meet Vijay Ebenezer, a gospel musician, has made his foray into films, with Kandein
International music is replete with success stories of musicians, singers and performers in various genres, with a rich background in gospel music. “Knowledge of gospel and church music helps understand harmonies better and the nuances of performing in different voices,” says Vijay Ebenezer, who has made his debut as a music director with the recent release, Kandein.
Coming from a religious family with a deep interest in music, Vijay's initial forays were in the world of gospel music. “I have played keyboards for many gospel albums with Harris Jayaraj and currently have my own group of gospel singers. My passion for church music has resulted in three volumes of gospel songs under the title ‘Nesippaya',” says Vijay. And thanks to the Internet, they have become popular across the world and Vijay's fans are coaxing him to come up with a fourth album. “I am enthused by the acceptance of my gospel songs. On a recent TV reality show for gospel music, ‘Sing to The King', where I was a judge, I was pleasantly surprised to hear six of the 10 finalists render my compositions, and a girl won the award singing a song from my album!” says an excited Vijay. He has already started recording songs for ‘Nesippaya 4'.
How did Kandein happen to a gospel musician? “I have been exposed to film music through playing regularly for Harris Jayaraj. Leading playback singers Krish and his wife Sangeetha are close friends of mine. When Sangeetha was asked to suggest a fresh composer by the executive producer of Kandein, she mentioned my name. I was actually asked to compose for seven songs, each with ten options! Can you imagine…70 songs for one film! I told the producers that even if I tried to come up with so many variations, the first one would always remain the best. Finally, it just turned out that the first composition for each song was selected…however, the film features only five songs,” says Vijay.
Importance of live sound
So, did he resort to the easy way out…with a lot of programming and canned electronic music? “No way,” says Vijay. “I was keen on using as much live sound as possible. This lent richness to the songs. Even for the background score, I engaged a lot of live performers to get that unique feel.”
It has been a while since the release of Kandein. What's next? “A script should excite me. In my opinion, music should add substance to a film. Songs should be an integral part of the story and help take it forward. The stories should be love-driven and give ample scope for my music. My efforts should do complete justice to the final product and vice versa. I have gone through eight scripts and short-listed two. Very soon, I will sign on the dotted line for two films and start work on the compositions,” says a confident Vijay.