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Interview By: DRISHTI PANDEY

We had a quick chat with singer, composer Arjuna Harjai with regards to his latest work in Bollywood for ‘Judgemental Hai Kya’. He further spoke about his approach towards songs, marking his debut as a singer and composer in Tollywood for the film ‘Mahalakshmi’ and more…

How has your process been in approaching songs?
I am a kind of composer who would like to sit with the filmmaker and extract the brief idea from them. Because once you get a brief from the director, there are more aspects to understand the characters, personality, what kind of situation it is, how they react. So, to understand all that and try to bring every element in your music is what I try my best. It also depends on the project I do; I try to take certain elements from the personality of the film and try to implement it in the songs, the composition, and the lyrics.

How has your experience been to be associated with ‘Judgemental Hai Kya?’
I am extremely happy with the film; the director Prakash has done an amazing job. I was blown away when I saw the film and got even more excited that I am associated with the film. The audiences love the songs and with the placement of the songs it looks great.  I am very grateful, and my experience has been wonderful to be part of this film.

Tell us about your journey so far?
Initially when I started off, I was only focusing on composing because I was technically skilled into that. Eventually I thought if my voice is good enough for particular songs, I would definitely sing because I’m trained singer too.  I was never into singing but when something blends in the song; then why not give it a chance and sing.  I am actually not aware of the struggle a singer goes through because I have worked with lot of good singers and I have seen how difficult it is for a singer to struggle. Because now a day we don’t have one singer singing the song, but 2-3 singers, to understand what type of voice we should take for the song. I actually don’t go through all this process; I already have in mind whose voice will fit in the song.

Which song would you consider as a turning point in your career?
My first song which came out was “O Soniye” sang by Arijit Singh. And unexpectedly the song became very big and I was wondering how it was so well appreciated and popular.  And now people are discovering that it is my song and I still receive messages.  So now people are digging it up to find out whose song it was which a good thing is for me.  So, I believe the first song is always special for you and that only gives you more chances.

What do you have to say about recreated songs?
It depends on the film and if a particular old song has to be used then I feel why to mess with it, use it as it is.   I feel until a recreation song is entirely changed, all recreated songs sound the same.  I feel it’s a phase and it will go away…

Yes it is, but what if you get a chance to recreate a song?
I don’t want to react on it because it will be completely nasty.  I have recently done one recreation song for a very big south Indian film – ‘MahaLakshmi’.  And I did that because I felt challenged, when I heard the song, I questioned myself – ‘What can I do with this song?’ So I had to try it!  And in the past I had done the song “kaavaan Kaavaan” from the film ‘Lucknow Central’ that was recreated by me. Because, I cannot say ‘No’ to Nikkhil Advani since he is my mentor.

Do you keep in mind what the audience’s taste in music is and create music accordingly?
The only thing we should be aware of is that we know what’s trending right now. Trend is an illusion according to me, because it is creating a perception for a song to be considered a hit. We really don’t know how many people are listening to it, it’s just a perception how we have for 100 crore club for films, 100 million club for music industry.  But nobody actually knows if people are actually listening to the music, so, that’s the whole point of the trend. Music should come from within and people do connect to it because they like to connect with reality. And I feel slowly, slowly that phase will come again; things that are real.

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