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Jones of all tunes

NEETI SARKAR
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Chat Norah Jones who will be performing in India for the first time talks about fulfilling her father’s desire and her musical influences

The right noteNorah Jones
The right noteNorah Jones

She is one of the most critically acclaimed and commercially successful artistes in the world and despite being the daughter of one of India’s most illustrious musicians Pandit Ravi Shankar; she will perform live in India for the first time ever this month.

Nine-time Grammy winner, Norah Jones, will kick-off the three-city tour with a headlining performance at A Summer’s Day ( new music festival produced by Only Much Louder, the company behind music festivals such as the Bacardi NH7 Weekender and Eristoff Invasion) in Mumbai, followed by concerts in New Delhi and Bangalore.

Jones first emerged on the world stage a decade ago with the 2002 release of Come Away with Me that introduced a singular new voice and grew into a phenomenon, sweeping the 2003 Grammy Awards and signalling a paradigm shift from the prevailing synthetic pop music of the time. Since then, the talented artiste has sold over 40 million albums worldwide, releasing a series of solo albums — Feels Like Home (2004), Not Too Late (2007), The Fall (2009), and Little Broken Hearts (2012) — as well as two albums with her country collective The Little Willies.

Norah Jones speaks to MetroPlus about her maiden India tour, her music and what she’s got on the cards.

How did this performance come about?

I’m excited to come to India. It’s also bittersweet because my dad just passed away. I’ve never played in India, so that’s one reason to do it, and also my dad has always wanted me to perform here. It’s just been a matter of timing, and adding on to tours. It’s just never worked out in the past. I’m usually so tired by the end of the tour that I never want to add the faraway places. This time I planned it a while ago and my dad was really asking me to do it, and I thought it would be nice for him and for me. So it’s very sad that he’s gone now.

Among your albums which one is a personal favourite?

I don’t know. I think the newest thing is always the favourite — it’s what you’re closest to, and I think that’ll probably be true for a long time. I think I’ll need another 10 years to reflect and choose a real favourite.

Who are your biggest musical influences?

Every year I change and get inspired by different things. I find inspiration in all kinds of places. It’s really hard to put into words.

Your music appeals to a wide range of audience. How did you achieve it?

It’s great. It’s totally random. Sometimes there will be older people, sometimes there will be college kids, and sometimes there will be people my age.

If there was an Indian artiste/band you could collaborate with, who would it be?

At this point in the tour, there’s not going to be a lot of room for anything other than the shows, but I’m always open to things. I’m mostly familiar with my dad and sister (Anoushka). They’re my personal favourites. I’ve heard a lot of music from them over the past few years that I love and I never remember other names. I have a good old Bollywood soundtrack compilation that I listen to sometimes. I love old Bollywood music which is so good.

What have you lined up for the rest of 2013?

After the tour in India, I’m going to have some time off. I’m not sure what I’m going to do, and I’m excited to have no plans, for a while.

Norah Jones will be performing in Bangalore on March 8. Tickets are available at www.nh7.in/asummersday and BookMyShow.com.

NEETI SARKAR

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