Coming from the background of a reality show and entering the Bollywood industry as a playback singer, how would you describe your entire journey?

I don't consider myself from the background of the reality show because I was a part of a reality show for a small two rounds and that was the first and the last time I went to a reality show. It taught me a lot for sure. I understood that I need to work harder. The Bollywood industry was the first thing that happened to me when I came to Bombay. I gave myself some time and I came here to enjoy music, get to know other musicians and understand how music is happening in India. I never thought that I would sing a dance track and the whole country would be grooving to it. I think I am still living one day at a time and just living in gratitude as to how everything panned out.


You began learning music at a very young age. What drew you towards music?

Well, I think if we go down to the root of it, there was a rich musical environment at my house. My parents were listeners of great rich musicians like Lata Mangeshkar, Asha Bhosle, Nusrat Saab. I can't imagine my life without music playing in the background while my mom cooking food for me. I have tried a lot of things like mixed martial arts. I received a black belt at the national level and trained quite religiously for 7 years. I was playing districts and nations for rifle shooting. I was always into athletics. I did an MBA and had a lot of options. Having all said, when I would come back home at night and play the guitar it was the best part of the day. That was the time I felt happiest and alive. As I grew up, I realised that our purpose in life is to do what we love the most and enjoy it while doing it.  


You are known for singing soulful and romantic numbers, which later become the top chartbusters. Is there anything special that you do to get into creative space?

When I am working on a song and I make sure that I am aware and present at the moment. When I am dubbing, I make sure I am enjoying the moment and understand the song deeply. It is very important to understand the lyrics and instead of singing, I try to say them with conviction. The moment I address the lyrics to someone, it suddenly finds its soul and is quite convincing and honest.  I think that is why some of the songs take ages to rise and eventually have become some of my biggest hits.


You have sung in multiple languages. While singing, how important for you is it to understand the lyrics of the music?

I have sung in multiple languages such as Telugu, Tamil, and Jaunsari.  I try to understand the song by translating the lyrics in English and by making sure that my pronunciations are right to keep the soul of the song intact. Initially, it was difficult when I started singing Bengali songs, but then gradually I got comfortable with the authentic pronunciations of different languages.


Apart from singing for Bollywood movies, you have stepped into the realm of independent music. Do you believe that independent music can help a musician in building a career in a better way?

Bollywood has been very kind to me. I have acquaintances here who are very talented musicians and I know how hard all of them have worked towards their songs. I have multiple projects lined up in Bollywood in the coming years. I have received a lot of love for my folk songs and I believe I’m blessed as an artist who’s living it up. But I still have a long way to go as a musician. I want to keep exploring my music and independent music has given me the liberty to be curious.


With time, music has evolved gradually. What is the one thing that you would want to change about the industry?

Yes, music has evolved gradually, and honestly I don’t want to change anything about the industry. We are already going through a dynamic change since the introduction of social media. In terms of how the music is sold, the way artists are made, the way songs are making money, everything has changed. There are better opportunities for people in the present times, which I think is a boon for the industry.


Social media has become a significant medium for interacting with your fans and followers. Your take?

Initially, I had no presence of social media, but then when I started using it I realised its importance. I got to know my fans better and how they perceive my song and their reactions instantly. It allows me to learn and grow as an artist.


You have become an inspiration for many. Who is your role model and why?

My role models are my parents. They are my pillars of strength. They are my guide and give me the courage to battle all the obstacles in life. If anyone gets inspired by my journey they should know that I was trained for music by my parents. They have worked hard towards making me who I am today and I want to thank them for being so inspiring.


It is rightly said that practice makes a man perfect. What is your schedule for the riyaaz? Any tips for the budding flock?

If you do the same thing exactly the same way you become a master in it, that’s what art is about and that’s also how you train your brain. My schedule for riyaaz is unsteady because of my work and travelling schedule. I use the travelling time for riyaaz, sometimes in my car or early in the morning. Tip for the budding flock is sing more meaningful songs and make sure that your song has a message.


Tell us something about your upcoming projects. What's next on your list?

There are a lot of things in the pipeline right now such as, there’s a song in Himesh Reshammiya's upcoming film, 3D Dancer, Sadak and apart from that I have a song that I’ll be releasing for my YouTube channel and I’m really excited about it.

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