'I have become selective'
Rachana Dubey chats up Sonu Nigam on his bonding with Sunidhi Chauhan, camps in music industry and youth power.
Sonu Nigam on his bonding with Sunidhi Chauhan, camps in music industry and youth power...interviewed by Rachana Dubey.
News is that you're trying to convince Sunidhi Chauhan to take to acting.
Sunidhi was approached for a film opposite me. But I don't know what happened to the project. It was between her and the producers.
You once called Sunidhi Chauhan a female Sonu Nigam.
Yeah.. the entire film industry calls her that. Actually, she's grown up listening to my songs. Several traits of hers, like mimicking people, are like mine. I still maintain that she is a female Sonu Nigam.
Do rumours about your affair affect your friendship?
See, the whole industry seems to know about my so-called affairs. I don't react. Sunidhi is a pal. We meet once in six months, crack mad jokes and laugh. Such tittle tattle doesn't affect our work chemistry and friendship.
Have you lost interest in playback singing?
You have to move on. Doing four songs a day wasn't making sense. I don't want 20000 songs to my credit. I want quality songs. I believe the film industry sucks the best out of you in a few years and then, dumps you. I don't want that to happen to me.
Aren't composers like Pritam and Shantanu Moitra partial to your voice?
Shantanu once told me that only I can do justice to his compositions not that the others are less talented but he finds me good. I love the kind of music he composes.
Pritam has gone into the T Series camp a bit too deeply. Like it or not, you end up in one camp or the other. Lately I've only sung , Nagada for Pritam in Jab We Met, which did well. I'm not restricting myself to one composer. I've become selective though.
Have you had fall-out with T-Series?
What do you think about of the youth's taste in music today?
If the young generation is buying frivolous music, it's because we are selling it to them. In fact, the young generation still selects the best of the lot. Commercial music is being promoted big time.
Unfortunately, there's no media support for ghazals. Youngsters tell me to do a ghazal album.. which means they do want ghazal albums. Why can't they buy the albums of the existing ghazal singers?
It's because they're not promoted well. There are tiny ads and funny looking music videos which no one watches. I still do frivolous songs but I have tremendous respect for real music.
Was your taste in music much different when you were young?
I grew up on the Hindi film music of the 1950s, '60s and '70s. Till a few years ago, I didn't know about Pink Floyd and Jim Morrison. Today I , know a little bit about them.
Do you really feel talent hunt winners can make it big?
Of course. If there wasn't an Indian Idol, there wouldn't have been an Abhijeet Sawant. If there wasn't Sa Re Ga Ma Pa, you wouldn't have known Amanat Ali and Oneek Dhar.
Most of these guys come from middle class families. Today they, own cars and homes. They have a name, a career, all because of the contests.
It's believed that Anu Malik didn't want you to return as a co-judge on Indian Idol 3.
(Laughs) Anu is not as bad a composer and human being as he's made out to be. I could have easily been a part of the show but it had become monotonous for me. Also, I was expecting my baby then. My wife (Madhurima) was in America. I wanted to be around instead of being on the show.
Do you feel music is given its due status?
I think music is taken for granted. In Pakistan, kids and youngsters know the names of music composers but not of the movie stars. Here, singers are paid peanuts. Cricketers and actors are loved. We sing, an actor lip syncs and takes our credit away .
What do you want your son Nevaan to inherit from you?
My attitude towards work. I want him to be aggressive and hard working.
What's the progress on the bungalow you're constructing on Yari R?
I need more space for work. I'll be moving in soon, hopefully.