Was The Revivalists’ reaction when offered a chance to come to town

For a band that’s only about six years and two albums old, New Orleans- based band The Revivalists sure know how to make a lasting impression. The American rock band, which extends to a seven-piece live band, made a similar mark on a promoter at a gig in Washington D.C. earlier this year. Saxophone player Rob Ingraham says in an email interview, “I guess he liked what he heard. A few weeks later we got an email from our manager: ‘So, umm, do you guys want to go to India?’ How could we say no to that?”

The Revivalists will play three shows in Bangalore — on November 8 and 9 at Windmills Craftworks in Whitefield, followed by an open-air gig on November 10 at Jayamahal Palace grounds. They’re travelling all the way across for just three shows, all in the same city, but the band says they don’t know what to expect.

Ingraham says, “We have some preconceptions about what it might be like, but I think for the most part we're trying to come in with a blank slate and just experience it for what it is rather than get caught up in what we expect it to be. We're all just looking forward to hopping on a plane and finding out.”

As much as it’s a surprise for the band themselves to be playing in India, it does stump the occasional music fan as well. The Revivalists have gained a huge following mostly around the States, specifically in New Orleans, with their raucous live gigs. “It helps that home is New Orleans, because there are a few times every year (Mardi Gras, Jazz Fest, Halloween/Voodoo Fest) where the city has a huge influx of visitors and there is a surge of live music. It creates a lot of opportunities to let new fans see you on your home turf, and also to network within the local and national community of musicians. Having a home fanbase is much more of a blessing than a burden,” says Ingraham, adding that they do usually switch up their live sets for club shows and open-air festivals, although they haven’t got to a point where they’d pick one kind of venue over another. Says Ingraham, “It's really all about the people, though. If we can get people dancing, then we’ll have a great time no matter where we’re playing. As for set lists, we always switch it up. It’s very rare for us to play the same set twice.”

That’s also because the band is constantly working on new material, according to Ingraham. Their second album, City of Sound, released in April 2012, but the Revivalists head into the studio for their next release in December and January this year. Ingraham says, “We have a lot of songs that are kind of half sketched out right now that we're saving for the studio, but we also have a few that we've started playing live. So India will definitely hear some yet-to-be-released material.”

The band recently played a Halloween show in New Orleans, except with an entirely different setlist, featuring songs from funk band Red Hot Chili Peppers’s seminal album Blood Sugar Sex Magik. Ingraham explains, “Last year we played in New Orleans on Halloween, and we wanted to do something different because it was a special night, so we all dressed up as different Michael Jacksons and we played a bunch of Michael Jackson songs. It was a blast.”

Covers aren’t an essential part of the Revivalists setlist, but they sure do help them win over the crowd, when they throw in something as random as Dr. Dre and Rage Against the Machine, which might be part of the plan for their India shows, according to Ingraham. “We like for our covers to be complete curve balls,” says Ingraham.

The Revivalists play at Windmills Craftworks, 331 Road, 5B EPIP Zone, Whitefield on November 8 and 9, followed by a show at Jayamahal Palace Grounds on November 10, 8.30 PM Onwards

Entry is Rs 1000 per head for Seat/Reservations & INR 750 for Free-Standing at Windmills Craftworks and INR 1000 per head for free standing at Jayamahal Palace. Tickets are available at the venue & BookMyShow. For further information & reservation: + 91 +91 9008079000/+ 91 7259024652