Shankar Tucker is an American clarinetist and music composer. He rose to fame with the popularity of his online music series called "The ShrutiBox". The Shrutibox features his compositions and was released online on platforms like YouTube and Soundcloud. He is now debuting as the Music Composer for a Bilingual Indian feature film, 'Orey Nyabagam' (Tamil) / 'Nee Vaipe' (Telugu), written and directed by Vignarajan, an associate of renowned Tamil film director Radhamohan.
Early life and education
Shankar grew up in Massachusetts. He was christened Shankar as suggested by spiritual guru Mata Amritanandamayi whom his family follows. As a high school student, Shankar was drawn towards Indian classical music on listening to "Remember Shakti" by John McLaughlin and started playing on his own. Shankar graduated from New England Conservatory in Boston, where he studied orchestral clarinet performance. He started taking lessons in Indian classical music from Peter Row, a sitar player. Eventually he obtained The Frank Huntington Beebe Fund to study music under flute maestro Hariprasad Chaurasia in Mumbai in 2010. Besides clarinet, Shankar plays tabla, kanjira, piano, bass and guitar.
Shankar started off "The ShrutiBox" in spring 2011. The songs in The ShrutiBox are a fusion of Indian classical music and jazz. Most songs are re-recordings of popular Indian songs including an instrumental version of A. R. Rahman's "O Saya". Several young Carnatic and Hindustani vocalists and instrumentalists, including Vidya and Vandana Iyer, Rohan Kymal, Nirali Kartik, Mahesh Vinayakram, Rohini Ravada, B. Sree Sundarkumar and Shriram Iyer, have performed in The ShrutiBox. Shankar himself has played most instruments in the songs.
- O Re Piya/ Rolling in the Deep - ft. Rohan Kymal
- Munbe Va - ft. Vidya and Vandana IyerSisters
- Night Monsoon (Instrumental)
- Guru Brahma - ft. Mahesh Vinayakram, Shree Sundarkumar
- Ja Ja Re - ft. Nirali Kartik
- Nee Nenaindal - ft. Vidya Vandana IyerSisters
- Moments And Centers (Instrumental)
- Lemongrass (Instrumental)
- O Saya (Instrumental)
- Sonu (Instrumental)
- Dhun in Raag Mishra Pilu (Instrumental)
- Sapnon Se Bhare Naina - ft. Rohini Ravada
- Manmohini Morey - ft. Aditya Rao
- Ashai Mugam ft. Vidya and Vandana IyerSisters
- Aaj Jaane Ki Zid Na Karo - ft. Rohini Ravada
- "Thuli Thuliyaai" - Shankar Tucker ft. Vandana Srinivasan
- "Nadia" - Shankar Tucker ft. Jaunita John
- "Tu Na Jaane" Shankar Tucker ft. Mugdha Hasabnis, Akshaya Tucker
- "Mere Saajan Sun Sun" Shankar Tucker ft. Shweta Subram lyricist Neelam Chandra
- "Kinara" - Shankar Tucker ft. Mugdha Hasabnis, Amit Mishra
- "Caught In The Rain" - Shankar Tucker ft. Rohan Kymal
- "Rang Lo" - Vidya Vandana, Shankar Tucker
- "Piya" - Shankar Tucker ft. Shriram Iyer
- "Jaane Kaise" - Shankar Tucker ft. Shashwat Singh (A Cappella)
The ShrutiBox YouTube channel has amassed more than 15 million views in around two years. Songs from the ShrutiBox also featured in MTV India's Roots program which features artists with strong South Asian music influence. Shankar Tucker was an invited speaker at TEDx Gateway conference in Mumbai and TEDxCEG in Chennai. On June 9, 2013, Shankar Tucker uploaded a new video titled, 'Shankar's New Album and Video Series' on his YouTube channel where he explained about his project to make a new album and video series for which he needs contributions from his audience. A link was provided to his Kickstarter page from the YouTube video, where people could donate to the project. The target was to pledge $20,000 before August 1, 2013. But due to his huge popularity, his project reached the target in just 6 days.
- "Shankar Tucker's music goes viral on web". Hindustan Times. 27 September 2011. Retrieved 23 October 2011.
- "The ShrutiBox". Retrieved 23 October 2011.
- "Shankar Tucker Interview". Thamarai. 16 June 2011. Retrieved 23 October 2011.
- "Our You Tube Piper". Tehelka. 21 January 2012. Retrieved 23 January 2012.
- "Clarinet calls". The Hindu. 3 July 2011. Retrieved 23 October 2011.
- "Tucker's Taal". Indian Express. 25 September 2011. Retrieved 23 October 2011.
- "Shankar Tucker | Music". Shankar Tucker.
- "Rohini Ravada's 'Jaane Ki Zid' a hit on YouTube". IBN. 15 November 2011. Retrieved 18 November 2011.
- "Shankar Tucker on MTV Roots". MTV Roots.
- "ShrutiBox". YouTube.
- "Shankar's New Album and Video Series!". Retrieved 19 June 2013.
- "I'm bringing together all the best musicians I know to create a new album and video series. Help me make it happen!". Kickstarter. Retrieved 19 June 2013.
- "We reached our goal!". Kickstarter. Retrieved 19 June 2013.