Classical music can be hard to consume in its purest form: Shreya Ghoshal

Shreya Ghoshal’s recently-released indie track, Angana Morey is getting rave reviews. The song was released in the first week of February and already has five million-plus views on YouTube.The versatile singer had joined hands with her brother, Soumyadeep Ghoshal for the indie track. In an exclusive tete-tete, Ghoshal, talks about her newest endeavour and bridging the gap between the classical and the popular. Excerpts:

Talking about the germination of the song, Ghoshal revealed that, “it all happened during the lockdown”. The singer said, “I was very uninspired, bored, and I wanted to do something that I enjoy the most. That’s where the idea came from. I love music based out of classical music. However, classical music can become very lengthy and if it’s done in very traditional form, it can be hard to consume for the audience. So, I wanted to do it in a way which would have been appealing to all the generation. (Also) I was very clear that I didn’t want it to be like a stereotypical fusion song.” When Ghoshal addressed her concerns to her brother, who produced the song with her, he “took it up as a challenge”.

While Ghoshal mentioned that classical music can be hard to consume in its purest form, she also clarified that she wasn’t skeptical about the reception of the song. “I didn’t give it too much thought (to it).” Elaborating a bit more on the same, she revealed how music maestro AR Rahman inspired her and her brother. “For me, Rahman sir is a great example of not going by any rule. I don’t think he ever has a formula. And yet how magically he transforms his thoughts to his piece. So, he was a big inspiration, somewhere. I was confident of the song, that if everything is at the right balance, it will work.”

Indie going commercial

The four-time National Film Awards winning singer, also pointed out how Angana Morey “absolutely” would have not got space in the commercial movies. “There’s an important reason why this kind of song happened. I do get my quota of satisfaction from the film music, because Hindi is not the only language, I’m singing in. However, this kind of song can’t be a part of (any) film script. I do indie music as per my moods, whatever I can’t get to do at that moment, I try that with indie.”

According to Ghoshal of late, indie music is losing its charm and becoming formulaic. “I feel that even in independent music whatever is happening is, most of the other artists are doing film-like music only. So, it’s not very different from film songs. They are also following the formula. Then what’s the point of going indie?”

Sibling symphony

Shreya is working with her brother Soumyadeep for the first time. With the recent conversation of nepotism creeping into the music industry, Shreya made it quite clear that her collaboration with her brother isn’t a fragment of nepotism. “If I had to do nepotism, I would have done it long back, but he is already an established techie in California,” Shreya revealed. Interestingly, it was Soumyadeep who convinced his sister to experiment with music. “He experiments with music and he wanted to see that in my work. So, he is the initiator in this. The inspiration comes from him.

“I wouldn’t have done this song had I known he was not good at his work, I was convinced that he was good at something, which is actually giving a different dimension to my music.”

Reality of reality shows

Shreya, who has been on the judging panel for various singing reality shows, has taken a pause from them. “It’s the phase that I am in right now, it (reality show) is not exciting anymore. I’ve done it too many times and I think it is kind of a repetitive thing. I won’t say that I am completely shunning these things off because there are some beautiful talents that you come across. But the whole process has become very redundant for me. I mean karliya, jitney bhi baar karna tha. Jaake taiyaar hona, seat pe baithna, and fir sabko waah waah karna,” she laughed off. The other reason why doesn’t wish to be part of reality shows, are the non-authentic things that she has to do.

“Sometimes, you can’t even say the truth because it’s on TV, so you’ve to be goody-goody, (also) do some scripted stuff, and do things that I’m not fully feeling. So whenever I have to do things that I feel don’t come naturally to me, I won’t do (them). I think the world is changing, there are so many different outlets for artists today to be happy and do things that excite you. I do not pick my mind too much but kuch cheez agar mujhe excite nahi kar rahi toh, I won’t do them,” she shrugged, adding that “it’s a big commitment and requires many days of working.” While conversing Shreya also mentioned that the concept of reality shows has become boring for her.

“It’s the concept that is...repetitive for me. And I think I can do more music than just being on TV. Just being on TV makes no sense, I should be doing something on TV and not just appear on it.”

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