Music for the yogi: All about singer Srimathumitha’s ‘I Am’

Singer Srimathumitha | Photo Credit: SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

Whenever Srimathumitha attends a  kirtan session in Melbourne, where she is currently based, she usually breaks into a song or chant while also doing yoga  asanas. “The people there are astounded. They are taken aback about the possibilities,” she says.

Having worked on hit songs with the likes of AR Rahman (tracks in  Slumdog Millionaire), Harris Jayaraj (‘Mudhal Mudhalai’ from  Lesa Lesa) and Yuvan Shankar (’Kana Kaanum’ from  7G Rainbow Colony), the popular singer moved to Australia in 2018.

Far away from the happenings of Chennai’s film music scene , Srimathumitha started connecting with two things close to her heart: yoga and music. And the result is her latest spiritual Indo-world music album,  I Am.

“Teaching yoga to adults and children in Australia made me understand the specific methods that global students like and also the kind of music that may go hand in hand with this practice,” says Srimathumitha, who is currently in Chennai on a personal visit.

The eight-track album, available on leading music platforms, was created at her home studio. “This is my attempt to showcase India’s rich musical and spiritual spirit, with authentic and culturally-informed ideas. Of late, I am tired of the many cover versions of long can singers keep re-interpreting older classics? With  I Am, I think I have discovered my original sound and what I want to tell the world.”

She is referring to the “Indian-ness” in her approach. “Our rich ragas can bring in a lot of texture to the music you can listen to while meditating.” Apart from using ragas like Saraswathi, Saramathi and Revathi in  I Am, she has also used instruments like the veena, mridangam and konokol in the album. “As an Indian based in Australia, it is my responsibility to upkeep that cultural identity,” says the singer, who is scheduled to do a workshop on Naada Yoga in the Bass Coast Yoga Festival in Australia in May, “With other similar ideas, I hope to create a global soundscape inspired by Indian music.”

Srimathumitha with the members of the Kosai Nagaraan Thollisai troupe

Srimathumitha with the members of the Kosai Nagaraan Thollisai troupe | Photo Credit: SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

Srimathumitha is using the time in Chennai to record a Tamil track titled  Chidambaram, in which she will collaborate with Kosai Nagaraan Thollisai Karuviyagam, a musical centre that promotes traditional Tamil instruments like kombu, udukkai and kudamuzha.

Once back in Australia, she will fine-tune musical work on a webseries titled  Mother Tongue, directed by Indonesian Australian filmmaker Katrina Graham. “Part of this series will be lullaby called ‘Soleram’ for which she has written English lyrics but the tune is set in Raga Dwijavanti, one of my favorite ragas.”

Does she miss the 2000s, when she was an active film singer? “It was a boon to have come up during a time when legends like SP Balasubrahmanyam and MS Viswanathan were judging me at a talent show! I’m lucky to have worked with some of the best composers in the industry during a time when playback singers were much in demand.”

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Printable version | Apr 28, 2022 4:38:54 pm |