He’s riding high with his award-winning composition Tum Hi Ho from Aashiqui 2, but Indian music composer Mithoon, who’s performing at his first ever concert in Abu Dhabi on Friday, feels it’s not the big breakthrough everyone is making it out to be.
“[The awards] have been a blessing, yes. But I’ve had similar experiences earlier, be it Maula Mere Maula [Anwar] or Tere Bin [Bas Ek Pal] or Dil Sambhalja Zara [Murder 2]. To me, all were breakthroughs in their own right,” says Mithoon, who won the Filmfare Award for Best Music Director.
The Abu Dhabi concert, he said, is not a commercial venture and not just about Aashiqui 2. “That too is great. These songs have meant a lot to me. They are an integral part of my life. The reason why I didn’t have a concert till now was because my heart wasn’t agreeing to do one. So, the two-and-a-half hour concert is a journey down memory lane, a celebration. People have never really known the face of the composer behind these songs and that’s what I wish to do. I’m coming with a lot of sincerity and truth in my heart. I will be blessed to have people be a part of it because they’ve been a part of my journey.”
Mithoon spoke to tabloid! ahead of The Magic of Aashiqui 2 Mithoon Live In Concert, organised by Rami Productions, to be held at National Theatre, Abu Dhabi. He will be joined by award-winning singer Arijit Singh, Shilpa Rao, Roop Kumar Rathod, Palak Muchhal and Mohammad Irfan.
Excerpts from the interview:
Music and lyrics
I don’t think [songs with double meaning lyrics] are more popular. I think every song has a connect with its own kind of listeners but I can only speak for myself. Being a part of the music scene, for me, a song is like a frame or a greeting card which should remain etched forever in the listener’s mind. It should become part of history. Sometimes, real life can be so normal, you want to go beyond the line and create something extraordinary, in a song at least. I like to write about extraordinary feelings, for example, Tum Hi Ho [Mithoon was nominated for best lyrics for the song at the Filmfare Awards] talks about love where a person is willing to wipe himself out for someone else. Or take Banjaara from Ek Villain. When Mohit Suri told me that falling in love was like a feeling of shelter, I knew this was the love of a man who has experienced life and then found this girl who makes him feel like he’s in the shade. I loved that concept and that’s why I wrote Jaise banjaara ko ghar [Like a wanderer finds shelter…]. Love has been metaphorised in many ways but never as this. The entire song came to me in a matter of minutes.
I cherish these expressions inspired from human life. I do music for myself because it gives me a lot of joy. For me, it’s something that doesn’t let me sleep.
What really inspires me is the beauty of the human existence, how people live together, fight for and against each other, yet long for each other when they part ways. Or be it just friendship. As a social creature, the concept of the human heart inspires me. These are the kind of things I see in the film before choosing, because the characters, though fictitious, are in some way connected to some person somewhere. I became a composer in Indian cinema because I wanted to enhance stories with music. And there are no stories without human beings.
Working with artists from across the border
Several Pakistani singers such as Atif Aslam, Mustafa Zayed and Farhan Saeed have sung songs for me. I appreciate their talent. I will continue to do so, not just with artists from Pakistan but also from across the world. I’ve worked with artists from the UK and US, even Turkey. Music is not about caste or creed — it’s very universal in nature.
Recently, Mithoon got into a verbal fight with actor Salman Khan at an awards function. But they’ve buried the hatchet. “Yes absolutely, we are friends. One cannot — should not — forget that his contribution to Indian cinema is massive. He’s the heartbeat of millions and that’s never without reason. He has all my salutations.”