Making music to heal: Delhi-NCR musicians make a note, pitch in help
Ludwig van Beethoven once said: Music can change the world. And this is true amid the pandemic, as surrounded by grief while battling the second wave of Covid-19, some musicians in Delhi-NCR are creating notes to use their music to heal those in need. From inspiring people to donate plasma to giving away music pieces and donating oxygen cylinders, these artistes are doing it all.
“Overwhelmingly terrifying and dark this time has been, and the only ray of light has been seeing so many people step up and do their bit to help. I recently saw a fund to save someone’s grandparents suffering from Covid reach its goal overnight, and that was so reassuring and powerful,” says singer Kamakshi Khanna, who has been participating in concerts organised to raise funds for Covid relief. “Show Up For India is a fundraiser that I got to be part of, which raised over 37 lakhs for organisations like Hemkunt Foundation and Give India. I also participated in a songwriting workshop in collaboration with Jesus & Mary College and Lady Shri Ram College, and all the proceeds from here will go to charities such as Karwan-e-Mohabbat and Mazdoor Kitchen,” she says, adding, “It’s great to be a small part of bigger initiatives contributing to helping our country get out of this crisis, from the safety and comfort of my bedroom, doing what I love the most.”
For music producer Harleen Singh, raising funds for Covid relief started with him offering free music production lessons in exchange for donation to different organisations. But after he partnered with his friend and music producer, Siddhant Chordia, an initiative, Breathe This Air, came into being. Singh explains, “The project is giving free original beats to donors who will support organisations that are providing oxygen concentrators and cylinders to people in need. For ₹2,000 you get one beat, and for donations above ₹5,000 you will get a beat customised to your request.” His initiative has brought more artistes, painters and producers to diversify their giveaways. “We have so far given out over 70 beats and 23 artworks and have facilitated donation of 14,000 litres of oxygen against our target of 20,000 litres. I’m elated that our art has come to the aid of others,” adds Singh.
When denizens were facing insurmountable challenges to deal with shortage of oxygen cylinders and concentrators, members of Bloodywood – an Indian Folk Metal band based – decided to take matters into their own hands. “We used our earnings to purchase five oxygen concentrators worth ₹3,50,000 and donated them to Hemkunt Foundation. They were put to use the very moment we delivered them. We have also shared links of this foundation’s fundraiser, which has received donations from our fans based all over the world,” says Karan Katiyar, a member of the band, adding, “We did this because helping is the ideology behind our music, and we will continue to provide support to others in whichever way possible!”
Known for their songs with eclectic influences, another Delhi-based band Peter Cat Recording Co also joined the bandwagon of musicians helping the countrymen tide over tough times. “People of the country should have never been put in this situation in the first place... People whose lives have been lost in this pandemic will never be replaced. But, we want to help those who are still fighting. So, we’ve put some of our albums on sale, and will donate the proceeds to Hemkunt Foundation, Swabhiman Society and an individual; considering their real life impact. Our donation, however, is a drop in a drought,” says the band.
Author tweets @bhagat_mallika