We asked around, made some calls and came up with our list of “10 to Watch” for 2011 – people who are doing good work and are poised to make a leap this year. Oh, and we just happen to think they’re pretty cool.
The full list of 10 comes to you next week. For now, we give you 1 of 10 – Siddhartha Khosla – and 10 not so random questions.
As a young boy in New Jersey, Siddhartha Khosla was forced by his mom to sing Hindu bhajans every Sunday at temple. He hated it. So imagine the shock when he decided post-college to pursue music as a career. His parents tried hard to talk him out of it, but fortunately to no avail. Now, as the frontman of LA-based band Goldspot, singer/songwriter Khosla is achieving a measure of success neither he nor his parents could have dreamed of. The band’s debut album, an infectious blend of pop, rock and Bollywood called Tally of the Yes Men, earned rave reviews following its release in 2008. The Sunday Times (UK) called Goldspot “the best band to come out of America in years.” Indeed, their songs—thoroughly unique and yet instantly accessible—have made their way onto TV shows (How I Met Your Mother, The OC), movie trailers and soundtracks (Run Fatboy Run, How Do You Know), and advertisements (Chevy, ebay, Apple). They just released their sophomore album, And the Elephant is Dancing, described by Khosla as evoking “sunny California pop, 1960s Indian films and George Harrison’s psychedelia-tinged work.”
The single Ina Mina Dika from And the Eleaphant is Dancing is featured on the soundtrack for the film Today’s Special starring Aasif Mandvi, and makes history as the first time an American artist has offered a single in Hindi.
We asked Siddhartha 10 Not So Random Questions
What’s the greatest piece of advice you’ve ever received and from whom?
“If you can’t do it, who can?” – My dad
What do you consider your greatest professional success? Finding more of a career as an independent artist than I ever did while on a major label.
Album: A tie between Sgt Peppers, Revolver & Rubber Soul. Morrissey’s Vauxhaul and I a close second.
Song: Anything sung by Kishore Kumar
TV Show: Tie between The Sopranos & Twin Peaks
Invention: Bottle Opener Remote ( A TV remote that has a bottle opener attached to it – I just found this online and it looks awesome)
Photographer: Nick Collett
Clothing Designer: Julie Wilde
Food: Chicken Makhani w/ Tandoori Roti and Raw Onions
What is the strangest number you have programmed into your phone? I just looked in my phone and found two people named ‘A.’ I have no idea who they are.
If you could change one thing about the world, what would it be and why? More Priuses and less Hummers.
Describe your perfect day.
In a recording studio, making a record w/ Jeff Peters.
List three things you cannot live without. My bazouki, the New York Giants & my wife.
What is your greatest extravagance? Any recording equipment.
What would your last meal be? Samosas. I dislike them so much so that they might just be the death of me.
If you could get your news from only one source from now on, what/who would it be? The Economist.