On October 9, 2011, Amitabh Bachchan released Shri Hanuman Chalisa. Presented by AB Corp and Veecom Music and Entertainment under the Veecom Music label, the CD, in a first for India, featured a single track sung by Bachchan.
There were 20 other singers on it too, including Aadesh Srivastava, Hariharan, Sonu Niigam, Abhijeet, Udit Narayan, Kumar Sanu, Shaan, Suresh Wadhkar, Kailash Kher, Prasoon Joshi, Shankar Mahadevan, Kunal Ganjawala and Vinod Rathod to name a few. This year, the superstar is collaborating with Aadesh on a musical rendering of the Srimad Bhagavad Gita.
“Back in 1954, my father (poet Dr Harivansh Rai Bachchan) had translated the Gita from Sanskrit into Awadhi, the language of Tulsidas’ Ramayan, to make it more popular. I wanted to record it for the longest time and have been working with Aadesh on it. We hope to come out with it soon,” says the superstar.
Aadesh who is looking at a Diwali release admits that they have completed a lot of
(verses) but there’s still a long way to go. “It will be out this year,” he promises, admitting that while working on Dr Bachchan’s great literary work that is unknown to most, including several Gita readers too, is a challenge, he is confident of pulling it off with his illustrious son.
“Amitji and I have done a lot of work together. I admire his versatility. He can bring romance to a love duet and soulful devotion to a spiritual piece. I’m even planning to get him to sing a classical
for me. Since he’s not a trained singer he has been often underestimated but I know that he can popularise the Gita with youngsters the way he did with the Hanuman Chalisa.”
Aadesh recalls that during a recent visit to the US he was surprised to learn that the discotheque-going children of his friend would begin their day with Bachchan’s Shri Hanuman Chalisa. “They believe that by doing say their day would go off well. The Hanuman Chalisa has been recorded earlier too but Amitji has made it universally popular. His biggest USP is his connect with every generation, and that includes children and teenagers too who otherwise would never veer towards the Hanuman Chalisa or the Gita.”