A Jazz Concert in Mumbai and Blogging detox

 By Somali K Chakrabarti


‘Anything that can go wrong will go wrong,’ says the Murphy ’s Law.

Many of you would have heard of Murphy’s Law, which states that we cannot stop an in-opportunity from happening, if it is supposed to happen. True!

Lately, Murphy decided to strike on my blog. Last weekend, all of a sudden, I found myself locked out of WordPress, for no apparent fault. How frustrating! Murphy didn’t stop at that and cast its evil spell on my keyboard, and mouse as well. So, there I went on a short blogging hiatus. Thankfully, the problem has now been sorted out with the help of WordPress support.

But, I won’t complain further, for the short break actually worked as a bogging detox and gave me much to write about. Here, I am back with an account of a cool jazzy evening spent watching the performance of the Russian jazz maestro Igor Butman and his quartet.

It is not ever so often that one gets to hear a virtuoso saxophonist and skilled band leader in action, with his amazing team of jazz musicians. So, when I heard about the show and saw the invite, I just had to go. By the way, did you know that the word “cool” and “hip” were originally jazz terms?

My limited understanding of Jazz made me dig a little about Igor Butman before attending the event.

Known for popularizing Jazz in Russia, Igor Butman has enthralled audiences all over the world with his performance in different countries. Bill Clinton called him “the greatest living jazz saxophone player.”

Igor Butman
Igor Butman | Image credit : http://www.igorbutman.com/


The event organized at NCPA, Mumbai, on 6th October, as a part of Igor Butman’s multi city Jazz tour in India was sponsored by some corporate houses including, but not limited to, SIBUR Petrochemical India, Religare, TCS, etc.

It was breezy evening as we entered the NCPA. The show was about to start at 7.00 pm. We entered the auditorium and took our seats.


The stage was all set. An introduction in Hindi by Ms Tanya set the ground for the performance. Hearing a Russian publicly speaking in Hindi, I was a little surprised. Adding to my surprise, she continued with most of her address in Hindi, speaking reasonably well, as she introduced Igor Butman and his quartet.

Jazz Concert NCPA, Mumbai

The event started with Oleg Akkuratov, an extraordinarily talented pianist and vocalist playing magic on the piano. A visually challenged boy from a small Russian town, Armavir, Oleg won the International Piano Competition in Novosibirsk at the age of nineteen. He has won countless international contests, participated in UNESCO’s International Choir, and has performed in the Olympic Games and Para-Olympic Games, inspiring many handicapped people.

Edward Zizak was on the drum kit, playing the percussion, Sergei Korchagin played the double bass. Saxophone in hand, Igor Butman coordinated the team, known for its strong rhythm  in Russian jazz.

Jazz Concert, NCPA, Mumbai

In perfect sync with each other, they exhibited a marvelous combination of sound and technique, and together they created a musical symphony that filled up the auditorium. Blending Russian music with Hindi words, Oleg Akkuratov sang a couple of songs including Jimmy Jimmy and Mera Joota hai Japani. A student from the National Association of the Blind was invited to join with the jazz team to sing Mera Joota hai Japani along with Oleg Akkuratov. Edward Zizak, on his drum kit, played the percussion to perfection infusing energy into the music with his mastery on the drum.

Completely immersed in their compositions, and playing from a different realm of consciousness that translated in their music, the musicians enthralled the audience. From Jazz classics to foot tapping numbers, one after the other they belted out compositions that had the audience clapping rhythmically with the tune.

The jazz evening lasted for three hours with a short munching break in between. Certainly, it was a musical treat to remember.  No wonder good music cuts across all boundaries and barriers and creates a common ground unites people in the harmony of the rhythm.

Finally, when Murphy is busy spoiling a few things, there are many other things to be happy about.


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50 thoughts on “A Jazz Concert in Mumbai and Blogging detox

  1. As it is true that “what can go wrong will go wrong” it is also true that whatever happens, happens for good. So with you logged out of Word Press, you could watch a maestro perform. Not many get to see such performances.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. You are lucky. The entire corollary of Murphy’s Law is, ‘If anything can go wrong, it will; and at the most critical moment.’ Seems Ft. Lt. Edward Murphy pitied you! You still were able to enjoy another art form. 😀

    Jazz is one of my favorite styles of western music. I did read about this concert but couldn’t get the pass. The benefit of allowing a writer in a concert is that they not only enjoy it themselves, they also churn out a verbal description, which allows others to enjoy it.

    Envy you ma’am!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Rakesh. Igor Butman has been coming since the last four years it seems, So next year maybe you can attend. Till then you can envy me .:)
      Btw Mr Murphy had no intentions of pitying me. I didn’t let him spoil my days though he spoiled my WP & l/t. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Exactly Indrani. We tend to get so obsessed with our blogs that any disturbance disturbs us, though it ideally should not.
      Even I don’t have much idea about jazz or for that matter any other music except for the fact that I enjoy listening to it. 🙂


  3. There is an idiom in hindi Somali ji ” jab ek darwaza band ho jaata hai to aur bahut se darvaaze khul jaate hain ” ! But we have to be remain calm and patience and Murphy is always here . Jazz is not so popular like Rock or other like . Happy to see you there .


  4. We are happy to see you back to WordPress and look forward to your blogs .We thoroughly enjoyed your great experience of the live Russian Jazz Concert of the Maestro Igor Butman and his quartet.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. What a wonderful evening. And in NCPA! Wow.
    Somali could you also put up a small blog on what exactly happened with the WP site? And how did you get it sorted out? Would be useful to me and many other WP users. Thanks 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  6. That’s a great mindset isn’t it!

    As you faced a challenge which you yourself could not sort out, rather than moaning and groaning like most folks, you looked for what other possibilities existed. And you found and went to that Jazz concert.

    So how could you use this experience in other parts of your life?


    Liked by 1 person

  7. Murphy’s Law! Love it. So sorry to hear that you had WordPress issues. That must have been annoying but glad you got your blog back. All’s well ends well 🙂 Very lucky of you to have heard the Bill Clinton of jazz saxophone music. What a treat and it did sound like you were captivated for the entire performance. Jazz is something I don’t often listen too, but I really admire jazz musicians who practise their solos over and over again until they get it right. Jazz music is so intricate, not easy to play at all.

    Great shots of the interior of the auditorium. And you had a great view of the stage to enjoy the performance 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Mabel. Yes it was a treat indeed. More than anything else I was impressed by the effort that they were putting in to get the perfect melody and the enjoyment they themselves derived from it and passed on to the audience. 🙂


  8. Truely it was a wonderful show and it was a rare privilege to listen to the maestro. Igor Butman is pretty regular in Mumbai and India and guess you can always listen up next time he performs in town which in all probability is 2016


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