An interview with Harshvardhan Kadam and Atul Paranjpe, the duo who are making news in Maharashtra.
Dawa Daru is an audio-visual experience with music, poetry and visual art woven together in a live performance.
It all started from our college days at IDC, IIT Bombay, when we used to jam together, Harsh painting walls and canvases and Atul singing compositions on his guitar and harmonica. We thoroughly enjoyed the experience and soon did a small in-house gig for close friends who loved it. That’s how Dawa Daru kick-started and is evolving thereafter. Here’s a glimpse of what it’s all about…
Why the name ‘Dawa Daru ‘?
Art directly or indirectly works on the psychological levels of every individual. Being literal – “Dawa” in Hindi means medicine, and “Daru” stands for alchohol, another medicine for your soul. As we find our answers through our performances and artistic expressions, Dawa Daru serves as an emotional medicine.
What / Who has been your inspiration?
Everyday life around us, the way it is and beyond moves us to develop our concepts and stories. As friends, we have spent a lot of time together by communicating through our choice of expression, like the canvas, paintings and poetry for Harsh and music, compositions and poems for Atul. Also, our recent unplugged travelling across the country has had an effect of its own on us.
Is there a particular genre of music you guys stick to?
The music we play are original compositions that complement our poetry and stories. Depending on the place we play at and the concepts we present, we play a wide range of music from acoustic bhajans accompanied by Ektar, to electro-acoustic, psychedelic programmed trips.
Isn’t live painting stressful? So many people watching you must be unnerving!
To be honest, the crowd inspires and influences the approach of creating an artwork. Painting publicly is more spontaneous than making one in the studio and what makes the performance more interesting is the exchange of both the art forms to elevate the experience. Here the audience can witness the entire journey of how an artwork evolves and speaks for itself.
Which venue/show of yours has been the most memorable and why?
We travelled across Northern India and went to Kumbh mela at Haridwar this year. We painted a few bhajans by the ghats of the River Ganga, for Sadhus and
people from villages across the country, who had gathered together looking for faith and hope. Those people could readily connect with our expression and that was the biggest ever audience we had. We’ll say those were the moments from which we got a great deal of joy.
Where can we see your paintings?
We are planning to put up an exhibition of assorted works done by us. We wish to have it as more of a public art, and present it as an amalgamation of audio-visual experiences through installations. We are in the process of publishing our work on our blog soon.
You are releasing your first album soon. Tell us a little about that.
The artwork and the music concepts are almost in the final stages. Now we are focussing on the financial aspects to make it happen and we are curious about the venues in India and abroad where we share the true spirit of Dawa Daru sessions.
Thank you for your time. A note to our readers before you leave.
Come enjoy our gigs, indulge and find yourself. Keep the faith. Hari Om !