Meet a singer/songwriter from Kolkata – TUSHAR RAJ
Tushar Raj is an upcoming 18-year-old independent singer/songwriter from Kolkata, India. Inspired by artists like Lauv, Jeremy Zucker, Blackbear, and Khalid, he has developed his own style of music, which is a hybrid of Alternative R&B and Indie Pop. Calls himself a modern-day storyteller, his songs are usually a deep reflection of events from his own life.
After the release of his first debut single titled Falling for You, he’s gained quite the attention from people in the business. He then released another single titled Used to It for which he had created a massive hype and people from all over the world by using the #UsedToIt and so far it has been his biggest release, it reached 5000 streams in just 14 days. Falling for You and Used to It are the first two of the 4 songs from his debut EP which comes out later in 2020.
He originally gained popularity posting short song covers on Facebook and Instagram,until he finally decided to start out as a solo artist. Currently still working on his upcoming EP, he is just starting out in the music scene. Other than music,he’s extended his hands to other forms of art,such as making short inspirational films to inspire the mass and encouraging them to go chase their dreams.
Here is Tushar Raj in a conversation with GOGO Magazine.
1) When did your journey as a musician begin?
The truth is,I never really wanted to become a musician. I always wanted to be a footballer, I was even a part of the school team but due to the lack of family support, I was forced to quit the game. I was angry at my parents for not letting me play and it was the first time in my life,when I had started arguing and fighting with them which eventually got me grounded. I spent a lot of time sitting at home, having nothing to do until one day I came across Justin Bieber’s Baby on YouTube. It fascinated me how a nobody became so big in the industry and that inspired me to start making covers of my own on my laptop’s sound recorder. I was 12 at the time. I was a pretty insecure kid back then so I never really got around to post any video until I was in class 10. Since then a lot has happened, I dealt with a lot of hate, stopped making covers altogether, and entered the darkest phase of my life. It took me lot of years to rebuild my confidence but everything that happened only made me stronger. Now, there’s nothing that can stop me.
2) Which was your first song?
My first song was called Falling For you, it was a very impulsive song,I mean it was never a part of any EP or anything, it wasn’t even supposed to be out. I had written the song in like 15 minutes, recorded it in another hour and the whole production only took me only a few hours more. So basically i completed the whole song in 4 hour. And I put that song out the next day. It’s not my proudest creation but I dont hate it either.
3) Which has been your most memorable live performance?
I remember the time,when i had been invited as a guest performer at NUJS,one of the biggest law school in India. It was my first actual performance and it’s my favourite so far. I had performed in a closed room with around 50-100 people all there to hear me. It was one of the coolest days in my life.
4) How do you manage investment for your music productions?
I produce my own songs, so I have never had to worry about going to the studio to record or paying a producer to make a track for me. As per as my equipment go, I save up whatever money I get and invest it when I have enough money.
5) Who has been your inspiration?
For me personally, i think Inspiration is everywhere. Whether it is,seeing your favourite artist’s performance on YouTube, or seeing your friends achieve their goals or standing in a crowd watching a concert. The fact that i don’t have what i want, has always driven me to work even harder and take everything I believe I deserve. I never had the most supportive parents or friends when i started out in music. Now that things are finally working out for me, it’s really fun seeing the look on the faces of people who said i would never amount to anything.
6) Where do you see yourself in the next 10 years?
It might sound too far fetched,but for the longest time, I’ve wanted to be on the cover of Forbes magazine as the ‘Most Influential Man in the World’. I wanna inspire people with my story, like someone else did for me. I wanna be a living proof that you can be anything you set your mind too. I also see myself living in huge ass beach side house with my wife and my Grammy’s all well kept and my guitars hung on the wall,and me looking outside and thinking how ahead you can get in life with a little patience and belief in yourself.
7) Tell us about your latest track.
My latest track, 2AM has been my most personal song ever. I have never been more honest about my feelings, it was almost so personal that a part of me felt vulnerable releasing it. I had written that song when I was in a very dark place in my life and a lot of people don’t know this but the song is the exact same recording I had recorded two years back, a few days after I wrote it.
I talk about how alone I felt at one point in my life and how I never thought things would get better. Listening to that song reminds me of my life was only a few years back, and how proud i am of myself for believing in myself when nobody did.
8) Which is your most preferred genre?
As a new artist, I am constantly trying to experiment with all styles of music. All the tracks that I’ve created so far have a very similar vibe,dark and mellow, Idk what exactly you call it,but it’s like an alternative RnB or alternative pop. However when I write my songs they sound very different, somewhat like a indie song but after production the vibe changes altogether.
Lately I have been working on a lot of electronic music and combining it with my indie style.
9) How was life in quarantine?
I see a lot of people talking about how difficult 2020 has been for them. But considering everything i have been through, this year was actually pretty good for me. I achieved a lot of big milestones in my life. My last song reached 25k streams in just two months, I got featured by rolling stones, and i have a feeling I’m gonna get verified on Instagram which is gonna be insanely cool. So yeah, I guess life has been great except for a few minor setbacks. I look forward to what life has to offer in the remaining months.
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