Bombay Rockers talk about their past/present/future, and the Desi music scene

Bombay Rockers are Naf and Thomas. They first met in 2003, and their tracks such as ‘Ari Ari’ and ‘Rock Tha Party’ won over millions of hearts, in India, and elsewhere. We asked them a few questions about their work, future plans, and LMFAO!

Listen to one of their first first tracks, while you read.

1. Where did you guys first meet, and how did you gel together, the first time you performed.

Thomas : We met up in 2003 through a mutual friend at a record label in Denmark. Punjabi MC had gotten a lot of airplay in Europe and we wanted to try and create a fusion kind of music.

Naf : The first time we performed was actually in front of 25,000 thousand people at Roskilde
Festival in Denmark.

Thomas : Not a bad debut

2. How do you make music? Who does what? [ in terms of lyrics/mixing/production ]

Thomas : I produce all of the tracks for Bombay Rockers. What normally happens is
that I’ve done a track. Either instrumental or with some vocal ideas. Naf then comes to the studio and we sit and vibe together.

Naf : Yeah. I then write my Indian lines over the track and me and Thomas then work
on making the English and Indian lines fit perfect with each other.

3. Where do you live mostly? India or Denmark?

Thomas : We are both based in Denmark. But we come to India a lot

4. Would you elaborate on Janus’ role in Bombay Rockers?

Thomas : Janus used to work as a producer with me. We produced the first and second
Album together. He is also the manager for Bombay Rockers. He is not producing anymore. Now he is a full time manager and also works at a record label back in Denmark as a booker etc.

5. LMFAO recently brought party rock music to the mainstream. What do you think of party music in general. Is it big only in clubs?

Thomas : The electronic music is dominating the whole pop scene right now. Not only in clubs
But also on radio and the charts.

Naf : LMFAO are great btw

6. ‘Rock Tha Party’ is the track that brought you to the massive ‘Desi’ market, as well as to Denmark. How did it do elsewhere?

Naf : We got a lot of attention in countries like Germany, Greece, Turkey, France and The Netherlands. Also in Dubai and Bahrain. We feel really blessed that our music had the ability
To reach out to such a wide audience.

7. T-pain is an artist that makes heavy use of ‘auto-tune’, while some artists seem to oppose it. You use it, so, what’s your take on it?

Thomas : In my opinion auto tune is not a bad thing. If you can’t sing it will still sound
bad even with the use of auto tune. We use it on tracks were we think the sound would fit.

8. In the new digital culture, nobody wants to pay for music. Some artists [ for ex. Radiohead in 2007 ] are now releasing their albums as free downloads. What is your take on this?

Naf : I think it’s a shame that people won’t pay for an album which they can enjoy for many
Years, but at the same time they have no problem spending a lot of money on clothes, restaurants and so on ..

Thomas : But the new thing is streaming. Soon that will be the only way of hearing music.
You pay a small amount each month and then receive access to millions of songs. It won’t generate as much as selling cds or from I tunes, but it’s definitely better than nothing

9. Do you plan to break into the American music scene? Maybe solo, or colab with some US artists?

Thomas : Actually we have some plans which we are working on right now regarding the US. So let’s see …

10. Your new album was much more electro. What do you think of artists like Skrillex/Deadmau5/Daft Punk. Would you like to colab with such an artist?

Thomas : I produce a lot of electronic music right now. For Bombay Rockers and other artists as well. Working with either of those artists would be an honor.

11. Around the time you first launched, there were many independent artists in India, like Jay Sean, Jazzy B, Raghav etc. Has that culture declined, over the years?

Naf : The international desi music scene really started buzzing in India around the time we came out. The last couple of years Bollywood have completely taking over again. But it seems like the international music is making a comeback now. Bollywood is also becoming more and
More international in the sound and film making. I think there is plenty of space for both.

12. What are the chances that you collaborate with other indian artists? You have stated earlier that you like the Salim-Saleman duo and Ishq Bector?

Naf : There will definitely be some collaborations in the near future. Can’t reveal more than that

13. Any Bollywood projects on the cards?

Thomas : We’re talking to various people regarding projects. Can’t reveal more than that, but
Something will definitely happen down the line.

14. You did a few shows in India currently. What’s next on the list, short term and long term. Is another album on your mind?

Thomas : We’re working on new tracks right now and some collaborations ..

Naf : Stay tuned for more info on our Facebook page.

Here’s a track from their latest album, Rock and Dhol

You can follow them on facebookyoutube and twitter. They also have a website.