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Music To Warm A Cold January Day

Ranjani Saigal
01/24/2007

Lahiri, New England’s light music group livened up a cold wintry January evening by presenting hit numbers from Kannada, Tamil, Telugu and Hindi film songs. The show, which was completely sold out was held at the Dakshin restaurant in Framingham, Ma on January 20, 2007.  

Based out of Boston, MA, the Lahari group has been performing in the New England / New York area for over six  years. “The members of the group have one thing in common - we all love music” says Madhu Akkihebbal who is one of the vocalists in the group. They  have performed at several concerts sponsored by organizations like New York Kannada Koota, New England Kannada Koota,  Indian Association of Greater Boston and many more.

The team is made up of vocalists, Madhu Akkihebbal, Jayanth Kananur, Satish Bhat, Meera Rajgopal, Shobha Hiremath, Sumana Bhat, and Padmini Narayan. The instrumentalists include Satish Bhat on the keyboard and percussion, Sudhir Srinivasan on lead and rhythm guitar and Sandesh Bhat on the tabla.

The show opened with a salute to Lord Ganesha and the team moved on to present several rocking numbers.  Drawing from the popular collections of music directors like Ilayaraja, Ghatasala, Hamsalekha, Himesh Reshamiyya  the songs had the audience out of their seats and onto the dance floor.

The Hindi song collection included  "Wherez the party tonight" (KANK) - a popular disco-themed number from last year, "Rang De" (Takshak) - a well-known dance number sung by Asha Bhosle,  Himesh Reshimayya's inimitable song "Tum Saason Mein" (Hum Ko Deewana Kar Gaye), and the melodious hit "Tum Paas Aaye" (Kuch Kuch Hota Hai). They also presented "Chand Sifarish" (Fanaa) for which Lahari's female vocalists presented a graceful dance number.  The guitarists took the opportunity to display their talents with an instrumental number "Kaho Na Kaho" from the hindi movie Murder.

The team presented several hit songs from Kannada films that delighted the Kannada speaking meambers of the audience. PB Sreenivas  and S Janaki’s   unforgettable song "ThamNam ThamNam" from the  movie Eradu Kanasu., Ghantasala and P. Susheela  melodious kannada classic "Mellusire Savigaana" from the movie Veera Kesari took audience down memory lane.

The artists then fast-forwarded to contemporary music by presenting Hamsalekha’s latest Kannada ompositions from the movie "Nenapirali".  The title song is a powerful duet with excellent background score and chorus. The fast paced number "Koorak Kukralli Kere" originally sung by S.P. Balasubramanyam that hilariously describes the city of Mysore had the men on the dance floor! The Kannada repertoire also included "Kanasaloo Neene",  an evergreen hit from the movie Bayalu Dhaari,  the title song from the movie "Chappaale" rendered originally by Shankar Mahadevan sings in his trademark fast paced style and a lively SPB and Chitra duet "Cheluve Nanna Cheluve" from the movie Suprabhatha.

IlayaRaja's masterpiece "O Priya" (Geethanjali) and a recent youthful peppy number "Cheppana Prema" (Manasantha Nuvve) was part of the Telugu collection while the Tamil collection included “Rangola” from Ghajini, “Ninnu Kori” from Agni Nakshtram and “Thottu Thottu Enne” from Kaadal.

Not to be outdone by the adults, Lahari kids presented a popular song "Akadum Bakadum" from the recent animation hit movie - Hanuman and couple of kids joined adults in the tongue-twister song "Chanda Chamke" from the Hindi movie Fanaa.

“We have been working on this program for nearly three months. All of us are crazy about music and thus despite our busy lives we really put in a lot of practice to make this happen” said vocalist Satish Bhat.

What did the audience think of the show? Madhu Akkebal asked the audience this very question and the answer came in the form enthusiastic cheering and thunderous applause.  Dinner from Dakshin was a fitting finale to a the fun party that Lahiri had going for nearly two hours.

“It was a lot of work but now that is over there is a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction” was the overall comments from the members of the group. A fun evening indeed from a bunch of talented musicians and we hope Lahiri brings more such parties to town!



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