Tiny Desk Special Edition: Red Baraat's Holi Celebration

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Red Baraat performs at Tiny Desk Concert on Feb. 8, 2017. (Marian Carrasquero/NPR)

Red Baraat's fusion of bhangra, go-go, hip-hop and jazz is driven by frontman Sunny Jain's percolating playing of the dhol, a double-sided drum which forms the rhythmic lattice of support for their boisterous horns and guitar. And though Red Baraat graced the Tiny Desk five years ago, we had to have Jain's band back to celebrate Holi, the Hindu festival of color, of good over evil, and the coming of spring. Usually you'd see the dusting of brightly colored perfumed powders strewn in the air, covering bodies and clothing. The notion of doing that in the office was a fun thought, but the band (with my nudging) opted instead for confetti cannons and passing candied treats. It made for quicker cleanup, but their uplifting spirits lingered on, giving us a chance to shake off the final days of winter and demonstrating why music is so essential to the soul.

Bhangra Pirates is available for pre-order now. (iTunes) (Amazon)

Set List

  • "Sialkot"
  • "Zindabad"
  • "Bhangale"
  • "Se Hace Camino"

Musicians

Sunny Jain (dhol, vocals); Rohin Khemani (percussion); Chris Eddleton (drums); Sonny Singh (trumpet, vocals); Jonathan Goldberger (guitar); Jonathon Haffner (soprano sax); Raymond James Mason (trombone); Steven Duffy (sousaphone)


Credits

Producers: Bob Boilen, Niki Walker; Audio Engineer: Josh Rogosin; Videographers: Niki Walker, Colin Marshall, Nick Michael, Morgan Noelle Smith; Production Assistants: A Noah Harrison, Bronson Arcuri, Ameeta Ganatra; Photo: Marian Carrasquero/NPR.

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