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Gift of the present

TEHREEM HASHMI
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Nothing pre-plannedRabbi Shergill.Photo: Shanker Chakravarty
Nothing pre-plannedRabbi Shergill.Photo: Shanker Chakravarty

With his enchanting voice and talent, the popular Punjabi and Sufi singer Rabbi Shergill has made a special place for himself in the hearts of listeners. He performed recently in Gurgaon as part of “Rhythm and Brew,” an initiative by Costa to promote music. The singer, who recently launched his latest album Rabbi III , uses various genres like Rock, Punjabi, Indipop and others. Saying he doesn’t know the secret of his own success, he however maintains that he lives in the present, not worrying about the future.

Excerpts from an interview with Shergill:

You are evidently a true music lover — writing and singing your songs and playing the guitar too. What inspired your love for music?

In 1989, I went to a Rock concert. There were 40,000 Delhiites singing in that huge concert, the whole environment flowed with the efficacy and virtue of music. That supremacy of music inspired me to get into it, to live it and to feel that divine love. From that concert I got the real passion for music.

How would you describe your music?

I would call it ‘ragda’ music. You put everything in a pot and then stir it. The mixture you get is my music. I just don’t know what to call myself. I always fail when it comes to describing my music. It just happens. I just try to put it down when it comes on my way. I can never define it.

Did you choose to sing in Punjabi merely because it is your mother tongue? And to what would you ascribe your mass appeal?

Punjabi is my mother tongue, it is my pride. I love singing in Punjabi. I write in roots Punjabi. I just do songs with honesty and integrity. I have absolutely no idea why some songs are appreciated to this extent. As an artiste I just give my cent per cent, and it automatically turns into a spicy and magical Punjabi track. The attitude and courage of the language appeal to everyone.

Throw some light on your latest album Rabbi III….

I don’t believe in commenting on my work. I want people to go and buy a copy and their comments are very valuable for me. I just want people to check it out. In total, it has nine songs and two of them are in Hindi. This album features “Ganga”.

Do you aspire to work with western artistes and what are your plans?

I would like to, like other Indian artistes. I have two or three names on my list. I do not understand what ‘future’ is, I just believe in the present.

TEHREEM HASHMI

I just do songs with honesty and integrity. I have absolutely no idea why some songs are appreciated to this extent.


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