By Sugandha Rawal
New Delhi, June 7 (IANS) Broken Brass Ensemble will be performing in India for the first time and they are looking forward to take time out to explore the country and relish some ‘desi’ delicacies, says a member of the traditional Dutch brass brand.
Broken Brass Ensemble, with origins in the Netherlands, will perform in Bengaluru on Saturday through their association with Johnnie Walker The Journey.
“We have no fixed itinerary really. We want to explore the city of Bengaluru, we want to eat Indian food, drink Indian beers, meet everybody at the show, see the sights, walk around the town and see all the special places. We want to do as much as possible while we’re there,” Nick Feenstra told IANS via email.
“We’re aware of Indian music and the variety of it, and there is so much to listen to. With this trip coming we’re listening to Indian music more of course,” Feenstra added.
The eight-member Broken Brass Ensemble is known for injecting New Orleans brass with a fusion of hip-hop, funk, soul, dance and jazz. It is made up of Joel Botma (trumpet), Luc Hudepohl (trumpet), Arjen Attema (trombone), Sjors Dijkstra (trombone), Feenstra (saxophone), Rick Hulsebosch (saxophone), Hendrik Baarda (sousaphone) and Pieterklaas de Groot (drums).
Recalling their origins, Feenstra said: “When we started out we definitely had to prove to people that brass music deserves a place on the festivals.
“It wasn’t common to book a brass band on a stage. When we played the first few stages and the crowd went wild, it was a sign for other promoters to re-think this idea. In every country, we play for the first time we have something to prove, we start âat the bottom’ and have to work hard to play the big festivals within time. But we have this ‘Do It Yourself’ attitude which we think helps us.”
Feenstra continued: “We won’t hesitate to travel for 12 hours to play just one show. It is the journey that we have made over the years, that has gotten us to where we are now and it will inspire us to go further and achieve our goals along the way. Platforms like Johnnie Walker The Journey that celebrate personal progress of artists from different walks of life, are a motivation that continue to help push artists like ourselves forward to achieve more.”
Broken Brass Ensemble have toured most of Europe, have had gigs at fests like North Sea Jazz, Motel Mozaique, Eurosonic/Noorderslag and Into The Great Wide Open. They came out with debut album Brasshopper last year.
How have you progressed?
“We have progressed massively. At least we like to think so. Musically we started out with the main influence being New Orleans brass on the first project. On the last album âAstonishing Tales from Beyond the Brass Dimension’ it’s still brass music, but the New Orleans sound has been replaced by much more influences, ranging from hip-hop to funk.
“It’s a much more dynamic sound than before.”
In the end, Feenstra is all about letting everybody know that brass music is awesome.
The band is working on a new album, and have some “special collaborations” lined up.
(Sugandha Rawal can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)