Posts Tagged ‘soumik datta’

Alchemy Festival begins at the Southbank Centre

Posted on May 15th, 2015 in Live, News, Recent posts by .


Alchemy Festival is an ambitious exploration of contemporary connections between the UK and South Asia. Now in its sixth year, it returns to London’s Southbank Centre, but will also go on tour to Oldham and Doncaster and then heads to Glasgow for the first time.

At Thursday night’s launch, held in the Clore Ballroom of the Royal Festival Hall, SBC’s artistic director Jude Kelly paid tribute to one of her associates from Pakistan, Sabeen Mahmud, who ran an arts centre in Karachi and was shot dead by extremists last month. Mahmud founded PeaceNiche, a not-for-profit organisation who promote democratic discourse and conflict resolution through cultural engagement. Dil Phaink is one of PeaceNiche’s audiovisual installations and can be seen throughout Alchemy at the Queen Elizabeth Hall.

The festival’s musical highlights include Zakir Hussain, one of the world’s greatest percussionists. The famous tabla player joins up with a group of Scottish and Irish musicians for Pulse of the World, a project that started at Celtic Connections festival in 2011, was developed for the Olympics in 2012 and has just been on tour in India and the US. On the Scottish side musicians include Gaelic singer Jenna Cumming, violinist Patsy Reid, Charlie McKerron (also on violin) and Michael McGoldrick (flute) from Capercaillie, plus Kumaresh and Rakesh Chaurasia from India. Hussain is a recognised master of percussion, forging an international language and Pulse of the World is the latest aspect of this. The concert takes place in London on May 21 and Glasgow on May 22.

Among Alchemy’s new creations is a live film accompaniment by sarod player Soumik Datta with the London Philharmonic Orchestra. The film King of Ghosts was made by Satyajit Ray in 1969. “On the surface, Goopy Gayne Bagha Byne [its Bengali title], is a typical kids’ fantasy film,” says Datta, “however re-watching it as an adult I realised it’s about music and art giving us the strength to fight for what is right in the world and overcoming evil.” In an abridged version of the film, the sarod represents the voice of Goopy, the lead protagonist.

Other highlights include Bollywood star Shreya Ghoshal, Nrityagram dance company from Bangladesh, and a two-day residency by the Jaipur Literacy Festival. Plus there will be plenty of South Asian food and drink on offer throughout the SBC.

Find out more about the festival.

Tags: , , .

All Night Freedom Festival, Rich Mix, March 27

Posted on March 19th, 2015 in Live, News, Recent posts by .


Soumik Datta and London’s Rich Mix present a full 12-hours of live music from some of the best young artists 

Starting at 8pm on March 27, Rich Mix will host an epic 12-hour all-night music festival of back-to-back performances by some of the best young artists around, as curated by saord player Soumik Datta (pictured).

The Freedom Festival will feature 15 artists and everything from a young Afghan rubab prodigy to modern Palestinian dabke dance, allowing you the freedom to party, listen, dance or just hang out to some excellent music all evening long. The festival aims to highlight ‘the relationship between artists and national independence, and to celebrate the art of these groups, which consciously or subconsciously, reflect their nation’s liberty.’

The full line-up:

8:00pm – Saachi Sen: Young British-Indian singer-songwriter
9:00pm – Kefaya: Reworked revolutionary anthems and world folk grooves
11:00pm – Shammi Pithia & Flux: The bansuri player and his band who recently top iTunes world music chart
1:00am – Khiyo Acoustic: A modern take on Bengali folk, film and protest songs
3:00am – 47Soul & Al Zaytouna: Modern dabke music and dance from Palestine
5:00am – Circle of Sound: Sarod and percussion duet, Soumik Datta and Bernhard Schimpelsberger
7:00am – Quest Ensemble: A unique piano trio fusing chamber, jazz, folk and 20th-century classical music

10:00pm – Fiona Bevan: Folk-pop singer-songwriter
12:00am – Samay: Indo-jazz trio with saxophone, tabla and bass
2:00am – Soumik Datta & Shahbaz Hussain: Indian classical improvisation on sarod and tabla
4:00am – Rosabella Gregory: Half Egyptian singer-songwriter
6:00am – Saphwat Simab: Young Afghan rubab prodigy

Tickets are available on the Rich Mix website.

Tags: , , .

May 2014: Top 10 UK Live Events

Posted on May 7th, 2014 in Live, News, Recent posts by .

We’ve compiled a list of the top ten concerts happening this May to help make sure you don’t miss out on this month’s best shows. 

Catrin Finch and Seckou Keita


The Songlines-award winning duo will tour this May. Their album Clychau Dibon won the Cross-Cultural Collaboration award for their blend of Welsh traditional harp and the Senegalese kora. Don’t miss them on their 12-date trip across the UK. They’ll also be playing WOMAD and Shambala this summer.

Where & When: Across the UK, May 2-17. More info.





A Hack and a Hacksaw


The American folk duo will perform with the BBC Concert Orchestra as part of a programme that explores the folk music of Eastern Europe. The programme features works by Bartok and Ligeti, plus a brand new piece has been written especially for the collaboration, which will be premiered on the night. There is also a free pre-concert gig in the Front Room from Firefly Burning.

Where & When: Queen Elizabeth Hall, London, May 7. More info.





Mamane Barka


Nigerien biram master Mamane Barka will visit these shores for a string of dates in May. It’s a great chance to see the sole remaining player of this wonderful harp-like instrument.

Where & When: Across the UK, May 8-23. More info.








Will Holland, aka Quantic, will play eight dates – including a full live show at London’s KOKO – to celebrate the release of his new album Magnetica, which comes out on Tru Thoughts this May. The co-founder of Ondatrópica  has collaborated with Pongo Love on the lead single from the new release, which can be viewed here.

Where & When: Across the UK, May 8-29. More info.





Gilles Peterson

@Youri Lenquette. Cuba .La Havane . 06/2009 .Projet Gilles Peterson present Havana Cultura .

The fantastic Franco-Swiss DJ/producer is curating an all-dayer at Dingwalls on May 11. Peterson is also performing at a  launch party for the upcoming release of his latest collaboration with Brazilian artists, Sonzeira, which is out on May 19. He’ll be supported by DJ Nuts.

Where & When: Dingwalls, May 11 & Club Bam Bam Bam, May 15 (both London). More info.





Alchemy Festival


Now in its fifth year, the Alchemy Festival at London’s Southbank Centre presents some of the best music, dance and art from South Asia and the UK. Our spotlight star – read more in issue #100 –  Soumik Datta (pictured) will perform with his project Circle of Sound, a duet with percussionist Bernhard SchimpelsbergerTheir album was a Top of the World in #84, and his new solo album was released on May 1. There is also a special performance from Susheela Raman, in anticipation of her first album release since 2011’s Vel.

Where & When: Southbank Centre, London, May 15-26. More info.




Rodrigo y Gabriela


The inimitable Mexican guitar duo will play two dates at London’s Royal Albert Hall this May. Their new album 9 Dead Alive was released on April 29, and these dates come as part of a huge worldwide tour in support of this release.

Where & When: Royal Albert Hall, May 20-21. More info.





9 Bach


9Bach are Real World Records’ first Welsh act, and the six-piece are about to release their second album, Tincian, on the label. The music of the album reflects their home environment of Gerlan in North Wales, and they will tour this May in support of the release. They shall also be playing at Green Man Festival and WOMAD this summer.

Where & When: Across the UK, May 15 – June 6. More info.










Rough Guide Live!


This event sees a coming together of three brilliant acts in celebration of both 20 years of the World Music Network, and 25 years of Riverboat Records. The Ethiopian band Kraar Collective will perform alongside Carnatic violin virtuoso Jyotsna Srikanth and Greek folk duo Krissi Stassinopolou & Stathis Kalyvioti. The anniversary celebrations will be hosted by BBC presenter Lopa Kothari.

Where & When: Rich Mix, London, May 17. More info.





Caetano Veloso


The legendary Brazilian musician will play the Barbican for a special one-off gig in the UK as part of his European tour. One of the key figures of the tropicália movement, Veloso has since received nine Latin Grammy awards, including Best Album for his most recent release, Abraçaçao. He shall be primarily playing material from this album as part of this show.

Where & When: Barbican, London, May 27. More info.  





Tags: , , , , , , , , , , .

Exclusive Track: Seb Rochford collaborates with Soumik Datta

Posted on June 26th, 2012 in News, Recent posts by .

Photo by Richard Kaby 

We are excited to share with you an exclusive new track from Sebastian Rochford of the group Polar Bear. ‘In Slow City’, is due to be released this Friday June 29 and features sarod virtuoso Soumik Datta

The collaboration is part of a larger project by Rochford, Days and Nights at the Takeawaywhich is a monthly digital singles club. Rochford has worked with a different collaborator to release a new track every month that is backed by an exclusive remix. Collaborators featured so far include Leo Abraham, Jehst, Tom Skinner, Gina Loring, Ranjan Ghatak, LV, Pete Wareham, Alice Grant, Simon Bookish and Micachu. The singles and remixes can be streamed on the project’s Bandcamp site.

‘In Slow City’ is based on the raga ‘Nat Bhairav’ and is an epic recording. Speaking about the track, Rochford says “For this one I wanted to try something that was more of a live performance. I wanted to keep the piece close to how we played it, in the way it slowly grew, which is why it’s around 15 minutes long.”

The remix is by Rochford’s Acoustic Ladyland bandmate and bassist Ruth Goller. “I had a feeling Ruth would make something I would never ever expect, and I absolutely adore what she did,” says Rochford.

The single and remix of ‘In Slow City’ will be released on Friday June 29, but you can stream the exclusive tracks below.

For more information:
Sebastian Rochford:
Days and Nights at the Takeaway:
Soumik Datta:
Ruth Goller:

Tags: , , , , , , , , , .

« Older Entries