Fans of Indian music in North America have a lot to look forward to this June, as the second edition of India’s largest musical gala, the Gaana Music Festival is set to hit Holmdel, New Jersey and Mountain View, California on June 8 and 9, respectively. Dubbed the ‘Coachella of Indian music’, the festival aims to bring a taste of contemporary Indian entertainment to music lovers in the US.
Following on the success of the debut edition last year, the festival, brought to you by India’s largest media conglomerate, The Times Group, is now bigger and better with more music genres and the introduction of stand-up gigs by some of the most popular comics from the Indian comedy scene.
The 2019 Line-Up: Who’s Performing?
Veteran musicians Hariharan and Alka Yagnik – who have between them eighty-one years of professional singing experience – will be performing, the former bringing a specially curated set focusing on his South Indian repertoire. The festival will see performances by one of the most popular music director duos and live performers from the last decade – Vishal & Shekhar – as well as one of the most popular singers – Sunidhi Chauhan, described as having ‘the liveliest voice in Bollywood’. And with a focus on the contemporary, the festival brings down one of the poster boys of the current ‘gully rap’ craze sweeping the nation, Divine, and two faces of modern Punjabi Pop, Jassie Gill + Babbal Rai.
Finally, given how popular stand-up comedy has become not just in India but among the Indian populace around the world, Rohan Joshi, Kanan Gill and Anshu Mor will entertain audiences in addition to the music performances.
The 2018 Edition: What Went Down
Held on May 19-20 at Shoreline Amphitheatre in Mountain View, California, the inaugural edition of the Gaana Music Festival was the first ever music festival of its kind in the USA.
Hosting performances by popular Indian artists Arijit Singh, Mika Singh, Usha Uthup, Benny Dayal, Kanika Kapoor, Gippy Grewal, Amaal Malik, Armaan Malik, Ayushman Khurrana, Akriti Kakar, Prakriti Kakar, Sukriti Kakar, Indian Raga and Penn Masala, the festival saw a turnout of over 20,000 over two days.