London based indie singer Latir Thakur’s voice encapsulates, love, loss and everything in between. His sound has been described as neo-soul with a touch of hip-hop. While Latir's authentic writing style has seen him gain fans worldwide. Guestlist had a chat with the up and coming singer about his inspirations, working with BGT winner Tokio Myers, love and new music.
So we are here in Latir’s studio...
It is surprisingly warm in here and really unique & cool, I can imagine a lot of cool stuff happens in this room.
Welcome to the hub, I don’t know what the name of it is yet, maybe the black room.
Now that we are sitting comfortably. Let’s put it out there, if you could live on any planet apart from Earth, what planet would you live on?
Maybe Saturn, just because it has rings around it and it looks big and cool. I can imagine myself skateboarding around the rings. And if it's moving around as well when I skateboard it would be going up and I would be going down.
So just being really dizzy going around and around...
But if I lived in space and I was able to be on that planet, I wouldn’t be dizzy because I would already be compatible enough to live there!
Okay, this is just getting too sciency. Let’s talk about music, when did you realise you wanted to sing?
I have been singing my whole life. I have been pushed to sing as a kid, there were times where my dad was teaching me. At uni I didn’t do music, I actually did Economics, but when I got into my second year I was recording stuff for fun, then I realised why am I here? I need to be doing music.The frustration has helped with the passion, I have seen what it’s like to do it. It was basically sometime in uni after a long relationship as well.
So relationships inspire your music?
Yes, they do but it’s also everything I go through, literally friendships, talks, relationships, family, the weather sometimes, the countries I go to and visit, spiritual things, everything. I write about love a lot, I wouldn’t say that it’s my go to but as a singer growing up you hear so many love songs that it becomes almost second nature to write them.
What aspects of love do you write about?
I have written about the good part of relationships, before I even got into the relationship, before I knew the girl, whilst I was in the relationship maybe 6 months in and at the end of the relationship, after the relationship, how I feel a year later, that’s literally how much I write about. But don’t get me wrong I don’t only write about love, but it’s a main topic to write about in my life.
Who are your greatest influences?
Wow. I would say as a kid it was John Legend, Michael Jackson, Pharell Williams, Justin Timberlake, Kanye West, that whole generation of up and coming, not quite commercial but urban music. People who were fresh and different and not too extreme, I never listened to extreme hip-hop or grime growing up it was a lot of indie. That was like a rude awakening because I got to uni and I was inspired by Nick Hakim, Bon Iver, Daughter. But I was influenced by jazz a lot as well, so like Frank Sinatra. Also, Brazilian Jazz like João Gilberto and Stan Getz and music of more depth and less commercial, not that commercial can’t be deep.
So what would you say is your style?
I am an enigma, joking. It’s a mix between my passions. Me and my producer would always laugh because the first question he would ask me was, when we make music do you want to go towards the hip-hop make your own style urban direction or do you want to go towards the pop direction because your voice is high. Obviously, I want to go in my own direction, I would much rather develop my style coming from an indie background.
'Juvenile Youth' and 'Golden Gate' are the beginnings of my style and now its growing to a point where I am so confident with what I am and what I want to do. And that is the softer side of jazz, I grew up listening to indie, rnb a lot and hip hop and those four things are now all incorporated. But also, a blend of poetry. I was doing poetry before music which helped so much. My sister, brother, mother and I were all poets before we did anything else. I remember my first poem in Year 10, the first one I wrote in English, literally the first two lines.
Go on then...
It was like “I sauntered down a desolate street hoping to catch a note in the midnight air” and that was the first line I wrote. I can’t remember what I was inspired by. But poetry has been a massive part of my music, you will hear that when more songs come out because there’s so much to come out.
What is to come? Your collaboration with Tokio?
Tokio and I are actually genuinely close friends. When we first met, within a month he was like you do you want to come to Cambodia with me to sing and I was like I have only got two songs, what do you mean? But he just believed in what I do and he was already on his way up. He is very much like a big brother to me as well because he is doing things that I am yet to do so I am inspired by him watching the path he is taking.
In terms of music, we have written over 10 songs, one of the songs we wrote together is now on his album. The song ‘To Be Loved’ was written 3-4 years ago, back when I had a baby voice. He told me I am going to put this on the album, I was like what! He had like a 38-part violin orchestra and a kids’ choir, he had the resources to change it. All in Abbey Road where people like the Beatles and Pink Floyd recorded and he has had a lot of madness going on and I was watching like this is crazy. We just like to create and every now and again we have a song that is just timeless compared to the others. So ‘To Be Loved’ was one of them that stood the test of time.
But in terms of myself there is a lot coming, this year I have just only released a video and 'Juvenile Youth' as a single, so technically I only have one single out which is crazy!
But there is a plan in place we are just trying to finish singles and I’ve got this EP idea. It’s all coming, and I am very blessed to have friends like Tokio and other friends that I am collaborating with. I know it’s been quiet on social media but it’s coming. Just expect a mix between my love for guitar and poetry and stuff with my love for hip-hop and gas music. Loud stadium vibes, expect both of them merged together.
We are all looking forward to that, hopefully, you will be releasing some new stuff next year or a bit earlier if we are lucky.
Definitely, not hopefully, that’s 1000% releasing something next year and shoutout Guestlist! Expect a lot from me because I am raring to go, I have been raring to go my whole life.
We are very excited to hear it.
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