Mumbai Blog 6 – boogie nights, standing on glass and pictures of people carrying things.

Just sitting in the living room, currently getting the mickey taking out of me for wearing socks. It’s totally boiling…but I went to a disco and stepped on glass so I’m trying to keep the cut clean. It was a decent bloody mess but stopped bleeding quickly. The Nicest girls in the bathroom gathered round and one said I’m a nurse, stopped the blood and gave me plasters. They said I should get an injection….(I immediately started imagining a huge needle in the bum and got nervous)

Back at my friend’s, they poured old spice aftershave on it – seemingly this is good for it. Went to the doctor the next morning just to check. Doc basically laughed and said its fine. But offered me an X-ray to double check for glass. Decided to give the X-ray a miss this time.


Above is the kids from Dharavi Art room having a shot of the keyboard. They are fast learners! …..the 3 at a time rule wasn’t quite working…but I think the world needs more up-side-down keyboard players anyway.

At one of Muktangan’s schools, I meet with the music teachers from their 7 different schools once a week and we go over different ideas for their music classes. We tried out lots of ‘energisers’ (little songs with actions) There’s tons of them on youtube It’s really amusing doing them all with grown ups!


Went to see a gig – ‘FKJ’, a DJ from Paris. He plays keyboard and guitar along to jazzy funky beats. It was cool. Totally packed. Had a boogie.


Mumbai Blog 5 – Badmaash on the train, Carol’s here, Paragon are here and the baby shark song.

This week we took Badmaash to the train….

Aashansh were playing keyboard and singing the Baby Shark song…AGAIN…and just being general cool dudes.

Dharavi Art Room are gearing up for our concert at end of march. Just need to find a venue…here’s a little snippet of baby shark.

Carol has been visiting this week….!


St Judes session – We sang some songs and play games with the centre’s percussion instruments and ukuleles.


Had loads of fun hanging out with Paragon this week and joining them for a couple of their sessions and concert. They have been working with the ADAPT centre. (Abled, Disabled, All People Together). The kids were amazing – percussionists, dancers and rappers! led by Ninian, Tom, Charlotte, Diljeet and Colin – what a team.

and more badmaash…..has been taking place…mohahaha. Video coming soon….

Screen Shot 2015-02-18 at 15.20.46

Mumbai Blog 4 – one month done – what.

This week I had my first piano lesson with Mahesh who works for Mewsic. He is a music teacher in Dharavi Slum and is from there himself. Wow what a guy. He came with a whole list of everything he wanted to learn and said his aim is to become a great teacher.

I had fun at Aashansh trying to speak Hindi, while the kids practiced their English. We were practicing the days of the week using a…. days of the week song. We’d sing it in English then in Hindi. Kids thought it was funny I was trying to speak Hindi (but were really encouraging! ) and I think it helped them understand the english – it was a laugh anyway.

This week Laura Grime and I collaborated with Indian Violinist Sunita and percussion player Ameya. We played a gig for Visit Scotland in the Taj Hotel, organised by Alan Tweedie. The event was highlighting all the places in Scotland which have been featured in Bollywood – quite a lot. Love a Castle so they do.

We played a mixture of Scottish tunes, Indian classical and Bollywood songs. There was a chef from Scotland who fed us oysters and smoked salmon and we got some Marmalade to take home. (and a handy map of Scotland.)

Introducing piano sack phototype 1 !

I went to visit a tailor, that Laura had recommended. Told him what I was after, with a little sketch via a man who could speak English. The Tailor told me how much material I needed (2 metres) and recommended a place to get it. I bought it, brought it back and the tailor told me to come back in a few hours. DONE. brilliant.

That night, I spewed all night long. Spend the whole of the next day and night sleeping. The following day, a bit more sleeping and then a rehearsal with Paragon from Scotland! so lovely to see familiar Tom Oakes and Diljeet faces! and meet Ninian and Charlotte from Paragon. We were practicing for a gig with Sunita and two other indian percussion players -who were incredible.

The Gig was at Bluefrog last night. In aid of the charity, ADAPT to raise awareness and to support equality for people with additional needs.

I had some whiskey to kill that last bugs that made me sick.

okay this week – lets gooooo

Mumbai blog 3 – Badmaash in Bombay, Ukuleles and Rickshaw driving

Badmaash is a Hindi word for Mischief. Laura came up with this name for our Badmaash. The plan is to play tunes in unusual places for a laugh. Since we are already in Mumbai, we started in the house….

For our next session we took a rickshaw to Land’s End in Bandra. A place where people go to watch the sunset and sit by the coast. There’s a good view of the sea link.


It was Burn’s night so we played Ae fond kiss. On a high after this escapade we went for a beer and planned a list. Suggestions are welcome. We ended up going to an open mic night at the Hive and played there too.


The next episode, “On the train” is coming soon….

Screen Shot 2015-01-27 at 20.34.57

This week I visited one of Mewsic‘s Centres in the Dharavi slum area. Mahesh, a self taught musician teaches at the centre. He is from Dharavi himself. The centre has half a dozen guitars and keyboards that have been donated and is always open so even when Mahesh isn’t teaching the kids can go and play on the instruments. They are really good! Mahesh says he would like to learn staff notation, chords progressions and improvisation so I’ll be meeting him once a week to go over these things.

Aqui gave me the key to open up for my music class at Dharavi Art room. I ended up walking into someone else’s home, but found it! We sang lots of songs with movement. I bought some cheap material to make a parachute and we tried some songs with the parachute. There were a few older boys in class this week, winding each other up so it was quite a hyper class.

I was also pretty hyper myself because on route to Dharavi the Rickshaw driver asked if I wanted a shot at driving! YES

St Judes centre with Rimi was great – the kids really picked up the song, we had drums sections, ukulele sections and shakers. Everyone singing ah- wumba – way! Rimi and I have signed out a couple ukuleles from the centre to practice and work out other songs to teach them. Figured out you only really need one finger to play chords C and F. This morning I’ve been learning some reggie.