Indian Ocean’sRahul Ram is not sure whether he would like to be placed next to Madonna or Prince. The band isn’t plotting another US tour nor are they collaborating with the American popstars. The topic of discussion is whether Ram’s signature headgear will find place next to Madonna’s iconic cone- bra or Prince’s purple jacket among the variety of rock memorabilia on display at Hard Rock Café, Mumbai. “It doesn’t matter where it’s placed. It’s an honour for us to be part of the installations,” says Ram, about being the first Indian band to donate a piece of memorabilia to each café in the country for display. “We are giving away mostly stage clothes and instruments that we do not use any more. My bandana used to be a bright shade of orange, now, it is a light pink with all the wear and tear,” laughs Ram. “But most of the stuff is from the early ’90s when we first started performing, so there are a lot of memories attached.”Among the pieces of memorabilia that will soon be on display, the bandmates have handpicked kurtas and headgear as well as some of the first instruments used by the original foursome. "We have Asheem’s tablas and clothes. They are items that bring back memories of the old days," reminisces Ram. "I’ll be parting with my guitar, on which we first composed ‘Kandisa…’" he reveals.
The contemporary fusion band has always been a step ahead in the home-grown music scene. In 2008, they first came out with a live recording of their concerts on DVD. Then, in 2010, their voice of protest rock was heard on the big screen nationwide as the band’s rockumentary, Leaving Home, hit theatres. This month, Delhi’s beloved fusion rockers will be visiting Mumbai as a part of their five-city tour. The concert will see a mix of all-time hits such as ‘Kandisa…’ and ‘Hille…’ and their Bollywood favourite ‘Bandeh…’ as well as tracks from their latest album, 16/330 Khajoor Road.
While the band’s friendly onstage banter is sure to keep the audience entertained, drummer Amit Kilam adds, “We don’t go with a set-list in mind. It’ll be a mix of what the audience wants us to play and what we feel like playing.” Of his five possessions that will be displayed at the all-American rock ‘n’ roll diner, the youngest band mate says, “I’m giving some instruments as well as the first costume I wore on stage, when Indian Ocean started wearing stage attire. It was a blue silk kurta. I’m also parting with a cymbal and drum snare,” he adds. Ask him what’s his most prized possession and he is quick to reply, “It’s a gub-gubbie (baul instrument) that a wandering minstrel in Bengal presented to me. I had used it at almost all our early concerts.”
Indian Ocean performs at Hard Rock Café, Bombay Dyeing Mills Compound, Worli on March 4 at 9.30 pm.
Entry Rs. 500 (Rs. 250 cover)