Raju Singh is here
A DEGREE in any subject does not help if a person doing it feels passionate towards something else. That's why, a degree from Mithibai College in Mumbai did not help Raju Singh build a career but a three-year stint in music learning under Guru Uttam Singh did. You have heard his composition in serials like "Dekh Bhai Dekh", "Filmi Chakkar", "Aahat", "Boogie Woogie" and "C.I.D".
What's more, the famous album that brought Javed Akhtar and Alka Yagnik together for the first time was his labour of love, "Tum Yaad Aaye". This album helped Raju Singh, score a few points in the Hindi film music world. Hence, came his way a few films like "Deewanapan" "Paagalpan" and now Madhur Bhandarkar's "Satta", as also others, including "Kisi Se Na Kehna", "Shaadi.com", "Karvat", "Hum Tum Pe Marte Hain" and Digmanshu Dhulia's latest flick.
Despite the fact that his father musician Charanjit Singh "commanded great respect in Indian music industry for his calibre and for association with the likes of R.D. Burman and Shankar Jaikishan," Raju Singh "never capitalised on his name. I worked tirelessly on my own." And the result was his very first album "Koi Baat Nahin" -- Raju regrets that the album was not "marketed well". It impressed Javed Akhtar so much that he got ready to work with him in "Tum Yaad Aaye."
But his "Hai Jamalo" with Malkit Singh popularised him overnight. And his album "I Love Golden Star" with Aadesh Shrivastva proved a rage in the West in 1986. Now, 32-year-old Raju's recent remix album "Roop Tera Mastana" is ahead of many others. Yet he has this to say, "I regret when I see myself doing remixes as it is tempering with the original."
Does he think that his knowledge of music is sufficient to do justice to the music he scores? "I know half knowledge is dangerous. Yet I try to do best with whatever calibre I have. I work hard. It has brought results too." Shayrana, an album of light ghazals by Universal with Javed Akhtar and Meghna Gulzaar would soon be out. And he has also scored music for a Malayalam film "Snehapurvam Anna". But he does not know the language. How come? "My wife is a Malayali. She helped me with it. Moreover, in the recording studio, I was surrounded by Malayali people who understood all notes I would tell them. So it was fun," he says.
Though Singh has placed himself comfortably in Bollywood but for newcomers, he warns, it is going to be tough. "Now singers of half-baked calibre fade as fast they come. Music companies have started realising that such short terms gains will not help them. So they are also taking trained singers only."
RANA A. SIDDIQUI
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