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Kavita Seth: OP Nayyar said my voice is rare and told me to come to Mumbai, but my father refused

Singer Kavita Seth, who is currently in Delhi for a Sufi concert, tells us about the difficulties she faced in trying to become a singer.

music Updated: Dec 15, 2017 17:47 IST
Rishabh Suri
Rishabh Suri
Hindustan Times
Kavita Seth,Singer,Iktara
Singer Kavita Seth says that she got to live her dream because of her husband. (Pramod Thakur/Hindustan Times)

Singer Kavita Seth has been that rare voice in Bollywood that has managed to stand out from countless others. She broke into the big scene with her song Iktara for the film Wake Up! Sid (2009), which fetched her a lot of awards. She has since sung songs such as Tumhi ho Bandhu and Jeete Hain Chal.

However, what many people don’t know is the difficult journey she had to undergo to reach the stage where she is today. “In our country, when a girl wants to become a singer, her family discourages her by saying ‘Kya hai yeh gaana-bajana? Isse chhod do.’ I, too, wanted to become a singer from a young age. I remember OP Nayyar (yesteryear music composer) had once come to Bareilly, and when he heard my voice, he told me ‘Tumhaari awaaz acchhi hai, different hai. Tum Mumbai aao (to join the music industry).’ But my father said ‘Shaadi ho jaaye, uske baad agar husband ko tumse gawaana ho toh gaana, we won’t go to Mumbai. Guarantee nahi hai ki success milegi’.”

Then how did she eventually get to live her dream? “Because of my husband”, Kavita says, “I would pray for a good husband who would understand me. And Mr. Seth did that. He supported me till his last breath. Till the time he was alive, the only thing I had to care about was my singing, as he was a one-man army and used to manage everything. After his death, I thought things would get difficult because I am zero when it comes to networking.”

Kavita has since then, from 2012, organised a concert in her husband’s memory every year. Currently in Delhi for that, she tells us what the event will be all about. “There will only be soulful songs, almost no film songs. Jo cheezein unko pasand thi — ruhaani aur sufiyaana andaaz ki. All the proceedings from this concert will go to charity.”

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First Published: Dec 15, 2017 17:47 IST