MUSICALLY, YOURS

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How India-born Dee Sinnarkar took to singing and song-writing after a setback.
India-born Dee Sinnakar was in her teens when she randomly entered an international poetry competition and ended up winning a gold medal. “My parents were stoked,” she laughs. Soon she was on a flight to Washington DC to receive the award and attend the grand ceremony. The point is, from a very young age Sinnakar had a penchant for poetry, writing and the arts, an interest she has since pursued. Over the years, she has honed her skills further and forayed into song-writing and singing, something she is now known for. She has her own channel Deemusiconline on YouTube.
Sinnakar has just finished self-producing her original track ‘I Wanna Dance’ and digitally released it on international platforms. Just few days into the release and the track has been viewed over 122,693 times. Her earlier Bollywood cover songs which she put on her YouTube channel have also gained great amount of attention. They have been telecasted on TV channels in India and Tourism Australia has been impressed with her work as it has attracted Asian audience travel to Australia. She now enjoys quite a great fan following.
As a passionate singer and songwriter, Sinnakar has been performing for over 12 years now. Growing up in India, New Zealand and Australia has given her the best of three worlds and influenced her versatile style of singing – from pop, dance to Bollywood songs.
Besides singing and writing, the Sydney-based singer has also taken screen passion to another level by securing acting roles for TV commercials including international brands such as Visa cards, Vodafone, Holden, Kmart, Woolworths and more. She shares with The Indian Weekly her journey to inspire others to never give up and gather courage to find hope in life’s dullest moments.

Let’s begin with ‘I Wanna Dance’. Why is it so special?
‘I Wanna Dance’ is my original song, the video of which I just finished producing and released a few days ago. It was a dream project for me as it has a deep connection to my past. I had injured my back while getting trained at a gym. It was a terrible injury which lasted for almost a year. I had to stop work as I couldn’t walk and sit for long periods. It was extremely tough to overcome the situation as I couldn’t go out of the house much and led to depression. I had sleepless nights wishing to get better and enjoy the little things in life such as going out with friends and enjoying a pain-free dance. I wrote the song to get out of my depression. Music has always helped me write my feelings down which in turn inspired me to recover as soon as possible to create a song out of it. Not to mention the fact that it would have been near impossible to do it without the constant support of my friends and family.
The track is a happy, tropical electronic dance song to which you can dance your worries away. I travelled from Perth to Sydney to find the best production team to work on the song and was lucky that the video turned out great. It feels extremely liberating to release it and to see such positive response from the public is truly rewarding. Through the story behind the track, I wanted to influence others to never give up and find hope in the dullest moments of life. Earlier I have released Bollywood cover songs on my channel which has close to 300,000 views. “I Wanna Dance’ is also available on my music channel youtube.com/DeeMusicOnline and available on iTunes, Spotify and CDbaby.

Tell us something about your growing up years in India, New Zealand and Australia?
My family migrated to New Zealand in 2002 but I have very fond memories of growing up in Gujarat and maintain very close connection with my friends and family there. My childhood was ordinary yet very special. Like any other kid in India I grew up playing in the narrow streets, driving scooters and eating amazing food. I remember going with my grandparents for their bhajans, it was fun! I loved my life in India, never wanted to move overseas but New Zealand is a very welcoming country, its people very kind and friendly. I also love its natural beauty. At first I found Auckland very quiet and lonely but soon I overcame that. I got opportunities of singing at various events in Auckland which re-ignited my passion for singing.
I moved to Australia for work and I love the weather here! My friends call me a world citizen now. I loved living in Perth a lot, it reminded me of being in Gujarat. Australia is full of opportunities and the beaches are amazing! It has given me lot to offer – from IT jobs to singing and acting. I couldn’t have asked for more.

So it was your passion for poetry and music that drove you into singing?
Since school days, I had interest in languages and literature. I used to scribble little notes on the back pages of my notebooks. Gradually the scribbles grew into little captions, then poetries and eventually to song writing. When in India, my best friend and I approached Hallmark Cards and they gave us opportunity to write English and Gujarati captions for them. I speak Gujju well but writing was a laugh! One day me and my best friend were browsing the net where we found an international poetry competition. I entered my poetry ‘Beauty Locked the Race’ and was invited to attend their grand event in Washington D.C. My Parents were stoked! I flew to the US to collect my award. I still remember about 14 family and friends drove from Gujarat to Mumbai just to drop me off.
Later my distant cousin heard about my poetries and offered me a chance to write lyrics for his album directed by Bali Brahmbhatt. I was very thrilled to experience the process of song making.
I have been very fortunate to have an army of friends and family members who have always been supportive of me. Although, I do remember a funny moment which is of my mother ripping the paper I wrote a poetry on as she wanted me to study for exams. But she remains my biggest supporter and fan and I wouldn’t be anywhere without her.

Do you follow a formula when you write? What inspires you to write?
The way I see it, life itself is full of inspiration. I get inspired by little things around me – friends, family, nature, events and experiences.

Which year did you start singing? Did you receive any formal training?
My parents are music lovers and they would always win at playing antaksharis/singing games so it gradually became a part of me too at a very young age. I remember singing at school and other private functions. I took some classical singing training in Auckland and completed Contemporary Singing courses at the conservatorium of music in Sydney.

You have also a few acting roles. Tell us about it.
Before moving to Sydney last year I promised myself to be fluid like water and grasp any opportunity that come my way. I started getting acting offers so I went ahead and did acting courses from the National Institute of Dramatic Art (NIDA), which helped me bag a few short films. And I’ve been fortunate to have worked in TV commercials for NSW Transport, Holden, Kmart, Vodafone and others.

What are some of the accolades/awards you have received?
To be honest, the biggest award for me is to see the happy shine in my family’s eyes, my fans enjoying my music and the satisfaction in the knowledge that I am pursuing what I love doing most.
Besides this, at a young age I was fortunate to receive a few silver awards for state championships in Chess, thanks to my grandma who taught me to play.

What are you up to next? What does the future hold?
I’m taking one day, one step at a time. I will continue my journey to voice my emotions through music.