Rhythm Of Love: In Conversation With Kunwang Wanghum - Eastern Mirror
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Rhythm of Love

Rhythm of Love: In conversation with Kunwang Wanghum

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By Purnungba Longkumer Updated: Apr 04, 2024 10:00 pm
Kunwang Wanghum
Kunwang Wanghum

Singer and musician Kunwang Wanghum, hailing from Nagaland, has captivated music lovers with his soulful melodies and the ability to seamlessly blend diverse cultural influences. A member of the renowned band “5 Minutes Band,” Wanghum feels that every element around him has a story to share.

His unique style draws inspiration from his rich cultural roots while embracing contemporary trends. In an exclusive interview with Eastern Mirror, Wanghum shared insights into his musical journey, the challenges he has faced, and his vision about the future of music industry in Nagaland.

Eastern Mirror: Congratulations on achieving the first runner-up position at the Fusion of Bands competition! What made you to participate in it solo, despite being a member of the 5 Minutes Band?

Kunwang Wanghum: Thank you so much for your wishes! The 5 Minutes Band was scheduled to perform at the event. However, due to the tight schedules and commitments of our band members, we couldn’t make it. So I took part in the contest and tried it out. My bandmates gave me their full support throughout the contest, and I was able to turn that love and support into something positive.

Kunwang Wanghum
Kunwang Wanghum

Eastern Mirror: Being a member of the 5 Minutes band, how do you balance your solo projects with your collaborative work within the band?

Kunwang Wanghum: 5 Minutes Band will always be my priority, and regarding my solo project, the members of the band are a collective of individual artists. We support each other in every solo project we undertake. Balancing between the band and solo projects isn’t difficult for us. Some songs require the full band for performance, while others are best suited for solo renditions. I believe music is meant to be shared, not owned.

Eastern Mirror: How did you discover your passion for music and decide to pursue it professionally?

Kunwang Wanghum: I started singing as a child and was particularly interested in singing multilingual songs. Although my childhood was rooted in English classic rock, my attention gradually shifted towards Hindi music as I found myself drawn to it.

Kunwang Wanghum
Kunwang Wanghum

Eastern Mirror: How do you think your background and experiences growing up in Nagaland have shaped your musical journey, style and lyrical themes?

Kunwang Wanghum: We, the Nagas, have a rich cultural heritage and are united as different tribes. We also have our own traditional songs that are unique and special. Our language influences our tone, and this makes dealing with Western and Bollywood songs more interesting and challenging.

Any young artist will feel a lot of superficial expectations around them at first, which will overwhelm their confidence and creativity. Always believe in yourself and ignore any negative comments or vibes you receive. The most effective way to overcome this is to move forward.

Kunwang Wanghum
Kunwang Wanghum

Eastern Mirror: Can you share any challenges you’ve faced as a musician in Nagaland, and how you’ve overcome them?

Kunwang Wanghum: It is difficult to pursue music as a full-time career in Nagaland, and I believe that it requires more support from the general public by attending shows and concerts.

Since we no longer sell music, our only platforms are online streaming and public performances, but the good news is that I am seeing some changes and improvements these days, and I believe we are maturing steadily. In the near future, I believe that music in Nagaland has the potential to evolve into a full-time career path. Nagaland could emerge as a prominent stage for both current artists like us and future talents.

Eastern Mirror: How do you strike a balance between staying true to your cultural roots and embracing contemporary music trends?

Kunwang Wanghum: Music transcends boundaries; language is no obstacle. Consider K-Pop: though we may not grasp the language fully, children joyfully sing along. Authenticity is key; create music with what you possess and understand. True music speaks its own universal language.

Eastern Mirror: How do you think the music scene in Nagaland has evolved over the years, and how do you envision its future?

Kunwang Wanghum: Music in Nagaland has evolved and improved over the last few years, and I would like to acknowledge TaFMA for taking the initiative to promote upcoming musicians in Nagaland and doing their best to create opportunities for artists and make a difference. This, I believe, is the tipping point for developing a thriving music industry.

Eastern Mirror: What message or emotions do you hope to convey to your audience through your music?

Kunwang Wanghum: Nagaland’s uniqueness stems from its diversity, which presents us with an opportunity. We Nagas are always united and enjoy each other’s cultures, which gave rise to the term “Naga Culture.” To express this emotion, we can combine traditional music with Western and Indian music to create our own unique style of music for the world. All I can ask of our audience is that they listen to our local artists more. They are truly beautiful.

Eastern Mirror: What inspired you to explore different languages and dialects in your music, such as Hindi, Konyak and Nagamese?

Kunwang Wanghum: As previously mentioned, music transcends boundaries, and language barriers do not hinder its reach. Aside from Hindi, English, and my native dialect, as well as Nagamese, I am unfamiliar with other languages. However, Hindi and Nagamese are widely understood across various regions of our state and serve as effective means to share our music and convey messages. Nevertheless, if given the opportunity to learn additional languages, I would readily embrace it.

Eastern Mirror: Any upcoming projects or collaborations that your fans can look forward to?

Kunwang Wanghum: Yes, indeed, the 5 Minutes Band will be releasing new songs and cover renditions this summer. I encourage our audience to stay tuned and continue following us for updates. Additionally, we are also planning some solo projects.

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By Purnungba Longkumer Updated: Apr 04, 2024 10:00:55 pm
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