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#MusicforChange: Swarathma Action Replay Concert at Poona Blind School

Roll Of Honour: We thank all our friends and family for helping us put this gig together and it was all worth as the kids jived!

Swarathma played live at the Poona Home and School for the Blind on Feb 7, 2010 as part of the series of Action Replay — Concerts with Conscience. Rather than give you a blow by blow account of what happened, we thought it would be a better idea to thank all of those who made this happen. After all, getting a gig together even with a budget is a tough ask!

Dr R Gujjar, Administrator, Poona Home and School for the Blind: When we called her, out of the blue, with a number taken off the website and asked her if we could play for the kids there, she never even blinked. No questions on who we were or what we were planning to do. She had the openness of heart to say, “Wonderful, come and play!” And this is true of the staff and the trustees of the school. Also a reason why the world is becoming a better place.

Furtados Music Store: Putting a show together on zero budget is next to impossible, you think? Not with friends at Furtados, India’s premier music store. As we have seen on other occasions, Action Replay goes straight to the heart — we got three stage amplifiers (bass, guitar and violin) and a full drum kit at no charge.

Nitin Joshi: Soundmeister extraordinaire, lensman par excellence and all round nice guy Nitin said he would love to come to the show, but was held up. In his stead, he sent some SM-58 and SM-57 mics from his studios, along with cables.

Silver, and Rishi Rai: One of Pune’s hottest bands Silver are also the nicest guys there. Though they rehearse about 20 km from the city, they took the pains to make sure that the Stranger amp we needed was brought to a friend’s place close to the Poona Blind School one day in advance. We just helped ourselves.

Naveen Deshpande: From getting us the cabs to sorting out sound issues Naveen was there at every step to make sure we had everything we needed. The fact that nothing happens in Pune without his say-so is also a big plus.

[Photo] Vasu gets the kids to jive to 'Tibet'. You can dance even if you can't see.

Kaustuv Dasgupta and Friends: Our hosts for the weekend, my brother, and adopted brother of everyone else in the band. His friends and roomies who opened their hearts and homes for us (as they have been doing in the past) and give us a permanent residential address away from home.

Kunal Kakodkar: Here is a photographer with the rare talent of capturing the right moment at the right time. His pictures speak loud and clear of what this event was all about. You may want to check his work out here.

The Kids: There is a disarming lack of artifice in the Action Replay audience. There is no condition to their affection – it is spontaneous and heartfelt. We cannot begin to imagine what life without sight is like, but here we found a strength of spirit that belies all we may think of their so-called ‘plight’.

All of our friends who showed up to cheer us on: Tasneem , Akshata, Purva, Apphia, Arjun, and Amit. We hope you enjoyed it as much as the kids did. Watch the live video here:

Text: Jishnu Dasgupta | Pictures: Kunal Kakodkar | Video: Kaustuv Dasgupta

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