Sandhya Chari’s “My Roots” is a Celebration of South Asian Culture

The Tamil-American artist’s debut single taps into the traditions of the subcontinent to pay homage to her cross-cultural journey

Mumbai, 4th December 2021: Tamil-American artist Sandhya Chari hails from a family of musicians and dancers. Honouring her history and legacy, her debut independent single “My Roots” which released on 3rd December is a kaleidoscope of her homeland’s diversity. The rising artist is redefining how one claims their origins through this celebratory debut. An influential new voice, Sandhya is forging a connection with the subcontinent’s past, present and future in this crossover track. “My Roots” is a homage to the multiculturalism that is inherent and abundant in South Asia. Breaking barriers, the diasporic artist’s “My Roots” is also a feminist anthem that invokes people to rise in their power.

The multilingual track comprises verses in English, Hindi and Tamil. The music video has encompassed the heritage of South Asia, particularly the regions of India, Pakistan, and Nepal.

A third culture kid, Sandhya first rose to prominence as a YouTuber whose incredible cross-cultural mashups brought her acclaim. Her covers of “High On Love + FRIENDS” and “Munbe Vaa” were celebrated by thousands of viewers. Sandhya was also one of the winners of Academy and Grammy-Award winning musician A.R. Rahman’s #99SongsCoverStar contest; her rendition of “Sofia” was viewed and selected by the maestro himself.

Sandhya’s debut original single “My Roots” is a testament to her passion and vision as a musician. The music video for the empowering single features 15 women from different parts of South Asia, each representing their own unique story and background. The song, much like its themes of representation, feminism, decolonisation and more, encompasses various forms of music that are melded together to create a distinctive sound. Western pop beats, South Indian folk, Classical music, and Bollywood vibes have all been beautifully strung together to create Sandhya’s powerful debut track “My Roots.”

Commenting on the same, Sandhya says “I have always wanted to enter the independent scene with a song and theme that resonated with me. We wanted to showcase South Asian unity on one platform. Media is often divisive when it comes to portraying regions and we have labels such as south and north. We wanted to break that and depict unity, especially in this industry.”

“I wanted to create something powerful. From a classical standpoint for instance, the Revathi ragam is very powerful. I get goosebumps every time I listen to Aigiri Nandini. I wanted to give a homage to brown women and influenced it with pop beats,” she adds.

Watch the song here and immerse yourself in the experience:


-Image credit – Ranjith Kankanala

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