Getting fresh

Anjali Jhangiani
Wednesday, 15 May 2019

Singer Akasa Singh talks about her latest track Aithey Aa, inspired by the popular Bollywood wedding song from the ’90s Didi Tera Devar Deewana, but with a feminist twist

Remember the iconic scene where a slim Salman in suspenders and a bandana, slingshots a genda phool at Madhuri’s derrière in the 1994 blockbuster Hum Aapke Hain Koun..! ? Making bhai’s fans go crazy with nostalgia, the upcoming Eid Bharat will be featuring a track set against the backdrop of Didi Tera Devar Deewana, but with a fresh, feminist take. How? Now since Bollywood can’t really get rid of the teasing, stalking or misbehaving in the name of love, they resort to the simple solution of reversing gender roles. But at least it’s a start. 

In Aithey Aa, we will see Katrina Kaif’s character (who seems to be a foreign-return government official due to her accent, from the trailer) teasing Salman’s character in good fun. The song is composed by the dynamic duo Vishal-Shekhar and sung by Akasa Singh, who says,  “When Vishal described the song to me and asked me to come to the studio, he said that he just wants me to be myself. He told me that the song really suits my personality, and he wanted me to be my true self when I sing it. He wanted me to record it with my tomboyish attitude.”

The vocalist says that when she heard the melody, she found it quite refreshing. “Also, it clicked because of the Punjabi element. I actually say the phrase Aithey Aa in real life quite a lot. In fact, many Punjabis do,” she says. 

Though she was comfortable with the kind of vibe she had to bring to the song, she recalls how nervous she was while recording it with Bollywood biggies like Vishal and Shekhar. “We did a campaign together two years ago, that’s when I met them for the first time. Then I came to know Vishal better and interacted with him quite often. I adore him as a person. It was only when we started recording Aithey Aa that I realised how intimidating it was to sing in front of both of them,” she says, adding, “They’re both such geniuses when it comes to music. While recording, Vishal told me that I wasn’t doing exactly what he wanted, and though I was trying to, I couldn’t because I was so nervous. I remember telling him jokingly to please go out and come later so I would be less nervous and be able to get it right. It took a while but we got the result we wanted. Both of them are such sweet, friendly and patient artists, and I’m so thankful for getting the chance to work with them on this song. I would love to work with them again and again.”

Sharing her thoughts on the picturisation, which is touted to be a revolutionary gender-bender, she says, “When you think of ‘teasing’ you think of the hero teasing the girl. But this time you see the bratty side of the girl who is teasing the guy in good fun.” But that’s not the only refreshing fact about the track.

“Even if you think of the structure of the song, I think I was lucky to get to sing the track which starts with female vocals. Mostly this type of Bollywood songs start with male vocals and you have the female vocals coming in somewhere in the middle. So this track has role-reversal in many ways,” says she. 

While she has a couple of Bollywood tracks in the pipeline, she has a lot of independent material to be released in the next few months. “After Thug Ranjha, I took a long gap because I wanted to explore the lyricist and composer in me and I have written a lot of songs. I will be dropping many singles with big collaborations, and I also have my fingers crossed for some international collaborations,” she says.

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