ATHOI - THE ORIGINAL PROGRESSIVE BENGALI FOLK BAND OF KOLKATA | WBRi EXCLUSIVE FEATURE

Athoi: A voyage of Indian folk music


Athoi - Demo Tracks: Click on the play button to listen online

The term Athoi means indefinite, limitless. Surely God would not have created such a being as man, with an ability to grasp the infinite, to exist only for a day. No, no man was created for immortality.

Thus to quench the eternal thirst of mankind, Athoi shall explore the undaunted and bold spectral of Indian folk music to find the divine “amrit” in its musical form.


Athoi - Practice Session


Athoi with Bhoomi, ETV Bangla TV Channel, Dec 20, 2009

The goal of Athoi is strictly the exploration of innumerable genres of folk music existent in the Indian sub-continent and put it forward in such a manner that is acceptable and appealing to all. In the age of globalization and transition, our aim is to open all the closed doors of the unexplored, unexplained and mysterious aspects of Indian folk music to the rest of the world.

Since last 4 years, Athoi is working upon a new sound of Indian folk music keeping itself fully underground. Now Athoi is exposed not only as a musical band, rather it is a movement; a movement of exploring our glorious folk heritage. Besides recreating the conventional popular folk songs of Bengal, Athoi is composing new lyrics and tunes in a contemporary form. Along with it, Athoi is in search of folk singers and musicians of the new generation, who are talented but still unexposed. We will be finding them to give a moral support to get a new platform.

The crew of Athoi's voyage:

Athoi - Chinmoy MondolChinmoy Mondal (drummer)


Athoi - Chinmoy Mondol23 years. A benevolent follower of world music. Beating the tom and snare with sticks under the guidance of Sri Anindya Hazra for six years. Apart from participating in various band competitions, he has also performed with well known musicians of Kolkata. Athoi’s rare genre has given him a great platform.

Athoi - Indranil BanerjeeIndranil Banerjee (violinist)

Athoi - Indranil Banerjee21 years. Fiddling since childhood. A student of western classical music. Presently developing his skill in oriental classical music prevalent in india under the guidance of Sri Subhas Seal. Athoi is now his platform to express his creativity and solidarity.

Athoi - Sandip Raj RoySandeep Raj Roy (percussionist)

Athoi - Sandip Raj Roy24 years. A candid professional when it comes to oriental and Latin leather instruments. Taking ‘talim’ since 1996 and a favorite student of Sri Manojit Dutta. Tremendous stage experience and performance ratings. Athoi’s regular rhythmic experimentation and fractions have carved a pathway of extreme rhythmic salvation for him.

Athoi - Rohan SenRohan Sen (guitarist)

Athoi - Rohan SenPlaying guitar for about 10 years. Originally from Silchar, Assam. He was formerly trained in Indian classical (vocal). Later concentrated in guitar seriously. His interest lies in jazz, blues & world music. Athoi has given him a dream platform where he would wish to explore his musical spectrum.

Athoi - Shoumik DeySoumik Dey (Tatai) : bass guitarist

Athoi - Shoumik Dey21 years. Trained by renowned bass guitarists of Kolkata, starting from Carlton Kitto and recently improvising bass tones in Indian classical music. Performed with renowned bands and solo singers. Composed music in some ad jingles and in a couple of short films. Athoi is proud to have him as the bassist and the music director of its debut album.

Athoi - Sudip BakshiSudip Bakshi (vocalist)

Athoi - Sudip BakshiSinging is his passion when he was a 10 year old child. Trained in Indian classical music under Sri Ram Gobindo Chakraborty. Besides singing, he is a lyricist and composer too. He is also a well known painter and sculptor. His voice is no doubt, the cream of Athoi’s folk vision.

Formerly, we have said that Athoi is trying to explore the hidden talents of Bengal in the arena of folk music. In this venture, they have found Lakshman Das Baul, from Bolpur in Birbhum district, who has worked with them in their debut album. His voice needs no explanation how unique it is. Athoi are proud to have him and his extraordinary playing of dotara and khamok in the album.

Athoi - Discography
Debut album Dil Doriya was released in July’09 under the banner of Ambience Productions, Kolkata consisting of eight songs and one instrumental. Already it has created a great resonance with the Bengali listeners of all ages around India. Now Athoi is on the verge of the music video release anando bazar.

Tours
In 2008 Athoi visited the Joydev Mela, the greatest folk festival ever in West Bengal. They have performed there in several shows and with other bauls starting from Sri Purna Das Baul. People from villages applaused them and encouraged them on hearing their new compositions. They met there with Sri Arun Kumar Chakraborty, the renowned poet in Bengali colloquial language. His extreme patronage and guidance for Athoi is undoubtedly superb.

Performances
Athoi are regularly performing in various places all over India. Some of the shows of particular significance:

  • Roots festival, Shillong
  • Fever FM show, Salt Lake, Kolkata
  • Sonodyne, South City mall, Kolkata
  • Princeton club, Kolkata
  • River Ganges Utsav 2009
  • ... and many more

Athoi have performed in "Baranday Roddur" with Bhoomi, the renowned folk band of Bengal, on ETV Bangla Television channel.

Contacts
Sudip Bakshi : +91- 98311 51899
Soumik Dey (Tatai) : +91- 99034 49540
Indranil Banerjee  : +91- 99030 55848
Email id:  athoibaul [at] gmail.com