What happens when a Music college graduate and an Engineer with a rich Music ancestry come together to pursue their shared passion? Magic. This is the story of Rohit Vasudevan, who went to a Music college against his parents wishes and Saket Rao whose grandfather Bhaskar Rao was an esteemed Tabla player who had played with Ustad Zakir Hussain. Both of them started out on different paths with Rohit opting for graduation in Music despite coming from a science background and Saket deciding to pursue B.Tech from MIT, Pune. But their passion for Music brought them together and thus Rohit Vasudevan Diaries (RVD) was born. There hasn’t been any looking back since with the success of their singles like Zindagi Ek Khoj, Taqleef, etc. landing them a performance at Music Mojo, Kappa TV which eventually lead to them signing with the famed label Flying Carpet Productions, founded by the illustrious Ashish Manchanda who is the protege of Bruce Swedien, the Multi-Grammy winning Producer of Michael Jackson’s records. We at Brisky caught up with them, here are the excerpts from the interview:
Both of you were acclaimed artists in your own right before RVD, what made you join forces?
We used to play Street Music in Lavasa, it was evident that there was some kind of chemistry between us and once we started jamming together the belief got stronger. This belief grew when we started composing originals like Zindagi Ek Khoj because the way our Music synced it was magical and we decided that this can be a life-long partnership. Another crucial factor is the personal bond, it is a pre-requisite that you should be really good friends if you want to create some amazing Music over the long run
Rohit, you joined a Music college for formal education which is a very rare occurrence in India, how significant is the role of formal education in Music?
Rohit: If anyone intends to take up Music as a profession then I would strongly recommend them to pursue formal education with all their heart and soul since it helps build a strong foundation in Music. It also helps you get a comprehensive understanding of Music as you are exposed to different genres which in turn helps when you collaborate with other artists from diverse backgrounds
Saket: Unlike engineering, where there is little co-relation between what you study in college and what you execute on the site, in Music whatever you learn in college will have tremendous application when you start performing professionally. It also expedites the learning process, the time required to learn Music on your own is significantly more than what you will learn from a good teacher
Music as a profession demands a lot of struggle, what kept you going during the difficult times?
First of all we don’t like the word struggle, it’s a very negative word, we see it as a journey. Our vision to become great artists is what has always pegged us on. A lot of credit goes to our friends, who have supported us at each step of the way. There were instances when their overwhelming belief in our Music kept us going in moments of self-doubt. And a special mention to our distractors because they have always tried to pull you down and in the process of proving them wrong we have actually become more focused and driven in the pursuit of our passion
Rohit: I have been writing a personal diary since my school days, it has been instrumental in my Music as well. I have this habit of writing songs in sleep, for this reason, my diary is always on the bedside so that I pen down the lyrics first thing in the morning. I love travelling, very often I take off without any set destination in mind with my diary and guitar as companions, and during the course of the journey I pen down songs in the diary taking inspiration from things around me. Diary is the medium through which I want the audience to experience my Musical world, hence the name.
There is a growing breed of Independent Musicians who are creating some amazing Music, what more needs to be done to grow the Independent Music scene further?
Independent Musicians need to become a family, the unwarranted competition and ego clashes need to be weeded out, as they say, a revolution never happens in singularity all of us need to work collectively for Independent Music’s growth. Another aspect that we should focus on is professionalism if we want to become an ‘Industry’ we need to behave like one
You have planned something interesting for your fans at the end of this month, tell us something about that?
We are collaborating with many artists and giving the relatively younger bands an opportunity to perform. It will be a night full of some groovy Music.It is on 30th October at Classic Rock Coffee Co. Anyone who enjoys getting lost in the Musical world shouldn’t give it a miss.
An album is what every artist’s dream, you are very close to realizing that dream, how does it feel?
The feeling is surreal, having our own album is what we have lived for. Zindagi Ek Khoj is an album , titled on our first single, that is a reflection of the journey humans undertake in their lives. It is a genre agnostic album with songs from a variety of genres like Funk, Jazz, Blues and Pop, we have also had the privilege to collaborate with some fabulous artists like Mohini Dey. We got this opportunity thanks to the contract we signed with. This record is the first step towards making a dent in the Universe.
You can catch some of RVD’s best performances here.
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