The Hindi rockstars

The Local Train band members speak about the motivation and crooning Hindi rock numbers

September 05, 2017 12:10 pm | Updated November 13, 2021 10:57 am IST

It was a big shout out to the band The Local Train (TLT) when they performed at Hard Rock Cafe last weekend. The Hindi rockstars were toast of the evening as the foursome wowed the crowd with their cool Hindi numbers. The band includes Ramit Mehra (bass guitar), Paras Thakur (lead/acoustic guitar), Raman Negi (vocals /acoustic guitar) and Sahil Sarin (drums and percussions.) “We had a kickass time in Hyderabad,” enthuses Ramit a day-after the show. “It is lovely to go to a new city, a city which is far from your hometown and get such love. It is the energy of the place which makes you feel good about what you do. You feel like ‘Okay, What I am doing is definitely worthwhile.’ Hope we come more often to Hyderabad.”

How they started

We often see musical bands being formed when friends bound by their interest in music jam together. However, the story of TLT is different as these four individuals have never met each other until a few years ago. “It was not like we met in college or in at a coaching centre,” states Ramit. The musicians played a couple of shows together and got along well. “We ended up jamming in a studio and wrote our first album. We were like, ‘May be, we have something good,” smiles Paras. Chandigarh forms an important city in their scheme of things as they met there. “We all wanted to be big musicians and have grown up listening to all sorts of music, including Bollywood. Whether we like it or not, Bollywood music will have an influence at least in the initial years,” recalls Paras and adds, “Not until when we discovered rock music and how different instruments react to each other.”

As a group

Although the members come from different sensibilities, they have learnt to work with each other. “We all have different sounds but luckily we all figured how to deal with each other individually and as a group. All of us also realise that the music needs to sound good.” Paras shares the motivation was to make original music. “We wanted to write our own music which brought us and kept us together.”

The group raised many eyebrows when they began crooning Hindi rock numbers and the initial months were filled with surprises. “In India, when you say Hindi music, people connect it to just Bollywood music. Many times, we have been asked why we sing in Hindi. The question perplexes us. ‘Why not Hindi?” asks Ramit and states the big shift is happening. “When you play rock and roll and are not singing in English, people are confused. With a lot more bands singing in Hindi, the change is on the way.”

Second album

The group released their first album Aalas ka Ped in 2015. “We took our sweet time to create the album but that was also the learning curve,” says Ramit. Now, the group is excited with their second album Vaaqif which is to be released soon. “The album has eight songs. The four of us live together and that helped a lot. We would lock ourselves up in our rooms and jam to create the songs.”

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