In an attempt to make it big in an already crowded marketplace, entrepreneurs often find themselves working around the clock to perform at their best. Startup culture requires wake-hustle-sleep. But the spirit of an artist is above all.
“…Writers, artists, dreamers and strangers force us to see the world differently.”
If artists are the dreamers, entrepreneurs are the doers. But Tushar Vashisht, co-founder and CEO of HealthifyMe, is both.
The entrepreneur recently made headlines not for his decade-old startup, but for his original music releases. Tushar, with the guitarist Raghu Ramasubramanianco-composed and produced two singles, Kahaani and Ud Ja Re.
When YS Life caught up with Tushar on a Zoom call, we asked him to choose between entrepreneurship and being an artist.
“It’s like asking me to choose between rhythm and tone. You can’t have one without having the other. I would like to believe that entrepreneurship is my heart and my mind, but music is my soul,” he said.
Whereas Ud Ja Re brought Tushar into the limelight, this is not his first original composition. A musician since his earliest memories, Tushar began learning Hindustani classical music when he was only six years old.
In reality, Ud Ja Re is Tushar’s seventh original song. Alumnus of the University of Pennsylvania, Tushar was part of the acapella group Penn Massala. He co-wrote Pehchan, appearing on an album of the same name. He then helped Penn Masala win the award for best college acapella in North America. It was also the first Hindi song to win the best college acapella in the United States. He also wrote Main Tanha and co-author Jeet Le Jahan for Penn Masala and post-graduate, respectively.
Interestingly, Tushar’s first composition was born on stage when he was only 18 years old. He performed cry for peacean original of him, on national television on the occasion of Gandhi Jayanti.
A chance encounter
“Since I co-founded HealthifyMe, I haven’t had as much bandwidth to write or compose songs,” he says. With a friend from Penn Masala, Tushar composed a remix of Rehna You and shape of you for their 10th university reunion. But that was it.
The pandemic and a chance encounter with Raghu prompted him to pursue his hobby full-time.
Raghu, who plays guitar for singer-songwriter Lucky Ali, was performing at a Sofar Sounds concert in Bengaluru with a jazz fusion quartet when he met Tushar.
“It was rather complex music with mixed bars and lots of key changes,” Raghu recalls. After the show, Tushar approached Raghu with a video of him improvising the latter’s music on stage, “without knowing any sense of form or structure,” Raghu says.
They connected almost immediately. A few meetings and two years later, Ud Ja Re has been freed.
For Tushar, his greatest cheerleader continues to be his wife, Neha. A fan since his first stage performances, Neha has further pushed the entrepreneur to take his hobby just as seriously.
Source of inspiration: life
The seven songs Tushar has written and composed so far are based on his life and experiences.
“Ud Ja Re is a song about my life as an entrepreneur and that of Raghu as a musician. It’s about taking the leap to your passion… Entrepreneurs like me have taken that leap by quitting their usual job to start something new and pursue a goal,” Tushar said. YS Life.
Kahaani, on the other hand, is to lose and find love. Again, inspired by his life’s journey. In the same way, cry for peacewhich has not yet been made public, has its roots in the Hindu-Muslim conflict.
Tushar’s music has a strong classical Indian and Hindustani underlay. Based on the classical, his songs always explore Sufi and folkloric elements, with a fusion of jazz and rock.
Tushar, both entrepreneur and artist, has only one mission in mind: to create an impact and make the world a better place.
“With HealthifyMe, I wanted to create an impact in people’s lives. Likewise, I want to inspire people to find their purpose and passion through my music… This will help me achieve my higher purpose,” he says.
Currently, Tushar is working on some new songs and hopes to collaborate with more musicians and professionals.
Last Diwali, while down with COVID-19, Tushar wrote a song inspired by a son’s letter to his mother, apologizing for not coming home during the festivities and making sure he was fine. While he has already written and composed the song, Tushar is waiting for the time to produce and release it. He is also working on another song based on his personal experience of marriage.
Talking about who inspires him, Tushar names legends such as Abida Parveen, Bhemsen Joshi and Pandit Jasraj. More recently, he admired Arijit Singh and Hariharan. Before the pandemic, Tushar took music lessons at Omkarnath Havaldar.
“Although HealthifyMe takes up most of my mental space, I’m also passionate about music and songwriting,” says Tushar. So far he has created one song per year, but in the future he wants to increase this to one song per quarter.
“I don’t really have a long-term agenda in my life. My life has been a path of chance discovery,” Tushar concludes.