Music gigs in India are no longer about humble choruses, head-banging or music by bad composers. A new genre has emerged on the scene of Indian musical concerts which is independent music by freshly-formed bands. It can be fusion-folk, fusion-rock, classic rendition or a newly written song by these artists. This new breed of musicians is striking right chords among people.
While Bollywood melodies and established professional singers steal most of the limelight and cash, indie music is also not doing so badly during these days and is actually luring the music producers. A concert reminds me of frizzy-haired Aditya of the movie ‘Rock-on’ who left his career in music to become an investment banker. Well, this is not the case now-a-days; in fact it is just opposite.
What is Indie Music?
Indie music of these days can be pop, rock, disco, folk, pure, metal, fusion or even a classical raga done in your characteristic style. To get noticed easily, the bands usually compromise on their style of music and perform something close to Bollywood music, but Indie music is not about that. In early 90s, artists such as Alisha Chinai and Baba Sehgal tried to make their mark by composing music that is different from Bollywood and that worked too.
Problems of Artists in Indie Music
The primary trouble of Indie musicians in that era was signing up with record labels and studios that required them to compromise on their creativity. The only music that survived during that lull was Punjabi pop music by various artists such as Jassi, Hans Raj Hans etc. The dilemma about not having to compromise on the music of artist faded away when bands such as Euphoria, Silk Route and Indian Ocean emerged, releasing blockbuster albums.
While the artists got their initial hits due to popularity, but nothing spectacular happened to their bands in the first 10 years of their origin. They did great music but still were novice in publicity and marketing. The game changed eventually with advent of internet in 2005. While the Indie music industry still remains a clutter, but internet is still one of best release platform for emerging musicians.
Upsurge in Indie Music
The indie music scenario is increasing day by day in India. In last one and a half year, the attention, consumption and investment have gone up. The investment in ecosystem of this form of music is going high, year-by-year. The head of programming and content at MTV Indies, Nikhil Udupa, advises that to avoid clutter on internet, the social medial algorithm should be corrected.
Pubs, too are serving as great platforms for indie platforms. Music agencies are also helping indie musicians stay afloat. Aswekeepsearching runs an agency of its own, BlueTree, which helps other musicians find work. The number of live bands in India is proof of indie’s popularity. According to a survey conducted, Mumbai alone has about 600 bands, followed by Delhi, Bengaluru and Pune. Hence, the popularity of indie music is certainly increasing and emerging musicians and singers have huge scope to experiment their music during these days.