'Music is in my blood'

'Music is in my blood'

It is not every day that you compete for an award with singers and composers like Salim-Sulaiman, Yo Yo Honey Singh, Sonu Nigam and Bickram Ghosh, Dhruv and Vasudha Sharma, and Manoj Pandya.

But for 15-year-old Shraddha Shree, who has been nominated for the ‘Best Pop Song’ category in Global Indian Music Academy (GIMA) Awards 2016, along with them, the feelings are mixed.

“This nomination means the world to me. I’m such a huge fan of all these artistes, with one of them being my mentor and ideal. I am truly humbled to even have my name alongside theirs,” says Shree referring to Salim Merchant who trained her as part of Max Life Insurance’s i-genius Young Singing Stars’ Season 1 in 2014, which she eventually won, and landed a recording break with Universal Studios.

Being the youngest contender in the nomination cate for her song Khuda Mere from her five-song album Shukriya, Delhi-based Shree believes  such acknowledgement is a great boost to her nascent career.

“I could not have asked for more. While I believe that the best may win, it feels wonderful to bag a nomination for the first ever song you sing in a studio,” says Shree ahead of the award show on April 6 in Mumbai. 

 Prod her to recall her first day in the studio, and the classical singer recollects, “Everybody including composer Gujral Singh sir (Pakeezah song from film Ungli) and lyricist Manoj Yadav sir (Madari song from MTV Coke Studio) were warm. The director explained the lyrics, and I connected to the catchy number at once.”

Having grown up in a family of musicians and as a third generation Hindustani classical music singer, Shree credits her family for her achievement. “Music is in my blood. There is not even a day without music in my family,” she says.

That is what made her keep participating in competitions at the school level. And one day, taking her friend’s suggestion, she participated in the singing challenge which featured more than 2.5 lakh participants aged between 4-15 years.

Through a rigorous three-phase selection process, the panel of jury shortlisted performers who were filtered down to top 10 through a video conferencing round, and underwent mentoring sessions with Merchant and Shraddha Sharma.

Recalling the date when she was named the winner of the competition Shree mentions, “I had sent my first recording of the song Bhare Naina from film Ra One, which accidently turned out to be my grand finale song as well. I can’t forget the moment when I realised
I had won.”

She doesn’t idealise any singer in particular and wishes to be a “versatile singer”. “I do not just intend to sing, but also study music. So, I have opted for a school which emphasises on music. I want to be a music director and playback sometime soon,” says
the 11 th class student of Venkateshwar International School,Dwarka.

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