Armaan Malik is one of the youngest successful artists in the Indian music industry. And is fondly referred to as the 'Prince of Romance,' Hailing from a renowned musical family, spanning three generations of Bollywood music, Armaan Malik continues his family's musical legacy. His versatility as a singer is exemplified not just in his multi-lingual lyrics, but also in his exploration of diverse styles and approaches to creating music.
Apart from being an effervescent singer, Armaan has written close to 50 English songs to date and is eagerly waiting for the right opportunity to showcase them. Some of his songs like 'Butta Bomma', Zara Thehro', 'Beech Raaste', and 'Mera Intezaar Karna', have been loved by fans.
Armaan Malik's recently released track 'How Many' talks about the millennial relationships and the complexities surrounding it.
In an exclusive conversation with IBTimes, Armaan Malik poured his heart out as he speaks about his recently released song, 'How Many', his take on independent music, making a comeback, remixes, his belief in love and much much more.
Excerpts from the candid interview:
All your independent singles are doing well? The concept of original independent songs has faded away, but it looks like its back, what do you have to say?
The independent scene is growing and expanding rapidly, but the music has always been there; it's just that people are paying attention to it now. Big songs from Bollywood or label releases aren't being pushed as much as they were previously because shooting music videos has been very difficult due to the pandemic. In India, a song doesn't work until there's a proper video asset for it. Therefore, Indie music filled the void most brilliantly.
I feel even though there is a lot of potential, it's very important to keep the sound different from Bollywood as I hear a lot of music already sounding the same as a film soundtrack. Non-film should have its own distinct sound and approach. The way I am going about it, I'm making sure I'm doing things differently and trying to introduce new sonics in the independent music space.
Tell us about your new single 'How Many'?
'How Many' is about complex relationships where you're constantly fighting, breaking up, getting back again.. taking the hits but yet carrying on. It describes the cycle of events that take place during the course of a relationship. One of the hardest decisions is when to call it quits and close a chapter for good. It's really tough when you love somebody to give up... even after the 100th time, the truth is, as long we love them, we try one more time. The question is, how many times are you willing to try?
At its core, the song is quite an emotional one which I think will resonate with a lot of people out there who've been in love and have experienced heartbreak.
And after how many attempts did you finalise the song?
'How Many' was ready a year and a half ago, it was actually one of the first songs I was going to release from my English music project. However, due to the pandemic, we decided to release it now. The audio was already finalized but what took time was to figure out was the video. 'How Many' needed powerful visuals to complement it, and I'm glad we waited and shot it well!
What is your idea of love and romance?
For me, if I'm in love with someone, I cannot see beyond that person. That's "IT" for me.
Are you this romantic in real life too?
I am extremely romantic. If I had to put it in a cheesy way - I love 'love'. It's a beautiful and pure feeling, and I think everyone on this planet should get to experience that emotion.
2020 had been a very different year especially for the music industry we have seen a surge in original tracks, comment
I love it! It's amazing to see the kind of love and support independent music has been getting these past few months. I hope this movement continues to grow this way and doesn't die down when Bollywood movies and their songs make a comeback.
What is your take on remixes and if offered would you take it up?
I was a part of this remake trend in the early phase of it and no denying that I have definitely gotten some big hits out of it like Tumhe Apna, Pyaar Manga Hai, Aise Na Mujhe Tum Dekho to name a few but recently it had gotten out of hand. I believe too much of anything is bad. I am glad the last superhit Bollywood music album I was a part of was fully original 'Kabir Singh'.
I feel if you're successful and influential, you have a certain responsibility towards the industry. You've got to take the initiative to bring about the change. We need to start doing more originals and bring back that freshness collectively.
These days we see a lot of videos (music) that garner millions of views overnight this hampers the morale of hard-working and budding artists, as they don't get enough organic views. Your take?
Views have become a sort of barometer of success for an artist and a song. I am really sad at the current scenario because a lot of up and coming talents feel extremely discouraged if they don't get enough organic views and because they want to be successful overnight, they resort to purchasing or buying fake views. The belief system that garnering millions of views on your song means your song is a chartbuster needs to be broken. It's a bubble that has disillusioned people.
You belong to a family who is affiliated with music was that an added advantage for you?
When you belong to a family steeped in musical excellence, everyone around you expects you to follow the same path and obviously believe that you have everything laid out for you along the way. But I knew I wanted to make it on my own mettle and not use my family name to further my career. At the age of 9, I even submitted my audition to a big Indian singing reality show called SaReGaMaPa Lil' Champs with only my first name – Armaan. I made it to the top 10 of that show too. I only did this because I wanted to know deep inside that yes, I can chart my own journey the way I want to and not looked at differently just because my family is a famous musical family. The biggest challenge I was faced with was how do I make a standalone identity, which I accomplished by charting my journey on my own terms and in my own unique way.
You and your brother Amaal are the heartthrobs in the music industry any advice that you have to give him, or he has given you?
My brother, Amaal, has been a huge influence in my life. He was the one to introduce me to world-music and the different genres that exist out there. Yes, I have learned Indian classical music from my teachers and gurus, but I think my true training and musical influences come from my brother. He truly helped shape my musicality.
Had you not been into music, what would you do?
I would've been a chef for sure (smiles).
The eventual plan is to put out an EP/Album. For now, I am putting out singles and taking it as it comes. I'm working on a bunch of exciting collaborations in English, and across other languages too, so pretty excited about that! 2021 will have a mixed bag of solo singles, collabs, and a few Bollywood projects.
Check out his latest English tracks:
- Daboo Malik's advice to sons Armaan and Amaal is genuinely inspirational: Exclusive
- I was eliminated from Sa Ra Ga Ma Pa saying 'aapko aage kaam mil hi jayega': Armaan Malik (Exclusive)