Share This



Stay Thirsty Media, Inc.


By Kevin English
Scotch Plains, NJ, USA

Video: Bamboo Shoots - "Wrong All Along"

Bamboo Shoots are the luckiest college band I know. After winning Artist of the Year at mtvU’s Best Music on Campus Awards, the foursome began to study a much more exciting course syllabus. When we spoke, they had just finished a national tour with the insanely popular band 3OH!3. Weary from the road, they phoned in from their tiny tour van to chat.

THIRSTY: For the record, tell us who you are and what your roles are in the band.

Avir:  I’m Avir and I am the singer.

Ankur: My name is Ankur. I play percussion and keyboards.

Karl: I’m Karl, and I play guitar and do some vocals. Shiv couldn’t make it tonight, but he is our drummer and resident chef.

THIRSTY: You guys earned a lot of credibility with that mtvU competition. How did it help your career?

Avir: That was a nice little break for us. That got us onto Late Night with Conan O’Brien, and helped us get the deal on Epic Records.

THIRSTY: Why is your tour bus so little?

Ankur: It’s not that little! [Van erupts in laughter] For me personally, I wouldn’t mind being in this van for the rest of our career. I'm not really gassed about getting on a bus. It will take a lot more money out our pockets. I’m also trying to be a little bit more eco-conscious. So instead of doing that, we’ll just travel around in what we have. Surprisingly, it’s pretty comfortable.

Bamboo Shoots - Late Night with Conan O’Brien
(credit:Dana Edelson, courtesy NBC 2007)

Bamboo Shoots - Late Night with Conan O’Brien
(credit:Dana Edelson, courtesy NBC 2007)

The intensity of their live show is as infectious to 17-year-olds as it is to thirty-somethings. You can’t help but to enjoy the Jagger-like stage prance that accompanies Avir’s perfectly pitched lead vocals. The crowd breaks out into a mosh pit within seconds of their first downbeat.

THIRSTY: Did any of you study music formally?

Avir: None of us ever studied music like that. I studied Biology. Karl did Government and Politics, Ankur was doing Civil Engineering and Shiv was Finance.

THIRSTY: You all are four really smart guys that made it big in the music business. That’s rare!

Ankur: I wouldn't say we’re big in the music business, particularly.

Karl: Somehow they opened the door and we walked right in. We're just doing everything we can to keep them from kicking us back out.

THIRSTY: I think when people experience the music, they'll realize that you are not the typical pop group. There is some real depth behind what you do.

Avir: Thanks man, I appreciate that. We try to make music on a pop level, but at the same time there is more to it. We wanted to make an album that you can listen to from start to finish.

THIRSTY: What do you think the best part of being on tour is?

Avir: I like the girls in Utah personally.

Karl: I would say that meeting people from different parts of the country as we travel through it is really cool.

Ankur: It was a combination of those things. It was the girls and bigger than that, doing these shows gives us a great opportunity to share our music with the people. Hopefully they dig it and it becomes a relationship.

THIRSTY: I think you've been very successful doing that. So how long have you guys been on tour?

Avir: October 28th is when we actually left for the UK and India. We did that whole run and then we came back and filmed a little bit of a show that’s going to air in March. Right from there we headed down to Alabama to start the US tour, and we just got back from tour yesterday.

THIRSTY: What's the first thing you did when you got back?

Bamboo Shoots

Avir: I took a very long shower personally. What did you guys do?

Karl: I ate some of my mom’s food. I didn't even shower. I haven't eaten Indian food in so long. Then I showered for like four hours after I got home. Sometimes I still feel like I'm on tour.

THIRSTY: What’s the hardest part of what you do?

Ankur: We don’t really break even on finances. I mean, we’re doing what we love to do so we have to fuel it with our money, our time, with our efforts and just stay on that path. And sometimes this is how people get weeded out. Right now we are putting our work in and it seems like there is no light at the end of the tunnel, but we know sure enough, if we stick with it, we’ll be stepping up the rungs of the ladder as time goes on.

Karl: The hardest thing for me is going to the bathroom in really strange places. I can’t tell you how many times [there have been] where I would have to go to the bathroom with no door. Or I’m holding the door shut with my foot. Or there are some guys screaming on the other side.

THIRSTY: What the biggest misconception about being signed to a major label?

Karl: That you're going to get money to do what you need to do!  Even when [the label] knows what you need to do, it doesn’t mean that they are necessarily going to be footing the bill the whole way. They helped us with our record, but since then it’s been, like, go out there and do what you need to do.

Avir: The biggest misconception is that the record labels know what they are doing. They don't. They are trying to figure it out for themselves…especially now. It’s up to the artist.

Ankur: The record company is a lender or a bank. The second they are like, “We're not going to give you any more money,” we have to take matters into our own hands. So that’s what we are going to have to do…by any means necessary.

Avir: I agree with Ankur. It’s about trying to stay constant in the ups and downs. When you have an amazing show, everybody is going to be treating you well. At the same time, when you show up to a venue and the turnout is not so good, then you can really get depressed. So for me, it’s all about keeping perspective. You win some, you lose some.

Judging by their musical ability, all or nothing work ethic, and brilliant minds, I don’t think Bamboo Shoots’ lucky streak will end any time soon. You can catch Bamboo Shoots on the new reality show, Fly Girls on the CW network, and on tour in a city near you.



All opinions expressed by Kevin English are solely his own and do not reflect the opinions of Stay Thirsty Media, Inc.



Become a Thirsty Friend:

Share This

Search Thirsty for:

© Stay Thirsty Media, Inc. 2006 - 2010
All Rights Reserved

Privacy Policy | Terms of Use | Terms of Sale | Contact | Site Map