With his thick dreadlocks and thicker accent, it’s difficult to pinpoint his Punjabi background. Thrilled about his upcoming album with Jim Beanz, the 46-year-old laments about the lack of good clubs in Mumbai. In a tete-a-tete with CS, the UK-based vocalist spills the beans on music and life.
No disappearing act
It must have appeared like I had vanished from the scene but I was always working. What else can I possibly do with my time? I was creating music, even did a Telugu song recently. In fact, last year, I released an album in Punjab as well. If you aren’t seen on the television, people simply assume that you aren’t around anymore. This year alone, I’ve toured 27 nations so far and performed across nine cities in India itself. I visit this country at least four-five times a year.
The funniest thing I’ve noticed about music channels in India is they’ve turned for the worse. It’s so difficult to find good music on TV nowadays. Of course, Internet has played a huge part in this change but I still feel music channels should be more about music and less about reality shows. After all, not everyone is tuned into web to keep track of what’s going on in the world of music. And trust me, there’s much more to music than Bollywood films (smiles). Radio is doing a far better job than television today in this regard.
When I started out, I was a young kid who thought he wouldn’t be here two decades later. My fans proved me wrong (laughs). I like spending hours in the studio but touring and performing live is something I can’t even describe in words. It’s almost surreal. You are there standing on the stage belting out numbers and people are lip-syncing along with you. After all, they are strangers but still, we are connected on various levels.
Fusion’s the answer
I feel fusion is the best thing to have happened to music. It creates endless possibilities and I’m glad some channels have picked up the idea. This particular genre overcomes language and colour barriers. Like, I represent Reggae but you’ll see Punjabi, Hindi, hip-hop and folk influences in my songs. That’s the beauty I suppose, of coming together and creating something universal.
An incomplete picture
I’m excited about a film based on my life. It’s in the writing stage as of now and we’re looking for actors to fit the roles. This movie will show the highs and lows of fame and the hurdles I faced in my career. You can’t be around for 22 years and have no regrets.