“You’re not that inspired when you’re happy,” Xander Singh, who’s a Clarkliving client and close friend, says matter of factly. “When you’re really happy, it’s hard to write anything interesting because you’re just busy being happy, just living it.” Such is the cathartic experience a lot of artists recognize but don’t really like to admit. Sorrow breeds productivity, since you’re trying to wrench from yourself whatever it is that’s eating away at you. For Singh, his latest album and first full-length solo recording, Muffin, wouldn’t have happened had the relationship that inspired it stayed so peachy.
If you’re familiar with Singh’s name, you probably know him from the indietronica band Passion Pit, with whom he played keyboards. Prior to Passion Pit, Singh was a part of a two-man-band, Pepper Rabbit, and now he’s writing, producing, and scoring for various other artists and projects. After years of touring, Singh got burned out emotionally and physically. Aside from the breakup and the rigors of tour life, he got thrown off the stage during a DJ set and suffered spinal damage that required surgery to correct. The idea of performing for a living had lost its appeal.
With the pressure of trying to sell his songs dissipating, it became easier for Singh to focus on writing. And when he found himself unhappily single and with a therapist who’d just retired, he took that as his cue to sort out his own thoughts via composition. From the beginning, Singh saw Muffin as a personal growth experiment, and never minded if it flew under the radar. “It’s there if you want it,” he says casually, “but no worries if you pass it by.”
The impetus for his performing, it seems, has always been songwriting and storytelling. Singh grew up with a musical theatre background, and although he plays with different genres, he still gravitates toward chronology and fairly traditional storytelling. He learned to play instruments so that he could flesh out his own songwriting and tell his own stories. Even though it’s his focus, the inherent drudgery of creating isn’t lost on Singh. “It’s always really difficult,” he says, “but that last ten percent of the time where you can see the light at the end of the tunnel makes it worth it.” The momentum of making Muffin has reinvigorated his desire to chase that light and keep crawling through the tunnel.
The video for ICU premiered today- read about it here http://floodmagazine.com/42738/premiere-xander-singh-puts-synth-pop-and-his-life-in-icu/ and check out the video below:
Muffin is available through Hit City USA, via www.hitcityusa.com, SoundCloud, and on Apple Music. Keep up with Singh via Twitter @xandersingh.