Bollywood should use folk music in original form: Rajasthani vocalist

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Jodhpur, Oct 16 (IANS) Rajasthan’s popular vocalist Anwar Khan Manganiyar, who has also sung in films like “Rang Rasiya” and “Dhanak”, says its good to see that Bollywood films are using folk music, but they should incorporate it in its original form.

“I am both happy and sad with the way Bollywood movies are using folk songs. We are getting a platform through films and it is a nice progress for artistes like us, but we also want our songs to progress too. People should be happy after listening to our songs,” Khan told IANS here.

“People don’t understand many of our songs through words but they understand the rhythm and connect with that, so our songs should be taken by Bollywood but not in half form or with some editing,” he said on the sidelines of Rajasthan International Folk Festival (RIFF) 2016, where he performed on Saturday.

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Giving an example of the popular number “Nimbooda” from the Aishwarya Rai Bachchan-starrer “Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam”, he says what has been shown in the film is not the true version.

“The full song is far more interesting and rhythmic. So, what you saw in the film is not what a folk song is,” he said.

“There is a huge difference in the films made earlier and now. It was so good to hear old songs. Earlier, people used to learn singing by listening to their father and forefathers,” said Khan, who has collaborated with classical musicians like Krishna Mohan Bhatt, Vishwa Mohan Bhatt and Zakir Hussain.

He will also entertain music lovers through his gig on Sunday at RIFF by presenting songs that were passed on by his grandparents.

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How does the younger generation carry forward the legacy of folk music? He said that most of them have participated in reality TV shows like “India’s Got Talent” and “Indian Idol”.

But he doesn’t want them to compromise on their education.

“We want our kids to continue both studies and music together. They should carry pen in one hand and instrument in the another one,” said Khan, who belongs to the Manganiyar community in Jaisalmer, Rajasthan.

He can sing traditional jangada, sufi and Siraki songs. He comes from a village named Baiya in Jaisalmer, but has travelled extensively nationally and internationally, including to Europe, for gigs. He will soon perform at Abu Dhabi.

(The writer’s trip is at the invitation of RIFF organisers. Nivedita can be contacted at [email protected])

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