Pursuit of Happiness

Retro Tunes

Times have changed, but Mirae Asset Global Investments CEO Swarup Mohanty prefers listening to vinyl records

Soumik Kar

Swarup Mohanty lives by the motto: a person without music is a person without life. Till date, some of his fondest memories are his childhood days spending long hours listening to music with his friends. Even today, the CEO of Mirae Asset Global Investments cannot imagine a day without listening to tracks from his prized collection of 500 vinyls.

Back in his school days in Bhubaneshwar, Mohanty explains that there was one common thread with his friends: they were a bunch of music lovers who were fond of collecting cassettes. The only hindrance, however, was the cost of the cassette. But he still managed to get his hands on a few. "One cassette would cost Rs.65 then. But a rich friend of mine would splurge and get cassettes for the rest of us," he recalls.

Before Mohanty got into this hobby seriously, there was a phase when he was determined to learn and practice music. "But my parents never allowed me to learn music. They always asked me to follow one rule: music+1," he says.

When he moved to Delhi in 1992 to pursue higher studies, least to say, his new friends were definitely impressed with his humongous collection of cassettes. As time passed,  the mode of vinyls replaced cassettes, and Mohanty, too, switched to collecting vinyl records. Back in 1980s, on one such quest to find vinyls, he met a man in Kolkata who was selling "The Police" for Rs.200, even though the actual price was Rs.3,000. It was a no-brainer for Mohanty, and he bought it immediately. Mohanty, however, credits this habit of collecting cassettes and vinyls to his father and grandfather.

Mohanty has a varied choice in music, but Bruce Springsteen, Def Leppard and Pink Floyd are few of his favourite artists. He has learnt a lot from these musicians, and for the days to come, he hopes to discover more artists and keep the vinyl culture alive.