Dhon Rongpi, a guitarist and producer who runs Strobe Studios, along with Bhargav Das, singer, composer and music producer, and Bivas Sharma, percussionist, all came together to form ‘Ojapali‘ which explores the folk music of Assam. We caught up with the members soon after they released a beautifully shot video for their single ‘Hiyar Maje’ on Youtube.
How was ‘Ojapali’ formed?
We (Dhon and Bhargav) met while studying Audio Engineering and we started jamming. We then started to produce Lokageet (Assamese folk songs) with our own twist, trying out different instrumentations and compositional styles.
Tell us a little about ‘Hiyar Maje’?
Hiyar Maje is a traditional Kamrupia folk song. It is something that Bhargav has grown up listening to, and after a lot of jamming, we decided to record it.
Why did you think of making a music video?
It was a good excuse to get away from the city and we had been thinking about it for a while.
The music video looks terrific. Tell us about your experiences while shooting the video.
Thanks. Yeah, it was a very refreshing experience. We shot it mostly near Narkanda and Hatu Peak, which are both a little further from Shimla. Bivas, our percussionist thought it would be a good place to shoot. Also, our friends at Evil Soul Media (ESM) where the editing was to be done gave us the green signal and off we went. The video was shot in two days and the ESM guys deserve a lot of credit for pulling it off under the conditions.
When is Ojapali going to perform before its home crowd?
We would love to play back home in Assam and the Northeast. Not having a full time manager makes it hard to get in touch with organizers and coordinate for gigs in NE, but we are working on it. Hopefully, it will happen soon.
Currently, we are working on fresh material. More renditions of popular Lokageet is in the pipelines, we have one of them in Hindi to take it to a larger audience. We will also be going to Assam and working with other traditional musicians.
As told to Jadeed Hussain