Music, motorcycles and more Rock in Goa revs up for 12th edition

Heather Fernandes-Colaco | SEPTEMBER 17, 2023, 12:46 AM IST

Goa, known for its sun-kissed beaches and vibrant culture, has a hidden gem that has been rocking its music scene for over a decade now – ‘Rock in Goa’, an event that continues to redefine Goa’s rock music culture.

What began as an intimate gathering of kindred spirits with a love for rock music has organically grown into the biggest rock show in the state, hosting bands of national and international acclaim. As it gears up for its 12th edition, the event continues to redefine how Goans perceive rock music.

“We wanted to provide a platform for local Goan talent to showcase their prowess, and we’ve always strived to offer the best standards in terms of lighting, sound, and stage,” says Pravas Ravi, one of the event’s organizers.

“Rock music transcends age barriers, and that’s evident in our diverse audience,” he adds.

The event, aptly named the “Biker’s Rock Fest,” has a strong association with hardcore bikers. It’s a gathering that draws motorcycle enthusiasts and clubs from all corners of Goa, proudly displaying their prized possessions.

At the heart of this festival is ‘Bad Blood’, Goa’s pioneer rock band, that has been instrumental in the ascent of rock music in Goa. 

With a history spanning over a decade, it was Nixon Soares, the band’s leader, who initiated this event 12 

years ago.

“From the very beginning, our goal was clear: we wanted to promote rock music in Goa, especially the local bands, and it is incredible to see how far we have come,” said Soares whose dedicated efforts have kept the flame of rock music burning bright in the state. 

After a two-year hiatus due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the festival is all set to return on Saturday, September 23, at 5 pm at Gawin’s Restaurant and Pub in Verna. And the excitement is palpable. 

“We took a break to ensure everyone’s safety, but we’re thrilled to be back,” Pravas shares.

This extraordinary gathering has been drawing both motorcycle entusiasts as well as rock afficianados from every corner of the state, converging under the banner of live rock performances. 

Apart from Bad Blood who has promised new chartbusters in their song list, this year’s line-up promises an exciting mix of artists, including “Electric Pulse,” a classic rock band known for delivering your kind of rock with boundless energy from lead singer Anirban Halder.

New age progressive rock finds a voice in “Blackest-Eyes,” led by Rhys, while “Bad Apple,” spearheaded by Goa’s guitar virtuoso Bonny Alex, is set to rock the stage. 

“Altitude the Band,” led by Neil D’Cruz, showcases talents discovered through the project “Uncut Diamonds,” and “Eclipse,” a unique rock band led by the versatile guitar artist Victor, will also perform live.

The evening’s highlight will be a special appearance by “Kantten ani Fullam,” the Konkani rock band that previously took Goa by storm. Leading the band is the legendary Roque Lazarous.

Bad Blood will also be introducing a new singer, Sibi Mukundan, and is working on the video release of their slow-rock song “Angel” and a new album, scheduled to be released in the coming months.

The Biker’s Rock Fest on Saturday is a celebration of over a decade of rock music and ‘Rock in Goa’, an event that has not only entertained, but also united rock music enthusiasts from all walks of life.

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