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  Tejas Menon in the right groove

Tejas Menon in the right groove

| CRIS
Published : Aug 18, 2016, 10:15 pm IST
Updated : Aug 18, 2016, 10:15 pm IST

Tejas Menon’s life was full of fluctuations — from starting a record label, launching a website for computer nerds, working in an ad firm, making short films and becoming an RJ, until he landed in the right place — music

Tejas Menon
 Tejas Menon

Tejas Menon’s life was full of fluctuations — from starting a record label, launching a website for computer nerds, working in an ad firm, making short films and becoming an RJ, until he landed in the right place — music

Tejas Menon was then spending frustrating days in Mumbai. He was reluctant about that move from Pune to Mumbai in the first place. And when he came, he had no place to stay, and he was sleeping on other people’s couches. But somewhere in those couches, two songs got made.

 

5 O’ clock and the morning sun / You’re thinking ‘What the hell have I become ’/ Whatever happened to ‘waiting to happen’ /Well I guess sometimes you’re second to some

He wrote that and called it The Next Best Thing. That song went to the first EP Tejas made, called Small Victories. That was in 2014 when he had newly joined an advertising firm. Now things are much better for him, he’s had a lot of gigs. He is about to come out with an album and he has got used to Mumbai. Having grown up the first 18 years of his life in Dubai, he has but vague ideas about the homeland of his parents, both of whom hail from Kerala.“Both my parents are army kids and they were constantly on the move. They have been to Madras (as Chennai was known back then), Lucknow and other places. Mom ended up in Hyderabad and dad in Pune. But then dad took off to Dubai and that’s where I was raised. I was in fact born in Hyderabad, but was barely there for three months,” says Tejas, a day after a late night gig in Mumbai. He has just quit his job at the ad firm to focus on the new album called Make it happen which he plans to crowd-fund and bring out in January next year. “There will be 10 to 11 songs in it, and I will be bringing out a single first,” he says. There was a time Tejas didn’t know what he wanted to do. Even now, he says he has multiple interests. He has started a record label called Kadak Apple Records, with his manager Krish Makhija, to promote young independent artistes. He has also launched a website for computer nerds and geeks. But his main focus is on music. “I have always known I would be a musician. I used to sing in school,” he says. It was a few years ago that he has had his first gig at NH7 Weekender. It was for him a revelation attending the music festival, seeing so much of original music in India. He was at the time working as a radio jockey hosting an English show, while also going to college in Pune. That’s where he came back to when he decided to leave Dubai and come to India. “I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do so I chose to take a degree in Economics, because that was the subject I was good at. That and English,” Tejas says.

 

Two years later, he left the RJ job and took his Masters in media and communication. He was also making short videos and documentaries on the side. “It is after my Masters that I decided to move to Mumbai. I was scared about it, but I knew I had to,” he says. And that’s when the song Brave got made. It ends with the line: Try to run away but you can’t cause you’ve got to be brave. It was also the time he wrote the song Philosophy. Plus there was Ruby that he wrote some time ago. Tejas clubbed these three songs and two he wrote in his frustrated Mumbai days — The Next Best Thing and Until the End — and brought out Small Victories. All that while, Krish was making demo shoots and videos of Tejas and these got popular. Tejas got introduced as the new face in the block, and people took note. He got more gigs — Ragasthan Music Festival, the Vans New Wave Festival, Kala Ghoda Arts Festival, and Escape Festival Ladakh.

 

He has also had shows in Kerala — in Kochi and Alappuzha and Thiruvananthapuram. He knows there are his ancestral homes somewhere in Palakkad from where his dad hails, and in Thalassery where his mom comes from. But it is only with his grandmother that Tejas ever exchanged bits of Malayalam. He was pleasantly surprised to know that the metal band The Down Troddence is also from Kannur district.