Mhachen Yanthan a.k.a Achen is a 23-year old musician from Nagaland who is at present pursuing his music degree at Margaret Shishak School of Music, Patkai Christian College.
Achen credits music and mother as his two biggest inspirations who have always been his companions and comforters through all times.
His musical journey started at a tender age when he became part of a children praise group called ‘Kids Kingdom Praise’ in Wokha at the age of 9. And at 10, he won the first season of Campus Icon singing contest held in Wokha. He was also the youngest participant. Yanthan was also one of the finalists of Nagaland’s popular children singing contest, Kids for Fame.
Yanthan’s debut ‘Yanthan Brothers’ is about the real life conversations he had with his close friends.
Yanthan believes that with increased support and decreased criticism among the Nagas, upcoming musicians of Nagaland can make the state proud.
EASTERN MIRROR: Let’s start off with a little background information. How did you start off?
Mhachen Yanthan: My initiation into the world of music from a young age is all owed to my mother. Growing up in a humble background with four brothers and a sister, pursuing music seemed to be luxury I could not afford. But, my mom made it happen. She is also the one from whom I learnt my first few guitar chords. She is not a musician but a mother who genuinely loves music and a big fan of Dolly Parton.
Without the support of my mom and siblings, my musical journey would have never come this far.
EASTERN MIRROR: Your inspirations?
Mhachen Yanthan: Music and my mother are two biggest inspirations in my life and has always been my constant companion and comforter through all the times life threw curve balls at me. I love all genres of music, but particularly draws inspiration from G-Eazy, Zyan Malik, Justin Bieber, Charlie Puth, The Weekend, Bruno Mars and John Mayer.
EASTERN MIRROR: As mentioned in Indihut, you seem to have connections with various bands too. How would you like to enlighten your fans on your musical journey?
Mhachen Yanthan: First of all, we formed a band called ‘Lapwings’ to participate in a rock contest labeled ‘Rock Hunt’ back in 2012 which 2qs held at Wokha town but unfortunately we parted ways because we had to carry on with our studies in different places. When I was studying in Shillong and met few circle of friends in a church and formed a band where we worked together. There onwards, we were given the opportunity to lead the praise and worship in a youth rally held at Longidang Village under wokha district. Finally, we came to a decision to continue praising the Lord under the band name ‘Acts 29’, through the music and keep the band alive.
EASTERN MIRROR: What are your main focuses when it comes to composing?
Mhachen Yanthan: My compositions are based on my bad times, struggles, hardships, youth life, my childhood days and mainly keeping in mind that it should inspire the people who have experienced similar situations in life.
EASTERN MIRROR: What’s the best piece of advice you’ve been given as an artist?
Mhachen Yanthan: One day, I was feeling discouraged by the negative comments from the naysayers, a close friend of mine advised me “no matter what people say about you, as long as you have the talent, aim and dedication, you will be successful in your journey and prove them wrong.
EASTERN MIRROR: Seeing the growing number of musicians in the state..what do you think is needed for those who wishe to take ‘music’ as a career and to compete with the rest of the world.
Mhachen Yanthan: As a matter of fact Nagaland is blessed with so many upcoming talented musicians but as we all know, our state is yet to catch up with the rest of the world in the field of music industry. I think, one needs to work harder, be more creative instead of just singing and playing songs and tunes composed by various artists.
EASTERN MIRROR: EASTERN MIRROR: Which according to you is the best platform for the musicians of the state who wishes to promote their talents?
Mhachen Yanthan: For the musicians who wishes to promote their music, one can request the Indihut to get their music featured on their website which at present is a vogue in our state and the entire Northeast. Indihut offers artists to promote their music through different ways such as advertising it on different social networking sites and various newspapers.
EASTERN MIRROR: What is your debut single ‘Yanthan Brothers’ all about?
Mhachen Yanthan: My debut single ‘Yanthan Brothers’ is not just about my siblings, but is for everyone whose life story resembles mine. ‘Yanthan Brothers’ is inspired from conversations I have had with my close-knit circle of friends. Our meetings are often repleted with tales of life, childhood, hardships, families, and their dreams and ambitions. I named it ‘Yanthan Brothers’ because of the strong bond that I share with friends and consider them as part of life and family.
I believe there are many people out there who have the similar circle of friends with similar bonding and hope this song would resonate their lives too.
EASTERN MIRROR: What is your view on the approach/support given by the people of Nagaland towards upcoming musicians?
Mhachen Yanthan: Ok… Well, according to me the bitter truth among most of the people of Nagaland are ‘criticizing the upcoming musicians’. We do not expect everyone to be our fans but instead of criticizing the musicians, our people should atleast show support especially when a musician goes outside the state to perform representing Nagaland. We need support from our Naga brothers and sisters.
EASTERN MIRROR: If given a chance to perform with an artist/band who would you choose and why?
Mhachen Yanthan: If given such an opportunity, I’d wish to perform with the talented and beautiful duet I.e Virie and Zaza because they have angelic and breathtaking voices and a perfect collaboration with the gifted concert pianist, Nise Meru on the piano.
EASTERN MIRROR: What should fans look forward too for the rest of 2018 and beyond?
Mhachen Yanthan: I would like my fans to look forward for a better and refined music in the days to come and request my fans to keep supporting me because without their support it’ll be hard for me to deliver my music to other parts of the world.