Tuning Fork has evolved into a launch pad for emerging artistes
For a venue that's less than a year old, Tuning Fork in Khar has come a long way. Last night, it celebrated its 100th gig with performances by singer-songwriters Tejas and Abeineth
Bryan Ernest (centre) at a performance with his band at Tuning Fork
For a venue that's less than a year old, Tuning Fork in Khar has come a long way. Last night, it celebrated its 100th gig with performances by singer-songwriters Tejas and Abeineth (Abhineet Chandra).
A cosy performance spot that can accommodate only about 50 people, Tuning Fork is stacked beside other watering holes such as 3 Wise Monkeys, Quarter Pillar and Light House Café, all of which line a street outside Khar railway station. But, rather than be frequented for its culinary offerings, it is thronged by many a millennial for its stellar gigs.
According to Meghana Bhogle, who has been programming performances at the venue for the last six months, Tuning Fork offers a platform to those who might not be able to score a gig at a bigger venue. “These are the emerging artistes, the ones without managers or a large social media following,” she says.
Bhogle adds that when they were starting out, they had to approach artistes to perform at the venue. “Now that we’ve made a name for ourselves in the Indie space, we have people coming to us and asking if they can perform here,” she shares.
The sentiment is justified, considering Tuning Fork has helped jumpstart the careers of many musicians. “Abeineth played his first gig here; others such as Lawntuba, Ink of Bard and The Easy Wanderlings were — so to speak — discovered here,” she adds.
No monetary promise is made to the artistes. However, in exchange for their appearance, they receive recording time at the in-house studio. “We also hand over all the audio and video from their gigs here, which they can use to showcase their talent,” informs Bhogle.
Tejas, who has been associated with Tuning Fork since it early days, believes that this is very important for those who want a break in the industry. “There is a vast difference between singing in the comfort of your home, and doing it in a studio or before an audience. With Tuning Fork, new artistes get a boost and a space in which to play.”
Meghana Bhogle, programmer, Tuning Fork
He shares that the spot never set out to be the next blueFROG. He adds, “There is something to be said about intimacy. In a larger space (like blueFROG), it is harder to connect with your audience. A smaller place makes people want to shut up and listen.”
Recently, Tuning Fork tied up with travel company White Collar Hippie by having four artistes play at the latter’s campsite in Uttan. This shows the young brand’s willingness to innovate. “We also hope to open our doors to live
electronic acts soon,” says Bhogle.
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