Danish musician looks at fusion with Bollywood



Nikolaj Grandjean, a 36-year-old Danish singer and songwriter, was in India recently to perform before a select audience and negotiate contracts with Indian record companies. Grandjean's visit left him impressed with Bollywood numbers. He is now considering a fusion between Bollywood music with his own songs, even as a couple of music companies have initiated moves to sign him on. “Eros Entertainment have come up with a really interesting proposal, potentially making me the first western recording artiste to be signed directly with an Indian label,” said the singer.

Not that Grandjean, who chooses to take the name “N*Grandjean” because of his fascination for stars, will be a new Danish addition to India. Abba had taken the country by storm in the late 1970s and the group's music still continues to rock. And Aqua, a more recent phenomenon, is also popular on the circuit. "I am overwhelmed with the response from Indian audiences," said the lanky singer-songwriter. Grandjean has been writing music for over two decades, and got his first contract when 20. Since then, he has been working with various record labels and also formed the pop electrical band “Luke” with highly acclaimed jazz musicians.

Three albums were released by Luke and the hits include "Left to Right", "Heaven's on Fire" and "Whatever You Want”. Grandjean has also been nominated twice for the Danish Grammy awards -- in the category of best songwriter with Marie Frank in 2000 and for best newcomer with Luke in 2002. He cut his first solo album, "Carrying Star" in 2008 with his chosen artiste name N*Grandjean and the album features soft pop songs and love lyrics. His "Love Rocks" is a super hit, so is "Wake Up".

So much so, music critiques are comparing him to Jack Johnson and James Blunt. Inger Solberg, a Scandinavian living in India for over a decade, is seeking to get over a dozen talented Scandinavian artistes to play in India and also negotiating on their behalf with various Indian record labels. "The songs are all universal in their appeal and the initial response is really encouraging," said Solberg, who is also promoting Grandjean, even as some Danish companies like Carlsberg have come forward to become a part of this endeavour.

“Inger offered to manage my career in India, to get my talent across, strongly believing the Asian market has reached a point now to embrace these somewhat poetic English language themes of love that I insist speaking of,” said Grandjean. Solberg also proposes to organise a Danish music and cultural promotion tour in India next year with artistes like N*Grandjean to perform in New Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore and Goa, among other cities.

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