In 2007 I had been teaching Sunday School Kids who had grown up and become teenagers. They were so talented and really growing in their love for the Lord and for music. I wanted to help them so I thought of connecting different worship teams from all over the city, so drummers could hang out, singers could hang out, guitarists could be friends- you get the drift. The plan was hatched and I went from church to church on Sundays, announcing a rock concert for Church worship teams called ROCK OF AGES
The whole concert with the help of many generous donors and friends and families , who helped, came together really beautifully. The show was held in St. Andew's Auditorium and so many people came together. Some were young and some were old but all were in one voice praising and worshipping God. It would have been so wonderful to continue Rock of Ages every year but I moved to Delhi and the concert never happened after that. I don't know what happened to the bands- I don't even know where they all are. But for me this whole period was such a blessing.
It's not easy to put a band together, it begins with obviously getting talented people you sync well with — but even before that, it begins with learning how to sing or play an instrument. I play the violin and in school I preformed in recitals and at school orchestral performances, but the most fun I had was getting a bunch of talented classmates of mine on tabla, sitar, drums, voice, guitar and me on the voilin and playing the "Spirit of Rangeela"
Recently at my studio I recorded a very talented girl Sara Jose who sang a cover for her youtube channel because a fan had requested it. It was such a wonderful time but
it also made me think. How does one start a band. So I decided to make a list of things which can get you started.
How to Start a Band
1- You could get a guitar
Whether its an inexpensive guitar like a
Juârez Acoustic Guitar ₹1990
or an expensive Guitar like the
FENDER ₹ 9899.
I own this Guitar- its a KORT ₹ 12,157.00
A Guitar Wall Hanger: ₹149 helps in storing your guitar. Generally all instruments need to be maintained in a consistent temperature so you can put this in a room which has an AC. I have a friend who put his guitars like they are photographs, it makes his home look really artistic and beautiful.
2- You could get a Piano
A piano costs a lot. But if you're very serious about music and the piano and you can afford to buy one, then an actual piano is best.
Yamaha YDP164R Arius Series Digital Console Piano with Bench, Rosewood is a Piano even I dream of someday owning! Price: ₹ 1,01,499.00
But not many people can manage that heavy price, so the next best thing would be a “touch sensitive” keyboard. Now, there are many synthesisers in the market but to have that authentic 'piano' feel, look for this element, it changed things (sound wise) all together. Now most touch sensitive keyboards are super expensive. I bought a Casio around this price range. Casio CT-S100 Casiotone 61-Key Portable Keyboard (Black) Price: ₹ 6,265 and its really wonderful.
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For a band one guitar or one piano is often good enough but having both and more is always more fun. So here's a list of instruments with their links incase you'd like to check them out. Amazon prices keep changing so these prices are subjected to go up or down depending on sales and deals.
A nice Violin: ₹6999 https://amzn.to/32tsJ69
Clap Box Cajun (if a Drum Kit is too costly to invest in): ₹5349 https://amzn.to/39diSnq
9 Piece Drum Kit: ₹13,900 https://amzn.to/2VkL0RH
5 Piece Drum Kit: Mapex ST5295FIK Storm ₹65,100 https://amzn.to/2HXS6na
Mouth Organ: https://amzn.to/2HYd9Gd
Flute: ₹2100 https://amzn.to/32sedM1
Tabla (Brass) ₹5599 https://amzn.to/3cf6GVx
Sitar: 21,990.00 https://amzn.to/32tCz7Z
So you've bought the instrument of your choice, learnt it, practiced it (very important), got together with a bunch of people who want to create music with you. You have to first create a playlist or set list. Practice that like crazy. Record yourselves, test your sound and an inexpensive Mic Kit: ₹3999 https://amzn.to/2PqXDHf can help you with that.
Then you record on audio, hire a studio to do a more professional job, if you have the budget or else do it in a sound proof room (DIY soundproof). I do a lot of my recordings in the night because there's less ambient noise!
Once you have recorded your tracks, protecting them in this day and age is important, this comes in handy when you're uploading your tracks on social media. Getting this is vital not just because you can immediately earn money as a musician, but you are also paid every time someone uses your original music (through their channel, even if they've used your music illegally) —but they can even help you get your music on top streaming channels like iTunes, Spotify, Amazon, Google among others. Find what works for you. After being passionate about helping my Sunday School kids get a platform years ago, I now help young artists profile their work in this way so incase you're interested, let me know (email@example.com) you can WhatsApp me.
Once you have protected your music, then creating a social media presence for your band is really a must. Once your Facebook page, Instagram and YouTube channels are up, you can put up your songs, videos and BTS (behind the scenes). The sky is the limit.
Making music is much more easy than it was years ago. I remember a time when you had to go to a specific market in your city to buy an instrument. Now everything from buying your instrument to recording your songs, making your videos and uploading your music can be done from the comfort of your home. Hopefully this has helped guide you in the right direction.
This song was recorded internationally, my cousin Heflin in Italy and me in Bombay!
And if you're interested in learning the Violin, I do conduct classes at my studio as well as general music classes for kids which looks at basic Piano, rhythm and music theory as well. Here's a Beginners Tutorial Series for the violin I've started. You can check that out as well.
Thanks for reading and I hope all this information helps you, encourages you and inspires you to kick start your band.