Raja Kumari: It is so important to stay true to music
Indian -American rapper Raja Kumari who recently released her single N.R.I, talks to us about being responsible as an artist and the importance of staying true to one’s art.Updated: Apr 28, 2020 11:41 IST
The lockdown period is indeed one of the toughest phases ever, and for Indian-American rapper Raja Kumari, the feeling is no different. “We’ve had to cancel a majority of festivals and live performances for the safety of everyone, which has been the toughest for me because being able to go out to shows and connect with my fans has been the most important part of being an artiste,” says the 34-year-old.
“Quarantine certainly has its low moments, but I have learned it is a collective grief. We are all in this together, and we have to lend a hand to those who need it and help each other out,” adds Kumari.
The rapper, who is known for songs such as Bindis and Bangels, Shook and Karma, among others, is focusing on mental health, practising yoga, working out at home , and eating healthy. She also feels responsible as a musician to spread optimism, especially in times like these.
“Music and art is just as important now as it ever has been. I’m optimistic that during this time, we can create something really special. It’s my responsibility to share what I’m going through, to show everyone they are not alone, and that this too shall pass,” says Kumari, who feels she’s constantly evolving as a musician.
“It’s so important to stay true to the music. I’ve always felt it’s most important when creating music to stay authentically true to myself. It’s extremely important to know who you are as an artist and individual and continue to create the music that is authentic to you,” she adds.
Her latest single N.R.I, sees her address her Indian-American roots, and she explains how she felt alienated, which pushed her to create her own identity. “The song was written in Los Angeles in just a few hours. We were discussing cancel culture and how people become fearless behind a keyboard and say things they would never say in real life, and wanted to address that,” she says.
“Society is built around this construct of building people up and then quickly tearing them down from the platform they helped build. People have told me in America that I’m too Indian to fit into certain stereotypes and norms, so you begin to harbour this resentment and feeling, so I had to create my own lane,” she signs off.