Tanita Tikaram, the British singer-songwriter, emerged as a notable figure in the late ’80s with her debut album “Ancient Heart.”
Born to Bornean and Fijian parents, Tikaram’s unique blend of soft and Celtic influences set her apart. Hits like “Good Tradition” and “Twist In My Sobriety” made her an iconic presence.
With a career spanning decades, Tikaram’s musical evolution reflects a journey marked by artistic depth and a commitment to individuality.
Who is Tanita Tikaram?
As a remarkable pop singer and lyricist, Tanita Tikaram became widely known after she released her first album titled ‘Ancient Heart’ in 1988.
Born to Bornean and Fijian parents, Tikaram had spent her childhood as a British Army brat until age 12 when they settled in Basingstoke.
After just one performance of We Are Family at a showcase held by her manager in Mean Fiddler, London, she found that major labels were paying attention to her musical career.
Some of the prominent ones include “Good Tradition”, ” Cathedral Song” and “Twist In My Sobriety” which is Tikaram’s signature song.
Notwithstanding its failure to reach the same level of commercial success as “Good Tradition,” however, “Twist In My Sobriety” has gone on to become an iconic representation of Tikaram’s artistry.
Tikaram’s musical journey continued in subsequent albums, including The Sweet Keeper (1990), Lovers In The City (1995), and The Cappuccino Songs( 1988 ), where she delved into a wide array of influences: soul blues, electronica among others.
At the age of almost 50, Tikaram is still excited about her musical path and she states that now she feels free to record an album not worrying if anyone would like or dislike it.
Her forthcoming production, which is slated to break ground in this month’s recording, spells a change of course as that presented by an accomplished artist willing on the artistic frontier and teamwork.
As Tikaram welcomes this landmark, she states with equanimity that “50 is the new 20.”
What happened to Tanita Tikaram?
Tanita Tikaram, a talented singer-songwriter has thus seen a career trajectory that involves artistic development and steady success.
Her debut album “Ancient Heart” (1988) launched Tikaram to meteoric heights of fame and she has traversed the music industry with a remarkable style that juxtaposes powerful vocals against heartfelt lyrics.
As a child of Bornean and Fijian extraction, Tikaram was raised in the British Army with which her approach derived from.
Starting in Basingstoke at age 12, her artistic inspiration found roots despite the unusual setting of living close to firing ranges.
Starting as a child, she began to write songs under the influence of romantic figures like Suzanne Vega, Joni Mitchell and Van Morrison.
Tikaram made her debut with the album “Ancient Heart,” which featured a husky voice and an amalgamation of inspirations.
Working with well-known musicians such as Marc Ribot, who played the guitar for Tom Waits and Helen O’Hara of Dexys Midnight Runner helped the album become number one on the UK Charts which remained there for almost a year.
What was her debut album “Ancient Heart” like?
The first appearance of Tanita Tikaram on the music scene as a brooding teenage superstar, “Ancient Heart”, was released in September 1988.
However, the album demonstrated a rare musical mix and an individual style popularized by Tikaram.
Two producers Peter Van Hooke and Rod Argent, founding members of Zombies participated in the making of this album.
Tom Waits guitarist Marc Ribot and Helen O’Hara of Dexys Midnight Runners, as well Jackson Browne sideman David Lindley on violin; singer-songwriter Paul Brady played mandolin on the album.
This eclectic and multi-faceted supporting cast added to the richness and depth of sound on this album.
The first song, “Good Tradition,” set up an energetic tempo and displayed the Celtic element introduced by Helen O’Hara.
Nevertheless, this song was reported by Tikaram as almost a throwaway even though it turned out to become an important hit.
The album descended even in the realm of a mellow mood as shown with tracks like “Cathedral Song” featuring beautiful classical guitar played by Mitch Dalton and “Sighing Innocents,” where Tikaram contemplated saying that perhaps she could have done it more roughly.
Although “Good Tradition” didn’t achieve as much commercial success, it was the enigmatic and elliptical song ‘Twist In My Sobriety’ that became Tikaram’s signature track.