NEW YORK– Growing up in a traditional South Indian family, Shilpa Ananth started learning music at the age of 3. Her parents initiated her love for music and dance by enrolling her in Carnatic voice lessons, and Bharathanatyam dance classes from a young age.
While growing up, she started pursuing other genres, exploring jazz, R&B, and Spiritual music, and slowly her passion for listening to new music, and writing lyrics, grew until she realized that this is was the field she wanted to dedicate her life to. With the groove of Erykah Badu, and the soul of Nina Simone, Ananth sings in four languages – Tamil, Malayalam, Hindi, and English, fusing genres from the East and the West.
After her successful debut EP ‘Indian Soul’ released in 2015, Ananth is currently leading her voice to a few international feature films, planning a Bicoastal Tour, and working on some new sounds for an album release in 2017.
A graduate of Berklee College of Music in Boston, Ananth has performed at several legendary venues such as Carnegie Hall, the Apollo Theatre, American Museum of Natural History, The Blue Note Jazz Club in NY, and the Isabella Gardner Museum, as well as the prestigious Boston Symphony Hall.
In addition to working on her second album, Ananth has a few performances and national music tours lined up with the Berklee Indian Ensemble, as well as her all-female Serbian traditional music vocal group, ROSA.
On Oct. 28, Ananth will perform at New England Choice Awards gala at Westin Hotel in Waltham, MA. About 400 entrepreneurs, corporate executives, philanthropists, educators and community leaders are expected to attend the awards gala, which is presented by INE MultiMedia in collaboration with INDIA New England News.
Here are the excerpts from our online interview with Ananth:
INDIA New England News: How challenging is it to build a music career?
Shilpa Ananth: Very! This field and industry is not for the faint-hearted. But if you are serious and realistic about your goals, and keep yourself motivated through the tough times, then the pay off is great, and every good moment – no matter how big or small – will make you feel like you are on top of the world. But it is not easy, and definitely requires time, talent, and bit of luck.
INE: What advice do you give to aspiring artists?
SA: To believe in yourself, and do whatever it takes to make your dreams come true. Think outside the box, step outside the fears that are created by the environment you are in, and be willing to take any risk for your art. The industry is not easy to break into and it takes a lot of patience and perseverance to navigate the good and not so good moments. You need to be absolutely sure about your decision to be an artist, and devoted to the craft, that is the only way you can find what you are looking for.
INE: Have you produced any CDs or albums?
SA: I have co-produced my debut album ‘Indian Soul’ which released last year.
INE: How did Berklee help you?
SA: Berklee has an excellent alumni community. Wherever you go in the world, you feel like you are never alone, as you can connect with fellow alums, and become involved in the real world, and the music industry quickly.
INE: What type of music is your favorite?
SA: Fusion of all genres is my favorite. I can’t choose between them all, as a different day, and a different mood, calls for that specific song that feels like the answer to all of life’s questions and problems – be it rock, Carnatic, or hip hop.
For more information, visit:
Music – www.shilpaananth.bandcamp.com
Website – www.shilpaananth.com .