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Watch Shivam Lohia’s Animated Video For ‘Her’ About Lost Love

The New Delhi guitarist enlists Manipur-bred vocalist John Oinam on the track

David Britto Aug 31, 2021

New Delhi-based guitarist Shivam Lohia. Photo: Courtesy of the artist

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Earlier this month, New Delhi-based guitarist Shivam Lohia released his silky new single “Her” featuring Manipur-bred singer John Oinam. The song has been produced by the capital’s Kartik Ahuja and is also accompanied by a beautiful animated video illustrated by Brazil-based animator Daniel Fuscella that portrays the story of lost love.

In this interview with Rolling Stone India, Lohia talks to us about his early years, the new song, collaborators and more.

What were your early years with music like?

I began my musical journey at the age of 13 in 2010. My father was quite passionate about music. He encouraged me to learn and also bought me my first guitar. At that age, I never knew that music would eventually turn out to be such an important aspect of my life. I had many rejections even after six years of learning, it made me realize that hard work alone cannot guarantee success and that the true path to success also calls for being different and making your own way through your own stories. This led to the beginning of my ‘percussive guitar’ journey in 2016 and made way for endless opportunities for me to grow, learn and stand out from the crowd. I was greatly inspired by musicians like John Mayer, Sungha Jung, Andy Mckee, Mike Dawes and Dhruv Visvanath to not only create my own guitar playing style but also pen down and express my own life stories through my music.

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What’s the story behind your new song “Her”?

Being a non-vocalist, I always believed that it’d be really difficult to express one’s own emotions through someone else’s voice. However, it isn’t impossible and creating ‘Her’ proved that to me. I finished writing this song back in 2018 but took more than three years to build everything around it, from a perfect mix to an animated video. I remember making over 100 scratches for this song alone, where I constantly changed the arrangement of the song just so that everything sounds right and in place. I wanted the sound of the final mix, the songwriting behind the song and the overall arrangement to reflect my growth as a musician over the years and to justify my years’ worth of effort spent in the making of the song. As far as the lyrics are concerned, I’ve tried to stay as honest as possible, conveying a string of emotions one faces in a lost relationship.

What was the recording process like for the song?

The recording process was quite a ride and a learning process in itself. We recorded the whole song in multiple sittings with absolutely no soundproofing at our homes. In fact, we recorded with an entirely different song structure in our heads and decided to change the whole arrangement in the final output. Big ups to the recording engineer Vasudev from Mix with Vasudev for always being super supportive of my music since my early days and helping me execute the recording process super smoothly at his home setup. Also grateful to our mix and master engineer Anindo Bose from PlugnPlayStudios for giving such a beautiful finish to the final sound.

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What was it like putting the animated video together?

I had always dreamt of having my own animated music video someday and I’m glad that I could make that dream possible with the help of a super talented animator, illustrator and creative designer, Daniel Fuscella from São Paulo, Brazil. Despite the language barrier, Daniel and I worked for months to create a visual storyline for the song using a translator, since his native language is Portuguese.

What’s next for you?

Even though I had been working rigorously on this release for the past three years, I kept writing about some new stories and some old stories along the way. I’ve so much to share in the coming months from new releases to new musical ventures, so you can expect a lot of new collaborations with some well-known artists from the indie scene.

Watch the video for “Her” below and stream the song on other platforms.

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