We had the good fortune of connecting with Tasneem Islam and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Tasneem, do you have any habits that you feel contribute to your effectiveness?
Developing balance by improving my time management skills has been crucial in my development as an artist and manager of my own business. Earlier in my career, I needed to find a balance between my “day job” and my dream. Being overworked only took away from my musical aspirations, so I created a schedule that would be realistic but also give me enough wiggle room for life’s surprises. This took a few years to solidify, but practicing patience with myself has been another habit that has helped me succeed. It’s a constant process, though! I still struggle sometimes with overfilling my days, so everything I’ve learned about time management continually guides me.
Time management is so important! Alright, so what sets you apart in your professional work?
A few things. So much of my art is about how I relate to others and the world around me, especially through the lens of my culture. Being a Bengali woman in the music industry used to make me feel like a fish out of water, but I’ve learned over the years how much I actually bring to the table because of my unique background. It wasn’t easy, and still isn’t, being put in the “other” category by some, but it ultimately has strengthened my brand and vision as an artist. As a songwriter, I try to keep my message with each song raw but clear. It usually doesn’t take me too long to write a song – both lyrically and vocally – rather, it takes me much longer to develop the instrumentation. What sets me apart is the speed I can write songs while maintaining high quality in my vocal production and writing.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I love this question – makes me think about the pre-covid days! If a friend was visiting me from out of town, I’d probably take them to Joshua Tree or Big Bear to go “glamping” (glam camping). There is so much beauty in nature, especially in Southern California, and I love being among it when I can. I would want to take them hiking and kayaking, and – of course – eventually back to the west side to Venice or Hermosa beach. I also recommend visiting Matador Beach – it’s absolutely stunning, and tends to be less busy.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I want to dedicate my shoutout to my mom and dad. They’re the ones who put me through piano and singing lessons, even when I didn’t want them (which was, admittedly, for most of my childhood). Without them, I couldn’t have possibly tapped into my potential.
Toby Kearney, Valentina Olarte, Gabrielle Rodríguez, Rickey Pierre II, Britain Simons, Angel Garcia, Jake Fiedler