‘Bare with us’ says the Bear faced Cookie

There’s no feeling better than watching cherished ideas materialise into something tangible. When it comes to music, the hours spent putting paper to pen and plectrum to steel in the search for the right rhymes and chords deserves more than a chance to be heard; a lasting impression and people to singing is definitely a promising beginning. For Joel Prabal, the time has come for his suave way with words and melodies to infect a whole new crowd.

Spending time with Joel over the last 10 years, I’ve known him to be refreshingly persistent in all that he sets his mind to. Apart from having written a ton of material with him during our college days, I’ve shared and learnt much from him both musically and personally. However, I’ve always been in awe of his commitment to the music he has written without my help. He has often performed these songs over the years at solo gigs, as well as with his Kolkata based unplugged project ‘Oh Ma Go!’ Apart from these public renditions I’ve often lent a casual guitar solo during the countless times he succumbed to the ‘Play us a song, Joel!!’ requests at random house parties. It’s possible that at this point, there’ll be a couple of us singing along to the pun filled verses of Booty Callin’ and the many other Joel classics. What’s going to surprise us all time around, is that some fresh new energy has been added to these tunes, courtesy his talented new band mates Aarifah Rebello (Drums and Percussion) and Ralph Godinho (Bass).

After scoring a 90 minute set at the Tuning Fork, Joel began looking for others to share the stage with. On being handed a directory of musicians by the kind people of the venue, he took a leap and made calls to the first names on the list of drummers and bassists. Aarifah who also sings and plays guitars and percussion with several other original acts, offered to share the stage with him. As a duo, they planned accompany each other on their original material in successive sets. Ultimately chasing the bigger picture, they soon decided to bring in bassist Ralph to perform Joel’s material as a fuller sounding band.

The songs were initially crafted for a minimalistic two-guitar sound hence after getting the act together Joel nervously wondered how the final outcome would prevent itself. He says, “They both bring in a lot of their influences to give new shape my songs. I didn’t have tell them what to play, they simply heard the music and reacted to it.” What Joel seems most proud of is the fact that the other two are particularly enthusiastic about harmonising with his vocal lines. The band in their rehearsals have dedicated time exclusively to perfect this element of their performance.

Choosing ‘Nookie Jar’ as the name of the act, the trio are bound have a bunch of ‘punny’ references waiting to be laughed at their debut gig this Saturday.  They will be delivering a set of Joel’s original tunes along with some U2, Michael Jackson and Guns N’ Roses covers. The trio have something playfully cheerful planned for us this Saturday so don’t miss out on the love and the puns. Do look out for some surprisingly fresh sounding originals like A Minor Jam, Choco Hazelnut Spread, Paper to Pen and Chocolate.

They go on at 9pm on Saturday July 16th at the Tuning Fork. Make the best of Full Cover entry charge of Rs. 500 per person!

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Don’t forget to check the Event Page for more details on their gig this weekend!



Jason Rasquinha is a Mumbai based freelance writer. Along with being a curriculum designer he writes about music and travel. In his free time, he pursues his hobbies of recording his music and clicking photos.

One comment on “‘Bare with us’ says the Bear faced Cookie”


    Brilliantly written Jas! Do write about the gig too… wish I was there

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