As the designated DJ in most car rides, I often find myself choosing music that people around me enjoy. I attribute this to my upbringing in a joint family, where I didn’t have much control over what we watched or listened to on TV or the radio. As a result, I didn’t develop a strong personal taste in music and instead gravitated towards popular artists of the time, like Strings, Junoon, and Silk Route. Sonu Nigam was a pop star, and KK voiced the new generation. Bombay Rappers were hip-hop artists, and Sukhbir was a party favourite. I even went to stores with my aunts to buy cassette tapes of these artists. Good times!
This was by far the golden era of pop music when India had a thriving music culture independent of Bollywood. Today all we can do is watch as Bollywood burns it all to the ground. Ugly remixes have wrapped their evil tentacles around us. With every iteration of NKOTRBB – new kid on the reductive Bollywood block – from Pritam to Tanishk Bagchi, each act of sabotage gets even worse.
Where am I going with this meandering rant down memory lane? Patience, Padwan. Through it all, there’s been an unappreciated movement of indie artists putting out original music in a variety of genres. Using the Internet to aid discovery. One of these platforms to help you discover and support these artists is the podcast Maed in India.
This podcast has helped me identify some of the best Indian indie musicians. Each episode features an artist/band interview with an exclusive stripped-down session or acoustic renditions of their original music. It’s become my go-to place to find new music of all genres, artists from newcomers to veterans, and learn their stories.
Show an indie musician some love today. Make a playlist.