DID YOU KNOW?
Coldplay, John Mayer, Maroon5 or Ed Sheeran- global singers’ cover versions sell more than original work in Bollywood music dominated India, says Prabhtoj Singh – frontman/lead vocalist and guitarist of The Copycats band.
The band has a name that in itself has no qualms about being just a cover band.
We play in The Copycats majorly to pay our bills and raise funds for our original music. It’s easy to fill a venue with a Copycats show if we play a tribute show. But it takes a lot of effort, marketing and patience to build an audience for original music even if your songs are great and loved by people since the music scene in our country is majorly dominated by Bollywood music,” says Singh.
The band believes in covering music just the way the original artist has played it in the record.
This ensures that we maintain the original sound of the song and do not tamper with its arrangement,” he said.
“The simple reason behind it is the fact that an artist puts in a lot of effort to create his own sound and be known for it in the world of music. That’s what sets it apart from the others and if we cover every element of the song, only then we feel we have done justice to the song,” he added.
Another idea is to give the audience the exact same experience they would get if they went to a concert to hear the original artiste that they cover.
In order to achieve this, we need to sound exactly like the artist so that people can instantly recognize who we are covering. And this is not an easy task, we don’t believe in taking the easy way out either,” he said.
The Delhi-based band started with a John Mayer tribute.
“We idolized him and his music throughout our college years. We followed it up with Coldplay because that’s another band that has influenced us a lot. Then we went on to pay tribute to our childhood heroes like Michael Jackson, Bryan Adams, Red Hot Chili Pepper, Maroon 5, George Michael and Porcupine Tree.
The band also consists of Aman Sagar, Danik Ghosh, Pranay Parti, Aveleon Giles Vaz and Dan Thomas. He enjoys doing cover songs but believes in creating a balance between that and original work.
Yes, it is easier to survive in the music industry by playing cover music. A lot of bands do only that. But we don’t believe in playing only cover music. I, for eg., have three different bands with which I write original music.
I have my own singer-songwriter project where I write the music and lyrics and I have released an EP and a couple of singles recently.
Loudest take On Cover Bands
Cover bands have gained popularity in recent years even as more venues/ bars/ clubs and other establishments open doors for young musicians to come and perform. While original artists have their own following, it is hard to find recognition and draw crowds which a lot of these establishments demand. By being in a cover band, a lot of musicians can gain recognition even as they are covering popular artists from all over the world. Not only does being a cover band pay handsomely, but it also gives an avenue for the artist to meet people, engage with their music tastes and test the market while sticking to what they do best, play music.