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 About the Artiste

Colonial Cousins,Mumbai

COLONIAL COUSINS are one of India’s most popular and highly respected music group. Hariharan and Leslie Lewis, the duo who form the Colonial Cousins, came together to record their first album, eponymously titled, under the Magnasound label in 1996.

The album broke all records including hitting platinum sales in India. The duo also won the MTV Asia Viewer’s Choice Award and then later on bagged the US Billboard Viewer’s Choice Award too!

Their exceptional Indian and Western music fusion generated a new genre of music and won hearts of millions of music lovers worldwide.

When Hariharan and Leslie Lewis formed Colonial Cousins, little did they realise that their foray into popular vocal fusion would make them the hottest act in town.

Being a ghazal singer in the Indian music industry for over two decades, Hariharan is well versed in Carnatic and Hindustani music. Besides releasing several ghazal albums, Hariharan has also lent his voice to many Hindi and Tamil films, and ended up winning several awards including the National Award as Best Singer for his song ‘Mere Dushman Mere Bhai’ from the film Border. Recently, after a gap of almost five years, Hariharan has returned to ghazal singing with a successful album 'Kaash', released again under the Magnasound label.

Leslie on the other hand has always been composing ad jingles, albums for other singers, etc. He created a hit with a successful remix album called Asha Bhosle’s 'Rahul & I'. Besides being a music composer, he is also a singer, with his first solo album 'Haseena' being released under the Polygram label. Leslie also did the music for the extremely popular album 'Pal' for the indi-pop artist, KK.

So how could two guys with totally different personalities make such beautiful music together? The band was, in fact, formed quite by chance.

Leslie was looking for a person to sing with, and he ended up having a jam session with Hariharan one day. The session resulted in Lezz fooling around with blues and jazz on his electronic guitar. Hariharan began to improvise Indian classical against what Leslie had created. They liked each others sounds so much that they decided to stick together. Thats how the Colonial Cousins were born and the rest is history...

After the release of their self-titled debut album in 1996, Colonial Cousins released their second album under Sony Music, titled 'The Way We Do It'. Their third album was 'Aatma'.

Though sung mostly in English, the tunes and feel are Indian. There`s so much variation in every song, using blues, rock, folk and even techno beats with classical music. The sound is trendy but traditional. It`s Pure Indian Classical. It`s Modern Jazz. It`s not just a fusion of sounds... It`s the magic of the Colonial Cousins.

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Email: leslelewis@mac.com
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