After hosting a stellar art exhibition, some great music festivals and a series of indie gigs, Bandra’s Mehboob Studio has become a haunt for the musically-inclined. This weekend, the newest cultural hotspot will host the first JD Rock Awards at their studio number three on Friday and the bi-monthly gig night, Live From The Console at the cosy recording studio on Saturday.
Previously, the rock awards have been held at Hard Rock Café (HRC) in Lower Parel. Ask why the venue shifts in its seventh edition and Group Director, Rolling Stone (India) Arpito Gope says, “This year, we wanted to put it together in a different fashion. HRC has its set of regulations and we wanted to host it at a place that is bigger and can help make the show grow.”
However, with this being the first time the show not being open to music fans, how does Gope and his team plan to make it bigger? “We wanted to restrict the award industry to the music world only. It will be about celebrating all those who work closely in this field.”The line-up of performing artistes this year comprises three city outfits — Sky Rabbit, Ankur & The Ghalat Family and Indus Creed. Gope comments on the lack of musical imports from the rest of India, “It depends on the availability and budget. Bands from other cities perform during the build-up gigs, where Mumbai loses out, so the idea was to offer them a chance at the finale. We’ve got Ankur (Tewari) and his band, who won last year, Raxit (Tewari) who is nominated this year and Indus Creed, who may be nominated next year, with their album coming out soon.”
And though city rockers will take to the stage, Mumbai bands have scored this year, with just one nomination (Pentagram) in the Best Band category. “Four Delhi (Indian Ocean, Menwhopause, Peter Cat Recording Co, Undying Inc) bands have been nominated this year, but this is entirely the jury's call," adds Gope.JD Rock Awards will take place at Mehboob Studio, Bandra on February 24.
For list of nominees, log on to http://jdrockawards.com