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Want to keep my voice fresh like AR Rahman: Benny Dayal

Singer Benny Dayal on his influences and how he is keen to lend his voice to a Shah Rukh Khan track

music Updated: Jan 20, 2018 18:45 IST
Anjali Shetty
Anjali Shetty
Hindustan Times, Pune
Benny Dayal,Befikre,Gautam Rode
Singer Benny Dayal on his influences and how he is keen to lend his voice to a Shah Rukh Khan track

For singer Benny Dayal, music is all about completing the circle that starts with recording a song to singing it live. “I enjoy the entire process. While recording is the right eye, singing live on stage is the left eye, and I love both my eyes as they help me see,” says Dayal, who recently released the music video for his new single, ‘Sunwai’, featuring actor Gautam Rode and Serbian dancer-actor Nataša Stankovic.

The song has been composed by Naresh-Anand and directed by Rahul Sud. Talking about being approached for the song, Dayal says, “Nareshji, popularly now known as Mithoon’s father, has composed the song and he approached me last year.

He said, ‘Listen to the track and give me your opinion’. It was humbling to see an artiste of his stature giving me importance and respecting my opinion. I had to agree to sing it, as it is an undeniably beautiful song.”

Dayal says he has been influenced heavily by Malayalam films and music. “As a child, I was enrolled in Bharatanatyam and classical music classes, which is where I initially drew inspiration from. My parents watched a lot of Malayalam films and I learned many Malayalam songs before I was introduced to English, Hindi or Tamil music.”

The singer adds that he was exposed to music by artistes such as AR Rahman, SP Balasubrahmanyam, Kishore Kumar and Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy. “Old records from films such as Roja (1992) and Saajan (1991) inspired me and pushed me to better music. My dad would play these songs on weekends. Those were memorable days,” he says.

Speaking about the current state of India’s music industry, Dayal feels that the trend of remaking old songs needs to stop. He says, “I understand that old songs bring a feeling of nostalgia and make people happy. However, new songs and music will add character to the industry. We need to go back to making original scores.”

Dayal has spent a decade in the industry, but he is looking forward to more music. He says, “A decade is nothing compared to the other veterans in the industry. I want to keep my voice fresh, just like AR Rahman and SP sir. Even after so many years, their voice is relevant and suits everyone. I am looking forward to being like them.”

The singer says he is also waiting for a chance to be able to sing for Shah Rukh Khan. “If I am not wrong, he is the only A-list actor I am yet to sing for.”

First Published: Jan 20, 2018 18:43 IST