Photography Luka Alageyawana
After the pandemic and her album Poetry Ceylon, a lot happened with and around Ditty. ‘I went through a separation, found new love, went through a major surgery, lost loved ones to the pandemic, closed my Ecological restoration and design studio, and moved from Goa to Germany,’ No less than a whirlwind. After making her first carbon neutral tour, Make Forests Not War in April 2020, Ditty wanted to write more about our connection to the Earth. Thus, began the work on new music.
Ditty is a conscious musician who does not shy away from expressing her emotions and experiences through her music. She is honest and vulnerable in her lyrics, and shares her personal journey of healing, growth, and transformation. Skin, her new album is scheduled to release early next year. To give a taste of it to the audience, Ditty is embarking on a multi-city tour starting tomorrow. She talks to us about it below.
Colours of the Skin
Violets, Yellows, Greens and Brown.
My next record is an audio-visual record. I have learnt to work with video, to work with more complex ideas and I am a better musician.
I love to write alone, as much as I like working with others. Songs start with riyaaz and solitude. I might start with an idea, a lyric or a melody. Then I like to play with it, explore it from many sides and go on building it till it moves me.
Skin is a response to heartbreaking news around the world. I am bearing a lot of myself on this EP. And a sister EP, Kaali will follow– which is in Hindi.
I started writing the record in 2020. The CAB bill at the time and the climate crisis, I thought to myself, both have something in common. We continue to separate ourselves from each other and build boundaries between ourselves and the planet. These boundaries are what result in riots, climate crisis, widespread poverty, inequality, abuse etc.
There are no boundaries in nature. Unity in diversity is a fundamental law of nature. We treat Earth the same way that we treat our bodies. We expect it to be productive, we don’t take care of it. We go overboard and wait for a catastrophe to change things. Life as we know it, only exists in this small bubble called the biosphere! And this is our 3rd skin. It’s where we come from. The songs on this EP speak about coming home to our skin and to the skin of the Earth.
I write about coming home to myself– and how hard and beautiful that is. Lyrics from the title song, Skin: ‘I am sorry I ran away, I am sorry I couldn't come back to say – I’m here for you now, I am home in my skin’.
Other songs talk about the Earth being our home and our third skin. About the similarities of how we treat ourselves and the Earth. Lyrics from the song, Body: ‘Oh my body, you are a wonder.
Also about the domination of women and nature– Lyrics from the song, Mamma, ‘I will stand beside you, Oh dear rivers dear mountains too...and my darling mother’. The songs explore the theme of oneness that runs through the record. We are one with the Earth. We are made of her and bear her seeds. The 4th song is called Where money comes from. And the last song, hold me, talks about love. Can we be truthful to ourselves and love truly?
A feeling of being more connected to themselves and to the Earth.
Emotions and my relationships. Beauty, wonder and love. Inspiration, the natural world and pleasure. At the same time, we can’t be blind as artists to the events of our times. And a lot of that pours itself in.
Words Hansika Lohani