VETERAN PLAYBACK singer Suresh Wadkar rejected the idea of permitting selection of winners in reality singing shows through SMS votes and said these winners went into oblivion as fast as they emerged.
Speaking to Hindustan Times during his visit to the City for a performance, Wadkar said that mostly contestants with smart looks or the so-called X-factor were crowned winners, though they may lack talent to stand at par with the current lot of established singers.
A listener of all kinds of music including western, western classical, country music, pop, classical and film songs Wadkar appreciates music in all forms.
‘‘I derive contentment from singing and never ponder on whether it is classical or film songs,’’ said Wadkar. Wadkar explained in his soft, melodious voice that ‘Riyaaz’ was the only key to gaining a good voice with depth that could touch the listener’s heart. He said when a singer like Lata Mangeshkar, who is blessed by Goddess Saraswati herself, could practice for long hours, it definitely becomes necessary for ordinary singers to devote time to listening and singing.
Queried about singers he looks up to, Wadkar lists everybody from Manna Dey, Mohhamed Rafi, Lata Mangeshkar, and Asha Bhonsle to Kishore Kumar, saying he has learnt a lot by listening to them. Wadkar is currently teaching 450 students at his Gurukul, including two girls from Indore.
‘‘The first thing I tell my students is to awaken the ‘Sur’ in their mind and rest depends on practice, hard work and luck.’’ Wadkar said musical talent could not be inherited like wealth; it has to be developed and polished constantly.
He denied making any statement about remix albums, saying that if the whole media and public was supporting such music what could singers do? He, however, admitted that sometimes the declining values hurt his soul but then it was the media that had made remixes an overnight success.
‘‘For success in singing industry one does not need to perform on stage or dance or don some special mantle like some of the singers do today,’’ he emphasised, and added that singing was a complete art in itself and dancing and acting must be kept aloof.
Wadkar is currently working on a fusion album and some devotional songs, apart from doing live shows. The singer with so many evergreen songs to his credit summed up by saying that he wished to improvise his singing till his last breath.