MTV is bringing back it's Coke Studio for a second series and British musician of Indian parentage Nitin Sawhney is joining the fray. The programme is based around musicians of very different styles (folk, classical and modern) collaborating. In Coke Studio, Mr. Sawhney will be playing with Nicki Wells singing and Ashwin Srinivasan playing the bansuri and the 16-year-old electric bass guitarist Mohini Dey.
The Coke Studio idea started in Brazil, but the Pakistan version of the show was very popular, indeed some people (even quite a few Indians) reckon the Pakistani version is far better. The first Indian season featured the famous Qawwali group the Sabri Brothers collaborating with KK, and Shankar Mahadevan singing with Leslie Lewis, among others. The music might not always be entirely successful, but it always interesting. The emotions covered have ranged from the sort of relaxing music you can have on in the background while you play to highly charged devotional music and stuff to dance to.
The series will include contributions from Amit Trivedi, Ehsaan-Loy, Karsh Kale, Hitesh Sonik, and Clinton Cerejo, as well as Sawhney. If you were wondering, Mohini Dey is indeed the young bassist who can perform miracles with her fingers. She was featured on US blog Boing Boing a couple of years ago, where the editor said she was "hammering, slapping and walking a wide and impressive set of groovy sounds from a curious, headless instrument". Now 16, she has apparently gone from being an internet sensation to a serious musician.
Other Sawhney news, he has recently written a new score for an old Alfred Hitchcock film. The Lodger: A Story of the London Fog was a silent made by Alfred Hitchcock in 1926 and is being restored by the British Film Institute, to publicise this event they have asked a variety of musicians/composers to contribute. Sawhney is one of these. In the mean time, we can catch his work on MTV's Coke Studio this year.
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