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English music is my calling: Ananya Birla

Kunal Roy | New Delhi |

Developing an interest for music at a very early age, Ananya Birla is a singer, songwriter and entrepreneur, Her latest single Hold on has already hit 7 million views and counting.

In an interview to , the rising young singer shares her experiences and future plans.


Tell us about the reactions that you are getting after releasing your third single ‘Hold On’?

It’s been great! My last song ‘Meant To Be’ went platinum in India, which was so amazing but it created this uncanny pressure when I was working on the new song.

‘Hold On’ is about the realities of holding on to a relationship through the ups and downs, and interestingly enough, a whole lot of people wrote to me saying it’s something that they can all relate to. That definitely felt good, that I was able to reach out to people and strike a chord with them on an emotional level.

This song is about unconventional love and the social pressures that go with it. It is for those people who, in the face of adversity, manage to hold on to each other through faith, perseverance and the strength of their love. I enjoy writing about love. I think it is the strongest force there is.

It was also nice to read that people understood that no relationship is perfect and thought it’s important to talk about both sides of love: both the wonderful and the challenging aspects of it.

I am thankful that people listen to my music, can relate to the lyrics, the emotion and feel a bit better about something they are going through and some comments were about the role I portrayed in the song, am glad they liked my acting alongside my singing.

Are you planning to sing in Bollywood as well? What are your plans?

I think Bollywood and its music is amazing. I love listening to Hindi music because what certain Bollywood songs offer in terms of the sound, the melody and instruments, placements, chord progressions etc – it’s truly fantastic and fairly hard to replicate in English / Western music. Personally though, English music is my calling.

You’ve collaborated with many international DJs and music producers. How was your experience?

The experience is amazing. In music, I have seen magic happen with collaborations. With my producers, Mood Melodies for ‘Meant to Be’, with Nick (DJ AfroJack) who did the remix of ‘Livin’ the Life’, my director, Daps (‘Hold On’).. each of their contributions in regards to more than just the song, their guidance and knowledge of the industry – the way it works, what makes a certain message more relatable to an audience.

I really enjoy collaborating, it’s what takes a project to the next level.

Working with other people is essential for making your message relatable, adding another person in to the mix gives you a better idea of how it will be received and whether the audience will connect with it. I also believe that collaborating with another musician can produce great creative results by taking you out of your comfort zone, introducing you to new musical processes, and encouraging you to up your game.

Who is your inspiration? 

As an artiste, I draw inspiration from everything and everyone around me, it could even be someone I have met for two minutes.  I look up to my grandfather for being a visionary, my father for his dedication and my mom for her undeniable perseverance.

Any message for your fans?

Be the truest version of yourself, follow your passion unapologetically and love what you do. It takes some time and a lot of introspection, but try to understand and find your true purpose. As I have come to learn, the biggest gift that you can give yourself, is to give to others.

What are your  upcoming projects?

I am presently shooting my next music video for a song I recorded in December of last year. I can’t wait for you’ll to hear the new song. I really enjoy live performances. It is how I fell in love with music – when I was at university at Oxford, I used to head to London every weekend and perform at these tiny gigs. It was the best feeling.I plan on hitting the road in the next couple of months for some shows, and hopefully I’ll get a tour date set at the end of the year.