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  Drumming The Pillows in Sleep to Drumming with Love

Sandipan Parial is a respected Drummer in the global music industry, which celebrates his talent and skills for his expertise of the craft. He goes the extra mile in every occasion of his drums play, in order to bring out a unique essence of music in his art, as he is focused into creating a harmonious quality to the overall production quality of a presentation.

Sandipan is born in Kolkata, India, and loved to play cricket while in school. Growing up, he received formal training in Tabla, while he also listened to music in English and Bangla languages, songs of popular Bands at the time, and took active interest in spending quality time with music-loving friends and neighbours.

His mother would inform him that he was tapping his fingers on the pillow in certain patterns, in his sleep. Sandipan has always been known as a jolly kid with an enourmous amount of positive energy that is expressed in drumming at his best, and in his general conduct off-stage or backstage.

Soul Connections & Influence of Musical Elements in His Lifestyle

In the neighbourhood where he lived, Sandipan was introduced to Raju dada, who used to work as a Camera Operator in Doordarshan television. Raju dada had a set of drums and other instruments kept in a room, where Sandipan would pick up the drum sticks and fiddle with the drums. This was also the time when he would listen to songs of Deep Purple, Pink Floyd, Rommel Racp, Creed, Bangladesh-based band Miles, and others.

At the age of 14, Sandipan had cleared the junior Diploma university exams in Tabla, and during this time, he became friends with Raja dada, a gentleman in his locality, who was a Film Director in Tollywood, Kolkata. Both of them would spend time together listening to various kinds of music, including band music of Mohiner Ghoraguli, and others. One fine day, Sandipan got hold of some paint brush, and he would use it as drum stick to play on the books. In essence, drumming came naturally to Sandipan, whenever he would find any means as sticks and a drumming pad, be it a book, or pillow, or jars of cookies.

Education, Experimentation, Inspiration and Professional Take-Off

He started college right after high-school and whenever there is a melody in his mind, Sandipan would take delight in drumming up, either the college canteen table, or the drumsets he’d find at friends’ places.

He is a big admirer of the music of Oscar winning filmmaker Satyajit Ray. Sandipan also knew some family friends of Ray. Sandipan learned a lot of music just by listening to Bangla music that played in the Radio, as much as he drew inspiration from the music of natural flora and fauna, natural sounds of passerby hawkers and even the music in cacophony of urban traffic on roads. Some of the highlights of his professional experiences are mentioned below:

  • National and international concert tours with The Anupam Roy Band, since 2010
  • Assistant Music Director, with Anupam Roy, in Bollywood films – Piku, Pari, October
  • Performed in MTV Coke Studio (Season 4) with Anupam Roy, featuring Babul Supriyo
  • Performed in drum ensemble for Maestro A.R. Rahman ‘Jai Ho’ concert at Yuva Bharati Krirangan, Salt Lake stadium, Kolkata, in 2009
  • Played drums in India’s iconic music albums of Anupam Roy:
    • Ebar Morle Gachh Hawbo, 2017
    • Bakyobageesh, 2014
    • Dwitiyo Purush, 2013
  • Numerous studio sessions and assisted Anupam Roy as an assistant music director for various commercially and critically acclaimed Bengali movies
  • Drummer with some of the reputed Bands and their albums:
    • The Prophesor, 2017 onwards
    • Enolator, 2016 onwards | Album: Self titled EP
    • Ganesh Talkies, 2012 – 2013
    • Calcutta Blues, 2008 – 2010 | Album: Rajkonnya

The Big Breakthrough and Thought Process as a Musician

In 2006, Sandipan went to see the LIVE concert of A.R. Rahman, in Salt Lake, Kolkata. This was his first experience of watching the maestro’s concert, LIVE, and he completed his undergraduate degree college studies in 2007, with a determination to pursue the drums, more seriously. So, he was inspired to participate in the “MTV Rock On” reality show, in 2008, but he could not make it beyond the 1st round of audition. It was then, that he realized the need for in-depth study of the instrument, intricate details about tuning of drums, history of drums, various parameters of drums, and conscious and sub-conscious learning of the subject, which he continues, till date.

The subject is as big a size of the sound and as of the instrument, says Sandipan Parial.

He is passionate about study of Drums as a subject; he is a graded artist from Trinity College of London, and has been active as a drum teacher for many years, sharing his deep knowledge of drums and music with budding talents at his Studio at Art & Science Practice Studio, Kolkata.

In 2009, when he got a phone call to appear for an audition for the A.R. Rahman “Jai Ho” concert, he was thrilled and jumped at the opportunity. He was selected among the top 12 drummers from the city of Kolkata, after two rigorous rounds of auditions. They did rehearsals for three days, including some night-long sessions, and gained an eye-opening experience directly working with the legends like Shivamani and A.R. Rahman.

During this time, he was professionally performing with Calcutta Blues, independently working with several Music Directors, and eventually, he was introduced by Ayan Chaudhuri, to Anupam Roy, to join his Band as the drummer; Sandipan joined The Anupam Roy Band in 2010. Sandipan, in his quest to continue his education in Drums, received training from Manojit Dutta during 2013 – 2014, from Premjit Dutta at Calcutta School of Music, during 2017 – 2018, attended a session conducted by Gaurab Chatterjee, and he self-taught himself quite a few of unique techniques, nuances and styles, while he delved deep into understanding the thought processes of his legendary mentors and educated drummers.

Philosophy and His Legacy

Listening to melody, makes him feel in a certain way. Sandipan visualizes the melody, weaves a story and thinks deeply about how he will tell the story as a drummer. His style of drums playing brings forth a melodic sound that creates a magic due to this art of emotional storytelling. Instead of a hard-hitting stance at drumming, Sandipan likes his drum sticks to glide through a musical piece, with focus on pauses in-between beats and thereby, creating melodic rhythm in the silence. He always strives towards treating his drums not just as a rhythm instrument, but rather as a melodic experience created out of his musical sensibilities.

At a young age, going through the ups and downs of life has made him introspect more deeply, about himself, his music, and its impact in lives of millions of people. Sandipan has witnessed change in perspectives and thought processes as a musician, as he evolved as a human being. He believes that the tempo is proof of a human’s existence; it resonates with the changes in hormones and changes in feelings being felt. In his quest to eternally keep improving as a musician, he acts with integrity when he puts in his honesty and love in creating music. He believes that music is about art and science. When he sits on the throne to play the drums for sold-out shows, global concerts, local events and at studio sessions of blockbuster movies, Sandipan Parial is tuned to the simplicity in how playful a music is, how beautiful a melody is, and this is how he creates good music.

Moreover, he is serious about taking forward his legacy and has been imparting quality education in Drums, for over a decade now. Some of his senior students are professional drummers with reputed Bands, while the junior students adore him for the insightful classes packed with a punch!

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