“Just a small town boy who took the midnight train going anywhere” — these lines from an old rock song seem like an apt description for our featured artist today, Taba Chake. A hidden gem among the myriad of artists in India, Taba is an indie singer and songwriter based in Mumbai. Being from Arunachal Pradesh, he not only makes music in Hindi and English but also in Nyishi, his mother tongue.
His music is refreshing, carefully crafted and somehow addictive. While on his tour, Taba was able to sit down to chat with us about life and what motivates him to keep creating music. Read on!
Hello Taba, please introduce yourself to our readers!
Hello readers, I’m Taba Chake and I’m 26-years-old. I’m an average guy from a small town called Doimukh in Arunachal Pradesh. I’m someone who believes in hard work and God’s will. Currently based in Mumbai, I have been traveling, stayed in many places — all in search of music within.
What sparked your interest in music?
I think this all started way back in 1998. Since childhood, I was always surrounded by good music and people who listened to good music. All of my family members have a very different taste in music, so that exposed me to multiple genres.
‘Bas Teri Raah’ By Taba Chake
However it was only during my boarding school days when I realized I wanted to pursue music. A friend of mine was singing ‘Summer of 69’ by Bryan Adams, on the guitar after our nightly study hour. I will never forget that feeling. It was like a calling of God. I always thought people created music through computers or technology. But, after seeing my friend playing guitar and singing like it was right out of a record— as if Bryan Adams had been playing in front of me –
I was a changed person with a lot more hope and a goal to achieve. I started practicing almost 20 hours a day, non stop for years.
One of Taba’s first videos on Youtube, an instrumental called ‘Hills’
You say that you’ve grown up around music lovers. Do you think that has influenced your music?
Well, like I said, I was always surrounded by good music. One of my uncles was into old type western music, he used to listen and collect cassettes, from Shillong, of Don Williams, MLTR, Eagles, Bryan Adams and many others.
Another uncle was into old 60’s to 80’s Hindi songs which were the likes of Mohammad Rafi and Kishore Kumar. And my mom was into tribal traditional folk and chanting, and Bollywood songs with soulful lyrics. So these were the different kinds of influences I had when I was a child.
Taba At Gharka Studios after the completion of his album ‘Bombay Dreams’
However, frankly speaking, back then my parents were never okay with me pursuing music. But that helped me positively in many ways. I was eager to prove to my parents that I could do it. I was persistent, which made me better with every new day.
‘Ngo Akin’ a song by Taba in Nyishi – a language spoken by the Nyishi Tribe of Arunachal Pradesh
What’s a day in your life like?
Nothing special! I create music when inspiration hits me and it is the same as any other person’s life, with ups and downs but facing it head-on, wearing a smile.
Taba in Bangalore for his Bombay Dreams Tour
If your music had a personality, what would it be?
I get a lot of messages from people saying my music has saved their lives or showed them the right path or helped them get out from depression. It is overwhelming and a great pleasure to know that something I do is important to someone.
I have also been told that my music is of a “charming nature laced with positivity”.
‘Shaayad’ By Taba Chake
What’s your creative philosophy – where do you take inspiration from?
If you’re blessed with the gift of perceiving and creating art, you’ll see stories in every little thing and you’ll be able to create something out of it. That I believe is my way of doing music; it is my creative philosophy.
Performing at Mumbai — Taba Chake
What do you hope people take away from your Music?
Well as cliche as it is, I really want my music to reach out to as many people and be able to carry the message of hope to everyone who listens to it.
The first single of ‘Bombay Dreams’— ‘Walk With Me’
Tell us about some of your recent projects.
Well, I recently released an album called ‘Bombay Dreams’ which features the singles ‘Walk with Me’ and ‘Aao Chalein’. You can stream it on iTunes, Wynk, Spotify and Saavn. You can get all my music there. I write and sing in English, Hindi and Nyishi as well. Please give it a listen!
Bombay Dreams by Taba Chake
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