Live performances have always been Pakistani pop rock band Strings’ forte. The latest one was a Times of India Mumbai Mirror concert at the Bandra Fort, a beautiful open amphitheatre with a crowd attendance of approximately 2,000. Since the concert was especially organised for the youth, the venue saw throngs of youngsters coming in for some quality pop-rock music.
It surely was a star-studded event. And, interestingly, majority of them showed up for Strings as their gesture of friendship and appreciation for the band. The celebrities spotted at the venue included Bollywood actor Imran Khan accompanied by wife Avantika, directors Sanjay Gupta (with wife Anu) and Rohan Sippy, actors Aditi Rao (starring in the lead role of London Paris New York with Ali Zafar), Yana Gupta, Rohit Roy with wife Maansi, Amol Gupte, popular Vjs Cyrus Sahukar and Mini Mathur among others.
Strings performed their famous anthems such “Dhaani”, “Koi Aanay Wala Hai”, “Mera Bicchra Yar”, “Chaaye Chaaye”, “Anjane”, “Sohniye”, “Najan Kyun”, “Duur” and others. The band engaged with the audience and called a few people from the audience on-stage.
During their stay in India, Strings also performed in Bangalore before flying to Dubai. The Express Tribune also spoke to the band regarding their concert experience, new singles and future plans.
How was the experience of performing in Mumbai yet again?
Faisal Kapadia: We’ve been going to Mumbai quite frequently. Whenever we visit India, the first city we land in is Mumbai. We’ve got a lot of friends and fans there and it’s always a pleasure performing there.
How did you find the Mumbai crowd?
Kapadia: The crowd was electric. The venue was jam-packed as you can witness from the videos and pictures. What else could an artist ask for? It was a charged-up two-hour set where the crowd was simply amazing.
Are you also a proponent of the notion that it’s better to release singles than a full-fledged album in recent times?
Kapadia: One has to realise that the medium of music has been going through a change. If you look 20 years back, we used to have cassettes which were replaced by CDs and now, it’s the age of digital medium. The striking aspect of this medium is that one is charged per individual units. A cassette or CD would cost you the same amount whether a single song is recorded or a dozen. Hence, the concept of single was uncommon then.
Currently, the digital medium has completely transformed. Especially networks like iTunes offer you a single as well as complete album at different rates. But, of course, it’s not applicable in Pakistan because people here have the knack of downloading music for free. So, today is the age of singles. It’s a smart move to release a single periodically.
When are you releasing your new songs?
Kapadia: We’ve recorded a few songs and trust me, if we sit down in the studio for a month, we would be able to come out with a new album. Since we’re very much consumed in tours we are not getting time for it.
Where are you travelling and performing in future?
Kapadia: We recently performed in Bangalore and our next stop is Dubai for a live gig.
Is performing in Pakistan on your agenda anytime soon?
Kapadia: We have a big Pakistan tour coming up and we plan to perform in ten cities like Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad, Hyderabad and Gujranwala.
Published in The Express Tribune, January 2nd, 2012.