In the late '90s and early 2000s, songs like 'Dhoom Pichak Dhoom' and 'Kabhi Aana Tu Meri Gali' topped almost every track-list. Euphoria, formed by vocalist Palash Sen, was recognised as an Indian rock band, and it went on to become one of the most celebrated acts in the country.
Besides releasing albums, Palash also went on to act in a Bollywood film, Filhaal (2002), post which he didn't take up any acting projects until Mumbai Cutting (2010). As the singer-actor prepares to make a comeback in Bollywood with an upcoming film, he talks about his hiatus, why he doesn't want to be in the limelight, and more.
In an interview with HT earlier, you had said that Bollywood doesn't appeal to you anymore, as it doesn't give enough liberty to musicians. What triggered a comeback?
The liberty itself. When I met the director of my next, Biswajeet Bora, and its producer, Maya Kholie, they wanted me to act and compose for the film. They never forced me to make a particular kind of song or chased a particular kind of sound. They wanted Palash Sen, and they wanted Euphoria's music. That's why there was never a second thought.
Were you missing the limelight all this while?
Palash and limelight haven't been the best of friends ever. Euphoria continues to be one of the busiest and biggest live acts in the subcontinent, and we do this without any support from the film industry. The definition of limelight is quite hazy nowadays. I don't need films to reach out to my fans. I value their love and respect more than the limelight that movies can offer. Also, I have never really craved for the limelight.
Did you receive film offers in all these years?
Yes, I did receive offers. After being part of Mumbai Cutting, which did well in the festival circuit abroad, I refused a handful of films, as the roles were not intriguing enough. I accepted to be part of this film, as it tells the story of millions of families who are from small towns, but are stuck in a big city.
What kind of roles appeal to you?
I'm very particular about the roles I would like to take up. I am not a 21-year-old, who is fresh out of college. I would take up roles that are sensible and sensitive.
Besides acting, is there any other aspect of film-making that appeals to you?
I love direction. I'm pretty sure that I'll make a film one day. I have always been a storyteller - be it my songs or videos. I've already begun writing a script for my film.
What has kept you busy all this while?
Fans and concerts. It's been almost 17 years since Euphoria started touring. And, we haven't even reached out to 50% of our fan base. I still love getting on the stage, and going crazy with thousands of people in the audience. I love it when they walk up to me after the show, and tell me how my music has touched their lives. Very few people have been blessed with this gift. I'm proud to be one of them. I don't need to compromise on anything in order to sustain my career.
What projects are you currently working on?
I'm judging a Bengali singing reality show, along with my old friends Shubha Mudgal, Shantanu Moitra and Monali Thakur. I'm also in talks to compose the title song for an upcoming Bollywood venture that goes on the floors in September; I may play a cameo in it as well. Euphoria also has an album lined up that will release this year.
From here, where do you wish to take your career in terms of acting and music?
I want to support more upcoming musicians in finding their place in the industry. I want to associate with film-makers, who want to tell good stories, and continue offering clean entertainment to the audience. And the musician in me lives one album at a time.