A few days ago, Aditya Narayan tweeted saying ‘Can’t believe how many of you think I sound like papa. Humbled. Thank you. But I choose not to believe it. He is far too awesome.’ Now if you’ve heard Tatad Tatad and Ishqyaun Dhishqyaun from Ram Leela, you will certainly know the context. The young singer has been told by a number of people about how he sounds like his father, the talented Udit Narayan. And co-incidentally, so has his father! “Yes, when my father heard the songs the first time, his reaction was ‘You do sound a bit like me’,” laughs Aditya. And even though he doesn’t think the same, he’s really happy being compared to his dad. “I take it as a big compliment. I honestly don’t think I sound like him because I believe he has the most unique voice I’ve ever heard,” he adds.
Aditya was assisting director Sanjay Leela Bhansali when the opportunity to sing came his way. Interestingly, it was his father who was supposed to sing Tatad Tatad, but when Bhansali heard the scratch version sung by Aditya, he decided to retain that in the film’s soundtrack. “As an assistant director, I used to sit in music sessions with Sanjay sir, and sang a bit here and there. Honestly, he didn’t think highly of my singing ability. I never had the opportunity to show it off,” he laughs. As for Ishqyaun Dhishqyaun, the singer got just four days to rehearse for it. “The first time Sanjay sir asked me to hum some lines for him, he bombarded me with criticism,” laughs Aditya, “But when he saw how my voice improved after two days of riyaaz, he let me take some time off before I finally recorded the song.”
For the singer, it’s a dream come true to have sung for a Bhansali film. “My father has been associated with him for so many years. I have grown up listening to songs from Khamoshi and Devdas. So for me, it was an honour to sing for Sanjay sir,” he says. Aditya, who has worked as a child artiste in films and later, even acted in Vikram Bhatt’s Shaapit, says he wasn’t assisting Bhansali with the hope of getting acting or filmmaking offers. “Just like you got to a medical college to study medicine, I wanted to assist him in order to learn about filmmaking. I realised that if I want to be in the entertainment business, I need to understand it first. And what better place to do that than on Sanjay sir’s film sets,” says Aditya.
At the end of the day, it’s music that’s his first love. “My parents are singers and even my grandparents are associated with singing and song writing. So genetically, it’s all there. Now it’s just a matter of what people want to see me do,” he adds. As long as it comes under the gamut of ‘entertainment’, Aditya’s all for it. “It’s not like I’m generating jobs for myself. People are giving me opportunities and now it’s all about how well I do and how people respond to it,” he adds.