Power Moment: Shreya Ghoshal | Verve Magazine
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July 07, 2016

Power Moment: Shreya Ghoshal

Text by Simone Louis. Photograph by Ganesh Patil

For adding yet another feather to her cap with the award-winning song Deewani Mastani

Having entered the music industry about 15 years ago, Shreya Ghoshal continues to lead the Bollywood playback pack and enjoy sweeping wins at major award shows. Besides Deewani Mastani, Pinga and Mohe Rang Do Lal (all from Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Bajirao Mastani) have also been extremely well received this year.

Where it all began: “Both my mother and father are very passionate about music, and mom herself is a really good singer; she taught me music. The kind of music that was  played in the house would be as varied as Hindustani classical, old Bengali songs, Rabindra Sangeet, Nazrul Geeti, English retro, ghazals and old Hindi film gems. All this inspired me to love music and singing.”

On powerful vocals: “The voice that moved me the most while growing up and still continues to do so is that of Lataji — I am an ardent fan of hers. She has a certain innocence and vulnerability in her singing, yet she is so impeccable and powerful. A song that comes to my mind right now is Mai Ri Main Kase Kahoon.”

First ever performance: “It was at a state-level competition in Kota, Rajasthan when I was eight years old; I sang in front of an audience of musicians and music lovers. I was very nervous and my accompanying musician hadn’t turned up, so someone offered to play the harmonium for me. I started the opening ad-lib of the song Aur Is Dil Mein Kya Rakha Hai, and I still vividly remember the instant applause from the audience…it gave me goosebumps.”

Current playlist:Let’s Do The Things We Normally Do by Dido, Frozen by Madonna, and, since I am preparing for a medley of songs for my upcoming UK tour which will be a tribute to the legends, I’m also listening to this beautiful song by Noorjehan called Chandni Raatein.”

Overcoming challenges: “Every day, there are difficult decisions to be made, some life-changing ones, which my family and I take together, thoughtfully, keeping in mind the simple mantras of life — honesty, humility, simplicity and, above all, love. I am grateful to my dad for being my biggest support, my mentor and my closest friend, and for always keeping my heart and mind calm whenever I seemed to waver.”

If not for music: “I’d travel the whole world (just as a tourist), become a chef or be a student once again.”

Dream collaborations: “Andrea Bocelli and Coldplay!”

Read about our next power woman, Aruna Vasudev.

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