Exclusive Interview W/ Breakout Musician Aneesa Sheikh

Aneesa Sheikh is a rising musician who recently released her new single “New Normal” that reflects her close relationship with her father who has suffered from a stroke. Aneesa opens up how her music has been a big impact with her father’s recovery and why Jewel is one of her idols. 

Chelsie Overocker

AfterBuzz TV Host & Writer
Posted On: September 25th , 2020 9:28 am pst

Maria Menounos
Keven Undergaro
AfterBuzz TV Founders

Founded by Emmy winning journalist Maria Menounos and Producer Keven Undergaro, AfterBuzz TV is the artist-friendly entertainment news platform that celebrates, discusses, interviews, promotes and reports on the widest range of stars, creators and content through video, audio and article publications.

Breakout musician Aneesa Sheikh has had over 138k views on one of her first few singles, “Bad Thing” and continues to release new music. Her latest single, “New Normal” reflects on Aneesa’s close relationship with her father who suffered from a stroke. As a teenager she found herself not only pursuing her dreams but being a caretaker.

Photo Credit: Annette Navarro

Chelsie Overocker from AfterBuzz TV sat down with Aneesa to discuss her latest single and why she wanted to release her new song in 2020. Plus, she opens up about her father’s stroke and how her music has helped regain his motor skills. 

Right now Aneesa is in Michigan and enjoying being back home.

“Everything is opening up and I just did a live performance!” 

Congratulations on your single “New Normal” and the music video has officially launched. 

“Thank you! I’m really excited.” 

This song and the lyrics mean a lot to Aneesa because it’s about her trying to adapt to a new life after her father’s stroke at age 16. Now she is making her dreams come true and taking care of her dad. Is it hard managing both? 

“My dad is super close to me and is at a nursing rehabilitation. Prior to his stroke he only walked with a cane but growing up he was a great father figure.”

How long did it take for you to write “New Normal”

“I sat down with my producer on April 5th and we were on a Zoom call. They wanted to know something deeply about me which was my dad and adjusting to a new normal of not seeing him right now. We all wrote it in an hour.”  

That has to be difficult not being able to see him at the nursing center because of Covid. With everything happening in 2020 is that what made you want to release this song within this time frame? 

“Yes, actually in the song I sing, “I never knew how precious every minute could be,” and I knew I wanted this out in 2020. The message is don’t take anyone for granted. What I like about this song is everyone right now can relate to it because of Covid and we are now living this new normal life where our relationships and the way we communicate with each other are different.” 

How are you still connecting with people during Covid?

“I still Facetime and I’m currently going to school online through University of Michigan. I was supposed to go to New York University but with the pandemic I wanted to stay home and be close to my father. I am studying business and communications and hope to manage my own business and music.”

That’s smart and it’s great that you are not only a musician but want to learn the business side of the entertainment industry. You also had a passion for figure skating and were training eight hours a day with an elite program.

View this post on Instagram

Tbt #ivivva #doubleloop #skating

A post shared by ANEESA ™ (@aneesasheikhofficial) on

“I’m the youngest of four skaters [laughs] it was something that I grew up with and a big part of my family.”

Wow! That’s cool that you grew up with a family of ice skaters. What was the most challenging move that you had to learn and you’re proud that you accomplished.”

“The Charlotte Spiral and the lay back spin but what was the most challenging was the split jump. Something that seems easy was surprisingly the most difficult.”

We understand! It’s amazing how figure skaters can make every move look graceful but know it’s a lot more difficult to perform.

When you were younger you enjoyed watching Miley Cyrus perform and she inspired you to start playing the guitar.

“I feel like every six and seven year old loves Miley Cyrus [laughs] and Hannah Montana is where she started her music career. Just the idea that she not only acted but sang in the show. That stood out because she is multi-talented.” 

After Aneesa became comfortable playing the guitar she began writing her own music. One of her first singles, “Bad Thing” was to help anyone who was involved in a toxic relationship. Her music video currently has over 138k views on Youtube and is one of her top hits. 

“My co-writer and I wanted to write something that would appeal to teenagers. My close friend was dealing in a toxic relationship and we knew he wasn’t good for her.  But this song can apply to anyone of all ages.”

Scrolling through the YouTube comments a lot of people appreciate the message Aneesa has written about being with someone who is no good for you and that you have strength to remove yourself from a negative situation. Thanks for your using your music career to send out positive messages; especially for teenagers. 

Jewel is also one of Aneesa’s music idols and she’s focused on living a musical career similar to hers. 

“Love her! She is a person that inspires me and the passion she has for music she made into a living for herself . She now gives back and has scholarships for people who want to pursue music.”

We love Jewel too and appreciate how she is helping young artists with their music careers. You are also giving back as well and have started a nonprofit organization called Music 4 Miracle. 

Photo Credit : Annette Navarro

“I started this because I would take my guitar to the nursing rehabilitation center right after my father’s stroke. I would practice my music and he loved it. That soon became consistent where I would perform for him and that helped him with his motor skills. The doctors and medical experts told me it would be a miracle if he ever spoke again and having him hum along to my songs helped. He didn’t get therapy. I would also sing for the others in the nursing rehabilitation center and was invited to sing for St. Jude where we raised 10,000 dollars. During the pandemic they streamed my videos in the patients bedroom and they loved it. The patients are scared and listening to music gives them that comfort.”

View this post on Instagram

Daddy you’re my hero ❤️❤️

A post shared by ANEESA ™ (@aneesasheikhofficial) on

You were crowned Miss Teen Michigan Teen 2020. With all pageants there a lot of work and we admire the dedication young women put themselves through to be successful. What did you learn about yourself when you were competing? 

“Good question,I learned to be an adaptable racehorse with blinders on.” 

We like that and know that analogy has helped you become a successful musician. Any up and coming projects that you are working on? 

 “Yeah I’m flying to Nashville to record a holiday album.” 

Congratulations we will be on the lookout for your new holiday songs. 

Thank you Aneesa for talking with us and opening up about your father’s health and how you want to make a difference with your music career. Make sure you all are following Anessa Sheikh on all social media platforms. 

Keep up with AfterBuzz TV for the latest news in entertainment and more exclusive interviews.

About The Author:

Chelsie Overocker is a host for AfterBuzz TV. She grew up in Denver, Colorado and graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in communications and marketing.

Founded by Emmy winning journalist Maria Menounos and Producer Keven Undergaro, artist-friendly AfterBuzz TV is the world’s largest digital broadcast network and pop culture news platform, producing post-game ‘after-shows’ for nearly all favorite TV shows, interviewing cast and showrunners and providing the widest video, audio and article coverage of shows, content and influencers than any entertainment news platforms in existence

“We don’t just celebrate and cover the top shows, content and stars, we celebrate and cover ALL the shows, content and stars.”

Maria Menounos

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