Our first introduction to Nischay Parekh and Jivraj Singh in 2013 when they performed for RSJ’s India Music Week festival presenting a sound that felt quaint and musically dainty was perhaps the beginning of what is now catching the attention of the likes of Wes Anderson to Cerys Mathews at BBC.
Parekh & Singh grew up in Kolkata, both equally assiduous in their craft as musicians have contributed heavily to indie music landscape with some prolific work in their respective journeys. We spoke to them about the recent developments and their upcoming plans:
RSJ: Hi! Do tell us about the new developments with P&S since your video getting noticed by Wes Anderson to Cerys Mathews? How are you guys feeling about it?
P & S: It’s all been dream-like. Let’s be honest, this kind of thing doesn’t happen to bands from our country, it’s never happened before. Everyday feels like we’re taking a step forward on some strange and entirely new adventure. We were told recently that we are the only band from India to have played a session for the BBC. Things like that are incredibly humbling and gratifying. We are proud that we are able to show the world what we do and that they can see a truly alternative India.
RSJ: How would you describe your chemistry as a duo team? Maybe tell us a bit about growing up in Calcutta as musicians.
P & S: Jivraj and I complete each other’s musical sentences. As corny as that may sound, it’s true. We really play together. Jivraj grew up in a family of the finest performing musicians that this country has ever seen, I grew up in a home where music was revered and loved. We both respect and see the deep value in the job that we do.
RSJ: So what are the plans with Parekh and Singh? Do you think your music will find more listeners in the West than in India?
P & S: It’s an exciting position to be in. I (Nischay) personally do feel that we will find more ears all over the world going forward - at home and abroad. It’s all about momentum in this game and we’re ready to play. It is incredibly satisfying to reach new audiences anywhere. We are touring the UK and Ireland in May and we hope to go back and tour other parts of Europe in august potentially.
RSJ: What are your thoughts about the current independent music scenario in India?
P & S: There are some fine musicians, producers and songwriters in this country at the moment. Everyone just needs that seemingly unattainable mix of luck, inspiration and direction. Some of our favourites are Sandunes, Nicholson and Disco Puppet.
RSJ: Would you tell us about the UK tour? How did it come about? Any collaborations along the way?
P & S: It is going to be 9 dates. Almost back-to-back, we’ll be shuttling around the Kingdom in a van. So this is the first time we’ll be actually touring. We’re playing a couple of festivals - Dot to Dot and The Great Escape, both of which are great introductory festivals to the UK. One secret I can reveal is that Parekh & Singh will be touring for the first time with a full and traditional “band”. So we will be adding a keyboard player and a bass player to our crew. The new members of our cast will be revealed soon!
To listen and watch Parekh & Singh, watch below:
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