How do you keep reinventing music or keep it engaging? There are numerous ways apparently – focus on lyrics, focus on music, focus on rhythm, focus on music video/ visuals, focus on setting, focus on gimmicks – but at the end of the day, it’s the packaging that makes the product.

NPR – the Washington DC based National Public Radio – turned the concept of concert on its head, challenging the marquee artists to perform their best hits within a small confined space rather than the stadium full of frenzy fans. What can the artists do in the space that can hardly contain 6-7 people?

The result is ‘NPR Tiny Desk Concert’ that has seen stars ranging from Alicia Keys to Coldplay and Sting to Jorja Smith crooning best of their numbers in tightly packed format – from space to time. During the lockdown, it even assumed the form of Tiny Desk ^Home Concert with further stripping down the glitter around the music.

But today I introduce you to one of the favourite segments. To be frank, I had never heard of her or heard her. But the Mexican singer Natalia Lafourcade would surely take you to the journey of a world which is gentler, simpler, and more compassionate.

Her lullaby-like voice would surely soothe the nerves on a busy day, even as the lyrics (those who are interested) can give a peek into the very unique expression of emotions for Mehico! Personal favourite is, ‘Tú Sí Sabes Quererme‘ (You do know how to love me).

For the Indian segment, it would be one of my most favourite current artists – Maati Baani. The couple Nirali and Kartik keep their music quirky most of the times, balancing the Indian classical with global sensibilities and experiments (who would think that the tool to clean the cotton can be used as a string instrument) with tradition (Nirali Kartik’s several classical and semi classical renditions are already popular).

But I fell head over heels for them when I heard ‘Tore Matware Naina’ in film David. While the song is great in itself, I then discovered the Tamil version, and somehow liked it better – you can choose for yourself. Here’s the Tamil version, and you can search the Hindi one!

It’s the intersection of languages that make this and several other songs much richer – so lesson of the day is, swear by diversity!

Happy YouTubin!

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