Location: Kolkata, India
Years Active: 2013 to Present
Rohan Ganguli, Arunava Chatterjee,
Bijit Bhattacharya, Rupsha Sen,
What started as a full blown blues band 3 years ago at Jamsteady, Princeton has now evolved into something more of a concept than just another blues band. Known earlier as Big Family Blues Ensemble, the band later dropped the blues ensemble bit. This was done to accommodate more sounds. The band enjoys having guest musicians sitting in on sessions, gigs, etc. This expands the palette of sounds that goes beyond just the blues, although at heart it is still a blues band. Spreading the gospel of the blues, Big Family has hosted musicians from various backgrounds and musical styles thereby never settling on one fixed sound.
The core band members are Rohan Ganguli on guitar, Arunava Sonai Chaterjee on piano/keyboards, Bijit Bhattacharya on bass, Rupsha Sen on vocals and Premjit Dutta on drums. They are joined every year end by Mickey Kuttner on blues harp. They started out as a traditional blues unit and slowly branched out and incorporated more sounds and styles that come from the same emotional space occupied by the old blues men and women. According to the band, it is an effort to keep the blues relevant and dynamic.
They have garnered a devoted following in the city through their spirited live performances. The live gigs are almost always unpredictable as they keep changing the arrangements of classics and never settle down with a preset modus operandi. This makes the music interesting for the musicians and the audience alike.
They are currently writing and composing their album. A host of renowned musicians will be playing on the album. The band is excited but won’t divulge more than that till it is on its way to becoming a more concrete product. There is a lot to look forward to.
They had a tour of Delhi earlier in 2016 where they played 4 back to back gigs across the city. The tour was a success for the band. They will be traveling soon to other cities. They are a regular feature at all the venues in their home town, ‘Plush’ being their favourite venue.
They draw their musical influences from many different styles of music. From BB King, Etta James, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Robben Ford, Derek Trucks band, Santana, Miles Davis, John Coltrane, John Scofield, Bill Evans, Jaco Pastorius, Thelonius Monk to modern players like Kurt Rosenwinkel, Matt Schofield, Brad Mehldau and Brian Blade. It is an endless river of influences that contribute to the musical background of Big Family. Thereby, standing still is not really an option for them!
Rohan Ganguli is a Fender and Ernie Ball artist. Premjit Dutta is Sonor, Remo and Vic Firth endorsee.
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