| 18 May 2024
VYRL Originals, a platform to promote Independent singers, music producers, lyricists and composers: Vinit Thakkar

EMI Records India along with Mohit Suri have launched VYRL Originals, a platform created to promote independent singers, music composers and lyricists. This property will release one brand new song every month simultaneously on music streaming services worldwide and on radio.

Digital space in our country is growing on a wide scale and VYRL Originals have entered it at the right time. The brand aims to bridge the eternal gap between film and non-film music.

To learn more about this property we spoke to Universal Music Group India and South Asia& EMI Records India’s Senior vice president Vinit Thakkar. Excerpts.

When did the idea of creating VYRL germinate?

The idea of creating VYRL Originals started almost a year ago and there were two big reasons to initiate this. We felt that in the current digital landscape, consumer affinity towards streaming services has increased & audiences are more receptive to non-film music on these streaming platforms. We felt it was the correct time to launch a platform for independent artists to showcase their music &in turn keep up with the trend that’s being followed globally too.

Also, in the past year a lot of recreations & remixes of old Hindi songs were being released & featured in Bollywood films. We felt the need to launch some good quality refreshing tracks and add to the original & independent music scene here.

How did everything fall into place?

We revived EMI Records India almost two and a half years ago and we signed many independent artists who are great singer songwriters, lyricists& composers. They had a bank of songs & needed a platform to showcase their music. Our idea was to give these artists an opportunity to feature their independent work on a large scale. It took us 12-15 months right from conceptualizing the idea of VYRL Originals, to curate the content and marketing it on a big scale. 

How did you zero on the name ‘VYRL’?

We wanted a term that would resonate with today’s youth, a term that audiences would connect with. The term ‘Viral’ has become a large part of the urban dictionary. For today’s generation, it also means that a video clip or track is a huge hit if it’s gone viral. Hence, our team at Universal Music suggested we use the term ‘VYRL’ for this project. We believe that all content released under VYRL Originals has the potential to be viral hits.

What is the USP of VYRL Originals?

The songs that release under VYRL Originals are clutter breaking & handpicked by Mohit Suri, whose known for this impeccable taste in music.

The songs are contemporary & as good as or better than Bollywood film songs. The tracks are produced on a large scale but without the canvas of a film.

How did your collaboration with Mohit Suri happen?

I had worked in the past with Mohit (Suri) and I have seen his passion for music. He has been one of those rare directors in the Industry who’s always tried giving new comers an opportunity as a composer, lyricist or as a playback singer in his films. This is one of the main reason for his musical success. He has always been a trend setter. He was also amongst the few Bollywood directors who hand-picked songs from different artists for the OST of his film rather than working with a single Music Composer. We had the same vision for EMI Records India where we wanted to identify and nurture young talent and bring them out to the world.

Which platforms is VYRL Originals content available on?

VYRL Originals content is available across all streaming platforms and radio. We have Fever FM as our Radio partner who have extended their whole-hearted support towards VYRL Originals singles. Besides, we are now seeing increased interest from other radio stations in the music being released under VYRL Originals.

What would the artists take back from this property?

The artists under VYRL Originals are being mentored by Mohit Suri. He is extremely involved in the whole creation process & the songs are also getting the same treatment and level of production any film song would get. A lot of new artists & talented Independent musicians don’t get a platform to feature their music or get access to world-class production facilities to produce their tracks. We are providing them with some of the best music producers and programmers in the industry to work with & that’s what gives the artist & the track even more potential to grow.

Would there be a 360-degree marketing approach for VYRL Originals tracks?

It’s a complete 360-degree plan whether its radio, digital, streaming platforms, PR or on-ground events. We are promoting VYRL Originals tracks at the same scale of Bollywood film tracks that are being released.

Would we get to see VYRL Originals collaborating with music channels?

We have some exciting plans going ahead for VYRL originals in terms of differentiated video content and we are looking forward to work with television channels in the future. For our first two releases, we launched unique lyric videos on the same day of the audio release, similar to how it’s done Internationally. We aim to keep up with this worldwide trend and release videos that have a global appeal.

Currently how many artists are there on board and what is the selection process?

We have several artists on board and we will be releasing all their original content in due course. We always look for at least two qualities in a musician we meet-, whether he’s a great singer, composer, lyricist etc. Mohit Suri and our teams also listen to all the original content they have created and gauge the potential of these tracks. We truly believe in giving an opportunity to new talent to grow in this industry and give them a platform to showcase their music.

If you could let us know VYRL Original’s further plans?

We will be releasing one song every month. We have a lot of exciting things in the pipeline & some amazing collaborations lined up. Also, our endeavoris to do something unique in terms of content and audio-visuals with every forth-coming track.