Inspired by Kishore Kumar, helped by Nadeem
EVEN IF Hindi doesn't happen to be a singer's mother tongue, mastery over the flow of words and their correct pronunciation is an essential prerequisite to become a professional Bollywood singer. But try asking this question to Hindi playback singer, Babul Supriyo and his reply will overtake you by surprise. Supriyo says with candour that he is still learning Hindi.
The crooner assures though, "In another three or four years my Hindi will see more improvement."
Coming from West Bengal, Supriyo was "extremely nervous" before singing in Hindi. "I am a typical Bengali. It is a common knowledge that Bengalis are very bad in Hindi. Before singing, lyrics were kept before me and I was extremely nervous before putting my vocal chords to test," he says. "However, Urdu can be learnt while uttering words like Khwaish during conversations and even while singing," he adds.
Eagerly waiting for the release of Subhash Ghai's film, "Ek Aur Ek Gyarah" where he has sung songs, Supriyo has a few hit film songs to his credit. "For the last one year I have done some very good work like singing for `Kucch To Hai'," he says. An ardent fan of the late Kishore Kumar, Supriyo never used to miss the great singer whenever he cam to Kolkata for concerts. "But I never got a chance to meet him personally. There are numerous songs of his, which are my favourite. However, `Chingari Koi Bhadke' is the ultimate," he says.
On his equation with music director Nadeem, Supriyo says, "He is like my elder brother and a pillar of strength. He thought that if given a chance to sing I could become a good singer. From 1994 to `97, I must have sung for 15 to 20 films. The credit goes to Nadeem bhai."
On being asked that had he benefited from the split between Nadeem and singer Kumar Sanu, Supriyo says, "If I had benefited from a fallout then I would have remained where I was."
With a voice, which leads some to compare him with his `idol' Kishore Kumar, Supriyo says, "Both Kishore Kumar and Kumar Sanu have more experience in this field than I have. I was put into a place where as a singer, comparisons were drawn. In the initial years I used to fill vacuum when some singer had to go abroad. I was even called poor man's Kumar Sanu, who must be 13 or 14 years older than me. I had to wait." Supriyo gives credit to fellow singer Abhijeet too. "He was also a source of inspiration."
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