The Laung Gawacha Girl – Avneet Khurmi

The Laung Gawacha Girl – Avneet Khurmi

You might know Avneet as the amazing singer in Nucleya’s famous song, ‘Laung Gawacha’ and ‘Aaja’, but Feministaa discovered a whole new side of this super talented girl!

Born and brought up in Chandigarh, Avneet was an auditor with Deloitte for four and a half years before she went to pursue her MBA at INSEAD, while simultaneously working on her songs!

When and how did you get introduced to music?

“Much of my childhood was spent concentrating on academics, sports, and other extra-curricular activities. I was never trained as a musician. I remember coming back home from school every day, turning on Winamp, singing and recording my voice, and playing it back to myself to check how I sounded – it was a routine and my brother used to give me company. It was in 2013 though, when I moved to Gurgaon, that I got acquainted with the Delhi karaoke circuit. It was perfect – I could sing whatever I liked to an audience every single week.”

Her future band mate and colleague at Deloitte – Ishaan Juneja, happened to hear her at one such karaoke night and hence started the journey of Two’s A Crowd. The electro/pop/ambient project with singles such as Get Over It, Lovers on the Moon and Crystallized not only caught attention of the audience but found a regular spot on the local radio stations.

Avneet performed professionally for the first time in April 2013 at Blue Frog, Delhi, as a lead vocalist with Two’s A Crowd and her first live performance with Nucleya was in June 2016 at the IIFA Stomp in Madrid, Spain.

Her parents always had her back. “It’s probably because they treated it as another one of my million passions”, she says. Her father also recommended her auditioning for Voice of Punjab.

“Not every dad stands in the sun for 6 hours to wait for the auditions to get over. Today, he’s the one who keeps me updated on what’s going on with my songs on social media”

You have worked as an Auditor with Deloitte, how were you shuffling between singing and your work?

“I was never the kind of person who would just stick to one thing. I wanted to be the jack of all trades ever since my childhood, but you slowly realize you only have 24 hours in a day. Work life balance held the utmost importance to me while I was at Deloitte but a lot was dependent on getting to a level where I could be trusted with the quality of my work.”

Avneet was a top performer at Deloitte. She worked hard enough to earn trust of her supervisors – because at the end of the day, they knew work was going to get done well and on time. She always had something to look forward to when she returned home from work, which she believes is highly important when one is living an independent life away from home.

“I was an auditor by day and a singer by night. I didn’t sleep much but who cared as long as I was getting to live the dream. There were times I would run for sound check, come back and send out files, then go perform.”

What sacrifices have you made in the journey?

“A lot of times I had to say no to weekday gigs because I had to be at work, other times I just wished I had more time to work on music – I just never had enough time. I was in B-school in France when Bass Rani was released. It’s not a very pleasant feeling when you’re sitting in class trying to make head and tail of the Uncertainty, Data and Judgement class when you could be singing in front of thousands of people at Ganpati Visarjan (where the album was launched) and touring all over India.”

Did you ever think to take up music full time?

“Oh all the time, I still think about it almost every waking hour of the day. I step back though, because I feel like doing that might destroy its value for me in life. I just want to make music at my own pace, no deadlines, no limitations, just pure music from the heart and I definitely don’t need to have it as a full time career to make that possible.”

The ‘Laung Gawacha’ girl doesn’t like to settle for less and handles both her passions with ace.

“I don’t want to do music to pay the bills, I want to do it to make people happy. Of course if the money comes, nothing like it.”

How did the partnership with Nucleya happen?

“Udyan and I first met at a documentary shoot on the electronic music scene in India. I was picked (yay!) as one of his 4 biggest fans to be featured on it. It was during one of our conversations that I suggested he should try and venture into Punjabi.”

Avneet feels that this freedom is a huge sign of respect and belief in a musician’s work.

What message would you like to give to the women who are looking to fulfill unconventional dreams?

“When you’re 60 you don’t want to be looking back at that opportunity you missed because you had to be studying for an exam, or had work to finish.”

“There’s so much in this world to see and do, go find your niche and kill it. What do you have to lose anyway?”

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