My name is Anusha and I am a disabled singer/songwriter based in South London.
I am passionate about what I do and I aim to allow that passion to ooze in everything I do. I’ve been told many times that I’m doing music “wrong” because I’m not doing enough but these comments became easy to brush off. I didn’t feel the need to succumb to pressure as I was working at my own pace and I believed in my art.

Unfortunately, in May 2020, I suffered a mini stroke. Not only was that month one of the
scariest months of my life but it felt extra lonely because I couldn’t reach out to anybody due to the first COVID-19 lockdown. I also wasn’t creating anything due to my health. And if you can’t prove that you’re creating – even if it’s “behind the scenes” – then you’re forgotten. You’re not taking it seriously. Music professionals tout you as a lost cause and move onto the next person. Even though I survived the stroke itself, this felt like a social death.

That pressure led me to start going overboard. I didn’t know how many active months/years I had left. The idea of dying without releasing at least one body of work frightened me to my core.

 

For the next year and a half, I was releasing music constantly. This also left me spending
almost £3K in paying producers, videographers and extras (which left me going days without eating dinner or going into my overdraft). Spending £3K on your career is usually an investment but it hindered me.

But I felt like I had no choice. Anxiety led me to work in ways that were unhealthy. Growing up in the “underclass” and being newly disabled, I don’t have a lot of resources at my disposal. I felt left out as I was watching artists network and sharing their work online whilst my voice felt stifled.

It took me a minute to slow down and re-evaluate that I’m the luckiest person in the music industry.

I had people who were motivating me to be kind to myself. And it was the little things I
appreciated. Juniper, the producer for my single Loser – helped me figure out how to play the F chord on guitar. Maz Hedgehog gave me the space to vent about anything. Ban Summers and Becky reminded me to honour my disability and look after my health.

Community is all we have and it’s my community that saved me from myself.
I wish I could say everything is okay. I am currently at my sickest (which is why I couldn’t
attend the live show for W4M). Covid 19 has also hindered a lot of musical plans I had. But I am happy. The industry can be rewarding but if you are a musician – never rely on the industry. Your community is something you should be pouring into because if they’re the right people, they’ll be there for you too.

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