Manas Jha

Candid Talks with Manas Jha

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Born and bred in the Bombay indie scene of the late 90s / early 2000s, Manas was invested in listening to GIR tapes, buying the latest edition of RSJ, reading Gigpad forums, standing first in line for I-Rock Rang Bhavan, scoring faculty passes for Mood-I IIT Bombay, and really doing just about anything to catch his then favourite bands from the scene.

Manas Jha has been regularly been featured on Melody Insider and an interview was long overdue. So here is Manas in all his might and glory.
Manas Jha

If you were to introduce your music and genre to someone unaware of your music, how would you? 

At its core, my acoustic singing/songwriting takes after the Grunge Rock scene from 90s Seattle. Though, given the rather diverse of collaborators I work with, my produced music could range anything from progressive metal to electronic break-beat.

Tell us something about your latest single. Inspiration behind the name and the project. 

Liberate is about drug and alcohol dependence, the struggle to break free. The song has a dark and moody vibe. It features Warren and Jai from Blackstratblues. I’d say it’s the closest to my original set of influences – 90s Grunge.

One artist you’d like to collaborate with, but you know it’s not the right time now. 

Eddie Vedder. I think a few more milestones need to be accomplished before realizing that distant dream!

According to you, what does it take to earn the acclaimed badge of “Established Artist”?

Playing live to an audience that knows your songs better than you.

Your Highlight performance till date and why so?

A few years ago, we played a string of pubs in the Lower East side of Manhattan. These same venues featured Bob Dylan and Jimi Hendrix in the 60s.

An artist’s Best Friend is? 

Laptop. Most art in the world seems to be created there these days..

A piece of equipment that has been absolutely pivotal in onstage performance?

Ear plugs. Always good for a singer to be able to hear your own voice through all the amp noise on stage.

What was the first ever instrument you played?

Casio mini keyboard for kids. My dad bought it from a trip abroad. And it changed my world. I started playing music by ear. Imitating favorite tunes from TV or Radio. Slowly, that led me to start exploring my own tunes.

How has your place of Origin been an influence on your music?

I was born and bred in Bombay. Fondly remember playing local gigs at Razz Rhino, HRC Worli, Jazz by the Bay, as well as college fests like IIT-B Mood Indigo.

How are the psychological rewards in this career you have chosen? 

Haven’t chosen music as a career yet, so can’t really comment on this one. The only “reward” I look forward to is people being moved by music, the same way as me.

An artist whose music according to you is attracting international attention and is propelling industry growth. 

Mali. I think she’s, hands down, the best indie singer/songwriter from India right now.

Click here to read about Mali

If we speak to you again exactly this date 5 years from now, How different are all the above answers going to be?

With the pandemic, it’s been a few years since I’ve played live. In 5 years, I hope to have a more recent answer for my highlight performance.

If we speak to you again exactly this date 5 years from now, your answer to which question would remain unchanged?

My set of influences will never change. 90s Grunge will always remain the core of my singing / songwriting. 

Well, thank you once again for spending time with us, giving us valuable insight into your career. We wish you all the very best of luck in your endeavours.

Check out all of Melody Insider’s latest Features on new releases, , including many of Manas’ too, by following this link – Artist Features
Click here to read our interview with Mali

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