Papon: Wish to take Assamese music to the world
Having recently turned mentor on a reality show, Papon on aspirations of mentoring talent from the northeast to give them global recognition
Kyon Na Hum Tum (Barfi, 2012) singer Papon is popular among music aficionados who enjoy watching live gigs. And while he loves to belt out his Bollywood hits, Papon ensures that he also serenades his listeners with a couple of Assamese songs. Hailing from the northeastern state, the singer carries with him the weight of his heritage, and expresses delight at every chance to contribute to the music of his homeland. "I wish to take Assamese music to the world and make it big internationally. I want people to know about the different styles and sounds from the region," Papon tells mid-day.
The singer, who only recently turned mentor on music reality show The Voice India Kids, has already charted out a plan to further his cause. "I want to open a performing arts school in the northeast as a tribute to my dad [late Khagen Mahanta, an exponent of folk and traditional music of Assam]. I want people to be able to come from different corners [of the region] and learn." While Papon honed his craft as a musician, he hopes to allow kids to explore their individual strengths.
"The institute will not be about music alone; we'll teach all kinds of performing arts, like drama and dance. I want to provide children with a platform that enables them to learn new skills. It's my biggest dream."
With a few episodes of the reality show having already gone on air, Papon is now comfortable with his role as mentor. The format, which enables the panel to also coach the kids apart from judging them, interested him. "I'm getting a chance to share my experiences with budding talent, and groom them. [With this show] I think I might [become a popular name in every household]."
Music fanatics have lauded Papon's languid rendition of the song, Tu Chale Toh from Qarib Qarib Singlle. "People said I sounded different. It's one of my peppier numbers." He even has a few singles in store, but isn't certain about releasing them yet. Meanwhile, work on a ghazal album is underway. He says, "It will have fresh ghazals that are relevant today. I will start working on the record soon."