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“I want to establish myself as a versatile composer and singer as well” – Harshit Saxena

Photo Credit: Supplied

After crooning the super-hit “Hale Dil” from ‘Murder 2’ in 2011, Harshit Saxena has been handling shows and film assignments as a music composer and as a playback singer. A runner up of Amul Star Voice of India in 2007, Harshit composed songs in ‘Hate Story’ and ‘Super Nani’. He was also heard in ‘Tees Maar Khan’ and ‘Welcome Back’. In this interview, he talks about the challenges of this industry, his future plans and the love for music and singing.

You are looking in fantasic shape. What triggered that?
(Laughs) I am more serious about my health, I started going to the gym and eating healthy. I did that with lots of dedication and patience. So I lost about 11 kgs in about three and a half months. I really wanted to look good. After watching Adiya Roy Kapur in Fitoor, he inspired me tremendously. I am now very concerned about my health. These days, as a singer, as a performer and even as a common man, you have to look good.

You are a great performer on stage. Where do you get so much energy?
Before I embarked into reality shows, for my pocket money and all, I used to do orchestra shows in the evenings. That gave me lots of confidence. It also happens from experience after we perform so much. We also get the vibe from the audience.

“Hale Dil” from ‘Murder 2’ is still your most recognized song to date. Can we hear something ground-breaking from you very soon?
Yes, very soon. I am expecting a few releases (movies) next year now. They were meant to happen this year but due to some issues, they did not happen. I composed for ‘Hate Story’ and ‘Super Nani’. Very soon, I am releasing my single, which I shot one and a half year back but I could not release it as I was busy doing something else.

Was ‘Super Nani’ a challenging project?
Yes it was as it was family-oriented. Being a romantic composer, I did devotional, emotional and traditional numbers. I want to establish myself as a versatile composer and singer as well. There are many composers who compose only in a certain genre. I don’t want to be in that list. I want to be a composer like Pritam and Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy.

Are you establishing yourself more as a music composer?
As both. Singing is my passion. Since I have started working as a composer, I don’t want to restrict myself to a certain genre of composer. I want to gain respect in this industry. I want to be known as, ‘He can sing but he can also make others sing.’ If I am creating something and it suits someone’s else voice, I must take that person.

Is it hard these days to receive film assignments?
Yes, today it is very tough because there is a lot of competition going on. There are also singers, musicians and lyricists who became composers, composers who became singers and singers who became lyricists. Anything is going on right now. There are a group of singers like KK, Shaan, Sunidhi Chauhan, where we can recognize their voices. Today, we cannot even recognize the new voices. The genres are all the same and it is always somebody copying someone. There is a strong competition for everyone involved. And everybody is doing everything. Corporations are driving the market right now. One situation is given to so many composers, afterwards they gave it to someone else and then they shot the song. It is a time-consuming procedure.

Are you okay to share credits with multiple composers in a film?
Yes, I did that for ‘Murder 2’. It doesn’t matter. There are so many good composers sharing the credits. My mentality is that your work needs to speak for itself.

You put all your heart and soul in all your work – compositions, singing and performances. Do you agree with this statement?
Yes. This has been happening since I was studying and in reality shows, where I have been taught by very good composers and musicians. They always told me that there are so many singers in this industry but the difference is not only ‘sur’ and ‘taal’ but the feel and soul of the song, which is important for a singer to bring. I always apply this to my music compositions, my own songs and singing – the heart, soul, dedication and passion.

How much has success changed you as a person?
As a person, I have not changed a bit as I have always look up to people like A.R. Rahman, Sachin Tendulkar, who have achieved so much in their lives, without any controversies, any rubbed statements and are still very down-to-earth and humble. This makes others have more respect for them. When I talk about Sachin Tendulkar, I always talk with so much proud. As a person, you have to be humble, no matter what you have achieved in your life, and you have to be sincere towards your work and hard-working. It has been 8 years since I am in Mumbai, I used to stay alone because my family is in Lucknow. Till now, I have never touched alcohol, cigarettes, pan-masala. These are things which I have maintained from the beginning. Many in this industry go with the flow, I am still the same person and always give respect to the elders, have a soft spot for newcomers and that will go till the end of my life.

What do you like and hate about the film industry?
What I like is that this industry can give you anything. You can get anything in Mumbai if you are talented and have patience. There are so many people who have talent but don’t have patience. They are trying for so many hits. They get irritated and then they went home. You need to fight for it. For me, this industry is a dream, like everyone looks for. Without sounding controversial, I just want to say one thing. This industry needs hardwork and patience. There are so many people who talk like people are rude, always make false promises, false commitments but I don’t believe in all that. If there is something negative happening, it will be for your better. I think God wants more of your hardwork and committment. I always think that thing into a positive manner.

What has changed in the current scenario for reality shows compared to when you were performing?
It has changed a lot. Previously, there were better performers and it used to be more emotional. The same thing is happening over the years and people got bored. Even the voting does not come in the same manner. Even the TRP for the reality shows are not great, compared to the past, when I was a contestant. People are also smart enough to see and understand things. I don’t feel the connection with the reality shows right now, like before.

What song are you currently listening to?
(Laughs) I was listening to my own stuff I created. I like to listen to old numbers and good new songs with good lyrics.

Tell us about your future projects.
I am really looking forward to the movies (2-3) which are releasing next year, which I cannot reveal right now. There is also my single. And whatever I wanted to do in my life, I still have not achieved that. So I am working very hard for it and waiting. I have to mention that I am always very thankful, from the whole of my heart, to Mukesh Bhatt Ji and Mahesh Bhatt Ji for the break they have given to me in ‘Murder 2’ and to give me a chance to show my talent in this industry.

What message do you have for your fans?
Please be with me, in all my ups and downs. Keep supporting me. I always wanted to say a big thanks to everyone. In future projects also, please listen to all my songs.

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