Aki Kumar left his native home in Mumbai, India for the United States with the intention of working as a software engineer. Then he discovered the sounds of the blues, and his life changed dramatically.
One of the hardest working artists on the music scene today, this San Jose-based musician has successfully blended elements of Indian music into his musical and visual presentation, making for a multi-cultural mash-up that sounds like no one else, yet never loses touch with the inspiration it draws from the blues. He has made multiple appearances at The Hardly Strictly Bluegrass festival, has been featured on PRI “The World,” and has toured in Russia, Scandinavia and South America.
Kumar’s Little Village Foundation releases Aki Goes To Bollywood (2016) and Hindi Man Blues (2018) are considered ground-breaking albums that have garnered international critical acclaim. In 2020, Kumar made major news with the world-wide launch of his album Dilruba on Sony Music India. Kumar kicked off 2021 with the release of an uplifting reggae-infused single “Zindagi” (Life).
Kumar’s visionary stylistic mix, called Bollywood Blues, has already won him widespread attention. In addition to the local live music venues where he’s built an enthusiastic audience, he’s performed at the prestigious Hardly Strictly Bluegrass festival, been featured on PRI “The World,” and toured in India, Russia, Scandinavia and South America. Now, after spending more than a decade developing his sound with the help of some of the Bay Area’s finest musicians, Aki Kumar continues to take his love for the blues to new and fascinating place.