For the love of music
Rahat Fateh Ali Khan reflects on music, B’wood and more
Rahat Fateh Ali Khan’s name brings many powerful images in one’s mind. Be it his soul stirring music, his lingering vocals, the plaintive notes for songs such as ‘Teri Meri Meri Teri Prem Kahani,’ ‘O Re piya,’ ‘Sajda,’ ‘Mann Ki Lagan’ or his effort to popularise Sufi music and Qawwalis and making it accessible for the masses, Rahat is hugely adored by his fans.
His painstaking work for Hollywood projects like ‘Dead Man Walking’ ‘The Four Feathers’ alongside Academy award winning maestro James Horner and Mel Gibson’s ‘Apocalypto’ Rahat is loved by millions all over the world.
The Pakistani musician and singer who is the nephew of the virtuoso Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan reflected on his past, the future and the recent concert at Dubai which saw a sell-out crowd.
You have performed several times in Dubai. What do you love about this place?
I love Dubai because of its energy, the vibrant people. The love and respect I get here motivates me a lot and that’s precisely why I am always excited to perform here.
How do you look back at your journey in Bollywood been so far?
It has been an excellent journey. The entire fraternity of Bollywood has showered me with love and respect. So when you hear a good song of mine, you know that it’s their love that has translated into the good work I have produced.
You have worked with a number of composers in the industry? Who do you vibe best with?
I think that everyone has a unique way of working and I enjoy variety. So I can’t name anyone in particular.
Besides music, do you get time to watch films? Who are your favorite actors?
Unfortunately, I hardly get to watch any movies since I am so busy travelling, rehearsing and performing. But I do catch up on films when I need a break from work.
We saw you as a judge on the TV show ‘Chote Ustaad’ along with Sonu Nigam. How was your experience?
It was a different experience altogether. I was surprised to see young kids singing like professionals. It was very inspiring. Plus, Sonu is a great friend. I had a wonderful time shooting the episodes with him.
What qualities do you look for in a person while judging a show?
Well, the most important aspect in my opinion is the ‘sur.’ The tone or the tune is essentially the basis of singing. Next, it’s very important to know how versatile a singer is, the quality of his voice apart from other factors.
Is there any one song currently in Bollywood that you wish you had sung?
I usually get songs which suit my voice and style and I am content with those numbers.
Most veterans feel that songs these days have a short shelf life. In your opinion, how can a music composer or singer ensure that his music lives on forever?
Any good melody lives forever. Thus, it doesn’t matter which era the song was composed in.
What is your opinion of the use of social media to popularise music?
It’s a powerful tool that influences and shapes opinions. Anything that helps you do that has to be used to its fullest potential.