To start with the post let me first quote The Blue Frog‘s take on Singer Songwriter Night and the artists who performed there last night, Leah Khambata, Aria Nanji, Zian & Tizaan:
To encourage this upcoming genre (if it may be called that) we are dedicating an evening to 3 talents we’ve discovered. Come listen to Aria’s clear, innocent voice, Leah’s ruminating song-writing and Zian and Tizaan’s soulful renditions. – Malini Hariharan, Programming
Last night these three acts performed a mix of cover and original compositions and one even brought her friends along for the performance.
Zian and Tizaan Alphonso: The Sister-Brother duo from Mumbai, have been always been around music. Their parents were part of the band Faith which disbanded in 2004 after almost 25 years of performances.
Tizaan who was on the keyboards and the vocals has been singing since he was 4 and picked up playing keyboard and piano as early as 6 years of age. Although he has recently finished his grades in classical piano from London College of Music, he is more inclined towards the jazz and blues.
Zian on the other hand has a unique soothing, sultry, husky tone to her voice which she modulates and improvises for the covers being performed. The duo have performed at venues like the Blue Frog and Out of the Blue quite regularly as a 2-piece band,
but recently the band has expanded to a 5 piece set and call themselves Groove Gully.
Last night’s performance was a mix of Original Compositions and covers that they rendered onto their own style, jazzing them up and adding a mix of funk. Their original compositions were beautiful and they gradually bring up the tempo as the set progressed.
Leah Khambata: Born and brought up in Mumbai, she is a third year liberal arts undergraduate student at Wesleyan University in Connecticut, U.S.A. double majoring in Film Studies and Psychology. She started singing at the age of 4 and playing the piano when she was 8. Growing up she was a huge fan of the show “American Idol”, which also inspired her to take up the acoustic guitar. This helped her to create her own renditions of the covers.
Gradually she began to compose melodies and write her own lyrics, developing a strong passion for songwriting. While her renditions as well her original compositions are quite fresh, you can relate them to the styles of Taylor Swift, John Mayer, Michael Buble and Ed Sheeran who have been her major influences. She has written 10 songs till now, including one in Italian. She has performed at several open mike nights and won music competitions, and on July 6th, 2012, performed 4 of her original songs and a cover at “Ten Forward Café” in Hollywood, Los Angeles.
Last night’s performance she performed some of her originals alongside covers that was laced with her unique style of singing and harmony. I myself enjoyed her OC’s more and would love to hear the rest of them. The last track she performed Metaphorically Perfect, another one of her OC is a lovely number, and a couple even took the dance floor.
Aria Nanji: I love the introduction that blue frog has put for her : She’s younger than Justin Bieber, but she sings The Beatles. And guess what, she did start the set with one of their songs, “Yesterday”. Followed it with Bob Dylan’s To Make You Feel My Love, while her dad played the guitar for her. Next up was another solo before she asked her friend Malika to join her to sing KT Tunstall’s Other Side of The World. For the next cover the duet was joined by more friends and the quartet sang Maroon 5′s She Will Be Loved. She ended the set with a beautiful rendition of Sting’s Field of Gold. Oh and just for the record she also bakes mean cupcakes and not to forget she’s only sixteen.