gig at one of Mumbai’s most scenic outdoor venues, Bandra Fort Amphitheatre. “One reason we’re so excited to be performing in India is that there’s such a deep musical tradition here. There’s no choice but to dive in and absorb as much as we can. We’ll be drawing on that in later compositions, no doubt about it,” says Finnegan.
Since all four members represent different regions from the UK, it’s only natural that their music reflects their diverse cultures. “Folk and traditional music in Ireland, Scotland, Wales and England is a fairly intimate family, so we were aware of each other’s music for a few years before we teamed up in January 2010. Each of us had quietly gained a reputation for collaborating on pretty progressive cross-genre projects and writing our own material,” he says.
A lover of Indian music, Finnegan has, in the past, teamed up with Indian artistes as well. “I toured India in 1998 and played with Rajendra Prasanna and Sunil Kant Gupta (flautists), and it was an inspiring experience for me. I would love to collaborate with the young Indian flute maestro Shashank Subramanyam; I think he’s quite amazing.”
O’Rourke also shares his experience, “I’ve worked with Trilok Gurtu and Shankar Mahadevan at the Celtic Connections festival in 2010. I’ve also collaborated with the master violinist Sharat Chandra Srivastava.”