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Interviews |  21 Feb 2008 15:47 |  By Aaishwari

Palash Sen - 'Marketing helps to sell everything and hence it sells music too'

Doctor, musician, actor, performer extraordinaire - he is a man with a multi-faceted personality! A practicing doctor, Palash Sen is the lead vocalist with India's first Hind Rock band - Euphoria - the definitive Hindi rock band who coined the phrase 'Hindrock' and introduced the nation to their unique genre of music. The Doctor, who is known better as the pioneer of Hindi-rock, has now stepped into a "more matured" new role of a mentor. He is presently judging a Radio City initiative RC Live, which is looking for India's gen next Hindi band. Radioandmusic.com's Aaishwari Chouhan engages him in a conversation..

Excerpts:


From Dr Palash Sen to the singer Palash and then, an actor. How has the journey been? And the transitions of course?

The journey's been more like a beautiful mishap actually. I come from a family of doctors… being in fact, the 4th generation doctor from my family. They were all singers too and singing comes naturally by genetic linkage (brains doesn't, unfortunately). My first love was always acting and my entire school life had me dabbling in sports, dramatics, debate, quiz, elocution and music. I never really wanted to be a professional musician. But, destiny had its own plan and here I am!

Why 'Filhaal' and then, no other movies later on?

I was never offered anything as sensitive and sensible. I'll be seen again this April in "Mumbai Cutting" in the lead. Euphoria has done the music for it too.


Your style, be it as an actor or a singer, has always been unique. What differentiates you from the crowd?

I really don't know… but yes I always do whatever I know best! I'm always trying to keep things simple and being true to myself. The Lord has blessed me a lot, but His greatest blessing has been the fact that I'm not greedy or selfish and I believe one's character always shines through in whatever he does.


What made you take on music professionally?

Well, I think I got stuck - show biz is like quick sand and one day I got stuck. I just know that I'll always be a doctor at heart. Show biz is temporary and one day this will finish, and then I'll just be a doctor.

Is training necessary today to make it big and be successful in the Indian music industry? How important is marketing oneself or is talent enough?

Training is supreme to better oneself. I don't think that can guarantee success. If that was the case I would've never made it. Marketing helps to sell everything and hence it sells music too… but not for me… I still don't have a management or a PR company. I believe if you're good and different, sooner or later people will notice.

 

Which are the people that you really are looking forward to work with in the industry?


Everybody and maybe, nobody! I'm interested in working with people who want to work with me.. ha ha ha!

What's the latest with Euphoria?

Our new film - 'Mumbai Cutting' and our new album, a compilation of our best 12 tracks! It is called ReDHOOM and releases in Feb-end with the video of a song called, Bhoola Sab.

You also judged [V] Popstars. So why didn't you get back to judging after that and before RC Live?

I was the Dean on Fame X on Sony SAB in 2007. And one can only take such roles if they are offered… ha ha! Also, I believe that Hindi bands are the future of Indian music and here was my opportunity to help shape their future with Radio City's RC Live.

Where do you think is the music scene headed?

Right now all roads end in the film industry… Maybe Euphoria is the only consistent non film act… I hope and pray that the music labels wake up to all other forms of music and promote them.


What are the challenges Indian music bands are currently facing?

There are two - firstly, their own arrogance and short sightedness and refusal to adapt to an indigenous thought and sound. And secondly, the idiocy of music labels not to think beyond the films and promoting music that's available for free to them.


Don't you think almost all the Indian bands today are replicas of the bands overseas? Why so? Many cover versions and very limited original scores... Why is that so?

That is exactly why Hindi is important as the band's lingo! Till you keep playing in English you'll always be compared and you'll never find your true identity.

What does an artist learn from live performances?

Everything there is to learn… it is instant gratification and like an exam which you can pass with a distinction or fail miserably. It makes you tough and it is the real reason why you began singing in the first place.


What's your involvement with RC Live?

When I was approached by Radio City RC Live, I was very excited! I think they are endorsing the thought that I had 12 years back and thank God, someone has smelt the coffee and woken up to reality.

Having been around for almost 10 years with Euphoria, we are among the only commercially successful Hindi bands in the country today. Why is there no one else? Basically because there was never such a platform which would allow Indian bands to showcase their talent!

The onus lies more on us industry people to find a successor and we are only too happy that Radio City has come forward with this concept. With RC Live, one gifted, deserving band will get the backing of robust brands like Radio City and EMI to make that quantum leap into the industry!

I'm working very closely with Radio City on this and am looking forward to coming across Hindi bands with some extraordinary original compositions, excellent chemistry and audience appeal taking on the currently empty space!


How do you intend to go about giving your best at RC Live?

I always give my all to anything that I do and this will be no different. Just that I am very passionate about the idea of Hindi bands in this great country of ours.


How about composing music for Bollywood?

We did that for Shootout at Lokhandwala last year and Mumbai Cutting now. As I said, whoever wants to work with me is most welcome… I'm ready and willing.


What's the next big thing for Palash Sen?

I don't look at life like that. Each day, each moment is the next big thing. I'm blessed to have been born a human… to the greatest parents in the greatest country in the whole world…to have become a doctor and a singer who could heal so many... to have two lovely kids…and the most awesome band in the world... and have the ability to write songs... Couldn't have asked for more. The next moment of my life is the next biggest thing.


If given a chance, what would you change about the music industry today?

I'd have my own music company, radio station and TV channel… and promote the unheard, unseen and unknown. Aah… dreamer boy, dream on … dream on…

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