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Exclusive Premiere: Watch Mili Look For Love in the Stirring New Video ‘Fooling’

The Chennai-based singer and songwriter enlisted veteran instrumentalists such as Vinnie Colaiuta, Michael Landau, James Genus and George Whitty on her debut album ‘Written In The Stars’

Anurag Tagat Feb 26, 2018

Singer-songwriter Mili. Photo: Courtesy of the artist

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On the day that Chennai singer and songwriter Mili began recording her album in Los Angeles, her formidable crew of musicians entered the studio. Drummer Vinnie Colaiuta had just returned from touring with Sting and guitarist Michael Landau was touring with James Taylor. Mili says, “It was totally surreal to be in that moment and I had to pinch myself that this was all really happening for my very first record and for someone like me living half way across the world.”

That reflects the ambitiousness behind deciding to call her debut album Written In The Stars, considering her wish list for a dream team of musicians came true. The 10-track album also features bassist James Genus (who’s worked with piano legend Herbie Hancock) and pianist George Whitty (a contributor on songs by the likes of Chaka Khan and Celine Dion). Previously a name who sang “Meethi Boliyaan” from 2013 film Kai Po Che! with composer Amit Trivedi and appeared on performance show Coke Studio, Mili says she was always working on her own material, naturally preferring to sing in English. She says, “It was a fantastic experience to don the hat of a composer. Conceptually it’s also about what each song demanded and the sound of the album. That was something I was very clear from the start of this project.”

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Predominantly taking from jazz, pop and funk, Mili says she’s been fortunate enough to listen to mainstream music without any genre restrictions or preconceived ideas. With complete freedom and virtuoso musicians like Colaiuta and Landau, “Dream Like A Skylark” is epic-scale, while the piano-led title track leans on pop, as does the slowed down “Is It Something.” Mili picks up the pace on “Inside Out,” making it one of the most exciting tracks on the album. Turns out, it started as a “very slow beautiful ballad” which Mili turned into an energetic funk song featuring a horn section. She adds, “And if you’ve got the greatest drummer Vinnie Colaiuta playing drums on your record why not have a drum solo, right?”

With a global audience being drawn to both, the musicians featured on the records as well as Mili’s blend of sound, the singer promises more music videos next, which were shot overseas. She adds, “And yes, writing more music.”

Watch the video for “Fooling.” Hear the album here.

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