I had the pleasure of interviewing
Anand Bhatt, the First Indian-American to walk the Latin Grammy red carpet.
Anand has been featured on TV with Usher, Romeo Santos, Steven Tyler, Queen Latifah and more, and is known for his signature “Latindian Style” music.
Thank you so much for joining us! Let’s show everyone you’re a normal human being. What are your hobbies, favorite places to visit, pet peeves? Tell us about YOU when you’re not at the office.
“Other than being an “out of control” foodie, lately I have been obsessed with meditation and philosophy. I have to pry myself from books lately to get to the computer or studio and answer emails/work on projects.”
Can you tell us something about you that few people know?
“I might be the only person to truly believe that Indian food in America is more “authentic” than Indian Food in India (it is, btw).
“Indian food in India hasn’t been Indian in a long time.”
Do you have any exciting projects going on right now?
“And of course still supporting/promoting the songs from latest LATINDIAN STYLE album.”
Many people say success correlates with the people you meet in your life. Can you describe two that most impacted your success and why.
“Jim Martin from Faith No More. When I was young, he took the time to educate me on the business, collaborate with me, and just be all around cool. He was an amazing source of wisdom.
“Lighting Director, Rich Locklin.
“Not just in an industry way, even though he has worked with all the greats and has also been a wealth of career knowledge — BUT he also has that “spirituality and character is important” thing down that most people don’t get to realize until it is too late.”
Leaders always seem to find ways to overcome their weaknesses. Can you share one or two examples of how you work outside of your comfort zone to achieve success?
“Everything I do seems outside of my comfort zone.
“I am in my head most of the time, so I push myself to be social and show up almost every day. I actually don’t like it ;), but you’ve gotta do what you’ve gotta do.”
What are your “3 Lessons I Learned from My Most Memorable Failure”
“That would be my first TV interview in Spanish. I botched it terribly. Hahahaha, I was unintelligible. Lessons learned that allowed me to ace future interviews:
1) “Never overestimate your abilities, nor underestimate your inability to navigate challenges on the fly.
2) “It is OK to compromise your ego and ask for help and even look stupid if it allows you to do a better job.
3) “Work out talking points with a publicist. I believe in this for everyone, regardless of industry or job title. Believe it or not this helps with any and all future situations once you’ve worked this out and got it down.”
What unfiltered advice can you give aspiring stars regarding how to avoid common mis-fires in starting their career?
“Don’t listen to ANYBODY!
“Especially not your friends and family. I know it sounds harsh, but there is a lot of misinformation in the entertainment industry.
“And, I suspect now in many industries. Even if they mean well, people tend to whisper horribly destructive things in your ear, either putting you down or WORSE, artificially propping you up and talking you into decisions based on ego/arrogance.
“SELF-Assessing your position and your realistic leverage within your industry with as close to 100% humility as possible is KEY.”
What is the best lesson you learned from your worst boss?
“That you cannot count on external circumstance. Everything is unstable and impermanent. People sort of understand this intuitively and can sometimes cause harm by making decisions out of fear, yourself included.”
What is one “efficiency hack” you use consistently in your life to keep your time and mind free to focus on your strengths and passions?
“Don’t make work a priority. I get around this by dedicating my mornings and free time to everything BUT work. It’s the paradox of “trying not to try.” Granted, I can be bad at this — but when I can do it, it is a hack that works every time.”
All actors or musicians have sleepless nights. We have a term we use with our clients called the “2 a.m. moment.” It’s when you’re wide awake and thinking not-so-positive thoughts about your business choices and future. Can you describe a 2 a.m. moment (or moments) you’ve had and how you overcame the challenges?
“Oh yeah! Mine are usually at 3 AM. Or, 5 PM. Or, 8 AM… Hahaha. I’m not going to tell you the actual not-so-positive thoughts I was challenged with on this occasion, but that and all other challenges are overcome by analyzing the validity of the thoughts. If they happen to be correct (which they rarely, if ever, are), and it is something I want to do something about, I can create a strategy right then and there to remedy.
“HOWEVER, at the risk of sounding like Jim Carrey, I don’t really believe in free will nor in separate linear time where ‘events’ unfold past-to-future, especially as a result of action, so… it is easy to for me to disregard any regret over “choices” and concerns over the “future.”
Nobody likes to fail, and we sure don’t like to admit we failed. Can you describe a moment when you confided your most closely-held business issues/problems to someone close to you, and how the conversation(s) helped you work through the issue?
“That would be the aforementioned botched first Spanish interview on Univision. My sister was there, and I talked to her about it. Despite my usual advice of not listening to others when it comes to career advice, she actually was a great help in revealing to me the information that my audience would actually like to know in interviews — and therefore what questions I could expect in future interviews, all in Spanish. It was very helpful. I let my publicist know and we worked out talking points, and sometimes an on-the-fly-red-carpet translator.”
What’s on the drawing board for your next venture?
“Perhaps some Remixes of Latindian Style . I also started revisiting my rock roots. After all, I may sing tropical romantic Latin pop now, but I got my start in rock and metal and plan on recording and releasing new songs. There are no rules nor anyone to please. I can get as creative as I want, because you have to be a dedicated fan to know to look for it in the first place.”
What is the best way our readers can follow you on social media?
(OR www.youtube.com/anandbhatt depending on what country you’re in)
This was awesome! Thank you so much for joining us!
Originally published at medium.com