In an interview with CS, he says, “I love the energy at live performances. The music, lights, fans cheering with their camera on in their mobile phones, it is truly star-like. But the smile on their faces is most rewarding.” Here are excerpts:
On a roll
I have just finished recording a song for a Shahid Kapoor film. Last month, I was on a whirlwind tour across India and the globe. I visited Phuket, Nairobi, Mauritius, Bangkok, Dubai, Bangalore and Goa for concerts or recordings. This month, I have a concert in UAE with Atif Aslam and Honey Singh. Its the first time I will be playing with them.
Evolution as a singer
I grew up listening to all kinds of music — classical, pop, film music. In college, listening became more versatile with artists such as Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson, Aretha Franklin, AR Rahman, etc. And now, I have worked with some of them like Rahman sir, Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy and Vishal-Shekhar. I credit Rahman sir and Salim-Sulaiman for my success, they taught and groomed me into a better person. I was a kid when I came in, but learnt a lot along the way and gained in confidence. Today, I am more sensitive and realise the importance of staying positive. My father often told me, “Whatever you do, make sure you’re happy and do it till you die.” Nothing makes me happier than creating music and writing a song that connects to people.
Speaking the part
I can sing in five different languages – Hindi, Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam and Kannada. Languages have never been an issue with me, I am ready to sing in any language. Recently I sang a few songs for Kannada movies such as ‘Gaana Bajaana’ and ‘Love Guru’.
Creating the connect
It is said ‘Make hay while the sun shines’. But the sun shines everyday, it rises and illuminates our world, it’s not like we live in Finland which is shrouded in darkness six months in a year. Similarly, we should also create music to bring happiness to all. I just don’t pray to God, I try to connect with him by telling him to stay with me and help me accomplish my goal. There is also a deep sense of gratitude infused with the strength to work harder and be true to what I do.
There is something magical about this city. People are non-judgemental and cool. My only wish is they had more more time for art and culture. The city, it’s people, architecture and spirit, everything inspires me.