Interview Music

Jeanne Merchant is back with an original composition

Musician and vocal coach Jeanne Merchant

Musician and vocal coach Jeanne Merchant

Independent musicians led the way in exploring endless opportunities during the pandemic. As a result, some of the best content, compositions and collaborations came to the fore. A musician and a vocal coach for the last 12 years, Jeanne Merchant chose to come back with a single after her last track ‘Yeh Wadiyan’ that released almost 17 years ago. Her latest song ‘Round and Round sets her apart as a versatile artist with a unique voice and natural flair for western tunes.

The lyrics of ‘Round and Round’ is a reflection of the grim situation in the world. “There are so many problems — Black Lives Matter, Asian lives, soldiers dying on the border, Indo-China conflict, the Gaza issue,” says Jeanne. “I want to tell people that we should have faith in humanity. These thoughts made me pen down this song.”

Elaborating on why it took so long to come up with ‘Round and Round’, Jeanne says, “I have been so busy with the vocal classes that there was not a minute left in the day to focus on anything else. During the pandemic, however, the couple of months before I started vocal training online, was the perfect window of time and opportunity to compose, record and shoot original material.”

Knowledge sharing

A much sought-after vocal coach in Mumbai, Jeanne trains students of all age groups. She feels teaching is a great way of learning. “I feel empowered to share my knowledge of music with my students and people who want to learn. I get calls every day to teach vocals. People are interested to learn western vocals and I see that it makes them feel confident when they can sing a piece of music well. This makes me realise that my passion is real and makes me even more focused on my music.”

Married to musician Salim Merchant, Jeanne says they are “reflecting boards” for each other. “I do give my opinion when he plays his music to me and vice versa. I usually do not like going ahead with anything I have recorded or created without him listening to it first. We share our feelings about each other’s music and value inputs.”

Jeanne is an accomplished pianist too and is willing to push boundaries. “My music is limitless. Be it Indian, jazz or pop I am willing to come out of my comfort zone and sing in any language, style or genre.” However, the challenge lies in creating compositions that are clutter breakers and clear in thought, admits Jeanne. “The biggest hurdle is to create something that most people can appreciate that is also unique and reflects your personality and emotions.”

Merge of genres

Jeanne points out that a lot of indie musicians are trying to cross over to mainstream and the lines are blurred. “They are merging into each other’s genres and a new kind of music is emerging. It is a great time right now because people are listening to music in a very different way. I am happy with the way the digital medium and streaming platforms have allowed the rise of independent music.”

On her musical influences, Jeanne says, “I love the use of harmony, the new sonic space that the world is listening to especially in the last 18 months. The world has changed a lot because of what it has gone through and people’s choices of music have changed. This has given rise to a different palette for creators and listeners. I think it is a great mix of harmony, RnB, Trap, hip hop, drill and independent music, all genres bleeding into each other. These are the things that inspire me and also influence my music.”

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Printable version | Feb 13, 2022 9:58:27 am |