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Thursday, June 08, 2006
Zubeen Garg - the name might not sound unfamiliar post Ya Ali. But this singer isn't a new entrant in Bollywood. He has been singing since the past six years and even has songs like Jaane Kya Hoga Rama Re (Kaante) to his credit. The talented singer also has a penchant for composing music.
After singing in 40 languages, composing for 26 Assamese films and winning a National award, Zubeen is all set to mark his debut as a music director in Bollywood with Sanjay Jha's offbeat film Strings.
You began as a singer and now turned music director. How did the transition happen?
Actually I always wanted to be a music director. I started as a singer in 1992. I did a lot of music albums and then I started composing music for films. Later I sang for different languages. In north east there are around 40 different tribal languages and I am the first singer who sang in all these different languages out there. I kept experimenting on all those folk elements and then I came to music direction. I gave music for 26 films. I have experience and now I want to do Hindi films too.
You have been singing in Hindi films since around 5-6 years now. But you got recognition only off late. Why was it late in coming?
I don't know. I sang Mere Vatan from Fiza and then Jaane Kya Hoga Rama Re from the Kaante. But I didn't get the focus. With Ya Ali in Gangster, I got good scope. It's a very good song by Pritam. I want to thanks Vishesh Films. After Ya Ali everything is happening now.
Has life changed after Ya Ali?
Yes it seems so, because I am singing for different directors and banners. Its quite fun and I am enjoying it now.
Tell us something about your latest work, Strings.
Strings is a crossover film. It's half English and half Hindi movie on the backdrop of Kumbh Mela. It has been shot in Nasik and it was a fantastic experience. I have acted in two songs as a model. The film is about a British guy and a Purohit's daughter. It's about how they accept our philosophy and our culture. It's a bonding of western and Indian culture.
This is your first Hindi movie as a music director. Weren't you apprehensive?
This maybe my first Hindi film as a music director but I have done more than 25 films in Assam as a music director and also acted in films. I got a national award last year for a film called Dinabandhu. I was the executive producer, music director and actor of that film.
Sanjay Jha (director of Strings) is a very open minded person and he gave me a lot of freedom to work. I got an opportunity to experiment with my work. I worked for around 12 years in north east and Assam. I have used my folk elements here in this film so I think people will like it.
Tell us something about the music of Strings.
It has a folk base music with modern implementation and westernized orchestration. The songs are from north east. It's a virgin land and nobody knows about it. This is the first time I am using it. This has been released in Assam and Bengal and I am getting good feedback from them.
How different is the music of Strings? How will you define your style?
It's different because it's not a typical Hindi movie. This movie has a different attitude and a different goal, basically. I have not tried the common element. There's a 600 year old Assami prarthana (prayer) that I converted in Hindi. It is a first song of the film. I think people will like it. There is one more song, a poem from Baba Nagarjun. He is a Hindi poet. He was sent to prison for that poem in 1969, so there is a rebel in that poem. It's a satire that depicts all the drawbacks of our democracy. The poem was published that time and then it was banned. We managed to make it as a song. I think people will like it.
Which is your favorite song in Strings?
There are six songs in the movie and I like the prarthana and the Om song. There is one more song called Piya Milan Ko Jana by Pankaj Mallik. It's a very famous song. People don't even remember that song. I reworked on the same and used only Piya Milan Ko Jana while the lyric is different. But the tune was same.
What are the forthcoming films that you are working on?
I am singing for the movie Pyar Ke Side Effects. It's a PNC production. I think it's a wonderful song by Pritam again. I am singing for Anurag's forthcoming film Woh Lamhe. The next project will be Dekho Mil Gaya. I am also singing a song for Vishal-Shekhar which is Arjun Rampal's production.