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  • Hussein Charania

Sidharth - What's in a name?


Photo by Ahmed Klink

Most children of immigrant families in the west have to navigate between the traditional cultures of their family and the cultures of their current surroundings. Usually we would keep these two worlds separate, or bring some influences from the west into our traditional cultures. There are very few who have the courage to do the opposite - bring their tradition to the table with confidence and purpose, and infuse it with the culture of their surroundings. Once Sid Sriram realized he had the talent to do exactly that, he leaped forward with no reservations.


On his debut english album Sidharth, Sid Sriram is vulnerable with his lyrics, but absolutely fearless in his voice, and therefore in his message - grounding soul, r&b, and blues, all with Carnatic ragas; sometimes subtly for those who know, and sometimes explicitly.


Sidharth is Sid's full name; a traditional Sanskrit name which generally means "one who accomplishes with purpose". After listening to Sidharth, as well as some interviews which accompanied the album's release, and a TEDx talk which he delivered a few years ago, it is obvious that Sid Sriram has lived up to his name - I am glad that our children are growing up in a world where there are artists like Sid Sriram.



A little more about Sid Sriram: He was born in Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India, into a family of Carnatic musicians. His family moved to the Bay area of California when he was just 1, but the tradition of Carnatic music stayed with the family as a deep and powerful anchor. Not only has Carnatic music been with Sid's family for generations, he believes his connection with it transcends before this life of his - inline with beliefs influenced by Hinduism that we carry things with us from life to life.


While a student at the Berklee College of Music, Sid sent an email with his music to one of his heroes - musical legend A.R. Rahman (who is also from Tamil Nadu). Not only did A.R. Rahman recognize Sid's talent with a reply, he engaged Sid in some of his music for the South Indian film industry. Between Sid's movie soundtrack hits, and a couple viral YouTube/TikTok performances of his english covers/tracks, his platform has grown and is ready for a much deserved international scale with this beautiful debut english album. Make sure to give it a listen and check out these live performances of songs "Dear Sahana" and "Do The Dance".








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