A delightful dip into the world of Afro-Cuban Jazz: Mukul Dongre's latest release "WANNA FLY"
Updated: Sep 15, 2022
Coming from a family of inspired musicians with a father who is a violinist and a mother who was a singer back in the day, Mukul Dongre is an iconic artist hailing from M.P Jabalpur. Taking up the drums after his graduation, the artist says that music has been “God-gifted” to him. A sportsman at heart, he was rejected by the army for his height and that’s when music crossed paths with him, when he most needed it. Currently based in Mumbai, he met his guru Pandit Suresh Talwalkar who blessed him with a new vision. The latter has greatly contributed to his present mindset towards music and life.
In 2011, he released his first album ‘After U’ as a music composer/ producer with vocals by him and other iconic musicians such as Rekha Bhardwaj, Vijay Prakash, Shounak Abhiseki, Vivienne Pocha, and Neumann Pinto. Fusion dominated the genre of this album. The experimental and creative Dongre later released a rap song ‘Corona Corona’ during COVID along with a couple of other tracks that have defined his musical journey. His talents have been recognized by the team at MAPEX Drums which helped him get endorsed by the company. Along with MAPEX, he is the first Indian drummer to be endorsed by MEINL the well-known Cymbal brand.
Released on the 25th of August, his latest track "WANNA FLY, " is an Afro-Cuban Jazz melody. The song's main melody is a simple Samba groove with intricate and playful Afro Cuban/ Latin drum patterns, beautiful and improvisational jazz harmonies, a stunning piano solo, and an odd-time signature bridge. It is a power-packed symphony of experiences. The artist has composed, shot, edited, mixed, mastered, and played the drums for the track with Harmeet Manseta on the bass and piano arrangement. Its accompanying music video was released on the 29th of August.
The track took two weeks to be recorded at Sparkle studio. When asked about a fun story during the process, the artist fondly recalled how on the first day when Harmeet and he got together to record, they did nothing but jam the whole day. A major influence on the track is Horacio "El Negro" Hernandez who is a master drummer and a favorite of the artist. The artwork was made by Dongre himself along with the assistance of his wife, Shikha.
A night owl and a responsible musician who only jams at home when it's most convenient for the neighbors, Mukul Dongre looks forward to collaborating with artists like Niladri Kumar and Raja Kumari in the future. With diversity in styles and an infectious confidence, there is no doubt that the artist is going to reach great heights.