South Asian-American vocalist, sitarist, composer, and producer Amrita “Ami” Kaur Dang’s experimental ambient music references her upbringing as a first-generation Sikh-American in Baltimore, combining elements of North Indian classical music with noise, dance, and psych music.
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South Asian-American vocalist, sitarist, composer, and producer Amrita “Ami” Kaur Dang’s experimental ambient music references her upbringing as a first-generation Sikh-American in Baltimore, combining elements of North Indian classical music with noise, dance, and psych music. Dang broadens the palette of both contemporary electronic music and the traditional music of South Asia, drawing into focus the legacies of colonialism and extraction that have shaped and separated both fields. Dang’s meditative and entrancing tonal landscapes challenge the binary of traditional/contemporary music and East/West sounds, asserting that South Asian sonics are a vital part of the future of music. Working in the same realm as Dang is local tabla player Roshni Samlal, who will perform an opening set that fuses Indian classical percussion with electronic and chamber music through a feminist lens. Dang's genre-transcending performance—which has led to tours with musicians like Beach House, black midi, and Grimes—promises to be a transformative experience for all listeners.
The Living World’s Demands is out now via Phantom Limb and Leaving Records.
Ami Dang’s Bio
Amrita “Ami” Kaur Dang is a South Asian-American vocalist, sitarist, composer and producer from Baltimore. Her sound blends elements of North Indian classical, noise/ambient electronics, beat-driven psych and experimental dance pop. The work references her hybrid identity as a first-generation South Asian-American, Sikh upbringing, musical education, as well as the chaos and spirituality of the landscapes of both Baltimore and urban India.
Picking up her first sitar when she was twelve years old, Dang has studied North Indian classical music (voice and sitar) in both New Delhi and Maryland, and she also holds a degree in music technology & composition from Oberlin College Conservatory of Music. Following in the footsteps of artists like Ravi Shankar and Philip Glass, she seeks to advance the sound of contemporary experimental, pop, and electronic music with the sounds of South Asia—through vocals and sitar, ragas, and sampling. And vice versa, she aims to bring a broader sound palette to the legacy of South Asian music. These goals are a lifelong mission. To that end, she has collaborated with Animal Collective, William Cashion (of Future Islands), James Acaster, Thor Harris—to name a few. She has provided tour support for Beach House, black midi, Grimes, Lower Dens, Florist and more.
Roshni Samlal Bio
Roshni Samlal is a New York-based Trinidadian tabla player who has studied within the Farrukhabad, Benares and Punjab gharanas or schools of Indian classical percussion. She is a prolific local teacher and performer, both in traditional tabla solo and classical accompanist contexts as well as a variety of jazz and chamber ensembles. Roshni also explores creating sound design landscapes and beat production as a context for presenting tabla solos. She is the lead curator and producer of the Ragini Festival which focuses on spotlighting the work of artists engaged in traditional folk and innovative arts within the further reaches of the South Asian diaspora, focusing on Indo-Caribbean heritage.
National Sawdust has partnered with Sounds of Saving for this event:
Sounds of Saving (SoS) is a 501c3 Music x Mental Health nonprofit organization whose mission is is to promote a connection to music as a path to human relatedness, mental wellness and a source of hope during crisis. We aim to increase access to mental health resources, create original content, and offer fans information at music events and online about culturally competent clinicians and options for mental health care where they live.