Like most contemporary musicians, Ankur Tewari likes to experiment with styles and genres, besides foraying into acting as well. The singer-songwriter, who played the role of Dave in the 2008 international hit Slumdog Millionaire, is currently busy with multiple projects — one of a music supervisor for Zoya Akhtar’s Gully Boy (featuring rap music that will suit the infectious persona of lead actor Ranveer Singh) and an album for children called Bachcha Party Volume 2, which has been produced by Mumbai-based multi-instrumentalist Sidd Coutto.
“I rarely like to classify my music into genres. I try to make music that everyone will enjoy and is essentially good,” says Ankur, who launched his debut album titled Jannat in 2010 and has never looked back since then. The 41-year-old singer, who hails from the university town of Uttarakhand’s Roorkee, also went on to release a two-part album called Side A and Side B between October 2016 to February 2017. With songs like Aa Jaao and Dil Haare, both of which have a mellow sing-along feel, the Mumbai-based singer also doubles up as the frontman of his band, Ankur & The Ghalat Family, which will be celebrating its 10th anniversary this year.
While the task of creating music for children for Bachcha Party Volume 2 is new territory for Ankur, it was not too hard because he said he simply re-lived his childhood days while writing the songs for the album.“I believe every artiste has a child in them and at some point in time it does come out in our songs and that’s exactly what happened when I was working on this project,” Ankur says, while talking about the challenges in creating music for children over adults.
Interestingly, the idea of creating music for children stemmed from a particular incident in time, he explains, when he saw a child actually listening to English music over Indian music. While that isn’t a problem, the dearth in, not regional, but specifically Hindi music for children in India is what prompted him to collaborate with Sony Music. The theme of the album focuses on a child’s day-to-day life, and one of the seven songs is all about reclaiming their Sundays to do “absolutely their own thing”. From A aa E ee to Hocus Pocus — all the songs immediately give off an upbeat vibe that not only children but also adults will love instantly. What’s more —Bollywood actor Ranvir Shorey penned one of the songs in the album, Oopar Chadke Neeche Aa, keeping his own son in mind.
Ankur is also no stranger to Bollywood as he has created music for several movies like Chef, among other prominent films. The movie featured five songs with Ankur’s lyrics, including the popular Shugal Laga Le. Among his upcoming projects, Gully Boy, which is based on a true story about Mumbai-based rappers Divine and Naezy, will be just another feather in his cap. However, Ankur keeps us in suspense about the kind of music he is working on for the film. With our interest piqued, we can’t help but ask how differently he approaches Bollywood music over his style of indie music and the answer is simple, “I take it as it comes and try to make music that serves the project well.”