'Canít put a time frame to passion'
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How did the Mat aazma re from Murder 3 come about?
n Pritam called me and said that there is a song that he thought was right up my alley and he wanted me to do the song. He wanted me to approach the songs the way I did when I 'd recorded a couple of songs with him long ago, especially a song called Labon ko labon se. He wanted the tone to have a a mid-heavy flow. I had done songs maintaining that tonal level earlier, so I enjoyed it. And, I loved the lyrics by Sayeed Quadri.
When you recorded Mat aazma re, what were your expectations?
n I obviously thought that people would like it because it has a good recall. The melody was nice. I really liked the way the second antra is written. It's a very mush song; girls will like it definitely. Honestly speaking, when I do a song, I don't mentally go back thinking whether the song is going to be a hit or not. I just leave it to the studio and keep my head free of all the clutter.
What are the responses that you have received for the song?
n I was performing at a show in New Delhi last week, where I got a lot of requests, before and after the show,for this song. I really didn't know then if it had picked up; I usually wait for a song to become a big hit before I start performing it on stage. But I (still) sang a couple of lines that day.
Compared to Mat aazma re in Murder 3 (Sony Music), your song in Race 2 (Party on my mind) was a very up-tempo number. Do you have a favourite genre that you like to sing?
n From a professional angle, when I go for a recording, I really don't think of likes or dislikes. I enjoy doing rock, pop, ballads and dance numbers as well. For films, if there is a fast-paced song, I get into the mood and do it. Party on my mind, like you said, was really up-tempo and high energy song. It had a different approach altogether.
After Race 2, Murder 3 is your second collaboration with Pritam this year. What's been your experience with him?
n We share a friendship. I feel very thankful, he has given
me some of his best songs. As a music
director, Pritam knows exactly what he wants in a song.
Last year you sang for films like Kahaani, Ek Tha Tiger, Jannat 2 and Raaz 3 and this year, it has taken a start with Race 2, Murder 3 and Special Chabbis. With so much happening on the music front, why do you keep such a low profile?
n There's no particular reason why I do that. If there is something interesting, like this (song Mat aazma re), to talk about as a singer then it's okay. Otherwise if I can just concentrate on my work and let it speak for itself, then it's good enough. But yes, media does help an artist to connect with people, otherwise people don't get to know you.
You've come a long way since you made your debut in with Chod aaye hum in Maachis (1996). Having complete 17 years in the industry, how do you back at the journey?
n When you talk about it, 17 years seems to be a very long time! It feels good to be doing songs, even now in 2013. I feel very thankful. I came to Mumbai wanting to be a singer and this is what I am doing. My core being is all about this, everything else is incidental. That way I have kept my focus, kept my head low and have just concentrated in what I do. It has helped me get to where I am, and I continue to do that. I try to do what I can do to the best of my possible ability. Having said that, I don't really think about milestones because you don't really put a time frame to your passion. I may seem to have been singing in the film industry for long time, but I have actually been singing since I was a child and want to continue doing so for as long as I can.
Your last album was Humsafar in 2008, are there any more coming up?
n I hope to. Hope is the only thing that keeps us alive. I aspire to do another album. It's only a matter of giving time. You need to give that committed time to do that album. You should have the drive and motivation to do it, and not just do it for the sake of doing another album.
Have you ever given composing music for films a thought?
n No, that thought hasn't crossed my mind at all. But I think my ability to compose is just for my albums because it is a personal point of view, and I think I'll just stick with that, right now.
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