Jonita Gandhi entered the music industry 10 years back with the film Chennai Express. And after having worked with the biggest of artiste in the biggest of projects, one thing she has learned is to deny people’s requests without feeling guilty. “One thing that I had to learn in this industry over time was how to say no to people, not over committing things and not investing my time in places where it’s not giving me joy,” says the What Jhumka! singer.
Recalling how she was a people pleaser for a long time, Gandhi shares, “Because of relationships and not willing to disappoint people, I used to agree to everyone and everything. I was like ‘If they want me to come right now I should go right now. If they want me to do this show, I should do this even though it will become hectic for me’. I was not confident in myself. I could not take even a 2% chance of upsetting somebody in any way.
She is sure that it would have backfired, however Gandhi isn’t aware of it. “I probably don’t even know. People would taken it to their egos and probably that’s why they stopped calling me. I am not sure. But I have learned to have the confidence to be okay with that risk. Now, I’m just like, ‘Okay let my work speak for me. If somebody’s disappointed because I wasn’t available for something, then that’s their problem,’” she explains.
Gandhi had a fabulous start in this industry and she was flooded with offers to sing for films. However, that left her confused about what she was looking for. “For the last 10 years, it’s been a roller coaster, for sure. The fact that I was given the opportunity to be versatile and try all these different things was great. However, with every song, I had to take on a new persona. It’s not your song..it’s not your story. It’s dependent on the story of the characters in the film. So in the process of voicing that character, it does get confusing. And creatively, I’ve been confused questioning ‘if this is my sound’ with every song,” she says, adding that now she has decided to find her own voice.
“Right now I’m working on writing music for myself. I’m also simultaneously continuing my film work. But I’m focusing more on finding my own voice.. finding what kind of languages I want to use to express myself. I’ve been doing that about a year now. And hopefully within the next six months, you’ll start seeing music being released that I’ve written and I’ve commissioned on my own- independent stuff,” she ends.