Praveen Yadav | Oct 17, 2021 | 0
BAAVA & BLUEDOOR PROJECT
Baava & Bluedoor Project’ is a collaborative of Hansal Suthar (Aka Baava), a Delhi/Ahmedabad-based singer-songwriter, and Mayank Singh (aka Bluedoor), a guitarist-producer based out of Delhi/Bangalore.
Their shared love for telling stories through music brought Hansal and Mayank together. Music has shaped their lives from the very beginning. Baava & Bluedoors’ debut EP “Dastan” is an amalgamation of untold tales, with four chapters released so far on prominent music platforms.
Here are Baava and Bluedoor in a conversation with GOGO Magazine.
1) When did your band’s journey begin?
Both of us have known each other briefly since 2014. Baava had just finished his graduation from CEPT University, Ahmedabad and Bluedoor had joined the same college for his post-graduation. Both of us met on the college campus for one of the choir events, and we jammed after that. Cut to 2018, Baava moved to Delhi for work, and Bluedoor was also in the same city, so we met and talked about how both of us want to work on some original music, and then we thought of collaborating for a couple of original songs that Baava had in his mind. During the process, we felt like working on an elaborate set of original songs, and that’s how ‘Baava and Bluedoor Project’ was formed in 2019.
2) Tell us more about the experience of telling stories through music.
Our debut album is titled ‘Dāstān’ which literally translates to a story. We wanted to not compose songs incoherent with each other and throw in an album as a compilation. Instead, we devised an entire storyboard and divided it into five chapters each talking about a phase of the story. Each song has a specific emotion associated with a particular phase of the story. After performing the same for a couple of online shows & social media live sessions, we realized that our audience connects with our songs, and they do feel all the emotions we want them to feel through our storytelling & music. They would say that they get transported mentally to the place and the emotions would hit the nail on the head. The idea is that emotions are not to be felt in isolation but through stories and crafty storytelling, either lyrically or sonically. So we guess, it has been a good experience so far.
3) Which has been your first track?
The first track of our EP is self-titled ‘Dāstān’. It has a peppy, light, exciting, anticipatory, travel feel. As an opening track, this is the first chapter of the story where the protagonist is on their journey and is inspired by the sights and sounds along the way. There is both a sense of nostalgia/familiarity with the destination as well as a sense of the mysterious unknown which the protagonist embraces with a sense of wonder and innocence.
4) Who has been your inspiration?
We come with diverse musical backgrounds and a host of inspirations, spanning a lot of genres. Baava is a trained ‘visharad’ in Hindustani Classical Music. His inspirations are rooted in classical and folk. And he is always in line and updated with the latest trends in indie and pop music trends of the country. His inspirations span from Amit Trivedi, Ankur Tewari, Raghu Dixit to The Beatles, Jack Johnson, Bob Dylan, etc.
Bluedoor is a self-taught guitarist and a producer with a base in rock. He also is deeply inspired by Carnatic instrumentation and fascinated with fusing Indian classical and electronic with western genres like jazz and rock. His inspirations span from AR Rehman, Steven Wilson, Pink Floyd, Advaita, etc.
5) Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years?
We do not have a set goal in mind, but we aim to be at a place where we can make a difference through our music. With more experience & exposure to the industry, we aim to become better & better with each & every experience coming our way. We have our full-time jobs going on in parallel – Baava/Hansal is a consultant with the Ministry of Rural Development, Govt. of India and Bluedoor/Mayank is an architecture professor in Bengaluru, and we happen to be passionate about the work we do, so jumping ship to a full-time role in music is not something we desire. But we are open to commercial projects and gigs as it is quite a challenging place to be in current times as an Indie band.
6) How would you describe your music?
Our sound is a mix of several sonic identities we relate to, on a bed of palpable pop-rock. Throughout Dāstān we see inspirations from acoustic, indie-pop, and folk with modest borrowings from electronic, Khayāl, even Carnatic. Lyrically, we write mainly in Hindi, but going through the EP we love to try out lyrics in English and the regional languages we are comfortable with (Gujarati).
7) Which has been your most memorable song or project?
Baava: For me, the most memorable song of this EP has been the 4th chapter ‘Jawāb’. Because it was completely Bluedoor’s idea to create a song with a not-so-usual time signature and the emotion of the song itself was quite dramatic. So the process of writing lyrics & record vocals for this particular song was a challenge and no kidding, the lyrics of this song were written during a flight journey while I was listening to the raw jamming clip sent by Bluedoor.
Bluedoor: That’s like asking a parent which is their favorite child! But jokes apart, I’m conflicted between the 3rd chapter ‘Kāl’, mainly because of the amount of frustration and second thoughts it brought us during its composition OR the epilogue of the EP, the latest release ‘Sawāl’ because I wrote these simple chords way back in 2017 and Baava took it to a whole new level with the lyrical depth and musical intricacy. Also, kudos to Yash, the video has come out beautiful. Check it out if you haven’t!
8) What advice would you give to aspiring musicians?
There’s nothing like a ‘right time to start your journey with what you are passionate about. Keep on doing what you love and never stop doing it. Statistically, if you just keep at it, people give up on the way and it only becomes better for you. It’s important to understand that it was never about numbers, and it will never be about numbers. It was, has been, and will always be about the art that you deliver and how passionately, uniquely and genuinely you deliver it. Also, it’s ok to be confused about your ‘sound’ and it’s ok to work another job and have a whole different side to you. Music may give you your identity, but it does not have to be your only identity or your sole career.
9) Share some of your achievements with the magazine.
We have released our debut EP Dāstān with 5 songs starting from October 2019 to August 2021 and are now available on all streaming platforms. Our YouTube Channel has amassed 94k+ views and our work has recently been featured in Sofar Bangalore, House Concert India, Rock Street Journal, Indie Tune, Bangalore Art Company, Livelee, Match My Talent, etc. We have got opportunities to interact & showcase our work to some of the greatest people in the industry like Ankur Tewari, Susmit Sen (Indian Ocean/Susmit Sen Chronicles), and EhsaanNoorani. We were supposed to play some gigs at some really exciting venues in 3 cities, but the pandemic took over. Hopefully, things are getting better and bigger opportunities and venues await.
10) How was life in quarantine?
It was quite a mixed bag for us personally. Like a lot of people, we too saw our tough times with the suffering of our dear ones and the mental toll it had over us both as working individuals and as artists. However, we learned to cook amazing food, released the last 2 songs of our EP, composed one fresh track, and made full use of our time doing networking and gigs online.
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