Actor Priyanka Chopra’s single goes triple platinum
With hits like Kaminey, 7Khoon Maaf and now Barfi! under her belt, Priyanka Chopra has proved her mettle as an actor. She has recently added another feather to her cap. With her first release out, the actor has now turned singer.
Priyanka reveals that her infatuation with singing started as a child. Throughout school she was often “the girl that was pushed forward to sing when the teacher was absent.”
Singing professionally though was another ballgame. For Priyanka, being involved in the film industry surrounded by studios and booths, singing was always around the corner. “I was offered the opportunity to sing by Salim-Sulaiman and Vishal-Shekhar but I was too shy to do it,” she says, adding, “I even sang for a track in Bluffmaster! which was never released.”
In the Capital to promote In My City, the first single from her upcoming album, the actor feels that “nothing prepares you for the booth” and that hearing herself sing for the first time was “a scary feeling and took a lot of courage.”
A new start
When Universal Music initially approached her, Priyanka recalls, she refused the offer because of shooting commitments like Barfi! and Don 2. But at their insistence she agreed to go to their studios in London, later. “Taking up the offer was like coming back to the industry as a newcomer all over again,” she says.
The process of preparing for the album involved her working extensively with a voice coach. “I took singing classes and had a coach who trained me in western classical singing.” The coach, she adds, accompanied her on location shoots.
About collaborating with international artist will.i.am on the single she says, “Will is an extremely talented artiste and musician and it was an honour to work with him,” adding, “It was Will who showed me the single and told me that this was a song I must sing.”
Priyanka says she feels extremely honoured to have her name taken in the same breath as artists like will.i.am and RedOne — who has produced the track.
News of In My City reaching triple platinum status (three million copies sold) came as a complete surprise, says the actor, and she modestly remarks, “It could just be because the idea of me singing piqued people’s interest.”
Elaborating on her experience during the production of the album, she notes, “Music is a relaxed process. You sit with friends, talk, laugh, somebody suggests a tune and suddenly someone goes ‘Hey! We can write a song on this.’ Songs come out of thin air!”
While the track deals with her experiences growing up in many cities, the album with its use of Indian instruments will be a “mish-mash of global music,” she says.