Rocking India since 1986: Here’s the glorious saga of Mumbai's Mahindra I-Rock Festival
Making a glorious comeback last year after a nine-year break, the iconic Independence Rock is back to create musical waves across Mumbai. Now rebranded as Mahindra Independence Rock, this is one of India’s oldest rock festivals, which is all set to take centre stage on November 4 - 5 at Mazgaon's Bayview Lawns.
So Mumbaikars, get ready for an amazing adventure that connects rock lovers from all corners of the country. However, let's rewind a bit and see how the festival started and came to be what it is today.
Testament to India’s rock ‘n’ roll history
The birth of Independence Rock dates back to August 1986, when two rock gigs were cancelled at the annual fest of St. Xavier’s College, Malhar, which followed a public uproar. One individual, Farhad Wadia of the band Mirage, refused to give up. He then organised his own version of a rock festival at South Mumbai's Rang Bhavan, not too far from Xavier’s. This night of complete rock shindig laid out the way for a legacy - the Mahindra Independence Rock fest, as we know it today.
For long, I-Rock had been synonymous with Rang Bhavan, as the venue was known for hosting music festivals and it held a certain rebellious aura. In 2012, the festival found a new home in Chitrakoot Grounds in Andheri, until it halted entirely. In 2022, after almost a decade-long break, Mahindra I-Rock made a historic comeback to reclaim its cult status and rich legacy of a roaring rock scene. The festival welcomed rock scenesters to its new home at Bayview Lawns, by the Arabian Sea.
All in all, since the 1980s, this stage has been the launchpad for countless rock icons, igniting a passion for rock music that still burns bright in the hearts of fans across India. Mahindra Independence Rock is not just about the past; it’s about paving the way for the future of rock music.
With 28 successful editions, Mahindra I-Rock has evolved into a legendary rock festival that has left deep impressions on India's music history. Now for its 29th edition, the festival is bringing together stellar performers from diverse corners of the country, including Girish and the Chronicles, Mama Tips and The Mama’s Boys, Gutslit, Swarathma, T.ill APES, Tough on Tobacco, Agam, Parikrama, Bhayanak Maut and Kathmandu-based Underside.
When: November 4 - 5| 3:30 pm onwards
Where: Bayview Lawns, Princess Dock, Mumbai Port Trust, Mazgaon, Mumbai