Expanding His Game: A Few Words With Badshah

by June 30, 2018 0 comments

A Few Words With BadshahDil Hai Hindustani 2 is starting soon, and one of the people on the judge panel is none other than our favorite – Badshah! Muskan Kathuria says that the rapper will take on a new take with this role and follow it up with an acting stunt.

Does the name Aditya Prateek Singh Sisodia ring a bell? No? So, are you familiar with Badshah? If the answer is a resounding yes, no one is surprised. The transformation of the young civil engineer from Delhi with a common name to the ace rapper is now complete as his songs are now on the lips of every Indian. What has made him immensely popular is that he writes about the most relatable things. In the past, he has rapped in songs like DJ Wale Babu and Saturday Saturday which went to become the party anthems for young adults.

His latest song Tareefan, from the multi- starrer Veere di Wedding, where he made his singing debut just hit a whopping 91 million views on YouTube. He was in the capital to promote the second season of the singing reality show Dil Hai Hindustani 2 which will be aired from July 7 on Star Plus. While the rest of the judging panel has changed, Sunidhi Chauhan, Pritam and Badshah are in for a longer run. He believes the concept of the show and the bubbling talent is what make him love it. Irrespective of nationality, Dil Hai Hindustani invites everybody who can sing Hindi songs to compete in the show.

In a candid conversation, he shared his expectation from the show and his feelings for the group that used to be Mafia Mundeer. And there is more as one might soon see Badshah, the actor, on the big screen.

What according to you determines the success of a reality show? What made you choose Dil Hai Hindustani?

TRPs. The secret of TRPs for any show is the content and nothing beyond it. It’s the talent and the vibe of the show that attract the audience. I have no idea what makes Dil Hai Hindustani different from other shows, but I just love it. I love the people, the production house and the channel. Of course, money is one factor for why I chose to be here, but once I met the people on set, I felt like this is where I want to be. I have Raghav and Mukti, they’re such talented kids. We just hope we’re able to capture this vibe and communicate it to the viewers.

How was your experience while judging the show with Sunidhi Chauhan and Pritam in Dil hai Hindustani 2?

Pritam Da (music composer) and Sunidhi (Chauhan) Ma’am are amazing, I get to learn a lot of new things from them. It is amazing. While Pritam Da is a bank full of knowledge and Sunidhi Ma’am is like a computer. Like, I find a contestant’s song extremely good and feel that nobody can sing it better, Sunidhi ma’am can find a hundred flaws in it. And then she sings it and nails it. We had this contestant who sang Kamli and I was talking to her about how good it was and Sunidhi ma’am appreciated it too, I was like, thank god! But then she sang that song and I had goosebumps. I started crying  as I wondered how can she do that. We don’t realise it, we praise Beyonce, but Sunidhi Ma’am is so huge. She’s blessed. We’re blessed to have her.

How was your journey from Aditya to Badshah?

The journey from Aditya to Badshah can be an incredible biopic. I was just looking for a stage name and I thought Badshah was quite apt because I’m a huge fan of Shahrukh Khan. That was an important factor in choosing the name. Also, probably because I live like one. But these are two different persons. I think, Aditya is an employee of the brand Badshah. The rest is for you to figure out (chuckles).

Do you feel the industry is somehow losing originality as there is a flush of remakes, be it in songs or stories?

I have begun to feel the same too. That is why I made Buzz with Aastha Gill and then Tareefan. I rejected a lot of remakes that came my way. There may be around 20 remake proposals that I have said no to. I feel like you should do what you’re best at. It is up to us musicians to keep the sanctity of Indian music intact. I did feel like it was losing somewhere but it’s going to be back on track. There are a lot of amazing soundtracks releasing this year.

When did you decide that you wanted to become a rapper?

I always wanted to be successful in whatever I did. But being a rapper was a natural instinct. I think storytelling came naturally, so I felt like I need to do this. I just subconsciously decided that. I was working as a civil engineer but when rapping had started supporting me financially, I left the job. I wasn’t stupid to follow it passionately. I think, I was smart enough to balance the both. My dad wasn’t supportive. It was a typical middle class family crisis. But then I came home with a BMW and he was fine.

Tareefan is a huge hit, how does that make you feel? How involved were you with the song?

It’s a huge hit and that makes me feel pressurised. I didn’t expect it to become this huge. But I’m just glad to be a part of this song. The movie Veere di Wedding itself is very special to me. I love Rhea (Kapoor) for what she does, she’s always stood for women in her own ways. I wouldn’t call her a feminist but she’s a boss lady. When she was making this film, she was under tremendous pressure. She couldn’t find the soundtrack and I was happy when she brought the song to me. When she asked me to rap on this song, I refused and said that I’ll sing it. She didn’t think I could do it but I reassured her and told her to give me five days to nail this. After five days, she heard me sing it and responded, “Dude, you nailed this!”

Which one do prefer more — singing or rapping?

I like both. Maybe, acting! You’ll see me on the big screen soon.

Where do you find the inspiration for your songs?

Anywhere and Everywhere. This interview. *raps* Interview me pooche muhse aise se sawaal, jaise mere liye buna jaa raha ho koi jaal; jaise mujhse sunna chah rahe ho kuch sansani khes, jaise kya maine sach me likhe gaane Honey ke.

While there are millions of people that love your songs, there are also a few who dislike them. How do deal with the critics?

I’ll explain it to you in this way: Pink is a beautiful colour. But I don’t like it. It’s subjective. Lord Ram couldn’t make everyone around him happy, who am I. My own wife doesn’t like my songs. I am the colour pink for her.

You are no longer close to the group that was called Mafia Mundeer? What went wrong?

I’m not. I’m independent and I’m bigger. That is what I wanted to be. To be able to do my own thing, be independent. I feel it’s only natural to follow your dreams and people have their different ideologies. Even the biggest groups split. We were just young kids from Delhi. And it happened for the best for each one of us. I’m not close to any of them now but I wish them well. I don’t intend to work with them in the future because to work with me, they have to be on the same creative level. We have to share the same zeal, the passion and the vision. I don’t know if they share the same vision.

Who would you like to work with in the future?

Young kids. Passionate kids. Not the upcoming stars, just kids with a lot of passion. No big names because they’ll become big post working with me.

What are your views on the culture of rapping in India?

It’s growing, It’s beautiful. I think, it’s up to us to cultivate it. Of course, there is a stereotype against rappers but I don’t intend to break it. I think time will do that. It also depends on how we treat this genre. If we’re in this for the money, I don’t think it will be a long surviving genre but if we’re in this for the love of music, nobody will be able to question its credibility.

Your much awaited album O.N.E. is coming out soon. What should we expect from it?

It’s my life in an album. Obviously, there are going to be a few commercial songs, but the rest would be about my life. I feel it’s about time that you get to know about me.

Writer: Muskan Kathuria

Courtesy: The Pioneer

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