Singer Armaan Malik has come a long way, from his debut as a child singer in 2007 film 'Taare Zameen Par' to winning multiple accolades, including two MTV Europe Music Awards for his English singles 'You' and 'Control'. He commands an ardent following; the singer's fans call themselves Armaanians and amount to millions. He recently teamed up with music composer-singer Mithoon for ‘Wahi Toh Khuda Hai’ which hit the airwaves on Thursday.
The music video of the song showcases a butterfly effect of kindness as it passes down from one person to the next, eventually spreading smiles as it makes the world a better place. The song, which features both the artistes’ voices, is in a completely different zone from their earlier songs.
Two new collabs
When we caught up with the baby-faced singer after his stage show at Royal Stag Boombox festival, he said, “I’m truly glad to be a part of such a song. Mithoon told me that he had always wanted to write a song like ‘Wahi Toh Khuda Hai’. The world is in need of kindness and we hope to inspire people this way.” He has lent his versatile voice to another fresh collab with talented producer OAFF. Titled 'Tabaahi', the song has a breezy chill-pop vibe and an infectious rhythm.
Says Armaan, “The song talks about the ‘sukoon’ one feels being alone in nature with the person they love and when they aren’t in their company, everything feels like it’s falling apart and it’s absolute ‘tabaahi’ (destruction). The track brought out a different side to my musicality which I had never known or accessed before. That’s the beauty of collaborations, they always bring a new colour of both artists to the fore.”
Enjoys indie songs
His single ‘Sun Maahi’ is featured prominently in the Music Section of the new Apple Store in Mumbai. Says Armaan, “I was at the Apple store, and I saw that unveil happen. It's definitely a massive moment for me as an artist to see my song and my picture featured on the Apple Music desk. It's a huge win for me as an Indian singer, songwriter to be represented in that manner.” He enjoys making indie music. “For me, I think it's liberating to do a non-film independent release as opposed to Bollywood. So yeah, if someone asked me, what would I rather do? Yes, I would make an independent single,” he says.
Live performances over recording
Armaan straddles the worlds of Bollywood playback singing as well as performing on stage as a solo artist. Ask him what he prefers, and he says, “Performing live, because I can understand and gauge how much my songs have reached out to my fans in real time. The experience is enjoyable. I would say it's transcendental in a way because I feel like I escape reality in those two hours that I perform for my fans.”
Having just wrapped up a stage show at Seagrams Royal Stag Boombox, he said, “It's a great amalgamation of artists on one stage, representing their own styles of music, and yet doing something that can permeate through all the listeners of all the other genres. We're not alienating any one kind of listener. If a hip-hop track is being put out, it's not that the other genres' listeners will be alienated from it. I am very excited to be in Dehradun, doing this music festival. Some of my friends are on the line-up; Neeti Mohan is a very dear friend. We have sung ‘Sau Aasmaan’ together. So, I'm very happy to be here with her, and E.P.R and DJ Yogii.”
On mentor Salim Merchant
The singer has been blessed with many guides and mentors at every stage of his career, but counts singer Sonu Nigam and composer duo Salim-Sulaiman as his initial mentors. “Salim Merchant, especially, has been an integral part of my journey, inspiring and working with me. I was 15-16, when I collaborated with him for my first album ‘Armaan’. Very early on, he showed trust in me and faith in my talent,” he says.
Gen Z bros of Bollywood
Armaan and his composer-singer brother Amaal are the Gen Z power duo of Bollywood right now. When we asked him what it's like to work with his brother Amaal, he says, “Firstly, thank you for calling us a Gen Z power duo. Both of us have a very similar musical taste. Otherwise, we wouldn't have put out so many songs together. Our relationship is such that if I start a sentence, he finishes it. So, we've pretty much connected spiritually, musically, and because we are siblings.”
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