Universal Music in Thiruvananthapuram with French-Caribbean Soul
THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: French Caribbean artist Erika Lernot loves to call her music universal. Clad in a blue jeans and striped top, this young artist with long dreadlock has come to the city with her team members to perform here.
She has just finished two of her new songs written at Puducherry. “The song ‘Heritage’ talks about my love of French Caribbean islands and the second song ‘From the lakes’ is about my mother,” says the soft-spoken artist. Erika and her team performed at Co- Bank Towers to celebrate Francophonie organised by Alliance Francaise de Trivandrum on Sunday evening.
Hours before she took the stage for her first performance here, Erika was confident that the people would love her kind of music. Her experiences in Delhi and Puducherry had told her that city folks would groove with her. “My music is about joy and courage. When there is difficulty, it is something that makes one forget the problems,” says Erika. Music has certainly helped her at a personal level and motivates her to make such music. She started penning songs and poetry much before she became a singer.
Born and brought up in cosmopolitan Paris, Erika was initiated to the world of hip hop and jazz at a young age. What she did not learn, she picked up from her travels. As her childhood involved travelling to Martinique, a tiny island in Caribbean where her parents belonged to, she picked up the rhythm of the islands which she assimilated in her music. A chance meeting with Siam Lee, her composer and guitarist, opened her to the music of Africa, Cape Verde, Brazil and Asia. She uses the guitar of Cape Verde.
On her present trip to India, Erika says she was lucky enough to get the famous bassist Mishko M’ba, who is based in Puducherry. Frenchman Omain is her drummer. The more she spends time in India, the more she is attracted to Indian music. She lets out a secret that she will be introducing flute in her next music. Erika will be meeting some of the Indian artists during her trip to Mumbai to discuss collaborations. Having experienced the beauty of Kerala once at an Ayurvedic resort in Alappuzha, she promises to be back once her tour programmes are over.