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In the upper register

Roop Kumar Rathod on his passion

Photo: H. Satish

Upbeat Roop Kumar Rathod

“I am completely immersed in Sufi music these days. I am floating in the colours of Sufism,” says Roop Kumar Rathod, the popular ghazal singer. His songs have appealed to a large number of music fans, and now he intends to top the charts again with the album Teri Justajoo in which he has sung the title track. This song, incidentally, has no video, in an era when they are the reason for a song’s popularity.

“The company has faith in the composition, and sometimes the visual takes you away from the exact mood of the song,” he explains.

He has stalwarts for company in this album. Others who have sung are Kailash Kher, Rahat Fateh Ali Khan and the late Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan. “The future of Indian classical music will last till eternity and it is touching new heights every day,” says Rathod.

He is forthright on the skills of reality show winners: “They are unaware of the nuances of Indian classical music and also possess inappropriate diction,” he sighs.

A singer should have the right diction, as clarity of words plays a pivotal role in bringing out a singer’s genuine talent. That is one reason he learnt Urdu, he says. “Many a time listeners request a song in Urdu.” He adds that knowing the language gives him an edge in understanding people when he travels to countries of West Asia.

Music cools the mind, says the singer, who describes himself as “deeply in love with music.” That is why he learnt it, he proudly explains. He says he continues to learn all kinds of music and is currently sitting in on his daughter’s Carnatic music lessons. Expectedly, he feels, “One has to take several births to master music.”

Rathod is of the opinion that if an artiste’s work gets appreciated, that is the real award. Yet “one feels proud to hold the trophy for sure,” he adds. And then there is a particular trophy he covets. “I would love to sing for Shah Rukh Khan, as the passion and commitment he shows is seen in very few actors.”

NIPUN JACOB AUGUSTIN

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