Somnath Roy aka Tattu had been on the music scene for quite some time. However, his latest album Saiyaa Returns has been making waves. Films & TV World caught up with this young music director on a rainy evening at an Andheri studio. Here listening to the tracks from the album that features a lighter, more lyrical style of writing, Tattu shared some insights from his life and work.
Films & TV World: Tell us something about you and your work.
Somnath Roy: I was born in Kolkata, did my schooling from Calcutta Boys’ School and graduated from Calcutta University in commerce. From my very childhood, I was interested in music, learnt guitar and keyboards and started to compose my own music at the age of 13. After working for few days as an assistant in Kolkata, I started to work as an independent music composer and worked in music albums like Elemelo, Nostalgic, Ethnic and many others. As usual, even I shifted gradually to Mumbai, and now it’s been 11 years, I am engaged in making music.
How do you feel about 'Saiyaa Returns'? Are you pleased with the final result and how long has it been in the making?
Well, ‘Saiyaa Returns’ is very close to my heart. It took around six months in the making and I am very happy with my artist Dr. Adeeba Akhtar. She is a very melodious singer from USA. She got in touch with me on a social networking site; had some online interactions, and finally we recorded the songs. And I am happy; the songs are now available on all mobile service providers in India along with the digital stores, all over the world
How does it compare to your earlier albums in terms of sound and style?
I have a style of my own and I love to maintain that. I always try to create something very melodious, with soothing lyrics. That’s my genre, you can say. ‘Saiyaa Returns’ followed the same path, although I tried some new sounds and some new recording techniques, in this album. The end product is fabulous, that much I can say.
Where was Saiyaa Returns recorded?
We recorded this album in a very unique way. I composed and recorded the musical backing in India. Voice was dubbed in USA and finally mixing and mastering is done in Mumbai, India. You can say, it’s truly an International album.
Lyrically, are there any influences / themes that run through the record?
Lyrically, the songs are of ghazal genre and I did that intentionally. My influence was one and only Jagjit Singhji. Frankly speaking, I wanted to sound like Jagjitji, both lyrically and musically and yet be very different from his style and compositions.
This seems very interesting. What’s your favourite track on the album?
I would only say that although the tracks have my own signature, they are very much influenced by the gazal maestro’s style. As for my tracks, they are all my babies, so all are my favorites. But if you tell me to choose one, its “Neend”. It’s a haunting melody, and I love haunting melodies. We have also made a video of Neend.
What have you got planned after this? What about composing for Bollywood?
I have many melodies in my mind and am planning my next non-film album, which should get ready by November, this year. And I am also doing a film, which should get released by the end of this year (I don’t want to disclose the details right now).
These days it’s a norm to remix popular songs and use it in movies. What’s your take on it?
Composers have tried to bring old melodies to the current generation through peppy tunes and styles that they would love to hear. This is a novel attempt and many of the songs have become chartbusters finding itself more audience. So film-makers are also indulging in it. I believe that if you have not changed any lines or distorted the original, then it’s a good practice, otherwise not.
From the current breed of singers, who do you like the most and why.
I like Arijit Singh. He is very expressive.
Any advice to new singers.
I have not accomplished much to give advice to anyone. Having said this, my advice to singers would be to work on the expression. I have seen lots of singers, who have a lovely voice, but are either not expressive or don’t have the ability to enact the song. Every singer should work on that. They should feel the situation of the song, within. Then only they would get calls from different composers. Ultimately the main aim of every artist is to convey the expressions.
We at Films & TV World wish you a glorious musical future.