When pop-singer Shweta Shetty crooned ‘Khidki pe aaona bahar naa jau, kaise mein sare din ghar mein bitau’ in 1998, none of us had any clue that the song will become so appropriate to our current situation amidst the pandemic. I sure got super excited when I had the chance to interview the legendary pop icon recently. She spoke about how she was elated and excited when she got to know that her famous single ‘Deewane To Deewane Hain’ was trending on YouTube again, about her comeback song ‘Jalne Mein Hai Mazza‘, and all things music.
Excerpts from the interview:
What is a massive change you have seen in singles from the 90s to now?
In the 90s we had albums with 8-10 songs and if lucky, 1 or 2 videos to promote our songs. Today, we have to warm our fans slowly to the idea’s of singles, since it’s still in its nascent stage. Independent artists are still playing it safe with the tried and tested, but that’s not going to work with a musically very educated younger generation. We have to take bigger risks with sound, quality and video to re-create the 90s pop era. Jalne Mein Hai Mazza (JMHM) has somehow struck a chord and that shows that people are ready to make us help that change.
Your song may have released in 2021, but it immediately gives us a nostalgic vibe. Was it a conscious decision?
Yes, indeed! I hear and read all the time for years now, how they miss the 90s era of pop and how pop and artists have no individuality of their own. I wanted to get that vibe back, but with a more modern sound that would appeal to everyone. It was tricky, risky and aesthetically sexy and Addy S did a great job bringing that all together to keep the good times of the 90s alive and kicking in a pandemic year, to bring some nostalgia and cheer in people’s lives.
What kept you away for so long?
I got married, lived in Hamburg for 20 years, learned the language there, learned cooking/baking, set up 2 homes from scratch, travelled the world and got back to yoga and meditation, started Shwetasana and helped people with the power of yoga. Before I realised it, 20 years had just passed me by…
Do you think it is easier for artists today to be successful than it was in your day? Considering the presence of social media today, whereas back in the day, you had to rely on word of mouth publicity?
No, it’s not that simple. Bollywood has a very strong hold and always will have. Independent artists/music will always have to accept that. But I do know, there is a huge audience there who love our music and love us and that will never change. We just need the media’s support and all dance/music channels, radio, TV’s support, so we can help independent artists/music thrive and not given the step-motherly treatment. We all have started small before we hit big and let’s not forget that.
I sure cannot wait to listen to more of Shweta in the times to come!