* Srabon Fusion Band, an ensemble formed by Bangladeshi expatriates, strives to create unique music
Community togetherness and bonding is felt more among expatriates as they always look for opportunities to celebrate common traditions, values, and cultures. Music remains an overriding factor when it comes to expatriates marking a national or cultural occasion in Qatar.
Bangladeshis arethe second largest expatriate community here. They have different community groups and organisations that line up events for their national and cultural celebrations.
However, when it comes to having some entertainment and music, the choice is always Srabon Fusion Band.
Srabon is a fusion band formed by Bangladeshi expatriates, trying to create a new blend of improvisation of eastern music on modern instruments.
Gulf Times recently spoke to the band’s leading member, Amin Rasul Saiful regarding their ensemble and music.
Introducing the members of the group, Amin said: “I am the vocalist, guitarist, and band lead. Mujib Uddowla Mojo is the drummer and percussionist. Sohel Ahmed is the keyboardist. Priyotom Dutta is bassist. Tanjhim Ahmed a vocalist and lead guitarist. Firoz Ahmed plays the acoustic guitar. Some guest performers appearing with the band include: Oyshi Saha, violinist; Aniruddhu, who plays the tabla; and Mir Shobuj, flutist.”
Asked how and when the band came into being, Amin revealed the idea of the ensemble came to some musicians-friends as they wanted to do something different in Qatar.
“In 2005, it was a summer midnight hangout at the Corniche and a few friends were discussing music. We had been performing at various community events for long. The more we spoke on the multicultural music scene in Doha, we realised the need to do something different from what we usually used to do.
“It was the moment when we came out with the idea of creating some kind of fusion of eastern music on western instruments.
“The idea sounded inspiring and we decided to form a band with a dedicated project called ‘Fusion’. However, later we decided to name it Srabon.”
The response to the band was overwhelming, Amin said. “The combination of eastern tunes and western instruments sounded amazing. From every event we got enough inspiration to continue the effort. Our aim is to let the world listen the rich tunes of the east. We do believe in dedication and creativity. We don’t want to produce average things that do not have any message or mark in the history of music. We will continue our hard work to reach up to the level where we can make a difference.”
Asked about the kind of music they play and the audience they target, the band leader said that they play different music at different times. “We play various styles, traditional and modern music taking influences from cultures around the globe to create new sounds. We also take inspiration from the diverse cultural colours of Qatar. Though we mostly perform for the Bangladeshi community, we are not limited to performing for any one group of expatriates.”
Speaking on band’s performances in Qatar, Amin said: “Besides regularly performing at community events, we have been taking part in celebrations and festivals organised by the Qatar government. We are a part of cultural activities for FIFA World Cup 2022 Qatar, promoting the tournament and entertaining in fan-zones. We have performed at many open air concerts in Qatar for large gatherings and audiences of different nationalities.”
Asked if he thinks the band is helpful in uniting the Bangladeshi community in Qatar through music and entertainment, Amin said: “We have passion to create music that can touches the souls of the listeners of all segments of Qatari society, crossing boundaries of language and culture. We believe only music can unite people in harmony.
“We therefore perform not only in Bangla but also in English, Spanish, Hindi, Urdu, Punjabi, Nepali and Arabic. We just love music as it is a universal language.”
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