As we dive into another episode of “Lankan Plug”, we would like to remind you about the constant effort and creativity put in by these local artists who have constantly devoted their time to perfect out their tracks to provide us with free and flexible access via social platforms so that we can stream or listen to their music anytime, anywhere!
Today we will be featuring a star-in-the-making- an artist who has defined consistency in his work like no other; Arnon Ray Pereira!
Coming from a widespread musical background, Arnon tells us that he started to create his own originals only a few years ago; “I have always been surrounded by music growing up; my family is all musical and my grandparents still sing and perform in a Jazz band, so I’ve always been singing and playing music”. He made his debut release back in 2016 with a song named “Magazines” which was written by him and produced by his good friend, Nisho Fernando. However, although he was always creating and composing tunes and melodies, he wasn’t very consistent in releasing them; “It was probably a confidence thing and I was trying to find my sound and a vibe I was comfortable with” says the 28-year-old. As mentioned earlier, consistency is key when making and releasing music for this young lad and therefore, the releasing of his original work officially began in November last year when he put out a self-produced track called “A Place Called Home” which ended up hitting the number one spot on YES FM's Home-grown Top 15 Local Radio Show!
Being an independent artist, Arnon too had challenges to face and for any artist, it can be rather hard and daunting in the very beginning. According to him, the whole process eventually became easier when he set some goals and targets for himself which allowed him to make progress and develop overtime, later on giving him the ability to find his style and voice.
After immense observance, we can safely say that Arnon Ray Pereira plays a very solid Global Music Platform Game on streaming sites such as Spotify, Apple Music etc. We requested for some wise words of advice and this is what he had to say; “Be consistent. Spend time creating original content and finding your aesthetic and sound”. Even for him, it certainly didn’t take overnight to discover his ability to write music at an professional level, but he somehow had to force himself, when he started, to compose beats from what he let out musically and now, it just follows through; “You have to live it breathe it have music for breakfast – and listen to new music for inspiration, there is so much out there!”
We also inquired about how, in the digital age, social media has helped him to further promote his songs and other things related to music and he emphasized on how education on this subject is very important! “You have to stay current and move with the developing landscape of digital marketing and social media” mentioned Arnon who also told us that fully utilizing your socials is equally vital or else, you will be left behind and find it very difficult to stay in par with other fellow artists/musicians in the industry.
While actively participating in the English Local Scene rather frequently, he told us at HI!! Online that the community is growing pretty fairly and we get to see loads of artists pushing out originals on a regular basis. He also went on to discuss about his thoughts on live performances happening outside Colombo- “I love the performing in the South during season. It’s such a different atmosphere than Colombo with some great venues really pushing the live music scene and giving local artists a chance to perform to larger crowds!”. He also shared his thoughts on the “open mic” culture which occasionally takes place in Colombo; “Back then, there was a big culture of open mic nights where you could go, sing or play and there was no pressure to have a whole set list to prepare. When you’re starting out this is nice because you can try it out and work on your confidence if you’re a bit shy. You don’t get these nights around Colombo as much as you used to”. Unfortunately, we tend to see a small downfall in open mic nights nowadays mainly due the Corona Virus situation but many of us also see how this trend has died down over the past couple of years. We hope that things will settle down pretty soon and start functioning smoothly so that upcoming and talented artists can work on their stage skills once again by attending and participating in more open mics or live shows held in the near future.
Arnon tell us that he doesn’t have a specific memorable moment when performing but considers every time he gets on stage a special moment as he loves and embraces every minute of it!- “I love the energy and rush you get, it can be quite a liberating experience and you can let go and just do what you love”. The response from fans is quite stimulating and he has been able to find a small community who can relate to his sounds in such a short span of time! He openly appreciated them for always being supportive whenever he releases a new track and for constantly backing him up!
His latest single is an indie-pop track called “Let the wind” which was released on YouTube pretty recently and this song is apparently straight out of his upcoming EP! Arnon also launched his own small segment called New Release Thursday where he hopes to release a new track every Thursday evening going forward. His full catalogue of releases is available on YouTube while his Spotify and Apple Music channels hold a more curated version of this.
Listed below are his socials for you to follow so you can be more up to date with his music:
YouTube: Arnon Ray Pereira
Facebook Page: Arnon Ray Pereira
Today’s “Lankan Plug” got a tonne of wisdom for you! Here’s some inspiration going out to all you young individuals;
“Be yourself at all times! You might lose people along the way but if you are thriving and hard-working, you need these little moments to groom yourself into the artist/songwriter you are meant to be. Until then, keep writing. I learnt that waiting for inspiration is bogus! Waiting for the universe to help you out with everything is a waste of time. As humans, we have a habit of procrastinating a lot but embrace life and the world we live in and keep working hard to move past that procrastination & day dreaming by putting a pen to paper. If you’re not feeling inspired, practice your instrument; practice singing; fight through it!
“We are perfectionists and that holds some of us back. Throw it out of the window and learn to make mistakes. Learn to fail, learn to be satisfied with whatever project you are working on and let people see you progress your story through your music.
“To write better music, learn to wear your heart on your sleeve! Embrace the bad and sad times; take a minute a day, talk to yourself and listen to the voice inside of you. Open your heart to new feelings and emotions! It will help you along the way. Become comfortable with who you are as a person and an artist! We are all individuals with different perspectives and that’s what keeps the music game interesting! There is no right and wrong – it is just preference”.