Thomson Andrews, desi R&B star

Jun 04, 2014, 08:55 IST | Dhara Vora

From signing in a church choir to cutting his first R&B single, singer Thomson Andrews has truly arrived

Mainstream music in India today — which mostly comprises Bollywood music — has slowly warmed up to international genres of music such as Dubstep, Hip Hop and House due to their commercial viability. This has also led to the rise of Indian musicians looking at these genres. However, while contemporary R&B stars like Justin Timberlake, Usher, Drake and Mariah Carey boast of legions of Indian fans, there aren’t many Indian musicians dabbling in this genre.

Thomson Andrews
Thomson Andrews

Thomson Andrews would like to change this. He has just launched his debut single, People Ain’t Things, where he showcases his R&B chops. “The song is about a boy who has been cheated on by a girl but he is in a better place now. We wanted to keep the feel of the album international and reflect that in the video too,” he says. Paresh Kamath (Kailasa) plays the guitar for this track while Neil Gomes lends notes from his saxophone.

Andrews tells us that all the names who have worked with him on this song have done it at bare minimum cost as they enjoyed the music, which includes Grammy Award winning engineers — Deepak Palikonda from Mumbai and Reuben Cohen from Hollywood. But what got him attracted to R&B of all genres we asked him.

“Being a Catholic, music has been a part of my life since I was five, when I would sing the hymns in church and later, I got to be a part of the choir. The purity of Gospel music led me to the other genres including Soul and R&B,” shares Andrews. Stuck in a nine to five job earlier, it was through choir conductor Celeste Cordo that he got introduced to Clinton Cerejo. Later, he landed his first professional job with AR Rahman. “One thing led to another and today, I have my own single. Someday,
I wish to win a Grammy too. It would be Malad boy’s dream come true,” he admits, with pride.

Andrews was part of the back-up vocal team for movies like 127 Hours and Slumdog Millionaire. He plans to release his next single, Money soon.

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