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AYAAN SAWANT




Where are you located now and where are you originally from? I am a 22-year-old independent hip-hop artist, working out of Bombay, where I was born and brought up. Who has been your greatest influence? I don’t have many influences, but I do take inspiration from a lot of things. Since this question pertains to influences, I’ll say that amongst the few that I have, it is really hard to pick who has influenced me the most. Eminem has been a major influence on me in terms of writing and rapping. Everything from his range in music and songwriting to lyricism really influenced me as a young kid just starting to rap. His influence is strong in my style, but thereafter I was really influenced by the Canadian spoken-word poet Shane Koyczan. Shane’s influence was also a lyrical one, or in terms of the verbal aspect of my music, and it got me writing a bit of poetry as well. When I got a little good at it, I took the liberty of infusing it with the aggressive writing style I’d inherited from listening to a lot of rap. It made for a very interesting hybrid, and I continued to pursue and perfect it, though it was a little challenging, mixing the sophistication of spoken word poetry with the candor of hip hop lyricism. Enter Damon Albarn, and the Gorillaz, who opened my eyes to a very liberal attitude when it comes to creativity and ideas. His influence on me bridged that gap, and it helped me find the middle ground between both writing styles, as well as a way in which to present that hybrid musically. It influenced me to take chances with my songwriting, song ideas and lyrical concepts, and it also inspired the EP on which my debut single “Poindexter” was supposed to appear on. The EP didn’t come to fruition, but if it wasn’t for that EP, I wouldn’t have had Poindexter; and as an extension, if it wasn’t for Damon’s music, I would not have had the EP.   What is your latest and greatest? I’ve released my debut single; Poindexter, as of June 10th, on all streaming platforms as well as on YouTube as a DIY lyric video. It’s a song about self-acceptance, and self-assurance, as well as a little satirical in terms of gory visuals. The underlying message of the song is to highlight the ironic propensity of people to forsake themselves in order to fit in and be sad about it, as opposed to being themselves, not fitting in and feeling sad about it. The message of the song is to underscore the fact that in the case of the latter, happiness and security is a choice, whereas in the former, it is decided for you. I’m very happy with the product, and I’m hoping to release more of my music soon.  I have some songs lined up that are being groomed for a release, and I’m excited for people to hear them. I’ve been cultivating my sound for a little while now, and seeing aspects of my vision come to fruition will always be exciting for me.  What are you most looking forward to in 2021? I’m looking forward to releasing more singles, and getting better with each one. I feel like I’m finally in a position to write the kinds of songs that I like, and I’m getting better every day at presenting in a way that I see fit. I have a certain vision for my art, and it took me some time to see it clearly, but I’ve caught a glimpse of it enough times to have a good idea of that ideal. The goal is to reach that ideal, but as of right now I am having fun with seeing that vision manifest itself, even if it is in a little more than bits and pieces.  How can we stay up to date with you?  I am most active on Instagram, so you can always keep up to date with me on the app. You can follow me @ayaansawant, where I post updates regarding future releases, online gigs and just general stuff that I’m up to.  INSTAGRAM

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