From Sukhwinder Singh, Sukhshinder Shinda and Amrinder Gill to Gippy Grewal, Nachattar Gill and Diljit Dosanjh, Raj Kakra feels proud of having written lyrics for most renowned singers. The 38-year-old Punjabi music lyricist, who launched his third music album at Chandigarh Press Club on Wednesday, talks about his inspiration for writing and expresses concern about the younger generation’s lack of interest in literature.
“I started writing when I was in Class 10, though I hardly knew much about literature at that time. The first song that I penned was Tere Vajon Sara Din, which was sung by singer Satwinder Bitti in 1992,” says Raj, who claims to have grown up reading works by literary giants such as Shakespeare, John Keats, Shiv Kumar Batalvi and Jaswant Singh Kanwal.
“In my SAS Nagar home where I have been living for almost 13 years now, I have a huge collection of literature that has helped me know the depths of music and its strong connection with the society. I read a lot and therefore pen the goings-on of the society in my songs,” informs Raj, who has to his credit almost 600 Punjabi tracks, including hits such as Dildariyan and Tu Judaa (sung by Amrinder Gill) and Ishq Ho Gaya (sung by Diljit Dosanjh). Raj adds that he learnt to write people’s stories from acclaimed author Khushwant Singh, “whose pen is mightier than the sword.”
His latest album, Dilbariyan, has been written and sung by him. Previously, Raj wrote and sung songs on historical events as well, such as Punjabio Chidi Ban Ne Ke Baaz. Says he, “To pen a historical event in lyrical form is a big responsibility. In such songs, the words are bitter and it’s hard to find a voice that can interpret the emotion. That is why I end up singing them and give voice to my suffocation.”
The singer who says he is in love with the Punjabi language, is not attracted by Bollywood. “I want to contribute to the Punjabi music industry and write for my own people,” he states and announces two upcoming ventures with singers Amrinder Gill and Sukhshinder Shinda (whom he loves to work with), apart from working on collaborations with various other artistes.