| 18 Jun 2024
Control Alt Delete aims at giving back to the audiences and the artistes

MUMBAI: Control Alt Delete is coming back for its sixth edition on 14 September at blueFROG Mumbai, and will be offering audiences a small, but diverse line-up. The music event is the brainchild of three different people Himanshu Vaswani (BAJAAO), Rishu Singh (ennui.BOMB) and Nikhil Udupa (MTV Indies), and aims to make the artistes and audiences the real stars of the gig.

Speaking to about the event, Vaswani said, "The reason we came up with a crowdfunded gig is so that we can give back to the audience and the artiste. Control Alt Delete is about creating a space for artistes and the audience, who help make the gig possible. Most of the money is generated online, but many choose to skip online payments and instead make their contributions at the gate of the venue."

The collected funds are distributed equally between the performing bands. Sometimes, it is also used for accommodating bands from other cities in hotels. However, people do offer their empty houses for bands to stay in, which is certainly appreciated. Practically everything about the event is funded, right from the designs to the venue.

One of Mumbai's most popular live music venues- blueFROG is also doing its bit to make the crowdfunded event possible. "blueFROG is offering the venue without putting its logo anywhere, which is big for them and us, since the event is not associated with any sponsors," Vaswani said. The pub is also said to be lowering its prices to make it more affordable to the audience, and will be giving up its Sunday brunch to allow sound checks. "The event also relies heavily on volunteers, who help in many ways. These are usually young kids who are passionate about the music industry and want to learn everything that they can," he added.

So what encourages fans to give funds to the event? "Those who make a contribution are assured entry at the venue and get to become part of the gig in a special way," he said. "Names are put up on the contribution board, or not put up if a person chooses so. We also offer shout-outs on social networking sites, which many people like. Apart from that we also have band merchandise, CDs, t-shirts and other kinds of things that fans want," Vaswani added.

When asked what happens if the target amount is not met, he said, "The remaining funds are put in by the three of us. It might mean a loss for us, but it is sort of a payback to the people who are keeping the music scene going- the artiste and the audience."

This edition will see a total of eight acts. Bombay Basement and Spud in the Box are Mumbai based bands, while the other six acts come from four other cities. These include I Am Bliss (Pune), The Ganesh Talkies (Kolkata), Until We Last and Space Behind the Yellow Room (Bengaluru) and The Vinyl Records and HOIRONG (New Delhi).

Vaswani revealed that they often argue over which bands they want to bring to the event because each of them has their favourites. "This time's acts are not big names, but they have great music. These acts are not limited to a specific genre, but make all kinds of music. Right now they represent what the Indian music industry is like in terms of music. They are all very hard working bands, which maybe for some reason have not had the chance to play in Bombay or have not got enough exposure. They are not your regular sponsored gig headliners, but they all offer great music and deserve to play at great gigs," Vaswani said.

For an event that is dependent on the generosity of music fans, the event has done fairly well. Vaswani said, generally, they manage to raise over a lakh online, with at-the-gate contributions often crossing 60,000. In fact, the last edition was profitable, he revealed. This edition, however has so far, raised only a little over 23,000 and has a target amount of approximately two lakhs. With little less than two weeks to go until the event, Vaswani is hopeful that more people will contribute towards the gig and make it just as successful as the previous one.