Anushka Jagtiani is Returning with a Brand New Pop Sound
The Mumbai vocalist discusses her upcoming record, working with American producer Duddy Brown, her future plans and more
Two years ago, Mumbai vocalist Anushka Jagtiani decided to give up her day job as a journalist and follow her passion by taking up music full time. On making that move Jagtiani says, “Ultimately I just came to a conclusion that I’m happiest when I do a gig, I’m happiest when I write music.”
That’s when the singer started shuffling between her hometown and Los Angeles to connect with producers in the U.S. and work on her style of pop music which brings together a bit of electronica, rock and Indian classical vocal elements. In this interview with Rolling Stone India, Jagtiani tells us about her songwriting process, releasing her music and more. Excerpts:
Since you’ve written all of your music in America, how did you make connections to work with people there?
I went to L.A. just to scout around, do a few showcases, attend gigs. So I met these people from a band called Gypsy Sound Revolution – they introduced me to Jennifer O’Neil and she took on the role as my manager and A&R. She [O’Neil] worked with Lady Gaga for a few years, right at the inception of Gaga’s career. I [also] work with a young guy named Duddy Brown and he is super talented, excellent writer and he’s a real up and coming producer. We write together and he produces my music.
How does the writing process work for you?
It works in many ways – often I have an idea and I’ll pen down my thoughts and I’ll go to a producer or co-writer and then we’ll sit together maybe and then we throw ideas around and if the chemistry between the writers is good it comes around. Sometimes the producer has a track ready and says, ‘See what you can do with it and see what you can come up with’ – so it goes different ways.
Which method do you prefer?
I think I still prefer the organic way.
What is the most important part for you during the writing process?
Of late I’ve begun to appreciate having a contemporary sound – and so that’s what I’m trying to do but also keeping my influences intact and keeping my roots intact. I did study Indian classical vocals and an essential element of my writing is hooks and great lyrics and just [being] relatable and authentic.
You have a bunch of unreleased music already – when do you plan on putting it out?
We have spoken to people, we have had interest from people, music supervisors, and independent labels, there has been interest – we’ve got videos too. Now it is just a matter of deciding when to launch it, on what platform and how. I see exciting times ahead.
Do you plan on releasing an EP or album?
I want to drop a couple of singles first. I have a video for my song “Rebirth,” I have a lyric video for a song called “Vixen” and then I’m thinking eventually an EP in the next three or four months.
For someone like you who has given up their day job to follow your passion, do you have any advice for people who are stuck at a 9-to-5 but actually want to pursue something more creative?
I’d say when you feel you’re ready and you feel you’ve worked enough with your day job and you just can’t go another day doing that – you can support yourself for sometime till you can make money musically then it’s worth giving it a shot. I came to a point where it was like now or never. I believe if you work hard enough for other stuff and you feel you can do this, then go right ahead and do it.