JamBase Questionnaire: Cornershop

Welcome back to JamBase's baker's dozen to the bright lights of the music world. Last time we heard from Erland & The Carnival.

Since they burst out of the gate as a fresh new voice in alternative rock in the early 90s, Cornershop has always been slightly ahead of the curve in modern music. Or perhaps more accurately, this UK group anchored by Tjinder Singh and Benedict Ayres have simply operated outside the norms set by the industry and their peers, mingling Indian music with disco flavors, quirky indie pop with stubbornly eclectic textures, and generally beating Thievery Corporation and other likeminded globe trotters to the punch by a good few years.

Following on the heels of 2009’s woefully overlooked (in the U.S.) Judy Sucks A Lemon, the band has crafted Cornershop & The Double ‘O’ Groove of (released March 15 on the band’s own Ample Play label). While most of their earlier albums featured a mixture of English and Hindi, Double O’ Groove shuns the English tongue entirely. However, settle into the warm grooves – a lovely retrofit of Motown moves, 60s radio reggae, blippy electro accents and classic American pop forms given a tabla pulse – and even those lost in translation can appreciate what a sweetly assembled and easy to like set this is. The band that once memorably saluted the great Indian singer Asha Bhosle has found their own Bhangra accented darling in Bubbley Kaur, who is the upfront star on Double O’ Groove, which shows that 18 years on from their first singles Cornershop is still innovating in a truly delightful way. (Dennis Cook)

Here's what Tjinder Singh had to say to our inquiries.

1. Great music rarely happens without…
A pot of tea. In fact precious little happens without it.

2. The first album I bought was…
Gidhian Di Raniye. A.S. Kang was my first bought Indian cassette, but first bought LP was Monty Python Live At Drury Lane. First stolen LP was Ritchie Blackmore’s Rainbow’s Rising.

3. The last song or album to really flip my wig was…
Thomas Bangalter & DJ Mehdi’s “Signatune” track, especially with the video.

4. When I was a kid I wanted to grow up to be…
An airline mechanic for Air India or Pan Am.

5. My favorite sort of gig is…
A small venue not knowing who is going to play or even if there is a gig on at all. Still like the element of surprise, and still like doing a Jukebox Judge Judy.

6. One thing I wish people knew about me is…
I don't do that kind of thinking, but I did once have a soft drink with John Bonham on a bowling green lawn of a Black Country pub, with about five other kids there.

7. I love the sound of…
The smell of petrol, although I'm not a fan of petrol itself, but that smell brings back a lot of noise.

8. One day I hope to make an album as fantastic as…
I don't think like that, I'm not in an indie band.

9. The best meal I ever had on tour was at…
Bordeaux, breakfast in fact, just simple coffee and croissants in a very small kitchen with Ween playing in the background.

10. I always find the coolest audiences in…
Coolest is not a word I would use, but it is the audiences of America, and the word is chipper.

11. The worst habit I've picked up being on the road all the time is…
Losing touch of civilian life.

The Beatles or the Stones? Por qué?
The Beatles & the Stones, because we are blessed to have lived in their darshan.

13. The craziest thing I ever saw was…
"A woman walking into New York City with a frog in her hands."

Cornershop Tour Dates :: Cornershop News

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[Published on: 4/4/11]

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