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Earworm for the day

Published : Oct 6, 2017, 12:36 am IST
Updated : Oct 6, 2017, 12:37 am IST

Eight iconic female singers of folk and fusion will be taking the stage at the Paddy Fields music festival.

Performances from Paddy Fields 2016
 Performances from Paddy Fields 2016

When Paddy Fields, folk and fusion music festival, was announced last year, music lovers of the genres immediately took a fancy to it, After all, this was the first time a folk and fusion music festival was being conducted on this scale. Within the next few days, tickets to the first ever chapter of the festival were sold out, with the event garnering an audience of close to 3,000 music enthusiasts. 

Dibakar Chatterjee, CEO at Nesco, where the event will take place this year as well, recalls how they built the foundations of the festival. “At Nesco, we were focusing too much on our business-to-business prospects, and felt the need to connect to customers as well,” he says, adding that it was their belief that the best possible way to connect to people is music. With their target largely being people over the age of thirty years, Dibakar says that initially they short-listed several genres that this age group listens to. “We figured that the age group prefers listening to ghazals, sufi, soft rock and folk fusion. And lo and behold! We finalised folk fusion for Paddy Fields!” he smiles.

This year, even as Paddy Fields sticks to being a folk and fusion festival, their stage will welcome eight iconic female singers from different genres. Taking centre stage this year will be Shubha Mudgal, Kalpana Patowary, Sona Mohapatra, Nooran Sisters, Susheela Raman, Tipriti Kharbangar, Sonam Kalra, and Sunita Bhuyan. 

Dibakar takes it on himself to elaborate how this year is going to be different from last year. “Last year, we had big names from the folk industry performing with us. Performers like Mame Khan, Papon, and Salim-Suleiman came in,” he says, continuing, “This year, we are solely concentrating on female singers. The iconic Shubha Mudgal, who is otherwise known for her classical music, will be performing music that is native to Uttar Pradesh, Sona Mahapatra, who is very popular for her contribution to Bollywood and Hindi-language music, will be performing Odiya music and so on.”

Tipriti KharbangarTipriti Kharbangar

Tipriti, who is a part of the blues-rock band Soulmate, opens up about her performance at Paddy Fields. “The one-hour long performance will see ethnic folk sounds and folk and blues tunes. The performance will later branch out into something else that I don’t want to disclose yet,” she laughs. 

The singer says she is really excited about performing at the festival. “This is a very different from the kind of music festivals that I’ve been a part of. My excitement knows no bounds — I look forward to my practice sessions every day!,” exclaims Tipriti. She will be performing a solo set with her blues with folk instruments.

Shubha elaborates on her performance. “I was born and bought up in Uttar Pradesh and I want to bring to the stage, tunes that are native to that land,” she says. Apart from this, the singer will also be performing tracks that are composed by other musicians. 

With these talented women taking centre stage, Tipriti says she finally feels like this is a united cause. “I feel like the North East is finally a part of something. Really, the east is not that far off,” she laughs. 

Dibakar asserts that the aim is to create a festival that will have a loyal audience coming back, edition after edition. “With Paddy Fields, we want to keep the passion for music alive. We don’t want to make money; we want to make experiences,” he says, as he hopes for double the audience count this year. 

On October 7 and 8, At Nesco Centre, Western Express Highway, Goregaon (E) Tickets: Rs 600 onwards

Tags: paddy fields, dibakar chatterjee