Friday, May 30, 2008

Bollywood nugget: three interviews

Transcript of CNN-IBN interview (full text here):

Mumbai: A journalist who never thought that he will become a lyricist and this year, he is writing songs for some of the biggest films. This week on the Next Big Thing, it’s lyricist Neelesh Misra whose songs always has a soulful touch to it that works almost every time.

“Bollywood seemed out of reach. I grew up in Naintal. My only attempt to reach out to this world has been a letter that I wrote to Jagjit Singh with a song of mine which I don’t know if it reached him or not. But he rejected it. And I recently met Jagjit Singh at Lucknow airport and told him that I was in Bollywood because you rejected my song and because that was the same song that I sang to Mahesh Bhatt when I first met him and that set the ball rolling,” he says.

Excerpts of Indiainfoline interview (read full text here):

"Any benchmark that you have set for yourself as a lyricist?

I think I am really just an outsider in Bollywood as of now, and that is the way I would like it to remain. I am keen to get the opportunity to write everything from hopelessly romantic songs to item numbers to songs of urban angst to those of heartbreak.

I have been fortunate that I have already got the opportunity to do some of those, and I am doing a greater range now. But at the heart of everything, there has to be poetry and good storytelling -- simple, universal and the type that does not talk down to listeners. That has been the core of the work of the great masters of songwriting and if I can achieve even a piece of that jigsaw, it would be something I can truly be proud of. "

Excerpts of interview (read full text here):

"Neelesh laments on the dire situation of lyricists in the country. He believes apart from the likes of Javed Akhtar and Gulzar, songwriters country over are not getting their due. Lyricists are doing a thankless job. "They are treated as backroom boys and things need to change soon. FM channels, radio and television are popularizing songs without giving them any credit," states Misra."
(All photos by the author, except when credit mentioned otherwise)