‘Lots of New Music, Lots of Knowledge, Experience and Dedication Made Karnivals’ way’ Tinu Rashid-Karnival


After the success of Obaddho Bashona, we caught up with the front man of the band Karnival, Tinu Rashid, discussed about the bands’ journey and their point of view on Bangladeshi rock music scene. So here is how it went:

How did Karnival Start its journey?

Tinu: Karnival started in 2006. Me and our previous bassist Tanmoy decided that we would form something like this, after we finished learning how to play the guitar, and basically, that is it.

What are the influences behind the music that the band does and how does it relate to experimental music?

Tinu: The band was highly influenced from Grunge music. Bands like Nirvana, Alice in Chains, Pearl Jam were the main influences. We used to heavily cover Nirvana, during the bands’ initial stages, but that did not stop us from covering Pink Floyd and The Beatles. Gradually, the band started to take a sharp turn. As days went by, the band went through a transition where it matured itself. Lots of new music, lots of knowledge, experience and dedication made Karnivals’ way to the world of experimental music.

For a band to excel, they obviously needs to be matured. Question is how do we and our music mature?

Tinu: Maturity always comes through experience. No questioning that but, for a band to mature and take their music to a whole new level, it has to listen to new and newer music everyday. It needs to explore the musical world. For us, we did shows, we went to shows and we observed the kind of music that’s being done and we learned from them. We came to know about new types of music, new genres, new musicians, musicians like Steve Wilson and Porcupine Tree, Michael Akerfeldt and Opeth, and we tried to incorporate bits and pieces of what we learned from listening to new sounds and tried to make something of our own, something unique. It goes to show, that you need to be experienced in order to be matured as a musician and experience will come with time, and will come if you explore.


How did Karnivals’ first album come up? Any lessons taken from the album?

Tinu: What I believe is, for a band to work on their solo album, they firstly need to be sure of it. That’s one. Number two, they need to be aware of what their doing. Everything needs to be done on a perfect time. This is where Karnival did a mistake. We were too ambitious, and thought that we will come up with an album within a few months. We didn’t know people, didn’t know any record labels, and weren’t even mature enough, still we went forward with this approach and at the end of the day, we regret what we did in the first album and we think to ourselves that it would have been better if we took a lot of time to be proper musicians first, and then produce an album. So, moral of the story is, you need to be sure of what you are doing, unlike us as we were confused of what we wanted to do, and you need to do it on the right time.

How did the people respond to the album?

Tinu: We faced a lot of problems after releasing our album. These problems hindered our opportunity to get feedbacks to be honest. Even then, we did take the tracks and converted them to “mp3” formats and uploaded on the internet and we did get a few good reviews of it, which basically was a bit surprising to us, considering the level of music we did back at that time.

According to Karnival, what barrier would an upcoming band face?

Tinu: The musicians themselves. They don’t respect the music they do and appreciate the bands’ existence. On second level, they don’t know about the music that they do. For example, bands like Jahiliyyah, they know what they are doing, they know about the history of the genre they are involved and they clearly are on the right path. If the upcoming bands cannot do that, they cannot excel. They have to remember the fact that before going down and doing something, you need to be very clear about your goals.

Why do bands disappear from our music scene? Why cannot they continue doing music? What is the major problem?

Tinu: You need to compare scenarios. Bands like Metallica, Megadeth, they continued doing music in their country because they got money out of it. They got royalties, they got awards and all the other recognitions they could get. Compare this with our country. If I say, I’m going to be a professional musician, I clearly have to starve to death. Reason is, our music industry does not have a proper and organized structure upon which, our musicians, Karnival and bigger bands alike, can do music and take their career forward as a musician. Even if, someone dreams to be a professional musician in this country, he has to play as a session member or has to play in weddings and anniversaries. That is why, musicians in our country, these days; get into jobs because they have a family to run as well. Music cannot totally support them and that’s a fact no one can deny!

Talking about the changes, in terms of band line-up and musical approach. Why did it happen?

Tinu: Line-up changed frequently because the musicians that were getting into the band did not match our mentality, musically. They had a total new approach towards their music, totally different influences and all. So, we had to change the line-up frequently. If me and my band members do not gel together on the same musical level, having the same influences, that is eventually going to be bad for the band itself and I cannot risk that.

Talking about Karnival’s approach towards it music, all of us need to consider the fact that the band members are dynamic. As days pass by, we listened to new genres and explored the musical world and came to know about lots of new things and we started to incorporate them into our musical pieces. The band members went through a phase in life, something which everyone goes through, that made us a lot more mature, makes us look at things from a different angle, forced us to think more of our lives, which reflects clearly on the music we make, especially on the lyrics. We concentrate more on a certain incident in our lives and how it affected us, and if something comes from the inside, we write about it. So, maturing as musicians, again, takes time.

How does Karnival describe, “Obaddho (Bashona)”?

Tinu: The Karnival with a new line up, went in for a jam and we got out with this track. Salmi came up with the intro, the plucking and the rhythm as well, and we thought, it’s already a bit too aggressive. Then Khalid brought in a drum roll which totally changed the transition of the track. Slowly, we formed the basic structure of the track, came home, sat down, I have a home studio by the way, and came out with the track in just 15 days, and it turned out to be pretty good.

Obadho(bashonar) by Karn

What can the crowd expect from Karnival in the near future?

Tinu: Not much, to be honest. We are doing shows at the moment and also working on our singles. Our latest single would be released in the mixed compilation album called, “Play It NOW!”, so, wait for it.

Where does Tinu Rashid see Karnival after 30 years?

Tinu: I still see the band in this position but I see this society to be even more understanding, in terms of music, than it is right now. It will understand our music, will know how and why we made this musical piece and they will appreciate our music.

Anything for the people who love you?

Tinu: Keeping it short, support us and our music. Love the country and appreciate its music. We love you all.

These are the musicians that stand tall, out and loud in our country. A band that is not afraid to accept its mistakes. It is known to all of us that accepting your mistakes and working on it is the best mechanism to succeed in life and Karnival is the best example that can be set. Kudos to them!

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