Tag Archives: JD Rock Awards
The Jack Daniels Rock Awards 2013
The eighth edition of the annual Jack Daniels Rock awards was held on the 22nd of February at Mehboob Studio amidst little hype and no fanfare. The invite-only event hosted by Sameer Malhotra and The P-Man (Rohit Pereira) saw successful rock bands from the scene, across genres, being feted for their musical efforts over the past one year, by people who had little or nothing to do with the scene.
Bombay punk rockers, Blek kick-started the evening performing songs from their debut album, Hexes + Drama & Other Reasons for Evacuation to an audience of around 100 people. Their half hour long set included some of their popular songs like Minus the Makeup and Fog + Strobe which was also nominated in the best song category. Bleks set was followed by the first set of awards which saw Shantanu Hudalikar win the best producer award. Advaitas The Silent Sea and Swarathmas Topiwalleh shared honours for the best album art while The Blue Frog, Mumbai was adjudged the best live music venue. The emcee then made Michele Obamas virtual presence at the Oscars seem less random by calling upon a Bollywood designer along with an eye-candy model to give away the next set of awards Blek were back on stage to collect their award, after being declared the best emerging band of 2012. The next award handed out was for the best keyboardist which was shared by Jason Zachariah (Jason Zac Band) and Zubin Balaporia (Indus Creed). The designer-model duo then gave a priceless tip of advice in fashion to the musicians gathered (who, judging by the vibes, couldnt care less), before handing over the best drummer award to Jai Row Kavi (Indus Creed). Bombay Jam band Something Relevant was up next on stage, playing a half hour long medley of songs from their second album, We Could Be Dreaming which was released last year.
Actor Suchitra Pillai was then accompanied on stage by Ken Ghosh (Bollywood director) to give away the next set of awards – Tony Guinard of the Ska Vengers tipped my personal favourite Roop Thomas of Blakc to win the best bassist award. Thermal and a Quarter frontman Bruce Lee Mani deservingly bagged the coveted best guitarist award, having being nominated alongside other stalwarts like Keshav Dhar, Baiju Dharmarajan and Mahesh Tinaikar. A clueless Mandira Bedi then walked onto stage to hand over the awards for best male and female vocalists – Vivienne Pocha won the award for the best female vocalist scoring over equally good singers Samara C (Ska Vengers) and Suman Sridhar (Sridhar/Thayil), while Angaraag Papon Mahanta overpowered the likes of Uday Benegal, Rabbi Shergill, Bruce Lee Mani, Gareth Dmello and Vasu Dixit in a star studded list of nominations for the best male vocalist.
The Rolling Stone all-star jam that followed, showcased artists from bands like Something Relevant, Split, Goddess Gagged and Colour Compound, recreate the magic of some of Indias most popular rock songs from Siddharth Basrur and Gareth Dmellos duet take on Them Cloness Zephyretta to Rachel Vargheses cover of Junkyard Grooves Imagine, Saba Azads cover of Orange Streets Candywalk to Gareths beautiful delivery of Lucy by Zero, Suman Sridhars horror screams and deafening screeches on Workshops Pudhe Sarka to Rachel Vargheses rendering of Trapped by Indus Creed, the wonderfully selected set list for the jam had something for everyones taste and gave the attendees a lot to cheer about.
The Rolling Stone jam session was ensued by the last set of awards that saw Keshav Dhars Skyharbor bag the recently introduced – best metal band award before Papon made it two for the night after Boitha Maro Re was adjudicated the best song, overshadowing some splendid tracks like Maeva (Skyharbor), Fog + Strobe (Blek), Dissolve (Indus Creed) and For the Cat (TAAQ). Former Miss India, Yukta Mookhey was then called out of oblivion to hand over the last couple of awards – Advaitas The Silent Sea won the top honours bagging the best album award, however it was Indus Creed who won the bragging rights and took home the 5 lakh rupees prize money after being adjudged the best Indian band for the year 2012.
Despite oddities of the award presenters, a no-show by most winners and a kitty cat on the loose, the award show at large went off smoothly, thanks (largely) to the free flowing Jack at the event.
Jack Daniels Rock Awards 2012 at Mehboob Studios, Mumbai
There was something rather strange about last Thursday night’s 6th Annual JD Rock Awards, held in Mumbai at the Hard Rock Cafe. I’m not sure if it was the oddball MC-ing, the long list of small-time celebrities hanging around, the highly overpriced beer, or possibly a combination of all of these that left me slightly puzzled at the whole shindig.
The presentation of awards began almost as soon as I entered, admittedly quite late. I was already miffed at missing out on Demonic Resurrection, Split and Tough on Tobacco who had already played some brilliant sets as I was told, and now it was Luke Kenny dressed in a bizarre ensemble, who took centre stage. Despite a rather earnest effort throughout the evening, he somehow didn’t manage to connect too well with the packed house, the only highlight probably being when he tossed out freebies to the crowd. The screens displaying video clips and the names of the nominees, were placed far too high and ideally should have been a little larger and more visible.
The ‘celebrities’ who were called up on stage to present the awards included a motley bunch of designers, television actors, VJs and models who generally had very little eminence in the music scene, and were in some cases nothing more than eye candy. I also found it rather baffling that the two most important awards of the night were presented by Aftaab Shivdasani, who looked rather pleased to have this privilege as he violently chewed gum with his mouth wide open in a pasty smile. I really wish they’d left Bollywood out of this.
On the brighter side, the performances that I did manage to watch, were very good, and quite admirably salvaged the show. Something Relevant was up after the first round of awards, and having never watched them live before, I was highly impressed. The band was a tight unit, with a very diverse set of sounds and influences, and had the crowd well and truly on their feet. Ankur Tewari And The Ghalat Family played right after Ankur won the award for Best Male Vocalist, and played a nice set of catchy hindi rock songs.
Scribe then took the stage for a short set and did well to live up to the cool haul of five awards that they’d won that night. The show wound up with Ashu’s Petri Dish Project, who dished out some pretty decent trip hop and was interesting if you like that sort of stuff, although im not quite sure how many people in the audience really got into it. The assorted bevy of female vocalists that accompanied them one after the other held their own, but turned out to be more of a distraction than of any particular value addition in terms of sound. Dhruv Ghanekar joined them for the last couple of songs and sparkled with some fantastic guitaring.
In the end, I couldn’t really tell whether the emphasis was on the awards, the performances or the celebrities, and I think that JD would do much better with a slightly de-glamourised show next year.