Rimi Nique
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It was dream come true for singer-songwriter Rimi Nique to lend her voice to the title song 'Saasain Huin Dhuan Dhuan' for Salman Khan starrer Race 3. She made her debut in Bollywood as a lyricist and a playback singer with Naach Meri Jaan Naach from Remo D'Souza's ABCD 2. And now after working with Salman Khan in Race 3, Rimi Nique feels that she can achieve whatever she would work hard for.

In an exclusive conversation with International Business Times India, Rimi Nique revealed how she bagged the opportunity to sing for Race 3, why the music industry has remained male-dominant and whom she sees a competition in Bollywood.

It must have been a great feeling to lend your voice to the title track of a Salman Khan big ticket film like race 3.

I feel very blessed to have had this opportunity, to be part of the soundtrack of Race 3. I got to write and sing the song, which is always a treat for me. Gurinder Seagal, the music director, briefed me through the phone and sent me the instrumental when I was in LA for some music projects. I didn't even know what it was for. It was about 2 am in the morning, I listened to the beats, got inspired, wrote the English lyrics, sang the vocal demo on WhatsApp and sent it to him right away. Then I went about doing my own musical works, almost forgetting about it. When I got back to Mumbai, he told me it got locked in the song for Race 3 and that was it!

It is believed that once you work in a Salman Khan movie, opportunities come knocking at your doorstep. 

Rimi Nique
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There is definitely some kind of magic when it comes to being associated with Salman Khan in some way, that's what they say! If not opportunities, definitely self-confidence! Something magical about Salman Khan's presence, especially being on the same stage as him at the trailer launch, makes you feel like you can achieve whatever it is you work hard for.

It was such an honor to be called on stage during the Race 3 launch, taking pictures and celebrating the moment with Salman Khan, Anil Kapoor, Remo D Souza, Jaqueline Fernandes, Bobby Deol, Daisy Shah and more. And now seeing them perform to 'Saasain Huin Dhuan Dhuan' at the Dabaang 2018 tour makes me feel amazing! My fans were tagging me and the whole music team in the Insta stories of the Dabbang tour, of Daisy Shah rehearsing and then joining the Race 3 team on stage to perform the song. Such a dream come true.

Was playback singing always on your mind?

Playback singing came as an addition to my musical journey. I am first and foremost an artist used to holding my own through the whole process - to singing, writing, performing, and being in my own videos - the independent scene way. Been doing that in Thailand and in America when I had a college band, we had an album out and toured in the US.

The thought of singing for movies or have actresses be the face of my voice was a new concept for me when I got to Mumbai. When my song 'Naach Meri Jaan' happened, seeing Shraddha Kapoor carry my voice in the song was a new and amazing sensation. It became a new favorite for me, something to add to my ever growing goals as an Artist! Now it's definitely on my mind!

There are so many talented female singers in Bollywood. But yet we don't see them getting enough songs to showcase their vocal range. They are either made to sing a small portion or sing at a lower pitch than that of their male counterparts. Why is it so?

I am not sure about singing in a lower pitch of their male counterparts as I have never really experienced that or observed so closely myself. I am still a new artist, still fresh to the Bollywood music industry as a playback singer and still have so much to offer in my singing and writing. Well, I guess it really depends on the song, I do understand that we all have to start somewhere, even if it's just the small parts.

The songs for Bollywood that female singers sing have to depict the character of the movie more than show off the singer's vocal range - we are in the back end here, hence it's called playback singer, I guess? haha.. not funny? If you want to go all out and show your vocal range and many other skills as an artist, singles and independent music is the way to go. You can do both! Regardless of being a male or a female singer. That's the mindset I have as an artist.

Why do you think there are no female music composers?

I'm sure there are female composers. I compose as well, just haven't done one in Bollywood, but I compose western songs a lot and actually will be releasing one very soon as well. The ratio for male and female composers might not be equal, but it's not that there are no female composers at all. They might not be put in the limelight as much, but times are changing.

What could've been the reason for the music industry to remain male-dominated, according to you? Why there are only a handful of female music composers in the industry when we have talent in abundance? What changes would you like to see in the years to come.

Interesting question and there is definitely a point there. There should be more female composers I totally agree, time for them to come out and be confident about their work! I already see it happening. There are enough in the independent scene, but maybe not in the Bollywood scene. Maybe because everyone is conditioned to think that composers are mainly males, so movie producers/directors only look out for male composers - maybe people need to shift their perception and keep their eyes and their ears open for both equally - and then see the magic!

It might be a male-dominated industry but only because we all think that's the norm, it's what we grew up knowing so we don't see or imagine differently - time to let people know that it's welcomed to all genders. It's just like how we were conditioned earlier to think only women cook, and now look how many male cooks/chefs we have in this generation - it feels normal now, it's almost opposite... more male chefs than females haha. You never know, we might flip the coin around and before you know it, there will be more female composers and females running the industry than males. just saying!

Also, It's not just always about the talent, we all know that. The talent will get you somewhere but to make a mark, it depends on your connections, your luck, your sheer determination to be heard, the hard work you put into it, a lot of factors - but ofcourse if you are serious about it, you need to have your base, that is your talent, no excuses there.

Who do you think is your competition in playback singing in Bollywood and how do you take it.

Rimi Nique
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I don't really see anyone as a competition. I am carving my own path, offering something different as a lyricist and a singer. I always tell myself that I am my own competition, I try to do better every time. I am always learning and being inspired by other talented artists I come across in my lifetime, but there is only one artist I need to keep an eye on, that is Rimi Nique. Simple. Just got to keep making amazing music for the world to enjoy.

Lastly, tell us what is that one thing that you want to happen in your life really badly.

I feel like it's already happening, I am getting to do what I love every day, make people happy with my music and make a career out of it. What more can I ask for? If anything, I am very blessed and grateful to be where I am today. I just have to keep growing, keep climbing, keep learning, keep working at it - it's all part of the process. Now it's time to go global, hit the world stage! The rest I leave it to the universe.