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08.12.2014

In the movie Roman Holiday, Gregory Peck falls all the way in love with Audrey Hepburn while riding in the back of a taxi. Billy Collins apparently wrote a poem during a four-block cab ride. And this Scouter once lost her passport in a Spanish car-for-hire, leading to an unplanned and epic extra week in Madrid.

Suffice to say that important events transpire in cabs. Still, it’s pretty astonishing that Bombay Cab Sessions managed to fit three band members, their musical instruments, a director and a sound engineer in the back of a Padmini.

Bombay Cab Sessions (BCS) is a cool new project that will feature musicians and poets staging elaborate performances in the back of taxi-cabs, videos from which will be available on Youtube.

Inspired by Black Cab Sessions in London, BCS is Rishi Kartik’s project, a 25 year old promo director at a national TV channel. Along with friends in production and music programmers, he shot a pilot, got a radio taxi service to sponsor his project, and is currently shooting the first season, set to launch on December 23, 2014.

In Roman Holiday, Gregory Peck falls all the way in love with Audrey Hepburn while riding in the back of a taxi. Billy Collins apparently wrote a poem during a four-block cab ride. And this Scouter once lost her passport in a Spanish car-for-hire, leading to an unplanned and epic extra week in Madrid. Suffice to say that important events transpire in cabs.

Riding in the back seat will be a mix of merry musicians, poets and beat boxers (three is the maximum limit) who are new on the scene, but cherry picked and auditioned by Rishi and his team for quality control.

“Eventually we will expand the roster to feature stand up comics, reviewers and other performers, but for season 1, we are going to stick to music and poetry,” says Rishi, who thinks it might be fun to take musicians out of the comfort zone of a recording studio and put them in a cramped cab. This is not a new idea, even for India – BalconyTV Delhi is doing a similar thing – but it is certainly more extreme, and could make for some good television.

The logistics involved to shoot each episode in a moving cab in a single take sound like a nightmare. “A lot of adjustment was involved. Guitars poking out from one end, a tall musician from another,” Rishi tells us. As a result, seats had to be taken out in order to fit the crew, and shoots were conducted late at night to avoid honking sounds.

Along with showcasing new talent, the point of Bombay Cab Sessions is to also use the city as a backdrop, with locations like the Sea Link, Marine Drive, Carter Road, Ballard Estate and more.

At the end of our chat, just before zooming off, Rishi talked about whom he would love to take for a ride. “Bay City Lights, a Mumbai-based jazz band and Mad Boy Mink would be great in this format.”

Getting there: View the Facebook page here, to participate message them on Facebook or email http://www.baycabsessions.in/.

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