Interview By: AAKANSHA SHAKHEWAR
We get in chat with Jay Sean who is an internationally known pop artist. We talk to him at Universal Studios, Bandra. We ask him how warmly his motherland welcomed him and how is the feeling of being back to his home town. He also tells us about his new song ‘With You- Jay Sean, Gucci Mane Ft. Asian Doll.’, his Bollywood collaborations and more…
Tell us about your experience with the tour?
It has been great! It was actually a last minute thing because what I came for was the big show in Bangalore but since they knew I was going to be in India the markets were like, let’s do your show in Mumbai and to that, I said ‘Why not’. All shows were massively sold out. I’m a happy man now as all shows did relatively well.
You have a massive Indian fan following, we are sure the fans went insane when they came to know you are going to perform in the heart of the country i.e Mumbai. How did the Indian audience treat you?
Honestly I’m not just saying it but the beauty about being in India is that they know my entire catalogue from 15 years. There are other places in the world where they have heard my music from ‘Down’ onwards, they don’t know the music that I did before but India knows my music since day 1. So being able to come here and perform all the songs across 15 years is really a beautiful thing.
What about your fan base here?
It is really over whelming sometimes and it’s the obvious factor of me being an Indian and performing in the motherland is the pride you feel from Indians like ‘He is one of us and he is doing the music we love. Not only he is doing the Hindi Music or Punjabi Music but he is also singing R&B, Hip-Pop and all the things that we love.’ –and with that I get to be one of you and it is really beautiful.
Would you like to work in Bollywood as an actor if you ever get a chance?
I would love to work with Bollywood but not as an actor. To be honest my Hindi is not that good but as I’m a Punjabi my I can speak it fine. I can’t understand Hindi 100% nor can I speak well and I know they have dubbing but I would do what is genuine to me. So I’ll definitely do it for the songs and not as an actor.
Are you looking forward to collaborate with any Bollywood mainstream artists?
Yes that is something I have on my agenda for now. I have just done a bunch of songs with Rishi Rich which is specifically for this market, we will see what kind of movies are coming out and see if we can place any of our songs in the movie than we will do that and I’m sure it will be amazing.
You have worked with well known names like Lil Wayne, Sean Paul, Pitbull and many more mainstream artists… can you tell us about the collaborations that have been in your favourites and what makes it special?
It is really difficult to pick as I have done too many of them. I can pick 4 or 5 from that definitely Nicki Minaj is one because it was right in the beginning of her career so it was super new and the song blew up and so did she. Everything was super new and everyone was like ‘We don’t believe that you did that song with Nicki Minaj’. Collaborating with Pitbull has always been fun as he is international like me and the song that I did with him was internationally well received everywhere. Sean Paul will always be one of my favourites and he is also one of my good friends. We have had two smash hits together it’s like we can’t miss.I think one that will also stay with me Mary J. Blige, she is like a legend and R&B queen. For her to choose me for one of her songs is a great compliment because I grew up to her music and it’s one of those big things that they hand pick you.
If you have to sing for any Bollywood actors… who would it be? Do you have any favourites?
Right now I know that Ranveer Singh is killing it but that’s not the reason why I would necessarily want to work with him but I would work with him because he is a big fan of Hip-Pop and I know that. He loves Hip-Pop and that is why I think this collaboration would make sense. Next, I love Amitabh Bachchan but me making song for Amitabh Bachchan won’t make sense right? Do I love Shahrukh Khan? Yes ofcouse! Priyanka Chopra is a very good friend of mine; Abhishek also loves rapping, Hip pop and stuff like that so those are the things that makes sense if I collaborate with them.
How has your taste of music evolved over years as you have been in the industry for a really long time now?
I always adapt to the climate and for me ‘Adapt or die is a thing.’ Like you cannot say this is all I do and this is all I want to do and as the time passes by that music is 20 years old and nobody even likes it anymore. You have to learn how to adapt. Music is forever changing and if you look at the legends Madonna, MJ you see they have adapted with time. Music changes so you cannot keep on using the same instruments or the sounds. Learn how to do what you do with the time and I think that is the key to my own jeopardy.
Was there a point you felt like giving up because of the pressure?
No! Why would I? I have got to be honest, Life has been really good to me and I’m very blessed. I have been given one of the biggest privileges in the world to be the only Indian mainstream pop star on planet earth and why would I give that up? I mean no I never did and never would.
You recently released a marvellous track… can you tell us a bit about its genre?
I recently released a song ‘With You’ that came out on March 8 and it’s an R&B hip-pop record. Hip-pop has changed into becoming what it is now it is really trap music. Big names like Drake, Travis Scott, Future, Weeknd and this kind of artist has made the genre of music very big and this is my first real record in that world so again I’m going to try to do something that is different.
For this year I’m going to mainly focus on music but I have been doing TV writing for a show in America. I have put it on my wish board to Collab with Bollywood.