Bryan Adams has visited India thrice before. But the fans will likely discover a different side of the Canadian rock star when he makes the most ambitious tour of the country yet by a western singer-musician, with concerts in five cities in February
Bryan Adams will tour India in February, it has been announced. This is the fourth time that the 51-year-old Canadian rock star will perform in the country. He will have concerts in five cities-unequalled as yet by any western singer-musician touring India-and the response this time round will be interesting to see in this part of the world, where the popularity of Western music has softened recently.
The rock singer first performed in India, in Bengaluru and Mumbai, in May 2001. He was here for a second time in 2004 with three concerts in Mumbai, Delhi and Bengaluru, and again in 2006, in Bengaluru and Mumbai. This time, the tour will kick-off in Pune at a newly-built entertainment centre at Amanora. It will be the first concert in this city by an international artist of his stature. The second concert will be in Mumbai. He goes on to Bengaluru, which has a good number of people with more than a general interest in Western music, then to Delhi, and finally to Hyderabad, which he will be visiting also for the first time.
Surely, Adams' songs are still played in homes, clubs and at social gatherings. And a live performance is an experience fans will not want to miss. "It's the experience of seeing Adams perform," said Sujit Jain, managing director, Netsurf Communications. "Besides, 20% of the funds raised will be donated to Save the Children. So, I believe it will be money worth spent." Save the Children is run by Manna Shetty and her husband and movie star Suniel Shetty.
The question is will Adams draw in the crowds on his fourth visit to India, like he did on his previous tours during the past decade? It seems that the rock icon is conscious of the change and is working hard to rediscover his songs.
Only a fortnight ago, while chatting about a collection of some of his most popular songs in a new album, titled Bare Bones, Adams said, "When you've done this as long as I have, reinvention is important if you want to carry on. Where do you go? Do you go bigger? No, I don't want to go bigger. Music's a never-ending canvas that you keep moulding and changing. I think what you're learning on this album is me trying to find a new sparkle in each song."
The new acoustic double album has most of the classic tunes like 'Here I Am', 'Cuts Like a Knife' and 'Please Forgive Me'. Some like 'All for Love', 'Heaven' and 'Straight From the Heart' have been reworked. It was recorded live during his tour of North America earlier this year and was originally intended to be a Web-only gift for loyal fans, till Adams stumbled onto a potentially new groove, wrote Ben Kaplan in the Montreal Gazette.
"This new record's about taking the songs out live-just a voice and guitar-and doing it like a busker would in a train station," Adams said about Bare Bones during a benefit concert together with Phil Collins in Geneva, a fortnight ago. "Once you've taken everything off and all you've got left is a skeleton, you're left with something simplified and stripped down. What's great is rediscovering the songs."
It's this rural simplicity that has characterised the singer and continues to propel him even at 51. Adams' last album of new material, '11' in 2008 was a chartbuster the world over-it was number one in Canada and high up on the charts even in India.
Today, even after winning 18 Junos (Canadian music awards), several nominations for Grammy and Academy awards and the Golden Globes, the singer-musician who has sold over 65 million copies is still hungry. He has some 20 events lined up in the next couple of months before he flies to India. Most of the concerts are in the US, there is one back home in Canada, then in Damascus, Beirut, Doha, Dubai and Muscat, as well as in London.
Tickets for the concerts in India are priced at Rs2,000 and Rs4,000. This may seem steep, but the organisers explain that the expenses for such an event are huge; from tending the field where the concert will take place, to erecting the stage, everything has to be worked out. Entertainment tax takes away a huge chunk of the receipts. And the audience attendance doesn't make up for the expenses.
"The venue at the Bandra-Kurla complex can accommodate a maximum of 17,000 people. That's peanuts compared with venues in European and American cities where more than 40,000 people can attend," explained Richard Coram, agent for the Canadian singer. Promotion of the event has not yet started, but bookings for the more than 15,000 capacity venues have been brisk. Just how does this 51-year-old rocker manage to do it? We'll see soon!
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New Delhi: India’s merchandise exports rose by 21.3% to $18 billion in October over the corresponding period a year ago, raising hope that the country may be able to achieve the $200 billion target set for the current fiscal year.
Imports during the period grew by 6.8% to $27.68 billion, leaving a trade deficit of $9.72 billion, according to data from the Ministry of Commerce issued today, reports PTI. The export target of $200 billion was announced in the Foreign Trade Policy in August last year.
The rate of expansion in exports has outpaced the growth of imports growth for the first time in the past three-four years. Exports in October last year were valued at $14.8 billion, whereas imports totalled $25.9 billion.
The growth in overseas shipments is attributed to improved demand in the US and the European Union, and an increase in exports to African and Latin American countries. The country is likely to close the year with an import-export gap of about $125 billion, according to a commerce ministry official.
For the first seven months (from April to October) too, exports grew at a faster pace of 26.8% to $121.3 billion against a 26% growth in imports to $194.1 billion. All big-ticket items like engineering goods, gems and jewellery, chemicals and petroleum products registered positive growth in this period. But exports of tea, tobacco, cashew and handicrafts declined.
Oil imports and non-oil imports in October grew by 0.3% to $8.41 billion and by 9.9% to $19.27 billion, respectively. In the period April to October this year, oil and non-oil imports grew by 24.6% to $57.12 billion and by 26.7% to $137.04 billion, respectively.