Combining Indian, Arabic and Persian influences, this French band finds fusion harmony
Like most musicians, the three-member French band, EsharA?h, believe music is not defined by borders. And their beliefs define their unique soundscapea��a blend of Indian, Arabic, Persian and African sounds mixed with traditional Gallo songs of Francea��s Upper Brittany. Currently on a tour of the country, lead singer Simon DA�gremont and percussionists Matthias Labbe and Julien Lahaye talk about what they bring to the table.
a�?Matthias has travelled extensively, learning the tabla with Pandit Anindo Chatterjee in Kolkata, the mridangam with Pondicherrya��s V Sivakumar, and the Arab drum, darbuka. Julien has trained under the masters of African Mandinka music and plays the Iranian drum tombak,a�? says DA�gremont, adding, a�?I studied the Gallo song with Charles Quimbert (the director of Dastum, a cultural organisation in Brittany) and was hooked.a�?
With multiple collaborations in their repertoire, including French theatre director Daniel Fatous and African percussionist ensemble, Koungbanan CondA�, they are now taking their experimentation down new paths, by teaming up with Indian talent.
a�?EsharA?h (meaning a�?allusiona�� in Farsi) is all about bringing together people from different influences. This is our first time in India as a band and we wanted to play with musicians with a Hindustani background. So we have teamed up with Vishal Vardhan, a master with the bansuri (flute), and Sougata Roy Chowdhury, a sarod player,a�? explains Lahaye.
Excited about playing in Chennai, they promise a poetic evening with a�?mixed musical languagesa�?.
Today, at The Park, from 7 pm. Free passes at Alliance FranA�aise. Details: 28279803
Surya Praphulla Kumar