Cruz-ing through jazz

Gomantak Times-21st March ’06

Jazz has its own fan following. And any ardent fan of jazz will have heard of the Goan musician Colin D’Cruz. The jazz musician who has been striking the right notes in terms of music has many more reasons to smile as he recently released his album titled Colin D’Cruz-live in concert,
“This album is unique in the sense that it is going to be the first ever compilation CD made up of live recordings of different jazz ensembles that i performed with over the years. The album will be continuously updated with each edition of the CD. I intend releasing a new edition of the same title every year after pulling out some of the tunes and putting in new ones that i will record each year,” says an excited and thrilled Colin.
Colin has produced and released quite a few albums over the years, but this is going to be a first in terms of concept.
Music was his childhood passion. “I decided i wanted to be a musician when i first got to hear live bands perform. I used to listen to music at home and then i found out where it all came from. There was some kind of magic taking place onstage and i wanted to be a part of that magic. I think bass is the coolest sound of music. You can buy a radio for Rs.100 and listen to music but you’ll miss the punch of bass frequencies that a more expensive set will deliver. When i first discovered Hi-Fi sound i was immediately blown away by the bass and when i decided to play music i naturally chose this rich deep sound of music,” says the man who has made music his life. While speaking about his idols, he emphasised, “One of my biggest influences was an electric bassplayer by the name of Jaco Pastorius who revolutionised bass, taking it from an obscure background sound into the spotlight. amoung acoustic bassplayers (upright bass) I have been influenced by a Danish bassist called Neil Hennings Orsted Pedersen and like his name, he was huge,” Colin adds.
For him a bassplayer is part of the rhythm section (keyboards, bass, drums) and they are behind every moment of the song, where as the singer and soloist is only upfront in the spotlit areas of the song. The scope for a bassplayer in todays world of contemprory music is vast, ‘Bassists are free to use all the elements of music-rhythm, melody and harmony, to create a style of their own,” he affirms.
This talented young lad has been a part of not one or two but over ninety different music ensembles since he first started playing. When he was in Goa from 1999 to 2002, he performed with Just Jazz, Obligato and Blues Power bands that he put together along with his long time music associate Lester Godinho who now teaches drums at the Yamaha school of music in Dubai.
Even after so many years of live performance, Colin believes his best is yet to come. He adds, “As a live performer you are only as good as your last gig, I find this exciting, it keeps me on my toes and i’m always reaching for the next level.”
Although he is proud of the chance to perform and tour worldwide with some of India’s greatest artistes like Asha Bhosle, Sonu Nigam and Remo Fernandes, his most recenlty launched album has him anticipating better things to come.
The Goan in him says ” I am tired of being a Goan from Mumbai. I now look forward to being a Goan from Goa. It’s very sad, when the whole world wants to be in Goa most Goans want to be everywhere else.
Having just bought his first apartment in Sangolda, D’Cruz is happy to be back home, “Every window and balcony opens out to lush greenery-an inspiring setting for a musician. I plan on converting one of the three bedrooms into a state-of-the-art audio and video editing studio.” This idea came to him when he bumped into an American film crew in Goa who had to send each days shoot to Mumbai as they could not find decent editing facilities in Goa. “I am excited about moving to goa and working with the immense talent here.
Percussionists like Carlos Gonsalves, Drummer Bosco D’Souza, keyboard wizard Mukesh Ghatwal, Indian classical maestros Yograj Naik, tabla player Saish Deshpande and countless others who are going to kill me as soon as i get to Goa because i haven’s mentioned them here.”

By Arti Das

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