The skeleton of every city is art. Artists contribute a lot when it comes to the social identity of any city; their work defines a city when they are long gone. For example, Khushwant Singh and Delhi, Vincent Van Gogh and Arles, and Leonardo da Vinci and Florence. Some cities influence the artists and some artists influence the city.
The artist in talk today might not be a legendary name (yet) but his passion is surely worth acknowledging. Vishal Gore is a proud Puneri artist who has been playing music for over a decade and half. He has performed with several noteworthy artists like Urban Sprawl (USP), Smokestack, BeachDog, and Headrush.
On March 7, he released his self-titled debut EP (Extended Play) titled ‘Under A Lonesome Tree’ via SoundCloud, which got featured as ‘Editor’s Choice for the Week’ on ‘Rolling Stone India’. Here’s a conversation I had with him, discussing his music, journey, and of course, his new EP. Check it out!
At what age did you write/compose your first song? Can you tell us something about it?
My first song was written and composed at the age of 21.
This was way back in 2001 when I started playing music with a bunch of friends where we used to jam in the Drummers garage. Collectively, we wrote three songs and one of them got featured and released by ‘Rock Street Journal (RSJ)’, the only Indian music magazine at the time. After that we got to perform in a bunch of shows in Mumbai and Delhi for ‘Independence Rock’ and ‘Great Indian Rock (GIR)’. The band was then called ‘Headrush’.
What are some of the biggest challenges you’ve had to face as a musician?
Music is a language and by far one of the toughest one to master.
There are countless permutations and combinations that take place and it’s ever evolving. One of the biggest challenges that I still face (and regret) is that I started playing music by ear and never went through formal training; but I have been working on those factors and learning rudiments and hopefully I will get better with time.
Can you tell us about your new EP and what exactly influenced its creation process?
A few years back I took up poetry as a personal challenge; the idea was to just pen down words and not write songs. But eventually I couldn’t resist and wrote tunes around the words for a few of the poems, which mostly talk about loneliness and death. In the nineties when I had limited access to Rock, Grunge, Funk, Metal music etc. on cassettes, I stumbled upon ‘Riverman’ – track by ‘Nick Drake’. The whole minimalistic acoustic poetry sounded so ripe and fresh and that’s what I tried to create with ‘Under A Lonesome Tree’.
What separates this EP from the rest of your music?
All the previous outfits I played with mostly ranged between Rock, Funk, Grunge and Blues sounds – this one had a clear steer towards minimalistic acoustic poetry music and the words (now lyrics) had to be the highlight. And this is my first solo self-titled EP so it’ll always be special to me!
One positive as well as negative aspect about Pune’s current music scene.
The positive bit is that the crowd in general is on the receptive side + since there are so many colleges and corporates in Pune- the audience keeps changing which is a good thing for any musician.
The negative bit is that unfortunately the “millennials” have started deviating from live music.
The blame goes to all these college festivals that get the same sounding and/or same acts every year – nobody is open to options and this has now been hard bound into the teenage brain.
Music is about building a relationship and there is lot more than playing the same top 50 hits of the decade – Wake up, there is a lot more out there!
Connect with Vishal and his music –
SoundCloud (This is where the EP is released for now and soon will be out on all other platforms like iTunes/Google Music etc.)