As the "last Mughal standing in the film industry," age holds no boundaries for her, serving as a timeless symbol of melodic influence. In an exclusive discussion with us prior to her Dubai Broadway-style concert, the iconic playback singer Asha Bhosle shares her take on today's music panorama.
Speaking candidly, the versatile veteran vocalist acknowledges her disconnect from contemporary music. "Honestly, I don't listen to today's songs. To truly enhance my singing abilities, I prefer Bhimsen Joshi's melodies, classical tunes, and ghazals. These genres provide a platform for learning, refining, and practicing my own compositions," she explains. She goes on to reveal, "The exposure to such music elevates my singing capabilities, leading to improvisation and enhanced performance. Present-day songs often lack exceptional lyrics in my view.
Occasionally, I do indulge in tracks by Rahat Fateh Ali Khan and Sunidhi Chauhan, appreciating their talent. However, I rarely immerse myself in music nowadays. If I do, it's the timeless classics I turn to."
Having embarked on her singing journey at the tender age of 10, Asha Bhosle's enchanting melodies have touched the hearts of generations across eras, ensuring music remains a pivotal aspect of her life. "Age may advance, but not the heart; it remains the same. Singing is my life," Bhosle emphasizes. With her dulcet tones gracing an array of timeless compositions, her melodies have undergone myriad remix versions over the years, including iconic tracks like "Dum Maro Dum" (Hare Rama Hare Krishna, 1971) and "Yeh Mera Dil" (Don, 1978). Sharing her thoughts on this trend, the 89-year-old reflects, "Nowadays, it's a common practice, though it's not new, as it's been ongoing for many years.
While remixes emerge, the original music and the artist remain unforgotten. It's akin to sharing my phone number today; you'd probably forget it by evening unless you save it. In the past, people memorized numbers without phones. Similarly, current music may slip from memory, but timeless classics endure. Remixes serve dancing and other purposes, and while listeners recognize my song, they also know it's Asha Bhosle's. So, I'm fine with it."
She elaborates, "In this contemporary world of constant evolution, it's imperative to embrace change and adapt to shifting times. I, too, have embraced change by incorporating new singing styles. Over the years, I believe I've also introduced alterations to the industry; my intricate pancham songs, considered avant-garde during their time, remain unparalleled. I didn't enter the scene with privilege; hard work was my foundation. Just as I persevered and explored, new talents will emerge, experimenting and adding their voices to the ever-evolving musical landscape—such is the essence of progress."
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