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Songtrust Spotlight: Tritha

Invited to perform at the Cannes film festival 2019 in France for her award-winning film score, Voyage for Change, Tritha is a vocalist, composer, and music producer based out of India and Europe. Trained in Indian classical music for over 25 years, she has recently released an album called "Pachamama -A Tribute to Mother Nature," released on International Plastic Bag-free world Day!

Living between France and India for the last 14 years, Tritha has 16 albums to her credit and many singles and collabs from solo to her different outfits over the last decade. Her first album "PaGLi" was released on Sony Music India. Traveled and represented India in over 18 countries and performed more than 300 concerts, Tritha has also been featured on BBC, Arte, and Canal+ as a music activist and sound healer. Magnum Photos from France featured her as one of the 100 Women Changing  India. She was invited also by the U.S. State Department through the residency Onebeat 2016 as a cultural ambassador using music for Social Change and community development.  She has also worked with global personalities like dancer Mallika Sarabhai, famous percussionist Sivamani, director of Umrao Jaan Muzaffar Ali, and Eve Ensler, author of Vagina Monologues. 


WHAT OR WHO INSPIRED YOU TO GET INTO MUSIC?

My mom and dad were great lovers of music. When I was growing up, I was waking up to beautiful records of music played at home - Indian classical, old Bollywood, mantras. Nature also always inspired me - whether it was Mother Nature or Human nature that needed change. That's what I addressed in my music. 

HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR STYLE OF MUSIC AND PERFORMANCE? HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR PHILOSOPHY AND STYLE AS AN ARTIST?

Being trained in Indian classical music, I realized that it has a lot of deep knowledge of sound and its potential healing elements. I wanted to find a way to bring this knowledge blending with contemporary genres of music so more listeners could benefit from this rich science. From psychedelic punk rock to jazz to electronic music, I had different projects using the philosophy of music for healing or provoking. Having a collective called Space aimed at gender equality, we worked towards aspects of social change. My style is Indian classical fusion with contemporary expression. 

WHAT DRIVES YOU TO CREATE, AND HOW DO YOU DEFINE SUCCESS FOR YOURSELF IN MUSIC?

Expression of the source. When I see the audience during a performance listening to one of my songs, the listeners are touching the source via me, touching the core of my being through my creative musical expression. That’s success for me. Now with online platforms, the whole world can listen to you. That’s an excellent possibility of touching so many souls with my music. 

THROUGHOUT YOUR CAREER, WHO HAS HELPED YOU THE MOST WITH DEVELOPMENT AND SUPPORT?

My musical teachers. In India, we call them gurus. They helped me in learning the ancient wisdom of sound from the source. Also, my listeners, audiences, friends, and fans were always engaged with my music. This faith also helped me to keep going. 

SOMETIMES BEING IN THIS BUSINESS CAN BE OVERWHELMING. DO YOU HAVE ANY TIPS FOR MAINTAINING PERSPECTIVE AND NOT SWEATING THE SMALL STUFF?

Since the music business can be overwhelming sometimes, I plan quiet times. Or sabbaticals. Meditation or yoga retreats are great to take time off. Also practicing the art and skill of music-making as a discipline can be great to maintain perspective. 

HOW DO YOU THINK THE MUSIC INDUSTRY CAN DEVELOP INTO A MORE EQUITABLE AND INCLUSIVE ENVIRONMENT FOR WOMEN MUSIC CREATORS?

Since mostly in India and perhaps the world, there are mostly men working in the music industry, perhaps it will be nice to consciously think there would always be a certain percentage of women who should always be part of the team, there should be call-outs for women to send their work, as part of festivals or competitions. With some commercials so that women music creators think it’s worth it for them to think of music as a profession where their contribution is valued.

DO YOU HAVE ANY ADVICE FOR YOUNG WOMEN MUSICIANS JUST STARTING THEIR CAREERS, BASED ON WHAT YOU’VE EXPERIENCED?

Just believe in your talent. And never give up. Perseverance is the key! If you are good and believe, the right opportunities will come your way. Keep practicing, as may be, at any moment, is the time which could be the most important concert or recording of our life. 

FROM YOUR VIEW, WHAT OTHER KINDS OF MARGINALIZATION AND ERASURE DOES THE MUSIC INDUSTRY NEED TO ENSURE WE DON’T ENACT IN THE NAME OF GENDER EQUALITY?

Often the music industry uses the woman more as a desirable (sexualized) object than highlighting the actual talent the artist may have. The style of dressing or music videos that support the music is often too sensual. This is not the truth about celebrating the woman. The creativity of a feminine source is a great gift to the world. It needs to be respected and valued that way. 

DO YOU HAVE ANY OTHER ADVICE FOR YOUNG ARTISTS AND MUSICIANS JUST STARTING THEIR CAREERS, BASED ON WHAT YOU’VE EXPERIENCED?

It was funny to be asked to wear make-up or look sexy at gigs especially for Bollywood concerts, negating my natural talent. Being celebrated as an artist on Woman’s day was special. In my Indian women collective, SPACE, which stands for Stop Patriarchy And Choose Equality, we were 18 women in one gig as musicians, dancers, visual artists, and volunteers. The strong community and the will to bring a difference as women to ensure our freedom and creative expression was touching. I encourage young artists to always support their community and causes which bring about social change for future generations to have it a little easier. 

WHAT DO YOU HAVE COMING UP IN 2022?

I have organised many concerts around celebration, the full moon, and the heightened energies we feel during these times to channel through music and joy. New Moons have been super heightened healing times. Divine Union, my brand for curated events, will also be creating a festival in the Himalayas, most likely, in the coming summer. I might be in America singing at a film festival twice in 2020. I am also working on a Sound Healing album around the Chakras and co-relation with Indian Raagas and specific sound frequencies.

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