Serena Kern was tutored in singing by her maternal grandmother Anne, when the two spent quiet, twilight hours in the garden. Those informal lessons made school exciting for her. At St. Joseph's Convent (Coonoor), she was an indispensable member of the choir; at Hebron School (Udhagamandalam), she excelled at singing contests. A fresh law graduate from the London School of Economics, Serena realises that back then at the garden, her grandmother had actually sown the seeds of a parallel career for her!
Serena has two music videos — ‘Why I Cry' and ‘Your Eyes' — and a clutch of songs to her credit. She made all this music available on the Internet, and spotlight found her.
London-based MusikReporter introduced her to its readers as a singer-songwriter with immense potential, and is working on a special three-page Valentine's Day article on Serena and her love songs.
From an early age, Serena had translated her thoughts into poetry. While studying law in London, she began to write songs with the idea of making music videos. Once she found help, she went the whole way. Cornell, a young musician in Coonoor, the Kerns' home town, handled the arrangement for many of her songs.
With the essentials taken care of, Serena concentrates on songwriting and singing. Before she attempted lyric-writing, she sang cover versions at café concerts and events in London. “Being able to infuse your emotions into the songs you sing is a whole world better than signing borrowed songs.”
All about love
A majority of her songs are about love with its wild and scary alternations of pain and joy. Among the few that deviate from this theme is ‘Save Me From Me', a result of the challenges of living all alone in London and practising law. It is about how we bring unnecessary pressures on ourselves.
Serena's music is primarily pop, but expanding her repertoire must not be difficult. Her father Carlo Kern being Swiss and her mother Deepa, Indian, Serena grew up with diverse sounds. Working at sea, Carlo has travelled widely, and brought Serena up on an eclectic music diet. “Whenever he returned to Coonoor on vacation, he brought a fascicle of tapes from various regions of the world.”
Serena dreams of being a singer that parents around the world will recommend to their children.
She wants to accomplish this without compromising her career in law. “At present, my music ambitions have been kept in check because I want to first make my mark as a lawyer,” says Serena. So, music is spare-time pursuit —but only for now.