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Just Another Being: Putting the Limelight on the Northeast

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There is no doubt that the team at Just Another Being are good at what they do, anyone who seen the beautifully shot music videos can agree to that. We got in touch with the team to know more about how it all started, what goes on behind the scenes and their plans to focus on the Northeast.

Tell us about the team, how ‘Just Another Being’ came together and the vision behind it.

JAB Team: Just Another Being was founded by Dekaa aka Arunav Deka in 2015, who was frustrated with the fact that majority of people just talk about WHAT IS GOOD AND BAD in the music business but really don’t do anything about it. If you say that most content out of Bollywood is lacking quality execution, then if “you put in the work and give an alternative to that rather than just talk about it, there will be like-mined people who will connect with your ideas and help you grow.”

The vision of JAB is to connect those like-minded people who come from different backgrounds but share a similar passion (when it come to their art).

Share a little about the thought process that went into the two music videos that were released recently? Do you sit down with the artistes for storyboarding?

JAB Team: Every project we take, it’s like we are back to that blank canvas, and it’s one of the best feelings because we are living a life where we can create rather than just consume, which we feel is what this generation in Assam is a victim of (more consumers and lack of creator). Equipments, technology, money are the last things a creator should worry about. It’s the idea that sparks it all.

Dekaa: I see the whole film even before it is made and present it to the artiste involved. An artiste spends most of his life perfecting his/her craft and it is a responsibility for a person like me to translate that hard work and dedication that he or she put in and create something that best represents the artist. With The Royal Flush –  Reality, we wanted to capture the beauty of Arunachal Pradesh and translate it in a way that the current youth gets inspired to explore and see what else their place has to offer. With The Statement – It was an introduction/autobiography about Dekaa, who like most people, lost himself/his roots following trends/others dreams and is making his return to the music business after seven years. It was a little challenging because it’s really not simple to recreate 22 years of your life in 2 min 49 sec.

Why do you think it is important for artistes from the Northeast to come out with videos that are not only visually stunning but portray the right image of the region?

JAB Team: “You are sitting in a gold mine but you are settling for silver.” History has taught us that art manifests from places that are oppressed, racially discriminated, alienated. Sound familiar? The amount of talent that is present in the Northeast of India is just breathtaking but due to the lack of mentorship and exposure, these artistes fail to execute the re-presenting part of their art. Right now, as you are reading this, some of the best music, film ideas are been created by someone that we will never hear about, only because we lack the infrastructure and guidance, to shape these talents.

It is very important that artistes from the Northeast portray the right image of the region because, suddenly everyone (Mainland India) is interested in this mystical place that they ignored and now realise the true potential of this place. The Northeast is the new hip thing and everyone will try to be a part of it, but how will you represent something that you really cannot understand? There is a lot of content on the Northeast by reputed ‘travel brands’ that don’t represent NE for what it actually is, so it’s our responsibility now to do our best to represent our own.

What’s on the cards for 2017?

JAB Team: Starting 2016, every year, we organise something called the Mumbai Drum Day with Maestro Gino Banks, where the best drummers in the world come and perform. This year, we had our second edition. It was held on 23rd Feb 2017 at St Andrews Auditorium, Mumbai.

Secondly, being fortunate enough to have collaborated and learned from the Giant’s of the industry like Snarky Puppy, Louiz Banks, Zakir Hussain, Ranjit Barot, Games the Shop, Meinl Cymbals, Harmon & Kardon, to name a few, we are now shifting our focus on the Northeast, we want to build more content on the Northeast because there are so many stories untold.

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As told to Meeta Borah

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