THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: People love placing tags on others. This is especially true for someone like Sanjeeta Bhattacharya who has been visible in indie music circles for quite a while. “I was placed into this niche as a jazz singer and I wish to do more writing and grow out of this. I never think aise likhna hei (have to write a certain way),” says the singer-songwriter Sanjeeta.
Her performance at the capital city’s ‘music-first’ venues like the Piano Man Jazz Club sure helped this classification but her YouTube channel—which shows evident influences of flamenco and Blues styles—is the testimonial for her tensile vocal skills.
“I was talking to a friend about my style and we came to a conclusion that we’ll call it R&B, pop/rock,” she informs, as we speak to her prior to her debut show in Kochi along with guitarist Kaushik Manikandan this weekend.
World of music
This Delhi-based artiste caught the attention of music aficionados when she performed with maestro A R Rahman at Berklee College of Music. Calling this premier institute her alma mater, Sanjeeta synthesised her Hindustani training from childhood with exposure to various musical traditions from across the globe.
“When you’re surrounded by music practitioners 24x7, you learn a lot of things without realising it. I was deeply influenced by the similarity of Balkan folk music with Indian traditional styles. Another one of my favourites is Flamenco which is said to have originated in India before it travelled all the way to eastern Europe,” says the 23-year-old.
A year after returning to India in 2016, she put her exposure to good use by forming Voicestra, a quartet performing folk vocal arrangements from countries like Bulgaria.
Of late, this millennial has been at work, developing a sound of her own. She’s building a personal project around her vocal melodies with the intention of bringing out an EP named Yathra. “Most of my earlier tracks were romantic in nature, but now I feel a responsibility to talk about things going on around me.
Of late, I’ve also been using a guitar to arrange my tunes. There are nine songs now, so we might make it into an LP by next March,” informs the artiste, who is also part of this year’s NH7 Weekender Pune lineup.
A proponent of writing in local languages, her trilingual album will feature Bangla alongside English and Spanish. Kochi will get a taste of all the tracks from her upcoming release and a few (she stresses on non-commercial) covers. On August 11 at 7 pm At The Muse Room,Kochi.