When Tirthankar Poddar told his mother that he did not want a job anymore she broke down and cried. “I was in my late 20s,” says Poddar, now 47. His mother cried again a few years back, when he hired a former client as a management representative. “This time, though, it was tears of joy,” says the musician, who is popularly known by his stage name 2Blue.
For Poddar, the journey from a typical middle-class Bengali home in Agartala that prioritised a conventional profession like engineering or medicine to a career in music has hardly been smooth sailing. But in 2005, he had reached a critical juncture, where he had to take a call. “I had an opportunity to get a promotion at my job,” he tells Outlook. “And, I also had the opportunity to headline one of the biggest music festivals in the country. I thought: anyone can get a promotion. But not everyone can headline the festival.” The decision was made.