Red Baraat photo by Erin Patrice O’Brien
As the instant exchange of information is now commonplace worldwide, so has the term “global community” become ubiquitous. Exposure to different cultures brings different music, and fortunately, this combination of different styles of music brings revolutionary groups like Red Baraat.
Bhangra and other forms of punjabi beats added real flavor to Western hip-hop in the early 2000s via Missy Elliott’s “Get Ur Freak On” and “Addictive” by Truth Hurts. In 2008, famed dhol player/drummer Sunny Jain built the Brooklyn-based Red Baarat mixing elements of hard-driving North Indian bhangra rhythms with a bit of jazz, go-go, brass funk and hip-hop. The vibe of this eight-piece sound machine is undeniable, resulting in acclaim and popularity in all corners of the planet. Like most brass bands, Red Baraat has an energy designed to make a crowd move. Unlike most, however, its sound is uniquely inspiring. The tightly organized percussionists drive the vibrant horn section to new heights of musical union. The band also strives to challenge itself each show, demonstrating its obvious prowess with frequent improvisation.
Drawing crowds even more diverse than the multicultural group itself, Red Baraat’s celebration of world music is remarkably infectious. “We are simple creatures that desire community,” explains Jain in the band’s official bio. “If we can unite people of all backgrounds and ethnicities to partake in the exuberance of life through the universal language of music, then life is that much sweeter.”
Fri., Nov. 22, 8:30pm. $15-$18. With West Philadelphia Orchestra. The Blockley, 3801 Chestnut St. 215.222.1234. theblockley.com