The computer programmers arrived in the United States unknown to each other but united in their quest to rock. On the surface, they were not unlike many others who have left India over the past decade on the H-1B visa, a guest worker program for highly skilled professionals. They wore glasses and mustaches and collared shirts. They could exterminate Y2K bugs and code Java and link Unix.
But as they toiled in cubicles, they dreamed of banging on keyboards of a different sort, of a world where C-sharp is just a musical note, not computer code.
And then their worlds became one.
“H1Bees,” an album recorded in a Gaithersburg basement-turned-studio, will be released today, its music a mix of Indian and Western beats with lyrics exploring the high-tech immigrant’s experience in the United States. The troupe remains unnamed, giving composer Srikanth Devarajan top billing and referring to the remaining artists as “playback singers,” which is customary on many Indian albums.
Hat tip: Reader, Ajay Sravanapudi
Plug time: If you’re ever in Bangalore, check out Madhu Menon’s restaurant, Shiok Food. Madhu’s a techie-turned-chef — full-time restaurateur and part-time blogging tech guru.