I’m an accidental rebel: Monica Dogra

Updated on Sep 23, 2017 05:53 PM IST

Musician and actor Monica Dogra talks about her commercial single, collaborating with other musicians, DJ’ing, and more

Monica Dogra(HTPHOTO)
Monica Dogra(HTPHOTO)
Hindustan Times | ByAnjali Shetty

American musician and actor Monica Dogra needs no introduction, but she definitely deserves one. One-half of electronic rock duo Shaa’ir and Func, Monica made her acting debut with Dhobi Ghat (2011), and was later seen in David (2013). She is currently focusing on her music career, and will soon release her first commercial Hindi crossover track, a remake of Naraye Mastana, originally sung and released in 2003 by the sufi singer Abida Parveen. Monica says, “I basically wrote a song around my own understanding of the meaning of the original song. The song explores styles ranging from global bass and trap to dub. I really relate to the meaning of the song as well. I consider myself a seeker, and at times an accidental rebel because my seeking leads me to walk the unpaved path.”

Monica says she enjoys collaborating with artistes across genres. She says, “It comes to me quite naturally. I also really enjoy reinvention. I play with identity. Many things seem to fit when I try them on. Maybe I am just fluid that way.” 

The musician recently took up a course in DJ’ing and says the experience was brilliant. “I'd like to put time aside to just learn. It is important to me to be growing as a person and also as an artist. For this reason, I tend to be quite disciplined in my lifestyle and my work life. I also write a lot of dance music, so it makes sense to foray into DJ’ing.” 

Monica has lived for extended periods both in the USA and India, and she says she find both the cultures are diverse and feels they have a tremendous amount of room for improvement. “I experienced a fair amount of racism in America growing up there. But there was always a feeling that I could achieve progress by merit. In my opinion, India is governed by class systems that are often unspoken but dominating. I think the greatest gift you can give someone is the ability to dream beyond their circumstance.”

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