RAG N ROLL wit SHARAD SHRESTHA (THE AXE)
Interview/Pics: Umes Shrestha
I used to hate The AXE, I had only heard one song –“Chiya Bari Ma” back then. It was an absolute horror of a song and I even counted how many times the vocalist sings “maa” through out the song (around 54 times). And then I got THE AXE: VERY BEST OF album (in fact I copied it from a friend’s computer) and then my whole perspective on the band changed. Then some time later, I got to do an interview with the band. I was impressed – three guys, totally normal and down to earth. No “hi-fi kura” and no “posey” pretence. Now it was not just music. I liked the band even more. And then the new album “Kammasaka” did not disappoint me either, it was a solid CD full of funk rock with their usual folk touch (in the lyrics and vocals).
Why the hell am I blowing THE AXE trumpet? I just wanted to. The band is already popular and here’s one of the key members of the band – Sharad Shrestha, the axeman of THE AXE (lau maa!! pun po bani ra). Out of hundreds of interviews (boring.. every time promoting the band) in the mainstream media, this might be the most brilliant interview he might be enjoying for a long time. Or did it get him by the balls? Let’s see how he faces our Rag and Roll.
How do you define Sharad Shrestha in your own words?
Simple! Sa, Ra, D . No ‘H factor’! Simply Sarad!
Why haven’t you changed your hair style yet? It has been 20 years, it’s the same. Don’t you know the Grunge Era is over?
Oh my God! Ho ta hagi? Pahiley nai bhanya hoonthyo yaar! Anyway I’m growing my hair long at present. Now don’t tell me “that 70’s show” again hahahaha.
You seem to single-handedly invented the “funk rock” in Nepal. How proud are you?
La.. hya mula.. yesto jhina masina koora ma pani kehi fulaan deenu jaruri cha ra?
Will you be surprised if you were awarded “Gorkha Dakshin Bahu” for your contribution?
La hya ke baasi koora garya yaar? Tyo ta kharez bhaisakyo ni, hoina ra? Leene haru pani sabai dakshin tira laagey hola saayad. aba south tira chai ma janna hagi.. india pari halcha. Baru “Gantantrik Paschim Bahu” bhana na. teso gare kaso hola?
Have you ever felt your palms getting sweaty while playing guitar? How does it feel?
Horny of course. Should I feel like I’m loosing my virginity for the first time? La ghantai siti, feel gardinchu ma ta.
How would you suggest a young guitarist who is in a great dilemma of – playing the guitar right or impress a hottie?
Oye.. muji.. sabai bhanda pahile talai bhagwan ley guitar baja bhanekay chaina !! So you better concentrate on practicing more man.. I shall be busy with your hottie till then instead. And make her ready to serve you cold.
How often do you find yourself in such dilemma (since half of the crowd in THE AXE concert is usually hot chicks)?
Lau.. hya.. I’m offered (on hand) both of those.. ni.. aba ke ko dilemma hoonu paryo ta? hehehehe
You are married right?
Everyone should marry, coz happiness isn’t everything.
We have heard a true rumor that you declined to sign on the boobs of a girl fan. How much did you regret it later?
Ke ko decline na regret garnu ni? Tyo muji jharey pen ko tehi bela ma masi sakina parne kina? That’s why I carry one myself every time now! Fully loaded!! Skinable ink bhako.. like tattoo ink.. hehe
Do you have any annoying habits that your fans should know – just as a precaution before they swarm you for autographs?
Ok a line from John Butler: I come forth with only good intent, you know I am Heaven bound but I’m surely hell bent!
Do you ever get the feeling like – oh shit, I completely suck at this (like studying, talking to a girl, singing, etc)?
What are the things that you completely suck at?
Do you ever feel like giving up the guitar and start singing?
Hey.. I don’t wanna make my pal and other superstars to be unemployed. Why should I snatch others’ bread man? It’s not in my blood!
Who do you think has more fans, you or Shiva Mukhiya (vocalist)?
Ok lemme count hai ta! Tyo shiva ko gharma hmmm.. kitchen ma 1 wata, living room ma 1 wata, bedroom ma euta…3 wata cha kyare.. ok.. mero chai. Mero Bedroom ma euta cha. living room ma euta.. hoina 2 wata, tyo ceiling fan nai count garna birsey chu. Ho 2 wata. Ani kitchen ma 2 wata, tyo malai khana khada kheri yeso hamkauncha ke daya baya basera, Cameron Diaz ra Penelop Cruz ley yaar. japenese fan haat ma hehe esp. for summer time. tyo stable ma thulo euta cha. mula ghoda haru dherai paadchan yaar, morons! La hisab garu hai ta. shiva ko bhayo 3 wata, mero bhayo 6 wata, pakha pakha tyo helicopter ko ta rakhnai birsyo pheri. la! 7 wata. Wah! Merai badhi rahecha yaar!
What’s like practicing with THE AXE.. how often do you guys throw punches and kicks? Who usually wins the fight?
It happens every time.. Then I switch on to drums, and Surendra gets on bass and Shiva on guitars, it begins. And the winner takes it all, ‘Suman cha’, the tea boy on mic!
Which is your most un-favourite AXE song that you have been forced to play live?
“Preeti Basyo” —- hey is that AXE song? Nope. Hey man its ‘great’ Rumba bro’s hagi? Hey did I say great? Yup great!
What could be the worst case scenario that you even fear to imagine when you are playing live?
Well, if Raju lama would join the stage with us and all the hip hop freaks, Eminem ko santanharu, in the crowd head banging like hell, and one metalhead dude goes mad and cries out loud “Yo Yos” “bling bling” and in another minute he finds out his Antichrist tattoo changes to D12 and later his Dimbag t-shirt turns to “Justin Timberlake.” Oh my God!!! By the way, yo bling bling bhanya ke ho? Would you please ask Mr. Nirnay for this? Ke ho yo bling bling bhanya?
Which is more fun – playing a long guitar solo or letting your drummer play a drum solo?
Guitar and foot tapping on the bass kick at the same time.
Which band/musician in our local scene you would NOT want to perform with, even if they threaten you to take your guitars away?
1974 Ad. They would make me stand in the stage in a Elvis Presley looks.. oh my God!
As an audience, have you ever thrown bottles/stones at the stage while a band is performing? Did you have fun?
No man. I’m a decent guy remember?
Dhunga hanna kasto ramailo huncha ni hoina? Which band or artist in the current mainstream you would want to “dhunga hanning”?
Hey I’m a decent guy remember? (haha! yo bhanna kasto ramailo hoondo rahecha yaar! La again hai — I’m a decent guy remember?) Aba hannai paryo bhane chai, hmm……. I shall choose Karma’s vox guy as he always comes in the stage afterwards k.. bichara sabai band member haru pahila aaundo rahecha, sabai saman gadgets wire mili sakepachi.. ani this guy shows up after the music starts. Kasto lauda jasto yaar? At least he can come in the stage helping his band members ni hoina ra? Sometimes he even sings “Bhige hoth tere” rey ni ta! superstars hagi?
How would a “mature” misfit like you comment on the current political situation of the country?
Well c’mon guys we gotta be grateful for this instead and feel happy to be Nepali. Because I bet no one in other country can fuckin’ survive like we do here at present times. No petrol, but we r riding bikes. No gas, we are having our meal everyday. Load shedding, but we still r the richest in water resources in the world. Bandh, Chakkajam as we celebrate more than holidays festivals. Wow! We won’t be surprised one day if a dog with his colleagues would do chakkajam just because he was hit by a toy-bicycle on the road. So BE FUCKIN’ PROUD TO BE NEPALI! You are a great SURVIVOR indeed!!! Oh ho! tyo purano disco geet yaad aayo yaar “I’m a survivor” bhanney. kasko geet ho tyo?
We have a new-Nepal slogans all around in the country. What do you think this new-Nepal should do for Rock Musicians and Rock Bands?
Well, I’m so sick n fuckin tired of hearing this new Nepal slogan man. Bhayekai nepal nai samalina nasaknu bhairahcha, kina naya nepal chaiyo ra? Don’t count the chicken before……… blah blah blah!
We are planning to elect you as the Minister of “Gana Tantrick” Rock and Roll. What is your reaction?
Aba ke reaction garnu yaar? La.. aba Deep dai haru ko po ke hoone ho la? You better check their reaction man. Mero birudha kehi sadayantra garirakhya holan aba. Hey Deep dai! hernu ta, tapaiharu lai satta bata nikalne sadayantra rachirahcha ktmrocks ley! Beware hai, hahahahahaha!!!!
You must have given several interviews to the media – FMs, TVs, Newspapers and Magazines. Do you remember any particular incident when you felt like punching on the mouth of the reporter/interviewer? I know you have.. name please, name please.
Yes! Once during an interview from some program in Nepal TV kyare. That was some 3 years ago. I was fuckin’ so irritated as the lady puts the stupid questions towards us. Pheri kasari sodhne bhanya, his producer teaches her to put a particular question, and she asks us the “word to word” same. So we have to listen the same question twice before we do reply. Every one of them. Ditto!! Lauda jasto! Now she’s married to the same producer rey.
We have been informed by our Crime Bureau that you have been secretly listening to Kiran Gurung’s song “I was so bad to lose you”. Does that mean that your next composition is going to have KG elements?
Haha favorite color ASS color eh? Ok man.. he’s paying me a lot! And we are developing FUCK ROCK genre! Bravo!
If the track-singers ever stopped singing on tracks (because of the fear of getting stoned to death) and you were hired to back them up, which one would you choose and why – A) Kamal Man Singh, B) Anil Singh or C) Avinash Ghisingh. Remember, they might pay you good!
Ok I have to choose one haina ta? Hetteri.. kasto fasaune yaar? Ok I shall go for Avinash Ghisingh.. yo muji geet bhari khokda khokda “Uh humm uh hah” gardai busy hoone rahecha.. la yesai lai choose garnu parla aba. So I can play more guitars rey kya aba!!
Axe or Gun:
Axe is the first weapon invented by human being. So, Axe of course. Axe well equipped with shooting missiles as well haha. Ahile ko 21st century ma advanced bhai halcha ni.
Buff Mo:mo or Veg Mo:mo.
Well, veg ta rango haru le khai halcha ni.. so there won’t be any veg left. Ani pheri rango dude haru pheri risayera chiita dukhai halcha ni.. I can’t see animals cry. Buff!!
Shiva or Suren:
Hey, where is my name? I love my both hands rey kya aba! Am I sounding some kinda pathetic here? Damn!
Batista or The Undertaker:
Fans of Ktm Valley or Fans outside the valley.
La fans everywhere obviously! Jhan AC bhaye daami hooncha ni.. C’mon ppl its summer time!
Say No to Track Singers or Stone the Track Singers:
Yeah we shall make them stone instead. Let them have twat, gaanja, hash, heroines, all of them.
Lastly, recommend us some of the worst bands/singers of all times.
Mangolian Hearts, Avinash Ghishing, Karma, Satya Raj Acharya, I don’t need to mention the hiphoppers and all those scumbags, do I? khoi ke khoi ke..