Walking in the crowded lanes of Paharganj in New Delhi, we chanced upon a small musical shop nestled in the basement. Called 'Dhingra Musical', this establishment has all kinds of musical instruments and one that caught our attention was ‘Hapi’. First claimed to be made only in 2008 in California USA by Grahm Doe and Tricia Kelly, Hapi is a beautiful musical instrument made from metal. Hapi was created with inspiration from the Hang drum, which is a musical instrument in the idiophone class (an instrument that creates sound primarily by the instrument vibrating as a whole) created by Felix Rohner and Sabina Schärer in Bern, Switzerland. Even the Hang came into existence only in 2000, and since then, both these instruments have gained acceptance in street music.Finding one in Paharganj was sheer serendipity and it gave rise to an interesting analogy of risk and how a new product gains traction. Founded by Rajat Dhingra’s grandfather, Dhingra Musical has been keeping a tab on the kind of musical instruments being played in the traveller community and if they don’t get access to one, they try and make it. The Hapi drum is one such story. Available in various shapes and sizes, Rajat tells us that they have made a limited quantity in the first batch and will make the next lot once the first is sold out.
From a business perspective, it makes perfect sense and is also similar to what we see in the Internet technology space- pick up an idea that is working, innovate to bring in a local touch, and go to the market. The only difference being that Dhingra Musical did not think of scale and kept it lean in the true sense. The plus side? They have a profitable business. And for the heart, as Rajat says, “Music is life, life is music.” Here is a little conversation we had with Rajat at their store and also a small clip of the Hapi in action:
Synopsis from the video:
Rajat tells us how his grandfather started the shop and the love for music has kept them going from 40 years. Hapi is a new instrument that is grabbing the attention of music lovers and they have made a small batch to gauge the response. You can write to them at email@example.com or call them up on 09911043900.
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