Music has been considered as a form of expression and singer-songwriter Nikitaa has made a unique identity for herself with her songs. Pioneer of Goddess Pop genre, Nikitaa calls her music empowering and the one that has an aura of that ‘goddess’ who reclaims her feminine aura in this male-dominated world. Trained in classical Indian and western music, she is also a kickass songwriter who incorporated her wit in her lyrics. With her singles, Honest, Exodus, Majesty, etc., and the latest acoustic version of her song Clutch, Nikitaa has garnered acclaim for her quintessential style of music. In an exclusive interview with Music Beat, the singer talks about her genre ‘Goddess Pop’, her journey, and more!
Can you tell us more about your music genre ‘Goddess Pop’?
Yes! I called it Goddess Pop because I like to draw on the image of the Goddess - an entity who is unabashedly herself no matter what emotion and state she chooses to embody. There's wisdom and learning to be discovered in every state she takes on, and she welcomes all people with open arms. I think that reads loud and clear in my music. All of that feeds this image of a genre that aims to empower while also serving a dose of cultural sensibility.
Any key highlights of your genre?
It's a blend of ethereal RnB, Pop, and a touch of my South Asian heritage. I love incorporating Indian percussion and other instruments into my projects.
When it comes to music, did you always want to become a singer, songwriter? When did it begin?
I always nurtured the dream! I've been singing since I was very young. I remember being really tiny when, at a cousin's dance recital at school, I turned to my mother and said, ‘Someday, I'll be up there!’ I started writing poetry when I was three, training in Indian Classical Music when I was four, piano when I was five I started writing lyrics when I was 12. I also trained under a coach who focused on western contemporary music when I was 16. But I didn't pluck up the courage, and I believe it does take courage, to make my own dream to pursue music seriously until I was about 16 or 17. I decided to finish my BA before moving on to LA to study at Musicians Institute and pursue a career in music. My intent was to get an Associates degree in Vocal Performance, and I graduated top of my class with a faculty awarded ‘Outstanding Performer’ award.
You also write songs. What drives your lyrics?
Life! My experiences in it, as well as the experiences of those around me, drive my lyrics. I like being witty about my lyrics too. I believe the best writing is absolutely honest and unfiltered.
‘Clutch acoustic’ was your recent work. Can you tell us about it more?
I've loved taking several of my releases and reimagining them with fewer bells and whistles. There's something about a song stripped back to just guitar and vocals that always feels really intimate, and really fun. And that's what I did with the acoustic rendition of my latest song Clutch! I really allowed myself to play up those lyrics in my vocal delivery. The video was shot at home - just like the official video for the studio version of the song that came out in May. For the acoustic version, I wanted to bring the ‘outside’ to me since we were still in a lockdown phase, which is why I basically created a little plant oasis for myself for the video.
What kind of music fancies you apart from your genre?
I love Hip Hop, Afrobeat, and Rap music. I've been listening and familiarizing myself specifically with a lot more Afrobeat lately and it's a big learning experience!
What are your upcoming projects?
I have a year of releases lined up for you all, and I'm very excited about the next single, which will be coming early this July!
Any favourite singer, you want to collaborate with?
Definitely more than one! It's always been a dream of mine to work with Jon Bellion, Frank Ocean, Beyonce and lately ChloexHalle. They're all at the very top of my bucket list.
Are you planning to make the Goddess Pop genre big in India?
Most definitely! I think the world could use more empowering, inclusive, female-driven music.
Anything else you want to share?
My final words in any conversation lately have all been ‘I hope you're feeling safe’. I know that is not the reality for a lot of people for a lot of different reasons right now, but I continue to hope nonetheless. I also hope that people continue supporting upcoming artists! No matter what happens in the world, art and its creators will always show up for you, especially when you need to feel supported and heard. And we deeply appreciate readers and listeners that support us right back, especially in times like these! Thank you so much for having me!