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Rock Music History of Bangladesh

In: Film and Music

Submitted By sarwar
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The history of Bangladeshi rock music started in 1960 when a handful of self-taught musicians got together to create original music tracks. Their efforts resulted in the birth of the "Bangla Rock Scene". Among the pioneering groups in the late '60s were bands such as Windy Side of Care (Rafique Mazhar Islam Saju and Rafi Omar) (Ex-Iolites), The Lightnings, Rambling Stones, Ugly Phases and Insex Dui. They didn’t have the privilege of expensive instruments or sound systems, which present-day rockers now take for granted.[1]

In 1963, "Zinga Goshty" was the first[citation needed]Orchestra Band in Bangladesh, formed in Chittagong by a young group of students of Chittagong College. [2]

Azam Khan (Uchharon) a.k.a. "the Legend", a.k.a. "the Imaginative Composer", emerged around early and late 70s. Happy Akhand's "Abar Alo Elo Je Shondha" is a well known song. His premature death was a big blow to all of the musicians who were influenced by Happy's passion for music. His contemporaries include some popular figures such as late Firoze Shahi, Ferdaus Wahid and Fakir Alamgir.

Among the old bands there are many bands that are still active, such as is Souls (1970), Feedback (1976), Miles (1978), and others. [3]
Progression (1980s)

While the early phase of Bangladeshi rock is marked by romantic songs and mellow tunes, the scenario began to change in the '80s. "Warfaze" was a progressive rock band of the country in this period. "Feedback" was another band in the `80s with their album "Ullash" and "Mela." It was from mid `80s to early `90s that hard rock started getting attention in Bangladesh. Sumon of Aurthohin describes the era of metal music: "It was around 1986 when "Miles" performed hard rock in Dhaka. One fine day my elder brother came home and announced that there was a band, which was performing songs of Iron Maiden. It was very difficult to believe. But then I witnessed it myself in the next concert. It was mind blowing to see them covering several numbers of Iron Maiden and they did very well indeed! The band was called "Rock Strata" followed by another well known band "Warfaze." Different Touch were also active in the late `80s and early `90s with songs like `Sraboner Meghgulo`. Nova(1986) was a Hard Rock, Soft Rock Band from the same period. Another band from that era is "Renaissance." This era also witnessed the emergence of other artists like Ayub Bachchu(who created LRB)and solo pop performers Tapan Chowdhury and Kumar Bishwajit.[4]
Emergence (1990s)

Arguably, the early 1990s was the most productive phase[5] of Bangladeshi rock, with bands such as "LRB" and "Dalchhut." "Cryptic Fate" and "Maqsood O Dhaka" were the other notable bands from that era.[5]

The heavy metal scene developed in the early 90's. " Mixed album Hooray was back then a huge inspiration and boost for many celebrated bands from today ", claimed Shakib of Cryptic Fate, followed by albums of Warfaze and Rock Strata. Another such band was Winning, but the band later broke up.

In 1993, musician Sumon left Warfaze, along with Piklu from Rockstrata(after the band broke up) and Jolly Roger(Band) tagged along to start the same journey under a new name Aurthohin(1993). In 1993, metal bands such as Cryptic Fate, Maestria, Dethrowa and PsychoDeth emerged. These bands used to perform at underground shows. Shironaamhin(1996) still an active band. It was sometime around 1998 that Koprophilia, Clovermind and Spanking Monkeys from the alternative side came into existence. Suddenly most of the bands broke up again. Around 1999, some more bands came in the music scenario. Artcell(ex-Tantrik), Metal Maze, Migraine, Black, Wire, Nemesis with some more bands surfacing.[5]
New Millennium (2000s)

By this time, bands like Black, Artcell, Dalchhut, and Nemesis became much more active in the Bangladeshi music scene with the releases of their debut albums. In addition to these bands, some of the newer bands emerging during this period, such as Stentorian, Arbovirus, De-illumination, and Shunno, became well established in Bangladesh. Another feature of this era was the revival of the rock music scene in Chittagong. Even though Chittagong is regarded as the birth place of Bangladeshi rock the rock music scene, the city witnessed a period of decline in the 1990s. Most of the musicians and music bands hailing from Chittagong began to move to Dhaka because of the better opportunities and facilities there. Recently, the Bangladesh Music Bands Association (BAMBA), along with the Chittagong Music Bands Association (CMBA), has begun to organize rock concerts in the port city on a regular basis which gave great amount of exposure to the local underground bands. This resulted to the emergence of fresh rock bands like "My 31st Demerit", "Hemorrhage," "Blunderware" etc.[6][7][8]

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