Wonderful news for fans of Sahana Bajpaie. The artiste, who is equally popular among music enthusiasts in Bangladesh and West Bengal for popularising Rabindra Sangeet among urban youth in the mid-2000s, is launching her next solo album on September 27.
Under the banner of Hindustan Records Inreco, the folk album titled, “Mon Bandhibi Kemone”, features 8 songs of Lalon, Shah Abdul Karim and Bhoba Pagla. Rabiul Islam and Agami TV (Austin Texas, USA) have produced the album.
Samantak Sinha and Satyaki Banerjee – talented musicians from Kolkata and longtime musical collaborators of Sahana – have arranged music for the album. English folk guitarist Mal Darwen and jazz musician Idris Rahman have played in some of the songs as well.
Talking about the recording process, Sahana told The Daily Star, “Some of the numbers have been sung, maintaining the quintessential folk arrangement, and recorded live in the studio to capture the true spirit and essence of folk music.”
Though it has been years since she moved from Bangladesh, Sahana's music remains her unbreakable link to her fans here. The Santiniketan-born singer has remained active in her musical pursuits, mostly focusing on Rabindra Sangeet, alongside a teaching career in the UK. Her last solo album, “Ja Bolo Tai Bolo”, featuring Rabindra Sangeet, was received very well both in the West Bengal and Bangladesh.
Asked what inspired her to venture into the realm of folk music, the artiste said, “I have been singing Bangla folk songs since I was a child, and I was learning intermittently from our neighbourhood Bauls in Santiniketan. Incidentally, I was the first lead singer of the folk fusion band Bangla when it was formed by Shayan Chowdhury Arnob. Later, Anusheh Anadil joined as the lead singer and of course that gave the band a brilliant edge which made it so popular. But my deep interest in folk songs has always remained, and I sing them at my concerts. I feel this indefinable energy when I sing folk songs, especially because there are no constraints when it comes to these timeless tunes. The big bosses are not watching and judging, as it were. It is people's music.”