Everybody wants to be Arijit Singh


Among the few folk artists who have established a foothold in commercial music, Mame Khan on retaining her tonality

mama khan

From being the first Indian folk singer to walk the Cannes red carpet, to being sought after by music mavericks like Amit Trivedi and Salim-Sulaiman, Mame Khan arguably knows the kind of fame few folk musicians have. , in commercial music. Khan, who returned to the familiar Antisocial stage yesterday, after a two-year hiatus, admits the lockdown has been difficult to manage.

“For Manganiyars like me, live shows are the main source of income. While I also have work [in other arenas], they depend only on this source. Although we have learned a lot over the past two years, including the use of digital media, many difficulties have been encountered,” says Khan, who has performed his all-time hits Kaisariya balam, Nimbuda and Chaudhary, and Bollywood. songs like Bawaare, and the Sufi offering, Duma dum, at yesterday’s performance.

Also Read: When a Young Arijit Singh Met Shahid Kapoor on the Fame Gurukul Sets

Arijit SinghArijit Singh

Although his work is rooted in Rajasthani music, Khan says he has rarely found the need to tweak his set list, despite catering to a young audience unfamiliar with folk music. “Most of the songs I sing are now well known and I often find the audience responding to me. I understand their tastes and deliver what they want. After being commissioned by Punjabi music artists for a long time, commercial music consumers have gradually started to appreciate tunes from South Indian cinema and those in other languages.

This fact gains credibility when considering the success of tracks like Oo antava, Pasoori and Manike mage hithe. After his popular rendition of Coke Studio, Chaudhary, Khan established a place for Rajasthani music among this crowd. He claims that the reason for his success in this industry has been his “tone”. “I’ve nurtured it over the years, and people will agree it’s distinct from any other. I don’t want to become Arijit Singh. Today, all singers want to be like him and in doing so lose their identity. Arijit is already there; it cannot be replaced. By singing like him, a person cannot become him. So I choose to keep my voice, which is why it is valued. I also celebrate my folk roots; it is the strongest aspect [of my personality].”

It’s the limitless nature of folk music that allows him to really showcase his skills. Pointing out that unlike the four-minute cap on commercial songs, folk performances allow him to sing for 30 to 60 minutes. “I bring a touch to my music. I arrange the music so that you also notice elements of western music. In songs like Laal peeli akhiya, you’ll notice that even the audio has a strong visual element attached to it. Even if you hear it with your eyes closed, you will notice that the song, which uses saxophones and drums, is striking.


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