Mesmerising vibes to equally mesmerising stories, eight-piece Pune band Easy Wanderlings is a soulful delight once twilight settles down. They have a new song called Mayflower, which appears to highlight the ‘grass is greener on the other side’ philosophy while their new EP is called Caught in a Parade, which is a must-listen.
How did composer-lyricist Sanyanth Naroth, vocalist Pratika Gopinath, flautist Siya Ragade, violinist Shardul Bapat, bassist Malay Vadalkar, guitarist Sharad Rao, keyboardist Nitin Muralikrishna and drummer Abraham Zachariah go about making the new song and EP? Let’s find out.
The word ‘mayflower’ can mean different things to different people. For some, it’s a sign of blossoming and welcome while for others it could be a journey, like many families undertook on a ship to reach the New World. What does it mean to you?
Sharad: The inspiration for this song did come from its namesake. Symbolic to the ship that was in search of new opportunity, and the promise of tomorrow. For us it also came from the feeling of envy. We’ve been in this industry for a while and even though we’ve had our accomplishments, it felt like we were plateauing while our peers were moving ahead. In the end, it’s also about being grateful and inspired by others’ success rather than being put down by it.
When did you realise that Nikhil D’souza should get involved in the song and what kind of changes did he bring to the single, Mayflower?
Pratika Gopinath: From the inception of the song, we knew that Mayflower needed a very specific type of voice, with a mature and melancholic quality that could really bring out the emotion of envy. None of our voices in the band seemed to fit the bill so we wanted to explore a collaboration to find the right voice. We reached out to as many artists as we could from around the world and finally found that Nikhil’s voice would work really well. I think he did a really amazing job in capturing the attention of the listeners.
Easy Wanderlings have a very diverse sound and go across genres
When you were working on Mayflower, did you work with the vision of making an album or maybe an extended play?
Sharad: While writing Mayflower the vision of putting an EP together wasn’t exactly planned. However, all five songs were written around the same time, and captured ideas we felt were worth exploring. It fell in place quite neatly once we noticed that they were all talking about the human condition.
The group has been around for six-seven years and you guys were quite busy with the Ziro music festival. How is the music you are creating now different from what was being made in 2015-16?
Pratika: As you might be able to tell, the Easy Wanderlings have a very diverse sound and go across genres. The compositions in the first album were more towards indie folk/pop. These compositions were already written by Sanyanth before the band was created and were heavily based on his influences. As the band and its members have evolved we’ve all been exposed to and inspired by new musical ideas. We’ve melded our influences together into the songs that we’re creating today which leans more towards soul music.
How did the group evolve, as in what was the early vision of the band and who brought everyone together?
Sanyanth Naroth: It’s been seven years since the band was formed. Early vision of the band stands true even to this day — to create music straight from the heart, performing with the band in all corners of the world and collaborating with as many inspiring artists along the way. Malay and I brought the band together between 2016-17, when we were recording the debut album As Written in the Stars.
Who brings what to the band and what’s the usual writing process like?
Shardul Bapat (violinist): Everyone comes from such different places and musical influences and that’s what keeps the sound fresh. Sanyanth with his soul influence makes the backbone of the band. Pratika, Sharad and Abraham’s love for blues, jazz and R&B add a ton of flavour and bring in some fascinating melodic lines. Together with Shardul and Siya’s Western classical and folk roots, Malay’s love for classic Hindi and Nitin’s Tamil and electronic music presence together create a fascinating amalgamation, that is the sound of Easy Wanderlings.
Did anybody tell you that the ideas of making music and becoming rich take time to cross paths and meet?
Shardul: If we were thinking solely about making money, we wouldn’t have made it this far. The main motivation for us is and will always be the music we make. The joy of creating and performing is, for us, the reason we are here. Of course, we have our goals and plans and those most definitely got derailed during the pandemic but at no point were we worried about the future of the band. I guess we believe in the music and in each other too much for that.
Easy Wanderlings members share their hidden talents
- Sharad’s talent is the ability to fall asleep through any difficult situation.
- Siya’s (flautist) talent is to roast people in the kindest voice.
- Abraham can find a way to offend anyone.
- Shardul Bapat’s stomach is a bottomless pit.
- Nitin Muralikrishna has probably used every emoji on the keyboard.
- Pratika Gopinath has the ability to get everyone drunk with her cocktails.
- Malay Vadalkar is the ultimate jugaad king, he can fix anything.
- Sanyanth is too good to be true. Also, he did not write this answer.