Navraj Hans is the sensational voice behind several super-hit Bollywood and Punjabi songs.
Some of his best songs stand as Sadi Rail Gaddi in the movie Tutak Tutak Tutiya, Chote Chote Peg in Sonu Ke Titu Ki Sweety, Mundiyaan Tu Bachke for Baaghi 2. Despite being the song of ace singer and composer Hans Raj Hans and the son-in-law of Daler Mehndi, he has carved a niche for himself in the music industry. His latest release 'Khaas' featuring Ihana Dhillon is ruling the charts.
In conversation with International Business Times, India, Navraj Hans spoke at length about his song, his journey so far in the music industry and how he keeps himself away from the ongoing nepotism and music mafia debate.
Excerpts from the interview:
How did you start your journey in music?
I probably wouldn't be able to frame a picture of my journey, but I was studying abroad and I always carried a very strange void of cultural deficit within me. So, to fill up that void, I used to listen to Indian music all day. Gradually, I found myself humming the songs and then I would practise my beats correctly.
Did your dad Hans Raj Hans help you in shaping your career?
Yes, of course. His contribution in shaping my career is immense. Without his guidance and teachings, I would not have been able to achieve anything.
Had you not been a musician or singer, what would you be?
I think it's very difficult to choose an alternate career. Other than music what I love is I love to play cricket. Not many are aware that I am one of the key players in 'Punjab De Sher Cricket' team.
How has your struggle in the music industry been?
I have always strived hard to meet the expectations of my audience. I believe that everyone has their own experiences of highs and lows in their career from which they need to rise and shine out.
At any point in your career, did you ever feel that you haven't got your due as a singer?
I think it is the audience that decides and grades your work. For me, thankfully and very fortunately, the audience has always given me extreme warmth and love and I will never ever let them down.
To garner more views, labels usually buy views, and the hard-working ones have to suffer? What do you have to say?
What one does in their field of work is very subjective to each individual. These small factors don't affect a sincere artist's work.What counts is your talent, hard work and art.
What is your take on remixes? Especially in Bollywood when big labels take popular Punjabi songs and remix it, do you think its fair?
I think it is a very proud thing for the Punjabi music Industry that big Bollywood labels take songs from here and remix it. They appericate our industry and our music. And my views on remixes is that it is a piece of art and as an artist, I have immense respect for all forms of art.
Who is your favourite singer?
I have a lot of favourite singers. My favourite voices I'd say would be my father, of course, Hans Raj Hans, Daler Mehndi, Mika Singh and Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan Sahab.
If you had to sing for a Bollywood actor who would it be and why?
I would love to sing for everyone. I have never looked forward to being a specific voice for someone. I'd like to work for everyone, all the Khans, all the Kapoors, all the Kumars. All the artists, basically.
Tell us about your new song?
The song 'Khaas' shows a very bittersweet nature of love. It is a rather special song. It is a tune that has an element of sadness to it. I have always been fond of crooning romantic songs because I believe that they have the power to touch your heart. Khaas will surely transcend you to a different world and will make you think of someone speical in your life.
What's your take on the ongoing music mafia?
I think I have a very generic answer to this. I believe that there is nepotism, not just in the industry, it's present in all the industries. However, I would like to say that it is your talent, your hard work and your art that is going to make you count.
Have you got your due in the music industry?
My audience, who is my judge, has been giving me a lot of warmth and love so far. I have huge respect for them and I'm not going to let them down.
One thing that the Indian music industry lacks?
I don't think there is absolutely anything that the Indian Music Industry lacks. Our music is very rich, Indian musicians have gained a lot of fame all over the world.
How different is the Punjabi music industry than Bollywood?
I think the very and only basic difference between the two is that Punjabi Music Industry is an independent music industry and most of the music of Bollywood is for movies.
What do you enjoy more Punjabi songs or Bollywood?
Since I started working initially with Bollywood songs, I'd say that I enjoy Bollywood more. I prefer playback singing more.