The NH7 music festival started in Pune in 2010 and quickly went on to become a multi city music festival and is widely touted as one of the happiest music festivals.
Here are a few reasons why the NH7 weekender is the happiest music festival for me. I attended the festival in Pune this year, along with my mom and brother.
1. The music: Living in Goa means there are a lot of musicians, live music gigs and music festivals, but a large number of them play electronic dance music, which to be honest is not my kind of music. Here at the NH7 weekender in Pune we heard the likes of Vishal Dadlani curatind a beautiful tribute to Nusrat Fateh Ali , shilling band soulmate , Indie band swarathma and AR Rahman playing some of his Bollywood numbers. A medley of known and unknown music, some we could sing along with, some whose lyrics we knew by heart, and others which were added to the list of new favourites. As a not so adventurous music lover I still knew a lot of the songs at the music festival, and to be able to shake my head to a few familiar tunes made me happy.
|know your wrist bands. there was a separate drinks band for above 21|
|gorgeous stages, great acoustics|
The people: the first day that mom and I went to the weekender festival, mom wore black. She said “ I have heard that people wear black to the music festivals.” Now it is true that given a choice most men would gravitate towards wearing black, but hear we saw lovely flowery dresses, flowing kaftans, cute shorts, flower hair bands, and even men in checked shirts and khaki shorts, and not one of the ‘music band t shirts’we were expecting. For the AR Rahman show we were a sea of people all jostling and clustered together, and yet not one bottom pinching, lewd sounding, boob glancing person in the crowd around us. Everyone around us was there for the music and if we connected over anything then it was the tunes.
|loved the I was There drinking cans, which are now being used as watering cans for plants at home|
|loved the inflatabe lounge seats, which made great festival souvenirs as well.|
|potato tornadoes! love love the topping the execution and the concept|
|juicy chicken rolls from Jamjar Diner|
|the yellow flags with smileys set the happiness mood|
|posing pretty for clap shoes, interesting advertising concept|
The vibe: I had not expected children under 18 at this event, I didn’t know that there would be children under 8 years and some even at the tender age of 8 months at the event. Babies in strollers, carried on arms, and parents with feeding bottles sat around on the sprawling lawns at Laxmi lawns. There were inflatable lounge chairs which had people lazying around in. There were high energy zones as well as laid back zones as well. when Rahman asked for some mood lighting a thousand mobile phone torches came on, and when Dadlani asked for a show of hands a thousand went up in reply.
|fun names and esy directions|
|camping out infront of the stage|
|lots of walking , best to wear loafers, since the parking was a mile away|
|the whole stadium lit up|
|The maestro AR Rahman|
The food: Food is always a big deal, and yes, they had a dedicated food court. Swiggy had even conveniently mentioned the recommendations on the boards above the stalls. Finger foods and everything from biryani to burgers were Available. The food was available way past 10 aswell, and after the music stopped at 10 we were able to get ourselves the yummiest rolls from Kareems, the fingerlicking and sinful bacon and potato fries at Jamjar diner. And no one said the food was over! The drinks however did run out, even the bar which was to serve till 7 pm, got shut at 6 pm itself, but there were plenty of Redbulls to keep everyone flying.
|loaded chicken hotdog at jamjar diner|
|sinning with bacon, fries and cheese|
The support staff: Now here’s what happened. We were motivated to be in the first few rows for the AR Rahman show, which meant camping out in front of the stage for a good 4 hours. That is 4 hours of no water break, or pee break or food. Once the music began we quickly sang ourselves hoarse, and had parched throats. But the organisers started handing out water bottles .Water was freely and generously passed down the rows of people and we were grateful for the thoughtful gesture. It made us all the more happy to sing along with the musicians.
Everything from the parking, tickets, ticket checks, was well planned, executed and done keeping in mind the happy vibe. I was happy to see a few wheel chairs and walking canes making the music festival truly inclusive. The music left us uplifted and the happy vibes have continued even after the stage lights went off, and the musicians have gone home.