January, 2017

Daisuke Tanabe // Chiba, Japan

Daisuke Tanabe // Chiba, Japan

Mukul: How was it like to grow up in Chiba? Daisuke: I have not  grown up there really. I moved and travelled to various places in Japan and learnt life. Growing up in Japan is simple and nice, it’s really different from rest of the world. Mukul: How did music happen? Daisuke: It happened naturally. I had some inclinations towards sounds when I was around 10 or something. I used to keep my music making or track making, as pure hobby until I was 13. It was later when I shared my music with others Mukul: How do you find living in Japan along with your constant travels to various spaces and cultures around the world? Daisuke: It is kind of mixed. It feels comfortable but it also feels as though am away from home. I feel everything when am away, but I like it. Mukul: Tell me about your process of making music? Daisuke: Music is like making films. Like you want to create something say scary movies, you don’t have to make something look scary or something, its just the feelings. Sometimes it works opposite, some scary scenes can go with peaceful music. It makes it scarier sometimes, because there is an irony. Mukul: Yeah, I get it. So you consider your music ‘Cinematic’? Daisuke: Yeah, totally! Mukul: You create music with your emotions and how you feel. What’s that one emotion that plays as a recurring motif in your sound? Daisuke: I don’t really start making a track by an emotion, I simply decide that I am going to make music today,  and then put some emotion after that, that’s the order. So, it depends really. Once it starts, it takes it’s own direction, until it’s finished. There is a way to finish the track, a climax….

Monica Dogra & Shilo Shiv Suleman

Monica Dogra & Shilo Shiv Suleman

Mukul: So, how did you two meet? Monica: Shilo emailed me, long ago, she told me about her work, and she appreciated my work and I wrote back saying that I appreciated hers too, and one day we can collaborate and she started doing installations and stage work for Nh7 weekender and then we met again, 4 years later maybe in person and then a very good friend of mine from Bombay started to be very close to her and I guess I have a problem letting new people in, because I really liked her and I just didn’t know how to get close, she got close to my friend and then we started to hang out lot of time and I think it was at Magnetic fields when we really bonded and I realized she is my soul mate and now there are very few people in India to count on two hands, my closest, and she is one of them. Mukul: Tell me about your time at the festival, how did it grow you two as people and as friends? Monica: Shilo and I have been coming to this festival together for three years. We call ourselves, jokingly, the Ranis and often find ourselves with Agarbatis and giant headgears on. Shilo does a lot of work that thematically aligns with all my works, yes, we do different things.. hmm, she is a great source of inspiration for me- a muse and confidant. Shilo: Its actually quite appropriate the logo from magnetic fields – 2 squares located around each other making a star, cause it feels like me and Monica are like that, I am one symbol and she is another symbol then we interjected in a very beautiful way, sort of complimenting each other. So, I think magnetic…

Gabriel Superpoze // Paris

Gabriel Superpoze // Paris

Mukul Bhatia: So what’s your story? Superpoze: Well, am a 24 year old French boy, I was born in a small town in the north of France and I studied classic percussions in the academy when I was a little child. I took the road of electronic music very early at the age of 19, so it’s been 5 years right now. I started to tour a lot in France, all my shows were in France in the beginning and I did some EPs. I released my first real album, called ‘Opening’ in early 2015 and thus I started to do music tours outside of Europe, a bit of America, but mostly Europe and UK, and this is my first time in India and I just finished my second album which is going to be out next year. Am so happy to be here and a lot of things happening. Mukul: Do you consider yourself a nomad? Superpoze: Yes, with my music career so far, totally! I have a song in my first album called ‘Home Is Where I Am’ and the title is really what I started to feel as I started to tour across places and palaces. I definitely think that my home is just where I am, coz when I was 10 years old, my family just split up and I started to move from houses to houses and my home became just my laptop and piano, so I think yeah, am definitely a nomad. Mukul:   A lot of your tracks and EP albums are named after cities, countries and cultures, just like your ‘The Iceland Sound’ EP. Do you think there is a co-relation with travel and the music you make? Superpoze:   Yes, for sure. One clear example that I can talk about is that when…

Prince Abhimanyu Singh // Alsisar

Prince Abhimanyu Singh // Alsisar

Mukul Bhatia: Ok, so what is it like, to be a prince from, and in modern India? Abhimanyu: (LAUGHS) That’s a really good question. I think it’s a great feeling, getting to be born in a house like this, and to be able to do something beautiful for the people of the area, and the family and around, coz after all we’re not the owners but the custodians of the house. Am actually not really a prince, people call me that coz of the properties and the heritage but I don’t like to be called like that, I mean, India is a democratic country. Mukul Bhatia: You said last time that you travel a lot, do you consider yourself a nomad? Abhimanyu: I am a nomad, totally. I drive around 70, 000 kms an year and to various properties around Rajasthan. So I travel and take care of them. I also do sculpting works and collect pieces that are located in various parts of the state that involves a lot of travelling, and dealing with things I care about and help me grow. Mukul: What has travelled done to you so far? Abhimanyu: There is an old saying, ‘jo phirega wo charega’, which means that you only get to grow if you travel. If you don’t get out of your well, you’d always remain the frog who stayed in the well. I wanted to see the world, so I had to travel. I believe that road trips are the best way to travel. I make sure I take a month long road trip every year. I just came back after driving around 2800km all across Italy, we hired a small Fiat Pinto and it was lovely. Mukul: The first gypsies that started nomadic culture all across the world are the…

Smita Singh // New Delhi

Smita Singh // New Delhi

Mukul: So Smita, How would you define your life so far? Smita: Just evolving, that’s what I am constantly doing. Everything that I am engaging from work, to my own self. I am really open to change and to evolve and that is that one thing I can say is constant about me, that I will surely move to another place not moving physically but carrying all the experiences of the last place along, into a new life or zone that I carve, that’s kind of how I do things. Mukul: What is your idea of home? Smita: It’s the most special place for me. It’s my safe space, open for everyone but an absolute expression of who I am. That’s the one place where I don’t have any inhibition, I don’t have any worry about, what anyone thinks and doesn’t. I really express myself completely in my house in the way it looks, in the way it functions, in the way I function when I am in it. Mukul: So you have hands around in different places- you own a music festival, you have a restaurant as well, and you have been a stylist as we talked last time in Delhi. How does creativity flow for you? In different facets of businesses and ventures? Smita: For me it is more about the moments rather than things, its about small endeavors that I give my energy in. I look at my life in a very very micro way. I am always engrossed within one particular thing – so if something comes up in a conversation and it tickles my imagination, I will just do it. I mean it could be a conversation about making a music festival, which is really how Magnetic Fields came about, and I will do everything to…

Armaan Menzies // Bombay

Armaan Menzies // Bombay

Mukul Bhatia : So Arman, What’s your story ? Arman Menzies : What’s my story ?? Ahh, man! I am a mix of my dad’s Scottish side and my mom is Mangalorian. I was born in Canada and am Canadian by nationality but Indian for all other reasons. I pretty much grew up in Bombay and then I went to school in Pune. Later I figured out those were the days that kind of made me who I am today. Going to Krishna Murthy School was really unique and I remember that in my first class my English teacher asked me to go and spend the next 45 minutes under a tree, have a conversation with it and  write about it. Coming from Bombay, which is so regimented,  everything was mugging and doing things by the book, it was fully eye opening. I appreciate all those years a lot. Mukul : So you call yourself a Bombay person ? Arman: Yeah, for sure. I have grown up there and my family is there. There is always home in Bombay, its comfort zone and these years I feel like there’s so much happening there – It’s where I want to be. Art wise, music wise. Its really good to be back here. Mukul : Do you think that the spaces you’ve lived in have affected the music you play at your sets? Arman : Definitely!  I have been listening to really early memories of Ray Charles, Pink Floyd, Led zeppelin, that was what I grew upon. I have got a pretty good education in music but I don’t know if growing up in India has really influenced it. I only got into classical music  much later. But my mum used to take me to Jazz Yatra every year, which was really inspiring. Mukul: How old were…

Jahanvi Dameron Nandan

Jahanvi Dameron Nandan

Mukul: What is your story? Jahanvi: Currently I am perfumer; I blend ingredients sometimes 60 to 200 of them to create fine fragrances. In previous lives, I have done other things that culminated to perfumery. I was a classical dancer, I am trained as an architect and right now I have been trying to blend all creative backgrounds that I have had in my perfumery. Mukul: How were you as a child? Jahanvi: As a child I think I lived in my imagination all the time and I told a lot of stories. I would always cook things up and these were not lies, these were primarily stories to make me feel interesting, cause I felt like until I was 30 years old that I was very boring, and I was constantly challenging myself to be interesting to myself and then somehow, those stories became true. Mukul: What’s your idea of home? Jahanvi: Home? This is a very touchy topic. I am very emotional about it at this moment, because I Iost my home recently. I wouldn’t call myself homeless, I have shelter over my head these days but I don’t have a home and that is what I am really craving for and it is a very touchy topic. If I go in too much detail, I will become extremely emotional about it. One of my closest friends sadly was murdered last year, she was a contemporary artist and she too had a similar issue to mine with her home and her last work is called ‘Build me a nest where I can finally rest’ and I am on that stage as well. It’s in my head everyday, I wake up and I am talking to the world and I am requesting the world to build me a nest…

Louis Couke // Brussels

Louis Couke // Brussels

Mukul Bhatia: So tell me about you! Louis Couke: Am 28, Am from Belgium, I work for an international cloths label for 3 years, and working in India for the same since last one and a half years. Mukul: And how do you find it? Louis: Aah its crazy, I love it! Its an amazing experience, an amazing country and you get to travel quite a lot. It’s great growth from both personal and professional perspective, I love it! Mukul: And what’s your life’s story so far? Louis: Quite interesting question, haha. Amm, I’ve been born and raised in Brussels, Belgium and since am 18 I’ve been travelling or living most of my time out of Belgium, mostly in Europe, here and there. And then I had opportunity to go to India while I had no idea about the country so I said, lets do it! I love photography, and a real passion that has been developing and its growing here being in India. Mukul: What’s your favourite ice-cream? Louis: Stracciatella! Mukul: What is beauty for you? Louis: I think beauty is what you want to see with your eyes. Something that you relate to, support or feel happy to see is just beautiful! Mukul: What’s your favourite colour? Louis: I would say Blue, boring but its blue!

Lulu Leonard // Tulun, Mexico

Lulu Leonard // Tulun, Mexico

Mukul: What is your story? Lulu: My story? Well, I was living in Los Angeles, I lived there for 7 years, and I saw everything, and I wanted a change. A friend of mine had been travelling to India and he met this woman. I had a boutique hotel that time in Mexico and she took him to a small mine village called tulun, basically a paradise. He is an architect and when we were there, he had this vision to open a restaurant in a jungle and so he came back with all the pictures and convinced 5 of us to go on a road trip down to Mexico and basically everyone bailed, and I was like ‘fuck that we are going’. Neither one of us spoke Spanish so we drove from Los Angeles to Tulun, it took us 3 weeks on the way we stopped, had amazing adventures in a vintage Mercedes Wagon – we called it The Yellow Mushroom. Anyways, when we got there, I instantly fell in love with that place. But I still had obligations at work, so later that year he asked me to partner him in this hospitality project so I ended up in Mexico, and for about 5 years, I helped to create that space – the ambience, interiors, lighting and different things, last year I started my own store called – ‘Calo’ Mukul: What does it mean? Lulu: Calo is the secret language of gypsy. It is kind of a visual representation of our lives; since we like to travel, and are very inspired by ancient cultures, crafts. I tried to incorporate that philosophy into what I do. Next year I will be going to Bolivia, Guatemala and Peru and working with artisans there. And along the way, we will be…

Will Mumford // Jaipur

Will Mumford // Jaipur

  Mukul Bhatia: Hey there! Tell me about you? Will Mumford: My name is Will Mumford. I’m from the US, from Wisconsin, the state above Chicago. Mukul: And what’s your story so far? Will: Oh my gosh, that’s a question. Like when I was really young, I knew that I have to live in India and I came here when I was 20, and it’s been 6 years now that I am really exploring all the possibilities of my life in India and I really love every minute of it, that’s my life. Mukul: What do you do? Will: I take care of a bar in Jaipur- it is called Bar Palladio, I plan events and I do the management of that bar. We have one bar and one café. Mukul: What do you believe in? Will: I believe in humor and beauty, and the free flowing expression of life. Mukul: Do you consider yourself a nomad? Will: No, I do not. I mean I could, but I don’t consider myself as one. Mukul: How important do you think is travel? Will: I was just thinking about this. Ahh, I think travel is very important but what’s more important is to take time and live, get bored in single place. Travel is very important visually, to see, and experience – but to actually feel like home or not to feel like home in a new place  is most important –  to travel for really long periods of time and with enough time to actually realise that, “Fuck I am so bored and I really don’t know what to do and trapped where I am, not just boom boom boom snap ‘I have been to 7 countries’ and I checked my list”. The kind of feeling when it is difficult to leave a place you’re travelling…