Supplement to Newsletter
Edited by Eddie Fernandes,
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1. 17 Nov. BillBoard (USA).
2. Remo an introduction. From:
3. Remo: Discography. From:
4. Remo: Streaming Audio. From:
5. The Day Music Died By Joel D'Souza. From:
6. Remo rage against bankrupt Bharat. By Frederick Noronha. The Telegraph (Calcutta) 25 Feb. 2004
7. Some other references:

17 Nov. BillBoard (USA). October 17, 1992
India: Remo Fernandes is arguably the country's most popular performer and certainly one of its most versatile. He plays guitar, bamboo flute, and synthesizer and sings in English, Hindi, French, Portuguese, and Konkani. One of his trademarks is his liberal usage of Indian rhythms for his compositions in English. His albums "Pack That Smack" and "Bombay City" (both on CBS) sold more than 20,000 cassettes each. Fernandes, who lives and records in the village of Siolim in Goa, recently had a CD released in Japan. Titled "Old Goan Gold" (Alter Pop-Meta Co.), the album comprises traditional Konkani and Portuguese songs together with four originals, three in Konkani, and one in Portuguese. His forthcoming album, "Politicians Don't Know How To Rock 'N' Roll" (Magnasound), incorporates a positive ode to Prime Minister P. V. Narasimha Rao and his policies.

Remo an introduction
Since 1987 Remo has been the highest record selling pop/rock artist in the English language in India, and is the only one to have earned Gold Discs in this category here. Since his foray into Hindi he has been at the top of that category too, with three film songs ("Jalwa", "Humma Humma" and "Huya Ho") going double platinum and topping every Indian press, radio and television hit chart.


Remo made the decision to make his original music his profession (he is a Bachelor of Architecture) at a time when there was no pop music scene in the country. In 1983 there was no air play on radio and television (they were both monopolized by the government, who refused to accept pop music's existence); no record companies willing to sign a contract (specially as Remo wrote and sang in English; they said "Give us Hindi disco and we'll sign you on right now!"); and the only concerts where one could play were so-called charity ones where the organizers mainly took artists for a ride.

Remo knew that his songs, though in English, had nothing foreign about them, and reflected life and socio-political happenings in India which every Indian could identify with. So ignoring record companies' lack of vision he invested in basic home recording equipment, recorded and released his first album called "GOAN CRAZY!" on a 4-track cassette Portastudio in 1984 (on which he played all instruments, sang all voices, composed all music & lyrics, engineered the recording and mixing, designed the album cover, etc), made a thousand copies in Bombay, distributed them to record shops around Goa on the yellow scooter he drove at the time, and the rest, as they say, is history.

Besides his tremendous success with records, Remo is known as a stage performer and entertainer without equal in this country, and is the only Indian pop/rock artist to perform totally LIVE, without fake lip-sync or even backing tapes. He has represented India at the Tokyo Music Festival, the Festival of India in the USSR, the MIDEM '96
Music Festival in Hong Kong, besides Festivals in Germany, Bulgaria, Macau, Seychelles and Mauritius. He has performed in Europe, the USA, the Middle East, Australia, Africa, Reunion Island, etc.

PEPSI USA chose him, as India's leading pop/rock star, to endorse and star in Pepsi's first two launch films here - films which made advertising history in India.

Remo : Discography

"GOAN CRAZY! " (GOANA, 1984) A collection of original satirical songs in English about life in Goa; includes the hit "Ode to Graham Bell", "O Panjim", "Navhind Times Blues", etc.

"OLD GOAN GOLD" (GOANA, 1985) Songs which Remo had grown up listening to on the radio and in his father's record collection; side A in Konkani, side B in Portuguese; nostalgic songs which he could not find in record shops anymore. Includes the following originals: the mando "Panch Vorsam" [sung by Alisha & Remo and composed by Remo for Shyam Benegal's film 'TRIKAAL'], "Soiri", "Konkani" [a theme song for the Konkani movement of 1985], and "Fado Goa".

"PACK THAT SMACK" (CBS, 1986) The fame Remo had gathered by now brought the very same record companies who had first said 'no' back to him with contracts in their hands. He was presently in a position to choose the best one, and "Pack that Smack" became his first album to be released on a national level. The album outsold all Indian albums in English released till date. The main theme was against drugs, which were beginning to ravage Goan and Indian youth, specially those exposed to the coastal beach areas; Remo had experimented with comparatively harmless marijuana in college, so he wasn't just a preacher who didn't know what he was talking about; but the new drug young Indians were exposed to was a killer: Heroin. The album includes "Down with Brown", "Just a Hippie", "Mr Minister", "So Wie Du" [the song which brought Remo his first three international awards in Dresden, then East Germany], etc.

"JALWA" (CBS, 1986) Although this Hindi film song became a mega-hit (eleven years later, audiences still don't let Remo get off a concert stage without singing it, and the 15-minute marathon piece has become a sort of trend-setting milestone in modern Indian music, going Double Platinum in no time), Remo still resisted the commercial temptation of going fully into Hindi film music. The reasons: a) he did not have much respect for what was happening in the Hindi film world at the time, and felt that he would have to compromise his artistic values to suit that scene; b) being quite unexposed to Hindi in Goa, his command over the language was practically non-existent, preventing him from writing his own lyrics or judging the adequacy of the translations.

"BOMBAY CITY" (CBS, 1987) This album broke all known boundaries and achieved what record industry experts had termed as impossible for an Indian album in English: it went Gold. Includes the hits "Ocean Queen", "Against you/Against me" , etc.

"POLITICIANS DON'T KNOW TO ROCK'N'ROLL" (MAGNASOUND, 1992) India was going up in flames. The Ayodhya mosque was being destroyed. Rajiv Gandhi was blasted. No Indian could remain unaffected by the horror, frustration and depression of the times, and Remo expressed them all through an album aimed straight at the culprits: corrupt, communal politicians. Includes "Don't kick up the Rao", "A song for India", "How does it feel?", and the hit "Everybody wants to" [a safe sex message given much before the trend-setters in India gathered the guts to talk about AIDS], etc. This album broke further barriers and went Gold in just three days of release.

"HUMMA HUMMA" (POLYGRAM, 1995) This song sung by Remo, composed by the south-Indian music wizard A. R. Rahman for Mani Ratnam's film "BOMBAY", became the Mega-Hit of the year. It went to # 1 in all Indian charts, and stayed there for weeks. Like "Jalwa", it is a song audiences demand as soon as Remo climbs on stage. It went Double Platinum.

"HUYA HO" (POLYGRAM, 1996) Composed by Remo for the famous film "KHAMOSHI" , this song too went Double Platinum, climbed all Indian Charts to # 1, and is yet another hot concert favorite of the Indian rock audiences.

Remo in Streaming Audio

It is difficult to represent Remo's wide musical spectrum through just four songs, but we have tried. For this purpose we decided to select songs in different languages: Portuguese, Hindi, English and Konkani.


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  1. "MARIA PITA CHE" [1997], Portuguese
    This is a folk song from Daman [another ex-Portuguese colony in India, situated in the state of Gujarat and now a Union Territory], with a new arrangement by Remo. Daman has its own dialect of the Portuguese language which is sure not to be fully understood in Portugal. This is a version recorded by REMO & THE MICROWAVE PAPADAMS for the Brazilian Television programme "Alem Mares". The final version will feature in their new album.
    Click to listen to song

  2. "HUYA HO" [1996], Hindi
    Composed by Remo for the film "Khamoshi". A duet with DOMINIQUE MANUEL, the power-house singer from Mumbai. This is a live stage version by REMO & THE MICROWAVE PAPADAMS at the Channel [V] "Freedom Concert".
    Click to listen to song

  3. "BOMBAY CITY" [1987], English
    This is a remixed version from the 1986 album; it contains additional tracks of tablas, dhol, guitar, and scat vocals. All instruments, vocals, recording & mixing by Remo except Tablas & Dhol by Dharmendra Hirve.
    Click to listen to song

  4. "SOIRI" [1985], Konkani
    This is Remo's favorite song from the album "Old Goan Gold". This is originally a poem written by Dr Manohar Rai Sardessai set to music by Remo. All instruments, voices, recording & mixing engineering by Remo.
    Click to listen to song

The Day Music Died By Joel D’Souza.

MILES away from the safety of their homes and warmth of their families fate lay in wait, in the dark shadows of the night of September 19, for three of Goa's most proficient young musicians. In distant Kanpur, brutal death claimed the trio in the prime of their youth and at the crest of their musical career. On that fateful day the symphony stopped and music died in Goa.

An empty bus, in trying to overtake another vehicle, is claimed to have crashed headlong into the Tata Sumo in which Remo's Microwave Pappadums band was travelling from Kanpur to the Lucknow airport. Keyboard player Selwyn Pereira, bass guitarist Victor Alvares, tabla player Dharmendra Hirve, along with Kanaiyalal, the driver of the Tata Sumo vehicle in which they were travelling from Kanpur to Lucknow, after playing at the IIT in Kanpur, died on the spot. Remo's personal assistant Sunil Redkar succumbed to his injuries later at the Regency Hospital, where the sole survivor, percussionist Santan Carvalho is still battling for life.

Like an earthquake does, the tragic news of the death of the musicians, who formed the backbone of Remo's Microwave Pappadums band, sent shock waves down the spines of their relatives, friends and fans. A pall of gloom soon enveloped the entire music fraternity in Goa.

The deceased musicians figured among the most sought after talents in Goa. Dharmendra, the eldest son of reputed dramatist Govind Hirve, studied music under Pandit Prabhakar Chari. Dharmendra's mastery of ragas, taals, bols and mukhdas, on the tabla, mesmerised his ever burgeoning audience. He also played the dholki and rendered Hindustani vocals. Being a devoted student of music and a perfectionist to the core, he was an easy choice for Remo, who took the tabla exponent on continuous concert tours around the country and abroad.
At his father's cloth store in the Mapusa Muncipal market, Dharmendra displayed a genial disposition commerce calls for. A few moments before his death, Dharmendra had phoned his wife Sweta, who was at her mother's house in Belgaum and inquired about her health because she is somewhere around the eight month of pregnancy. He had assured her that he would ring her up again on reaching the airport. But fate willed otherwise. His one-and-a-half-year-old son and the yet to be born second child will merely have a few photographs to know how their father looked in life.
Wellknown keyboards player and vocalist Selwyn Pereira (29), a product of Panjim's Don Bosco High School, lived in Chimbel-Ribandar (though originally from Cansaulim). His musical skills were honed at the late Fr Martino Fernandes' Santa Cecilia Music School at Fontainhas and at the Kala Academy's School of Western Music.
Despite his prodigious talent, he was a charming, unassuming and helpful young man. Selwyn, whose musical career took off in his very first teen with Purple Rain, went on to form his own outfit, Civilians. Remo picked him up for the Pappadums while Selwyn was playing for the Big City Band. Along with his former Civilians mate Jude Vaz, Selwyn was about to give the finishing touches to the recording of his Hindi CD at Orlando's studio, Angel Records, in Panjim. The CD was being readied for release on the birthday of his father, Simon, on September 28, but his time on earth was up. Through a fruitful life, Selwyn had already fulfilled the mission of music he was sent to achieve amidst us
God certainly needs the good. He needed Victor Alvares, the 37-year-old bass guitarist from Devotvaddo in the period village of Loutolim. The great bassist had performed magnificently for a New Delhi band called Sky for four years before shifting to Goa. Son of Maria do Carmo Matos Sequeira e Alvares and late Jose Antonio de Rosario Alvares, Victor was humility personified and the pet-name 'Pequeno' suited him well due to this important trait in his exemplary character. Besides music, he also had a penchant for mechanics and repairing automobiles. He carried on this work in his spare time in Loutulim.
Little is known of this young percussionist Santan Carvalho, the last to join Remo's band. He hails from New Vaddem in Vasco da Gama and played for an orchestra before Remo selected him. Santan is the sole surviving member of the group. All eyes are now riveted on him and his recovery.
Sunil Redkar was born on February 2, 1976. His birthday came around only once in four years but his impoverished family, dwelling in a palm-thatched house at Fernandes Vaddo in Siolim, could hardly afford to celebrate it. His father, Sripad Redkar, expired all of a sudden four years ago, in his early 50s, orphaning Sunil, his sisters Manik (married) and Milan, and brothers Suraj (17) and Swapnil (9). Hence Sripad's wife, Vasanti, was left with the galling task of bringing up the household single-handedly.

Sunil had completed the SSCE. The boy must have been overjoyed when his music idol, Remo, found Sunil diligent enough to assist him as a personal secretary. Remo's son, Noah, had grown very fond of Sunil, particularly after the latter joined Remo's troupe. Gradually, the family began seeing a bit better days and Sunil had already managed to change the thatched roof to a tiled one. It was only on his last birthday that he could afford to hold a semblance of a celebration for his family. As he was emerging into the breadwinner of the once destitute Redkar household, fate got envious of the boy's success. In the accident, his face was smashed beyond recognition

The bodies of Selwyn Pereira, Dharmendra Hirve and Victor Alvares, all members of Remo's Microwave Pappadums, were flown into Goa by Sahara Airlines on September 21 at around 2.30 pm.
The funeral of Sunil Redkar, Remo's personal assistant, was held immediately in Siolim, where an unprecedented, huge gathering of mourners awaited the expectantly the arrival of the body of the unfortunate, fatherless boy. Sunil's house, in Remo's neighbourhood, was virtually a vale of tears that September evening. The entire village of Siolim seemed to be weeping along with his distraught mother and inconsolable brothers and sisters.
The focus then shifted to Dattawadi in Mapusa, a huge crowd had gathered around the residence of Dharmendra Hirve, long before the hearse arrived with the coffin containing his lifeless, completely mutilated body. Breaking Hindu traditions for a day, they took the coffin in the drawing room of the Hirve house, adjacent to the Dattawadi temple. The coffin laid there bedecked with flowers and the photograph of the much loved, appreciated and admired table maestro displayed on it.
The family longed to have a last look at Dharma's face, but they dared not open the coffin in which lay the mangled body, wrapped haphazardly in plastic sheets. Just a few persons saw the deformed face when the packing was unwrapped, to check which side the head was, before laying it on the funeral pyre.
Dharmendra's wife, Sweta, who has a one-and-a half-year-old son and is in the eight month of pregnancy, broke down in utter anguish. One could not bear to see her, wrecked with spasms of grief. Besides Dharmendra's tearful relatives and scores of musicians, there was a long queue of people waiting anxiously to file past his mortal remains.
After his father, Govind Hirve, lit the funeral pyre at the Dattawadi crematorium, several distinguished personalities of Mapusa, hailing from different walks of life, including Francis D'Souza, Mapusa MLA and Minister of Law, paid glowing tributes to the departed, most loved and humble musician of their town. People and music lovers came from different parts of Goa, proving the immense popularity enjoyed by the deceased tabla player, the first member of Remo's Microwave Pappadum, which took off about 12 years ago.
Remo and his wife Michelle drove to Dattawadi after Sunil's funeral was over. Remo's voice choked as he rose to say a few words. "I had two families: my wife and children, and my band. Today I have lost one family. I have no brother...I only have a sister... Dharma was a brother to me. He was not only a fine musician but a very good human being," he said in Konkani.
The remaining two farewells followed on September 22 when popular guitarist Victor Alvares and excellent keyboardist Selwyn Pereira-were laid to rest in Loutulim and Ribandar respectively.
Victor's funeral cortege left his residence at Devotvaddo, at 3.30 pm to the Saviour of the World Church. His mother, Vanda, was present along with his brothers, his sisters and their families who had come from Canada, Venezuela, London, Germany, Bahrain and Dubai to pay their last respects to someone whom they loved dearly but would never meet again. Remo and Michelle were present too. The church was overflowing with people, who had thronged there to pay their homage to the talented musician, who had brought honour and fame to the village not only through his music but through his exemplary behaviour as well.

The main celebrant of the concelebrated mass was Fr Oscar Quadros, former assistant Parish Priest of the village, who knew Victor as a young boy. Fr Quadros said that Victor was always a humble person despite being a wellknown guitarist. The present youth would make a fine tribute to Victor by following his humble nature. Fr Quadros also praised Victor for showing active interest in the church choir.

After the mass, Victor's musician nephew, Oliver Alvares, choking with emotion, rendered the famous song "You will be always on my mind". At the cemetry, Emiliano da Cruz and his two partners rendered "Adios Amigo, Adios my Friend", bringing tears to the eyes of the mass of mourners.

At the Church of Our Lady of Health at Ribandar, the scene was no less tearful than in Loutulim. "When I was given the tragic news of the five victims of the road accident in Kanpur, I felt jolted, mentally paralysed, speechless, motionless...He was so simple, so unassuming, so humble...reaching out to all whether rich or poor," said Fr Thomas Aquino Sequeira, Rector of Rachol Seminary, in his homily at the concelebrated mass. Addressing departed Selwyn Pereira, Fr Aquino added, "All of them miss you. They were touched by your music, the harmony of your voice and your humble life...and the melody of all the good virtues God had given to you..."
At funerals, the mourners have the consolation of having a look at the lifeless body of the deceased person. But though Selwyn was a handsome young man, the huge number of mourners, who could not even find place to enter the church, had to be content watching his photograph, displayed on top of the closed coffin. Only his parents had a glimpse of the smashed and distorted head, which once wore such a smiling, angelic face.

The superb choir rendered some of the most touching hymns. Lester, Abigail and others too joined in the music. But when a song, which had been rendered by Selwyn for his forthcoming CD, was heard on the audio system, his parents, the choir members, his friends from the music circle, and almost all had to pull out their kerchiefs, to dam the tears flooding their eyes. His younger sister Fiona appeared to sang a line before she broke down on her grieving mother's shoulder. One couldn't bear to watch the pathos in the faces of Selwyn's father, mother, brother and sisters...wrecked with unbearable pain, battling to contain their immense grief. Our video clip shows a girl, wearing white, fainting beside the coffin. She had her hand on the coffin virtually throughout the service.

Aires Rodrigues too paid his tributes to Selwyn in a brief address after the mass. Remo and Michelle arrived a bit late at Ribandar as they had to attend Victor's funeral at Loutulim. Remo virtually broke down with emotion when he embraced Selwyn's grieving father and mother. It was difficult to control the endless rush of mourners. Must have taken the better part of 75 minutes for everyone to pay homage to the departed young musician at his grave and then offer condolences to the bereaved family.

For nearly a week now all the talk in Goa revolves around the tragic accident, speculating what must have happened, in the absence of any authentic information about how exactly the mishap occurred, resulting in such fatalities, wiping out a good slice of Goa's music talent and Remo's entire Microwave Pappadums troupe. The families, who lost their loved ones in the prime of their youth and of the one who is surviving, and Remo will need tremendous amount of courage to face the coming tomorrows, burdened with the unbearable personal loss of each of the mild-mannered, humble, devoted, hardworking and talented young musicians. Verily, none would ever envision a great tragedy for music...the dawn of THE DAY THE MUSIC DIED in Goa.

The Telegraph,Wednesday, February 25, 2004
Remo rage against bankrupt Bharat - singer rues bollywood monopoly
BY Frederick Noronha
Remo Fernandes strummed to fame raging against drugs. Years (and a few damp-squib albums) later, the popstar is seething again, this time against “intellectually bankrupt” audiences in India.

The 51-year-old crooner believes listeners have become incapable of understanding or appreciating anything serious. This trend against “anything that is serious” has taken root not just in music, but also cinema, literature and art.

In between tours to Kuwait and the Caribbean, Remo said in an interview published in Panaji: “This whole country, which was once the cradle of deep, high-thinking philosophy and art and literature, seems to have gone intellectually bankrupt, and Bollywood seems to be the beginning and end of life as we know it.”

Incidentally, Remo made it really big after singing in a Bollywood film, Jalwa.

The singer — the first big star on India’s pop horizon — hinted he was disappointed with the response to his recent albums, India Beyond and Symphonic Chants. “So now, as a private joke to myself, maybe I’ll record a remix album of my personal Bollywood favourites,” he said.

“That’ll be my way of saying ‘Feed donkeys with grass, not asparagus’. And I’ll probably write that caption on the inside cover of the album,” Remo added.

It’s not surprising that the pop icon, known for his music in languages ranging from Portuguese to Hindi with strong doses of English and Konkani, has had a flurry of foreign tours this year. He is just back from Kuwait and plans to visit the Caribbean in April-May. Possible concerts with his band, the Microwave Papadums, include visits to San Francisco in May, China in June and the UK in July.

“2004 seems to have brought in a few foreign shows, starting on a ‘foreign’ note! I’m collaborating with a British composer, William Hall Jr, on a new track titled Spectrum,” he said in the interview.

There is greater acceptance of non-western artistes now, he felt. “Unknown countries today have a new generation who can pop and rock with the best from the West while still keeping firm roots in their own cultures,” he said.

But Remo rued the lack of appreciation for serious artistic work in India. “Shobhaa De sells more than Arundhati Roy; David Dhawan’s blockbusters are more watched than Satyajit Ray’s masterpieces,” he said.

Remo has never been conventional, bursting on to the stage with his ponytail and energy-packed performances.

Trained as an architect, he initially struggled to sell his home-produced music, but stayed on in Goa — after a sojourn through Europe in his younger days — before striking gold.

In May 2003, he performed free before some 10,000 fans during a concert he organised for them on completing 50.

“I know some musicians who hide their age. So why am I so happy that I have turned 50? I don’t know, I just feel great. I still feel young and I don’t even dye my hair! I guess it’s just that I enjoy doing my music so much,” he had said.

Some other references:

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