In this Dream Tour segment, the singer-songwriter, Anita Aysola, reveals who she would want on her ultimate tour lineup. You can check out their picks, after the break.
For me, a dream tour would involve an all-female lineup. In particular, I would love to share a tour and a stage with half-sisters Norah Jones and Anoushka Shankar. I feel so musically connected to each of them that I feel like a distant relative.
When I first heard of Norah Jones years ago, her first single “Don’t Know Why” was getting radio play. Her voice was so different – I had never heard a voice like that, except that there was a unique familiarity with my own. I loved “Don’t Know Why” so much that I picked up her album “Come Away With Me”, and just fell in love with the whole album. When I started performing and writing for the first time, everyone instantly compared me to her. I play piano, sing, and have a jazz influence in my writing. I didn’t realize until much after her first album was released that she was Ravi Shankar’s daughter. Not only is she half Indian, but she is also the daughter of a musician I have followed and admired since I was a child.
Anoushka Shankar is another daughter of the legendary Ravi Shankar. She is an incredible sitarist. I used to study sitar, as well as Hindustani classical music and vocals. Anoushka’s technique and the sound she brings to the instrument is just brilliant. I also love her experimental work, especially with producer Karsh Kale. They released the album “Breathing Under Water” in 2007 and collaborated with many artists, including Norah Jones!
Because my music relates with Norah’s piano/jazz/vocal vibe and Anoushka’s Hindustani classical ragas, sharing the stage with them would be amazing. Being a part of this lineup would be just beyond incredible, but I would love to take it further and have a chance to collaborate with them on stage. With Anoushka, I would love to experiment with piano improvisation in specific ragas (blending raga and jazz improvisation), and to hear her improv on sitar on a couple of my originals. With Norah, I would love to have her gorgeous voice singing on any number of songs, utilizing duets and harmonies.
It would be a dream to perform Anoushka’s breathtaking song “Easy”, which features Norah on vocals. While there are several of my originals that could easily feature both Norah and Anoushka, my song “Firefly” comes to mind. The mood of that song is a hybrid between the “Come Away With Me” vibes of Norah’s first album and Hindustani classical music. To make this even more special, the song was written for my daughter, and all of us are mothers.