Avneesha: How Becoming a TikTok Creator Led to Landing My Own Radio Show
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If someone told me ten years ago that I would be co-hosting a national breakfast radio show, releasing music that I’m whole heartedly passionate about and having a beautiful community online where I can share my content, I truly would not believe it.
My journey began all the way back when I was only eight-years-old watching my dad singing at home, practising all his favourite Bollywood songs. It was through watching him and being encouraged to sing myself that I realised from very early on, I absolutely loved the arts. I would always perform at every family function, do Shabad Kirtan at the Gurdwara (temple) with my dad and eventually started writing my own songs.
This passion for the arts led me to falling in love with acting, which I was first introduced to at school. I was a drama kid through and through and would take any opportunity to act on stage. However, even though I always gravitated towards performing and being creative, I never thought that I could pursue a career in this space, as no one I knew ever made it as a singer or actress, it seemed impossible.
Eventually when I left school and started my undergrad, I learnt very quickly that all I really wanted to do was pursue music and acting. My parents were always supportive, however, there only condition was, for me to finish my university degree. I understood where they were coming from, but I also couldn’t wait to follow my dreams, so I may have failed to mention to them that I deferred university to start auditioning for acting roles. This is probably a good place to mention, I do not condone lying! I did a few random advertisements, was an extra in a movie and acted in a few short films. It was also around this time that I joined a girl group which was my first proper introduction to the music industry.
This was an incredible experience and one I’m grateful for. I really honed my skills being in front of the camera, learned the different parts involved in creating a record, got a glimpse into the business side of the music and most importantly met the girls in the group, who I now consider some of my closest friends. But this wasn’t the only significant impact it had in my life; I acquired a great deal of knowledge about myself in the five years I was in the girl group. Some of the lessons I learnt was that I loved writing songs and I needed to follow that passion, I was the happiest when I was being creative, and it was one hundred percent possible to pursue a career in the entertainment industry.
Eventually we disbanded as a group to follow our own paths and I knew that it was finally time to release my own music that I had been writing behind the scenes. I remember stumbling across TikTok which was relatively new at the time. My husband encouraged me to post my music on there but also acting sketches, which was so much fun to create. I remember posting a few videos and it was so exciting, I didn’t really have any expectations, I was just having the best time being creative and coming up with new ideas every day. Eventually, I had my first viral video which I still recall so vividly. I remember my husband running in with his phone and when I saw the video had over 100k views; I was in utter shock.
I posted a video a day for two years while I was also working full time, and although it was intense, I had so much joy watching my community grow daily. Throughout that time many opportunities became present, I started hosting lives online, hosting events, worked with brands that I loved and eventually had my first gig in radio with TikTok Trending on iHeart. In 2022 I landed my own show with Cada on 96.1 called Keeping up with Avneesha, and this year I joined the amazing breakfast crew, Kian and Yaz with Avneesha, and couldn’t be more grateful for the opportunity.
Upon reflection, as I write this, there’s a few key messages I hope people take away from my story:
- Always pursue what your passionate about, no matter what the outcome is, all that matters is it brings you joy!
- Stay consistent.
- Don’t compare yourself to others, it’s your journey and it will never be the same as someone else!
- Celebrate every achievement, no matter how big or small.
- Nothing is impossible if you set your mind to it.