Singers and Bands are always the cool kids in the college circuit. Music and fashion have been symbiotic in their growth, one wonders who influenced him in the annals of history. Musicians personal style sets them apart from the other breed; many consultants even guide musicians on building their ‘brand’ as an artist by donning a persona. Think of David Bowie, Elvis Presly, Madonna, Lady Gaga, Billy Eilish or closer home Indian Ocean band, Alisha Chinai, Sona Mohapatra. These artists have unique stage personalities that are in sync with their music style.  

The current lock-down imposed in India due to COVID-19 has led to multiple online gigs and live performances by musicians. Digital portals, event management companies, artist management agencies – all are queuing up to bring some relief to the ones who are staying at home and hope to the ones who are battling from the frontline. The current online gig scenario is a testimony to the fact that indie music scene in India is flourishing beyond the cliché Bollywood numbers. Alternative music platforms, content-led channels and music record companies are promoting independent music to the fullest.  

Ciceroni decodes the styles of some of the most loved indie musicians from across the country as you all enjoy their love streaming in these days of COVID.  

1. Prateek Kuhad:  

Prateek’s music is like a cup of hot coffee after a chaotic day at work; it takes you in its realm and calms you. His rustic voice makes his music relatable and soothing.  

When it comes to his fashion sense, it is as understated and unpretentious as his music. Kuhad is from Jaipur and rightly enough, you will find him wearing printed shirts that are characteristic of Jaipur and other Rajasthani cities. Being a creature of comfort, he mainly experiments with prints. You will find him wearing fusion printed shirts or solid basics only. His fashion style blends traditional designs with contemporary  comfort and much like his music, it is classic yet novel in its own way. 

2. Ritviz Srivastava:  

If you’re a party music lover in India, you would have definitely heard ‘Udd Gaye’ from Bacardi House Party. This song made Ritviz a popular name in the indie music scene. After that, he delivered hits like Sage, Jeet and Liggi. His music is bold and pathbreaking. With groovy tunes and beautifully conceptualized videos, Ritviz is the rising star in the indie music industry.  

He is uninhibited when it comes to fashion and frequently enjoys experimenting with his style. From wearing an earring for his cover shoot to colouring his hair to donning bright fluorescent colours, Ritviz has a bold sense of style. Move over Billy, we have our own blonde kid.  

There is quite a similarity between his eclectic style of dressing and video shots that are a melange of cultural potpourri and kitsch in equal proportions. If Prateek Kuhad’s music and style are soothing and calm, the kind that comforts you, Ritviz’s music and style can be described as spunky and surprising, the kind that keeps you on your feet, makes you want to keep going.  

3. Monica Dogra  

While she is currently basking in the success of her latest single, ‘Secret Sauce’ which has an equally exciting music video featuring Prateik Babbar, Monica Dogra’s sense of style has always been talked about. She is ‘Indian bohemian chic’ personified indeed.   

Her frequent travels ensure that she brings in multitudes of prints and textiles from different countries to her style repertoire. The American musician of Indian origin amalgamates the two cultures through her selection of outfits. From slaying in style at the famous Burning Man Festival to launching her own clothing line on way back in 2014, Monica Dogra’s sense of style is our favourite.  

4. Aditi Veena AKA Ditty  

An urban ecologist by profession and a musician by passion, Aditi Veena, is popularly known as Ditty. Being raised in a family that loved the outdoors, Ditty moved from Delhi to Sri Lanka some years back as she became dissatisfied with the quality of air and the culture in the capital city. Her music has an earthy feel and is heavily inspired by nature. Her album, ‘Poetry Ceylon’ is inspired by elements of nature and is centered around her time in Sri Lanka. 

Much like her music, her sense of style is also whimsical and artsy. You will find her donning attractive yet subtle earthy hues that are comfortable and effortlessly stylish. She is experimental in a way that grabs your attention subtly, without being in your face. As Ditty makes a case for climate change through her soul-stirring music, her personal style echoes the sentiment through sustainable approach. She hasn’t made purchases in last 5 years, we hear. Singer championing the cause of sustainability – much love indeed.   

5. Madboy Mink  

You might remember Imaad Shah from the critically acclaimed film ‘M-Cream’ whereas Saba Azad became immensely popular after the YRF film ‘Mujhse Fraandship Karoge’. However, the two together are now known as ‘Madboy Mink’ in the indie music circuit. The electronic music duo creates vintage dance music with their own contemporary twist to it.  

Both Imaad and Saba have fashion styles as eclectic as their music. Mink(Saba) pulls off everything with utmost style, be it purple curls or a pair of bright yellow boots in the middle of the road. From classic floral dresses to slick buns, her sense of style is like her idiosyncratic take on established classics. Madboy(Imaad) on the other hand, shifts from checkered shirts to colour pop jumpers with equal finesse. Both the artists carry out a fusion of styles with unapologetic ease. If you’re someone who enjoys a fusion of style, be it in fashion or in music, Madboy Mink are the duo to watch out for.  

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6. Swati Minaxi  

Swati Minaxi, the singer of Tapi project, personifies maximalism in the most beautiful manner. While her outfits are incredibly quirky and experimental, it is her accessories that you will fall in love with. From long danglers to statement neckpieces, Swati Minaxi accessorizes like a pro. While her music has rustic tones that fit very well with the rural communities that Tapi Project uncovers, her fashion sense also embodies the vibe of a carefree wanderer who pursues hedonism without inhibitions. Her outfits often incorporate traditional Indian prints with a millennial twist- think printed tube tops and halter dresses with prints all over. If you are someone who loves a maximalist aesthetic or if you enjoy country music, Swati Minaxi’s style and her music should be on your list.  

Which indie musician do you think has a style you relate to the most?  

In the meanwhile, listen to the beautiful music these artists create and stay safe as you enjoy your downtime at home.