Mys­tic River

India Today - - SIMPLY KOLKATA -

When Sau­rav Moni sang O ma­jhi re along with Bol­ly­wood play­back singer Shaan on the sets of MTV Coke Stu­dio ear­lier this year, he left the au­di­ence spell­bound. How­ever, Moni re­fuses to be la­beled as just a singer. “I am a sto­ry­teller; I nar­rate tales of lost songs and pay trib­ute to the river,” says the vo­cal archivist, strum­ming on his ek­tara.

THE JOUR­NEY Grow­ing up in the ru­ral coun­try­side of the Sun­der­bans gave Moni the ad­van­tage of un­lim­ited ac­cess to a vast re­serve of melodies by folk singers like Fakir Lalan Shah to Ab­ba­sud­din and He­manga Biswas. Since the late nineties when he was study­ing at Ja­davpur Univer­sity, he started ac­quaint­ing ur­ban au­di­ences with folk mu­sic. Gau­tam Ghose’s film Moner

Manush (2010) pushed him into the lime­light for his ini­tia­tive of dig­ging into mu­si­cal his­tory for lit­tle-known gems from re­mote vil­lages of Bengal and Bangladesh. “Nodir gaan (mu­sic of the river) is in sync with the flow of the river; the tempo rises as the river quick­ens,” he ex­plains. Moni is now work­ing on col­lect­ing and archiv­ing folk tunes in the quest of re­viv­ing this lost art.

Con­tact: face­book.com/pages/saurav­mo­niof­fi­cial

sec­ond opinion

“Sau­rav puts his heart and soul in his mu­sic. There is pas­sion, in­ten­sity and yet a rare in­no­cence in his voice” SHAAN, PLAY­BACK SINGER

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