Yo Yo Honey Singh recently released the remix of Rangeela’s (1995) song Yai Re along with Iulia Vantur. The Free Press Journal caught up with him for an exclusive chat.
When probed about the risk factors of touching such an iconic number, he avers, “When I was a 10-year-old kid, I heard the Tamil version of Roja (1992). While my family used to listen to Gurdaas Maan and Malkit Singh’s music, I came to know the legendary AR Rahman. I have made him my guru since then. Being his student, it’s my right to ruin his compositions! I earlier remade the Urvashi Urvashi song featured on Shahid Kapoor.”
When asked about his thoughts on the changing music scenario over these years, he shares, “I feel in Bollywood, there’s only one duo who are doing amazing and they are Vishal-Sheykhar. They bring some amazing music. I love the crazy electro drop in the song Jhoome Re Pathaan rest I am not really happy with the remixes those are coming these days. Independent music is doing well at the moment. I love the work of Shubh, AP Dhillon, Diljit Dosanjh and I still listen to the songs of Sidhu Moosewala.”
When asked why the Punjab music industry is doing wonders in the Hindi film industry, he explains, “Punjab industry has become huge over the last few years and the rest of the industries love to collaborate with it, especially Bollywood. Cinema has also changed drastically over the last few years. I like Vishal Bhardwaj’s movies such as Maqbool (2004), Omkara (2006). I am not very fond of commercial cinema. I feel the makers are making great artistic cinema. But, Punjabi artistes are making their own image too”
Director Imtiaz Ali's next Chamkila that stars Diljit in the titular role is about a popular folk singer Amar Singh Chamkila from Punjab. When we quizzed Honey if he has any memories with the late singer, he reveals, “I have always been a fan of Amar Singh Chamkila. He was assassinated when I was a kid but I heard his songs while I was growing up. I am originally from Delhi but my maternal side is from Hoshiarpur. I worked as a music director for eight years in Mohali, Chandigarh. There are three people, of whom I wear lockets on stage and he is one of them besides AR Rahman. I even picked the melody from his song in my song Blue Eyes Hypnotise. Chamkila is a legend and I am looking forward to Diljit’s film.”
On a parting note, Honey talks about working with Mouni Roy in his recently released song Gatividhi. “I have been writing songs for a long time with Hommie Dilliwala but in September 2022, I decided to write solo. I have written around 46 songs till now. I made this beat two years ago and came up with the idea of the Gatividhi word. It is a widely used word in North India. Mouni is really good and hardworking. She even got an injury just before the shoot but still shot the video for two days. The video is looking amazing also because of her,” he concludes.