'I've managed to flow with time'

SINGING SPREE

Clad in complete black, sipping a cup of coffee and munching some dark chocolate cookies, Sonu Nigam started his conversation. He spoke about how he sings with his heart and soul, not only in the languages he knows but also in those he is not familiar with. When asked if he finds it difficult to sing Kannada songs, he says, “Singing Hindi songs is as difficult as singing Kannada songs. I enjoy singing in Kannada. It has good composers and good music too.”

According to Sonu, even if one knows the language but is not able to express the feelings, it is of no use. He puts in a lot of effort and does a bit of background work before he sings in languages which he does not know. “I learn the meaning of each and every word in the lyrics. This way, I am able to emote well in an appropriate manner. I also learn how to pronounce the words properly to be able to do justice to what I sing.”
Sonu says he is very careful when he chooses his projects. “I don’t choose my work, work chooses me. If it’s a bad song, then I reject it. It is very important for me to make my audience like my music. Hence, I will sing only if people create good songs. But I am hardly offered bad songs as there is much respect for me,” he smiles.

When it comes to his acting talent, he says, “I look for quality in the movies which come to me. I never got the right movies to act, except for Love in Nepal. It was good, I don’t regret doing Love in Nepal.”

“I always wish someone would guide me in selecting movies. If not, all my hard work, effort and time will be wasted.” He chips in quickly, “I wish I knew how to select good movies.”

He is working on Three Idiots, Raavan and also doing a series called Time Travel. This series is different and unique.

“The project is more of an experiment, I will be going back in time, it’s more like revisiting the past. I sing along with many old singers like Mohammed Rafi. I’m ready with the first volume which spans nine years.”
He is currently working on the second volume. “I have also made my voice sound old for this,” he added.

In spite of being such a busy person, he still manages to practise singing. “I practise in flights, cars, in the corners of airports. It is very important for me to hone my talent. I need to practise, if not, I will not be able to sing well for long. I also do a little bit of warm-up before a concert.”

Sonu admires singers like Suresh Wadkar, S P Balasubramaniam, Sukhwinder Singh, Shankar Mahadevan and many more.

“They know the craft of singing,” he says. On his career now, he says, “My career looks pretty awesome. There were no albums, concerts and these many channels when I first started singing. It was only playback singing. Today, my career looks blissful. I have managed to flow with time and life rather than swimming in it aggressively.”

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