On the surface, it’s easy to sum up Los Angeles-based singer-producer Mayurath Sinh aka ILLAH as a musician who makes hit records out of his $100 bedroom studio but there’s much more in the mix. From his days in multiple bands, being an engineer and to being on the come-up as Illah. The Delhi native worked hard to establish a stable footing in the independent music world.
View this post on Instagram
I gave my all to my brothers but it wasn’t enough. I tried building with people but they alienated me. More people are against me than with me and more people speak on me than for me but in times like these I remind myself that I don’t have to prove anything to anybody but myself.
Surprisingly, ILLAH is one of the few faces that represent the South-Asian/Indian demographic in hip hop. A Duke University/UC Berkeley study revealed that Indian immigrants have gotten more engineering and tech jobs from 1995-2005. More than immigrants from the UK, China, Taiwan, Japan all combined. Sinh particularly sticks out like a sore thumb in this demographic as his career took him on a completely different journey.
“I’ve been betrayed, lost friends. Felt loved, felt overwhelmed, felt happy, felt sad but during all this what I realized was, I can’t feel the same every day. Hence, it reflects in my music”, ILLAH says about his songwriting.
One of his best known songs about suicide prevention has almost a million streams. Also one of his leaked songs “No More” has over 100,000 plays on YouTube. The common thread remains not just in ILLAH’s honeyed use of auto-tune, but also the lo-fi aesthetic, deep lyrical references. All that adds up to a unique sound which leans on ambient melodies and 808s when it feels purposeful.
Mayurath Sinh was born in New Delhi to a single mother who worked multiple jobs to support him. It wasn’t very long till she realized that her son had an innate talent and calling for music when Sinh started missing school to work on music. Although the 22-year-old has been visiting his second home in Los Angeles since 1999 but he enrolled at Musicians Institute in Los Angeles in 2015, pursuing audio engineering and later completed his bachelors in entertainment business.
In addition to writing, producing and recording his own music, ILLAH has a collaboration tape with Wiz Khalifa’s producer Sledgren on the way.