Moderator: Varsha Patra, Co-Founder Home Grown
Panellists: Vikatam, Be-Boy Instructor, Dharavi Dream Project, Ankit Khanna, Founder, DNH Artists, A K Projects, Tommy Sandhu, Television Presenter, DJ, Producer, and Brodha V, Artist
‘Apna Time Aagaya’ voiced Hip-hop Artists
On the second day of the one of the biggest Music conclave held at J W Marriott in Mumbai, artists from Hip-hop ecosystem came together to share insights on how Hip-hop needs to be more inclusive in India.
Patra, the moderator gave essence about how the hip hop ecosystem has evolved in 2019 and how it is going to get better. However, Patra notes that how the industry in India is going to make Hip-hop culture inclusive, diverse, break culture and linguistic barriers and focus on education and talent and ensure that brands do not pay lip service to Hip-hop culture and protect freedom of speech for rappers.
Tommy Sandhu who had been instrumental in infusing a lease of life in the then less acknowledged genre Hip hop and brought an artist like Divine to the forefront shared his journey with Divine, Sandhu said, “We love what Divine sang – ‘Meri Gully Mein’ which was loved by people in the United Kingdom and all over the place. This is how the hip-hop came to light in the Indian diaspora.”
For Brodha V, the struggles and scars have been his partners in life. Brodha shared how the artist belongs to hip-hop were not acknowledged and were falling on deaf ears. The artists from Hip-hop fraternity have been struggling and are being not given the importance they deserve.
The man behind the new production house called ‘Kalamkaar’ starts the session by saying that Apna time aayega nahin, aagaya hai. Khanna further told that ‘We have been working with three labels who are building Hip-hop culture in India with a vision to nurture stars and help them to come forward and make a dent.” Joining the discussion, Khanna believes that they have a plan to pump million dollars into the project called Kalamkaar to ensure that they are going to make this a sustained campaign where they are not going to perform for free.
Music and Labels only get highlighted when they have a talented artist, says Khanna. He emphasised, “What is important is the recognition and respect the artist from Hip hop genre.” Vikram, Be-Boy instructor shared how the movie GullyBoy has helped people to come out of the shadow and help the four elements of Hip-hop. However, what is important is an artist like Divine help other elements of Be-Boy to let people and music lover understand what hip-hop has in store for India.
Answering about how creating more space for Hip-hop, Vikram shared how difficult was the journey and people were not even aware of the styles present in hip-hop. “It has been a challenging journey to become a Be-Boyer where I used to sell milk at night and practice on the streets. The family pressure and their hostile attitude towards the dance form made the journey difficult.”
Nonetheless, with the help of Dharavi school project, Vikram and his team managed to get the space and shelter for the upcoming artists to perform.
It is important to know that a responsible Hip-Hop ecosystem is the need of the hour, and our panellists put forth important points to keep a note of.