Baba Seghal insists it’s paap to do Indi-pop these days
PHOTO: Anu Pushkarna
Thanda attitude Baba Sehgal
In a tight pink T-shirt and jeans, Baba Sehgal aka Harjit Singh Sehgal still exudes his almost child-like brand of enthusiasm and ebullience, but he’s an absolute realist when he discusses the state of the Indi-pop industry and his somewhat che
quered career since his rap heyday.
“Indi-pop is a pauper’s market now,” he says frankly. “There are very few buyers of Indi-pop these days because pop, rock, rap and hip hop have been picked up in a big way by Hindi film musicians… how’s a poor Indi-pop artist to compete with publicity generated by the actors, the actresses, their affairs, the banners, the exotic locations etc. ?”
He pauses, and adds with a trademark grin, “It’s become a paap (sin) to do Indi-pop these days.”
That’s not to mean that one of the first Indi-pop stars in the country is throwing the towel in — he’s just coming up with new ways to get his latest album noticed.
In fact, the electrical engineer- turned-rapper is working on his upcoming album (tentatively titled ‘Mennu ki’) that will be releasing in October this year, his first album in five years.
“There’s no point just putting together a bunch of songs and making one music video,” he says. “I have big plans — there’s a song in the album called ‘World Peace’ that I hope to have playing in theatres across the country, if all goes well and I find a sponsor.” The ten songs on the album are a mixture of bhangra, rap, hip hop, dance and techno, primarily in Hindi and English, but also a bit in Punjabi and Telugu. Yes, you read that right, Telugu.
“I’ve been singing regularly for Telugu films these days — ‘Jalsa’, which was released in March, has become an anthem of sorts and given me quite a bit of mileage,” he says. “I’ve even sung a couple of songs for Kannada films.”
Clearly Baba believes in keeping himself occupied. In addition to Telugu film songs, he continues on his TV show “Santa and Banta” on Zoom, and will be appearing in a stand-up comedy show called “Mr. Vachan” on a new TV channel this year. Oh, and he’s in talks regarding doing a radio show too, called Baba Sehgal Live. “There have been more ups than downs in my life, but it’s all about the survival of the fittest,” he says candidly. “You’ve just got to keep going and keep your energy levels high.”
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