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Marathi music is not alien to me: Lesle Lewis

Composer Lesle Lewis is thrilled about his musical venture where he has combined Western Classical music with Lejim, Bossanova and Lavani as well as composed a Rock ballad for Marathi film, Poshter Boyz

Q. Can you tell us about your composition — Deva Deva?
A. Shreyas (Talpade, the actor-turned-producer of this film) wanted a song to introduce three of his main characters — Dilip Prabhavalkar, Aniket Vishwasrao and Rishikesh Joshi — each with a different kind of music but a common thread. He was clear that it had to be just one song with variations to suit the characters. I started with a classical European flavour and from there, the track brought on a Jai Maharashtra kind of sound of the soil, to introduce Dilip Kaka. Then, on to Brazil for romantic Bossanova for Aniket and from there it dives straight into hardcore Lavani to introduce Rishikesh. It’s a seamless, four-minute journey.

A promotional song shoot for the film Poshter Boyz
A promotional song shoot for the film Poshter Boyz

Q. What were the challenges you faced?
A. I’ve always found that challenges are fun. I set off to Delhi to record the introduction piece and worked with young non-professional but serious musicians. The song’s budget was spent within the first minute of what you hear. But it’s heartwarming to listen to and was loved such that it became the opening music of the film titles.

Lesle Lewis
Lesle Lewis has composed for the film Poshter Boyz. Pic/Atul Kamble

Q. How was it working on the Rock ballad, Kshan Hey, featuring Shankar Mahadevan?
A. The Rock ballad was in my head since the time Shreyas narrated the sequence. By Shankar’s admission, it’s a landmark song in his career! His vocal range spans three octaves, he brought depth and energy to it that others would struggle with. This track makes me proud to be a part of Marathi cinema.

Q. Was it a challenge to compose for a Marathi film?
A. Re-structuring my music for the big screen was a challenge but creating the music was fun. The team was a fun bunch. We just hung around over cups of coffee at my studio, Red House. I’ve been composing ad jingles for 40 years. So, I have done lots of music in Marathi, too, including album songs like Itthun Dhakka-Titthun Dhakka and Kai Zhala, so you can see that Marathi is not alien to me.

Q. What are you working on next?
A. At present, I have started performing at live shows and concerts with my band and for corporate gigs. I have created the next space in music (after Coke Studio) where I see Hindi music go global. I’ve been composing and writing songs for myself. I am hoping this music will rock the next generation of music lovers and at the same time, have the mummies and daddies loving it too.

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