First Indian artist in metaverse, Bickram Ghosh looks to connect with fans

Bickram Ghosh, Indian classical tabla player and percussionist, has become the first Indian artist to have his own metaverse space. The platform is aimed at fine tune the experience of his audience and their engagement with the artist, who is most popular for his work with neo-fusion music.

The metaverse space, named Planet Bickram, has been designed and created by the Metastar Media Pvt. Ltd, which is helmed by Shatadru Sarkar-a fellow musician who has been in the industry for fifteen years-as one of its directors.

Ghosh and Sarkar say Planet Bickram is an immersive and interactive platform for the fans who are otherwise scattered across multiple third party platforms. From the artist’s point of view, it is a one-stop universe that widens their accessibility and creates an accrued database of fans.

“On Instagram we only post what gets more traction. That is how its algorithm works. Most people wouldn’t post content related to their work or the history of a particular incident, so to speak. But on Plant Bickram one will get to know anything and everything about me,” says Ghosh.

It was in December 2022, that Sarkar met Ghosh in Goa and music was breathed into the idea of creating an Artistverse. Over the last ten months, Sarkar and his team made multiple visits to Kolkata and the two musicians also met in Mumbai to jam over new ideas for the virtual space. Composing Plant Bickram began with mapping the 3000 square feet-odd large studio at Ghosh’s place, his lounge, his trophy room, office, every single photograph in these spaces, and slowly replicating them virtually.

Both artists agree that the advantage of virtual universe vis-a-vis real universe is that everything is just a click away. In Planet Bickram, fans can deep dive into Ghosh’s music, his life, one can read anecdotes behind the composition of a track, listen to everything Ghosh has created so far, listen to his interviews, purchase merchandise launched by him, and many more.

A very interesting and crucial feature of this platform is the ‘Karaoke’. While one navigates through this option the user will be presented with options of Ghosh’s compositions. The user can select any one of those and play his instrument along the track and record it. The recording will be stored in the system for Ghosh to access it later.

“If I find any of these pieces interesting I can get back to this fan and invite him for a jamming session on the Artistverse itself,” Ghosh said.

He is even planning to launch his line of tablas through Planet Bickram, Ghosh said. Another instrument, which he had prepared-the Tajobla-an amalgamation of the tabla and the cajon, will also be available through this platform.

Top fans who visit the platform will be presented with tokens, with which they can participate in any of Ghosh’s concert, across India, for free.

“I’m supremely excited about this platform and over the next year many more tracks and other things will be added to this platform,” Ghosh said.

Bombay-based musician Atul Churamani has played a key-role in facilitating the partnership between Ghosh and Sarkar. As Sarkar puts it, “I already knew Bickram. We met and things developed organically. He is an artist with international recognition and was a wonderful as our first choice for the Artistverse.” He adds that 12 to 15 artists are already lined up and the launch of another Artistverse can be expected by mid-November.

Subscribe to India Today Magazine

Published By:

Shyam Balasubramanian

Published On:

Nov 6, 2023