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[Shubha Mudgal is a gadget freak][Shubha Mudgal is a gadget freak]

   Vivek Fernandes

The name is:
Shubha Mudgal

Claim to fame:
One of India's most recognised classical vocalists who successfully crossed over to Indipop. Remember Vande Mataram II and Ab Ke Sawan? Has contributed to the score of Kamasutra and Aks. Also, her fifth mainstream pop album Nachoo Main Saari Saari Raat has just been released.

On a scale of one to ten, how Net savvy are you?
I'd give myself a five. I don't think I deserve more. I'm comfortable using a computer, but I'm not very Net savvy. I'm a general gadget-freak though, and all I have learnt has been self-taught.

What sites do you visit frequently?
I love checking out sites that deal with Indian music, like musicmagazine and ITC Sangeet Research Academy. They all have content on classical music, which I find interesting. I used to visit a number of download sites too, like napster.com and mp3.com.

Have you used the Net for help with your professional assignments?
When I was first introduced to the Web by my son, in 1997, I was amazed at what it had to offer. I decided to set up a site called raagsangeet.com, which would serve as a platform and forum for lovers of Indian classical music around the world. We did get a lot of response from international audiences and our downloads section called 'music room' fared exceptionally well. Unfortunately, I had limited funds and we had to shut shop for lack of a proper support system. It really broke my heart.

Do you think the Internet could enhance professional prospects?
Definitely. We need to examine the issue more seriously and professionally. We must locate promoters who are willing to take a risk with the so-called 'niche' classical market. I would love to listen to the work of other world music artistes, and I'm sure they would love listening to Indian sounds too.

If given a chance whom would you like to chat with, online?
One of the many advantages of using the Net is the anonymity it engenders especially in chat rooms which I frequent. If I were asked to pick favourites though, my top three choices would be Michael Jackson, Amitabh Bachchan and Ravi Shankerji.

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