Rocking Nashville

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By FOSSILS FRONTMAN RUPAM ON THE BAND'S FIRST TRIP TO THE US AND A MEETING WITH RICK VITO Madhuparna Das Do you think Fossils should record an album in English? Tell
  • Published 17.08.10
Fossils performing at Nashville. Rick Vito (in a pink shirt) along with Fossils members — Deep, Rupam, Chandra and Tanmoy

After the UK, it was the US for your second outing abroad…

Yes, if we don’t consider the two Bangladesh trips as abroad, since we feel so much at home in Bangladesh. This was for the First Regional Bengali Sammelan in Nashville.

So how did Fossils fare in Nashville?

It would be for the audience present there to comment on this. However I can say that the younger audience, both first generation and second generation NRIs, loved our shows. It was for them that we had to give a repeat performance as the final act of the closing ceremony.

So you took the stage twice?

The first show we did was supposed to start at 10pm on Saturday, instead it started well past 11.30pm. After an hour we ran out of time and the show was cut short. We are quite used to this in our local shows but having travelled that far we were a little disappointed.

As we were walking out of the auditorium, we were overwhelmed by a huge crowd waiting for us outside. They all started clapping and shouting out my name. It was they who insisted on a repeat performance.

The organisers had never seen the audience get so desperate for any performance. Fossils was asked to do a repeat performance the next day. Needless to say we were more than happy.

Which songs did you play?

We sang all original Fossils numbers and the audience loved it. They sang along with us. What more could we want? We sang 20 songs. For the second day, however, it was a completely different set. The only song common to both the days was Bishakto Manush. The second set was a lot harder with more punchy numbers with its climax in ACID.

How was it different from your UK show?

UK was our first show in the West and we were not sure how popular our songs were there. So we had prepared a list of all original Fossils numbers but unplugged. It was a list of the softer songs sung with acoustic guitars, drums and bass. Then we realised the audience was well aware of the kind of performance we give and was keen to see our full-on performance. Hence this time we gave a complete rock-packed performance.

Do you take a different approach for shows abroad?

Not for the US show, it was more or less the same type of show we do here. The UK show was different.

How do you prepare for shows abroad?

A show means interaction with the crowd and we are ever prepared to do that

anywhere and everywhere.

Would you prefer to go back to the UK or the US for a concert?

Both… the kind of love we got from both the countries overwhelmed us.

Anything that moved you at the event?

Meeting Rick Vito (Fleetwood Mac) was a once-in-a-lifetime experience and the hospitality of the Nashville crowd really moved us.

Tell us about meeting Rick Vito…

Well, we were informed that a certain Mr Rick Vito had come to meet us. While going down to meet him, we were wondering if it could be ‘the’ Rick Vito of Fleetwood Mac. So you can imagine our delight when we found him waiting for us.

He is doing research on different forms of music in different parts of the world. Rock music in Bangla interested him and he wanted to find out how much of the rock quotient was actually present in it. We spoke for a long time and he recorded the entire conversation. We presented him a CD of our latest album, Fossils 3.

The next day, after our second performance, we found Vito walking up to the stage. We didn’t know he was there to watch our show. He presented each one of us with a special musical gift — from a condenser microphone to a djembe. He loved our album as well as our show. He wants us to consider doing the album Fossils 3 in English!