Some Kannada love from Chennai, via Illaiyaraja
Chennai-based Staccato is a one-of-a-kind band that is surely becoming a household name across South India. What sets them apart is the fact that they create their own music, but are also pretty popular for their covers. With popular playback singers Niranjana Ramanan and Gowtham Bharadwaj as their lead singers and several talented musicians who make up the rest of the band, they recently launched a series of online performances called Freshly Brewed that’s taken the internet by storm.
“The lockdown in 2020 literally made us miss the stage so much that we all just wanted to get together and perform. We thought of creating some nice memories with a performance of songs that each of us grew up listening to and the main intention was to present it in a unique way. ElFe singers (a choir) and Picture Makers (videographers) made the whole idea executable and Freshly Brewed is now being lauded as one of the best online music independent productions to have come out of South India in the last few months,” explains Niranjana.
The videos on YouTube have been getting thousands of hits per day and one particular episode caught our attention. A tribute to maestro Illaiyaraja’s Kannada hits — this video has been trending on playlists in Karnataka for over a month now.
“Kannada Cinema has produced some amazing classics which aren’t revisited very often today. This generation is missing out on listening to such gems produced by Illaiyaraja, Dr Rajkumar and many other geniuses from the Kannada film industry .We came up with this beautiful medley of Kannada songs as a part of one of our concerts in Bengaluru. Many people reached out to us asking for our version of the performance which we had not recorded or uploaded on YouTube. We arranged these songs again and performed them as part of the Freshly Brewed series and the love we have received from across the border has been overwhelming,” shares Niranjana.
But will there be more such multilingual offerings as a part of Freshly Brewed?
“Yes, the plan is to perform in different languages and genres — not just with our covers, we’re also releasing originals in several languages. We have just started to perform live again with all the required precautions in place and there have been a lot of inquiries for live performances of our Freshly Brewed concerts. We are really excited and also looking forward to taking this experience all across the country,” concludes Niranjana.