Rajhesh Vaidhya announces his new music band SRUSHTi
Renowned veena player Rajhesh Vaidhya is all set to mesmerise you this weekend with his performance, and an announcement he can’t wait to share with the audience
When he was all of six years old, his mother insisted that he play the veena. “I had no choice. Like any other child, I too wanted to do whatever my mom said,” says instrumentalist Rajhesh Vaidhya. By his own admission, “Within six months, I fell in love with the veena, more specifically with its tone.”
From a six-year-old trying to serenade the strings of the veena to a becoming an exponent of the same, Rajhesh Vaidhya is a name to reckon with. Hailing from a family of musicians, it was but natural that he would follow suit. In a career spanning many years, Rajhesh has received accolades, awards and unparalleled love from people who love to listen to him play. “One of my compositions that people always request of me wherever I play is called Classically Attached. It is composed in raag hameer kalyani. About eight or nine years ago, my musicians and I were rehearsing, and all of a sudden, I came up with this composition… it just fell into place and the next thing I know is I have a composition, and one that people love. Apart from Classically Attached, I am also always requested to play my guruji veena maestro Chitti Babu’s composition.”
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When Rajhesh takes centrestage this weekend, Chennaites can expect some real good news that the instrumentalist is waiting to share. “This time, my musicians and I are prepared to give the audience a completely different experience because I am starting my new band, and will be launching it during my live performance! We have named our band SRUSHTi, meaning creation, and we are going to perform something new and exclusive! Of course, there will be fusion, classical, film numbers, but the way they are going to be presented is something people can watch out for.”
Letting us in on some details, Rajhesh informs that apart from him on veena, the six-member includes John Paul on guitar, Kumaran on drums, Saihari on ghatam and percussion, Keith Peters on bass and Bhuvanesh on the keyboard.
Classically inclined but always open to experiment with other instruments, Rajhesh draws his inspiration from his guruji, his father KM Vaidyanathan and many classical and international musicians like Dr Balamurli Krishna, Jimi Hendrix as well as Michael Jackson. Telling us about his process, he says, “I first compose a piece with classical overtones, add Indian instruments like mridangam, tabla, ghatam, and then I also add keyboards, bass guitar, drums and cook up a concoction. So the composition is mathematically classical but I enhance it with improvisation.
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Having worked for films and shows and with stalwarts like Ilaiyaraaja as well as with Vidyasagar and Anirudh, Rajhesh says that it has been a learning experience. “I don’t differentiate music — whether it is for films/shows or when I play live — the medium does not really matter, because I am still creating music and music does not discriminate,” he says, adding, “With Ilaiyaraaja, one needs to just follow what he says. If he likes something, he will tell you to keep it, otherwise, he sticks to what he wants,” he tells us.
Rajhesh has just composed music for his first movie, Shot Boot Three, directed by Arun Vaidyanathan, and is awaiting its release.
Rs 250. At Phoenix MarketCity.
January 28. 6.30 pm.