Tuning in with Tarini: A chat with the emerging Indie talent from Chennai 

Chennai-based singer-songwriter Tarini reveals her inspirations behind debut EP From These Cracks A Flower Grew
In Frame: Tarini
In Frame: Tarini

ShFor upcoming musicians, all inspirations are backed by passion and love for the art form. For singer-songwriter Tarini, it is no different. Her love for music has led to the creation of her striking debut EP called From These Cracks A Flower Grew. With four beautiful songs, the young indie talent, who just returned to Chennai after garnering some experience in the US, is on a mission to execute a soul-stirring performance at the launch concert of the EP curated by Quriosity, in Chennai. We talk to this emerging musician to learn more about her experiences, how they have influenced her as a singer and songwriter and much more.

Tell us about the story/inspiration behind your upcoming EP.
From These Cracks A Flower Grew is a collection of four songs that I wrote between 2018-2021. It wasn’t intentional, but I noticed a few common themes – healing, change and overcoming difficult moments in life and getting to the other side. My first two singles were very much about being in a dark place and struggling with heavy emotions and heartbreak, and I think it was a very natural transition to this much more light-hearted, positive record that stemmed from having those difficult moments and working through them. 

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How much of your own experiences and observations have you brought into the themes presented in the EP?
A lot of my music is inspired by personal experiences, but sometimes it can be an emotion, or someone else’s story that touched me, stories that I think deserve to be heard. And I think the themes of this EP certainly reflect my outlook on life in general, which is that even when things are hard when you feel like giving up, you have to believe that there is light at the end of the tunnel. You have to trust the process and do the time, and eventually, you’ll find you’re able to appreciate the person you’ve become as a result of those experiences, rather than the pain of the experience itself. 

Do you feel good songwriting can be achieved with the utmost truth and honesty about writers' experiences?
I think songwriting is a form of expression, it is art, and it is a fluid process. There are so many different approaches to songwriting, and they all have their unique styles, narratives, and so on. But I do believe that good songwriting comes from an authentic place. 

What is “good songwriting”? I think that is so subjective. People are drawn to different styles, narratives, perspectives, rhythms and flow. I think songwriting is a personal experience, something someone does for themselves before sharing it with the world. As long as it feels authentic to the person(s) writing the songs, it shouldn’t matter what anyone else thinks. 

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You present the guitar as a major contributor to your scores. What motivated you to bring its tunes to the forefront?
It was just happenstance! I used to write a lot of poetry, but eventually, I felt that writer’s itch to put it to music. Very quickly I realised I would need to learn an instrument to do this and I had an old guitar lying around the house so I started watching youtube tutorials till I was able to play some basic chords, and now it is just a part of my songwriting process! I would definitely like to expand my range and experiment with writing with other instruments as well! 

Who are some of your inspirations when it comes to music?
I think as I started writing music, I naturally gravitated towards an indie-pop singer-songwriter style. I’m someone who probably gravitates more towards music that centres on lyrics. I have had so many musical inspirations in my life over time, but I would say the biggest influences at the moment are probably artistes like Phoebe Bridgers, Lizzy Mcalpine, Taylor Swift, Sara Bareilles. And I also love a good Avril Lavigne moment. I’ve always wanted to be in a pop-punk band. Maybe someday! 

We recently spoke to many indie artistes about the state of the Chennai music scene. What would your vision for Chennai's music community comprise?
I would love to see the Chennai music community be more supportive of newcomers and be more inclusive overall! I would also love to see Chennai become a contender with Bengaluru or Mumbai as indie musician hubs, where independent artistes can have more work opportunities and freedom to play original music.

Who are some of your favourite artistes from the city?
I’m proud to say some of my favourite artistes from the city are very close friends of mine. Alvin Presley is an incredible musician, singer and producer. In fact, he produced my single Circles! I also love Stevie’s music, I think Sunflower Tape Machine is coming out with some really interesting music. Chennai has so many amazing artistes! 

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How was the collaborative process with Lex and Joseph? 
It was an incredible process. I’ve worked with a few different producers and they’ve all had very different approaches to the work. With Lexington and Joseph, we spent one or two whole eight-hour days in the studio, creating the songs from scratch, creating whatever feels good in the moment. I found it very invigorating to be in the studio with the two of them and bounce ideas off of each other. This is the most involved I’ve been in the production aspect of music, and I learnt so much about musicality and work ethic from both Lex and Joseph. 

What would be the one takeaway you would want for your audience as they tune into your EP?
I make music for the heart, and I hope this EP inspires hope in you. 

What else is in the pipeline for you?
I definitely hope to play live shows a lot more, planning to do some touring. And as always, keep writing music, collaborate with other artistes, and learn and grow and evolve as an artiste and a human! 

At Barracuda Brew
On November 26.
7 pm onwards. 

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