Delhi 2 Dublin have a milestone weekend ahead of them. The Vancouver five-piece are celebrating their 10th year as a band, no easy feat to come by in our current economy and industry landscape where it’s hard to get ahead and make a living off your art. Their blend of cultural sounds (North Indian and Celtic) and influences, combined with a melting pot of genres has torpedoed them to become a successful touring band, playing from literally Delhi all the way to Dublin.
This Saturday the Commodore Ballroom will turn into one big party to celebrate the band’s hard work and success, it is also the album release for their third LP, We’re All Desi, released in September last year and produced by Nick Middleton from the Funk Hunters.
Betty & Kora chatted to lead singer Sanjay ahead of their anniversary blowout to grab some pearls of wisdom from the seasoned musician…
Betty & Kora: Congratulations on celebrating your 10th anniversary. Did you think you would still be at it for this long? What do you owe your longevity to?
Sanjay: I kinda hoped we would be. Early on we’ve had our sights on the 10 year mark, and were always watching bands that made it to 10 years. I remember watching STS9 headline a festival in California when we were first starting out and they had been around for over 10 years, that kinda set the bar for us, it was a goal we wanted to reach. As for longevity: respecting the relationships in the band is important, and constantly hustling allows us to keep going and make this our living, no one is gonna run your business like you do so get on that shit. Its like going to the gym, consistency over time is so important.
D2D has toured all over the globe, do you have any essential survival tips and tricks for other bands globe-trotting?
Give in to the loopy tired jetlagged state. Accept the awesome altered state that it is and it will make traveling much more delightful and also think of plane rides as a time to catch up on sleep, watch movies and relax… the stuff we don’t seem to have time for at home or on the road. And if by chance edibles are ever consumed before a flight, make sure you have a lot of water, because the water doesn’t come around enough when you need it 🙂
What is your favourite D2D festival story?
Jeez, there are so many. It was pretty awesome playing at the Winnipeg Folk Fest and doing a workshop with Arrested Development and singing “Tennessee” along with them only to realize that I had been singing the wrong lyrics since Grade 7, I mean what better time to realize than live and amplified in front of a couple thousand people? BUT, the best story has to be when I did a high kick once and ended up pulling some muscle ‘down there’ although it didn’t start hurting until the next day while driving back home, I really started to think that I had literally busted a nut! Actually got pretty concerned, we called Tarun’s sister who is a doctor on the way and were prepared to take me to emergency once we crossed back over the border. It was the weirdest sensation… no more high kicks was the lesson, I healed just fine. It was also the first festival for me where a bunch of not-so-in-shape dudes were dancing naked front and centre and Beats Antique who were headlining were still fairly unknown. Good for the naked guys I say… all very fitting anyway.
The band released a new album last year produced by Nick Middleton of The Funk Hunters. Where did this funk-tastic choice in a producer come from?
We’ve known Nick for a long time and he has done some remixes for us in the past as well as production on a track on the last album. We are big fans of his work but when deciding on what angle we wanted to go it took some thinking. Finally we were just like, we want to make an album that we would love to listen to, and Nick was very clear with us that he also wanted to take reins of the project, and not just some songs, but the whole thing so it was just meant to be. I’m so glad too, he was such a rad guy to work with. The joke is that we won’t be able to afford him on the next album, so we’re glad we got the opportunity this time.
We read in an interview you did with Inside The Scene that Die Antwoord was one of your musical inspirations. Respect. If D2D had a musical love child with Die Antwoord what would it sound like?
Something that would get no radio airplay yet crush every festival it was played at – kinda not much different than what we sound like now! Really, a more freaky bassy version of what we already do. Actually watch out for an EP coming soon, part of the #desiSUBculture movement!
If D2D was a breed of cat what type of cat would they be?
Cougar… we’d hunt back.
How long do you think it would take for a cat to travel from Delhi to Dublin?
13-15 hours depending on the airline and wind patterns I guess.
Grab your tickets to see Delhi 2 Dublin on Saturday at the Commodore Ballroom.