We had the pleasure of meeting the talented artist, producer and entrepreneur, Peter Madana on a perfect summer afternoon at a cafe in Los Angeles. We instantly clicked with Madana and what was suppose to be a brief coffee meet up turned into an engaging 2.5 hour conversation. We chatted about Madana's Chicago upbringing, journey with music and the promising rise of South-Asian creatives in western media. Check out our exclusive Q&A with Peter Madana below.
What inspired your career in the music industry?
I have been pursuing music for quite some time now (over 15 years). I began in classical South Asian dance/ acting, eventually took on singing/songwriting, and later attended university for audio engineering, which wasn't part of the OG plan but it was intended to prove to my parents music can have stability.
What's the biggest challenge you've faced so far on your musical journey?
When it comes to the musical journey, one cannot focus on the challenges. But rather focus on the journey aspect. Too many people divert their attention to "why" things happen. The way I look at my musical journey, more importantly life in general is to "focus on the [how]'. The journey is the most exciting part, throughout all of my challenges. Not everyday is easy peazy, and not everyday is a challenge.
Who were your favorite music artists growing up and who are you listening to now?
Music is such an integral part of who I am. Most of what I do is simple as just "listening". Growing up in a very traditional South Asian household, I was always around classical Indian music and Bollywood music. However, when my parents weren't looking, I would sneak in some Pop/RnB music. I grew up in Chicago, therefore I was exposed to lot of House Music as well.
At a young age, you could find me listening to some where between: Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder, Prince, Paul Oakenfold, AR Rahman, Ilaiyaraaja, and a list of infinite artists. These days, I know it's so cliche to say, but I do actually listen to everything. [it's in the nature of the business]
I have a deep rooted connection with everything I hear & listen to. I try not to discriminate between genres, but just to list a few that are on my playlists at the moment are: Miguel, Major Lazor, Pink $weats, and not to sound totally vein - but my own! I think it's important to totally and utterly fall in love with your own content.
Tell us about your latest EP, "Crimson." What was the writing process like?
CRIMSON is my forthcoming mixtape I dropped few months ago. Following my last project entitled "NIRVANA", I began attracting a diverse fan-base from across the globe, especially Europe and Australia. To be honest, I had no idea how people would react listening to my first project. I was in total humble-shock how the listeners perceived it. It actually encouraged me to pursuit this release, "CRIMSON".
CRIMSON's origin is from Sanskrit, meaning "hues of red turning into purple." To me this resembles how my life has been consistently transforming over the years, since the release of NIRVANA. I have seen and been in some sh** over time, and my life was headed into the direction of a Phoenix bird, but as we know, the Phoenix bird isn't always good. I needed to learn how to remain grounded and humble still. Sometimes, we get lost in the mix and that's totally OK!
Remember — it's not about the "why"... its about the "how". There are no regrets in my journey, yet it's all a learning process. When constructing any project I want to let it unfold organically. However, things don't always work out the way they're supposed to. This project took me 2 years to create. With that being said, it encompasses a plethora of various feelings/mixed emotions.
CRIMSON illustrates a fine blend of original, mashups, and remixes records. It has musical elements of Trap, Classical Indian, Hip-Hop, Bass, and Electronica. This project is meant to take you on a journey; so I encourage all of my listeners to sit back and tune into all the ear- candy that occurs.
What advice would you give to desi youth wanting to get into the music industry?
The one thing that I would tell the Desi youth wanting to get into the music industry is don't be afraid of one thing: FEAR!
Fear can stand in between you and your dreams. You can be fearful of telling your parents that you want to pursue a career in music. You can be fearful of failure. You can be fearful of negativity and criticism. But how long can one be afraid of fear? It takes an abundance of courage and guts to do what you love and are passionate about. Be confident in your art and be proud of the work ethic that you put in.
"Don't let fear get the best of you.
You only have one life - make the most of it!"
What can we expect to hear from you next?
So much content in the works as we speak. I will be dropping several singles the remainder of the year. I think after dropping several large bodies of work I want my audience to really connect on a deeper level with a singular piece. Along with these singles, I will also be dropping visuals and have some well known names on the releases as well. So stay tuned & keep it locked and let's all grow together in unity.
It was a pleasure getting to know Madana and we're looking forward to all of his upcoming content! Take a listen to his single "Howling At The Moon" below!
Peter Madana & Milow - Howling at the Moon
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