Touring with Good People

Photo : Mellisande Boyer

I still remember the day Emma called me and asked me if I wanted to collaborate with Erik Truffaz. I had memories of a concert I went to many years ago while I was working at the blueFROG. Murocf + Singh + Truffaz performed at the FROG on 25th November, 2010. It was a mixed bag of emotions for me. On one hand I was super excited to meet one of my favourite ambient producers of all time and on the other hand, I was really disappointed with the experience of the concert because people wouldn’t stop chatting during the performance. If you were there, then you know what I am talking about and if you weren’t then I recommend you listen to this entire set. Its one of the most amazing collaborations I’ve had the privilege to witness and Erik told me that they rehearsed only one day before playing this concert.

Packing up before meeting Erik Truffaz in the evening.

I had never imagined that I would be able to work with someone like Erik Truffaz in 2010. 7 years later, I was getting ready to collaborate with one of the most revolutionary musicians of our time. I was excited but very nervous because I had never collaborated as a solo artist before. Whenever I am nervous, I have a lot of negative thoughts creeping in my head. “What if he doesn’t like my music?” “What is he loses his patience with me?” “Will he be rude to me?” etc. I struggle from this but this situation has gotten a lot better thanks to training in MMA and going for regular runs. I cannot stress enough on the positive effects physical endurance has on your mental health.

Neil Gomes & Anand Bhagat

It was going to be a tight schedule. I was supposed to meet Erik on the 30th, work on the set with him and we had rehearsals planned on the 1st and 2nd followed by our first gig in Hyderabad on the 3rd. Emma wanted me to get two more musicians on board. This would add more depth to the set and also give us freedom to do more with the music. It usually would take time to think and find the right musicians for a project like this but it was almost intuitive for me. I wanted to get Anand Bhagat on board for this. I have known him since we went to school together and always wanted to play with someone as diverse and talented as him. Erik wanted a rapper to be part of this collaboration. I didn’t really want to get in touch with the usual suspects. Neil Gomes came to mind instantly. He is this super talented multi instrumentalist who could do many different things. We just told Erik that he was a rapper. 😀

Over the years, I have realized that I need to be around people that I get along with in order to make music with them. It may sound like something that’s not very important but trust me on this, this is the most important part of creating music with someone else. I use the name Riatsu as my moniker because it means ‘spiritual pressure’ or in simpler words, ‘vibes’ or ‘energy’. Its the most important aspect of the music creation process for me. I need to get the right vibes from a place or a person for me to be comfortable. I can’t be myself if my thoughts and frequencies don’t resonate with the other person.

Photo : Emmanuelle De Decker

In the next couple of posts, I will talk about the rehearsals and the gigs we played together.

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