“Jammin Is A Great Way To Attract The Digital Audience To Come To Watch It On Television.” Says Salim Merchant
The concept of Jammin is an interesting one, could you give us your thoughts on this show?
Jammin is a fantastic concept because it’s a great way to collaborate with the digital stars especially for people like us who have always been a part of the mainstream and you know now, I have been dwelling into independent music. This is an exciting time because the digital medium is growing big and these singers from the digital world are very different to our compositions, to our tunes and music. And it was fun to collaborate with them. There was a different kind of tonality we have brought to our music, to our songs, and as you know we have collaborated with them regarding singing, I sang some songs with Darshan Raval and Sukriti Kakkar. We have also worked with the Indian Idol 10 singer Salman Ali, he is really getting all hearts from all over the world, because of the show. So, it was great for us, and we have done something special for this show as some of our songs like “Ali Maula”, “O Re Piya” have been presented in a very different light, and it was great for us to bring that arrangement and quality of jamming out in this show. It is something unique for the audience. The music is lively and energetic, and its kind of an experience which transcends you like you are in here with us, and the audience might feel that are very much present there which will be an excellent presentation for the listeners watching it on television. A show like this has never been done on a GEC ever, where there is a live audience, and the music is being formed live. So, if you believe it, the original composition is specially made for Jammin which features Darshan Raval and Sukriti, and it is gracefully done.
Jammin is a platform that brings Bollywood and digital together. So, what were your thoughts when you were first asked to do the show?
I was excited because digital stars have their own fan following and of course the Bollywood world has its own fan following. And I think it’s a great way to merge the two, it’s a great way to attract the digital audience to come to the party to watch it on television, and it’s an excellent way for the television stars to engage with the digital superstars. So, it’s a fantastic win-win situation. And it does bring out a really great idea of merging both the worlds- the digital world and the television world to come together as one in a different kind of presentation.
So, could you tell us your experience of working with the digital stars on an original? And your thought process behind the songs?
It is not that we have not done it before, we have been doing it for quite some time now, but because we know that these songs are for these digital sensations, it was actually a very comfortable zone for us because it was not something that we have never tried before. It was interesting for us to have no ceiling and no barrier. You know when we must work for Bollywood, we have a certain kind of story or a specific character to follow, but while jamming, it is pure jamming. Music is the ultimate agenda. It is not really catering to any kind of story or character. So that was a fantastic sort of freehand that we had here.
So, what will we see you performing this season or creating this season?
As the format requires us to do both, we are performing with these digital stars and being a part of the music arrangement, and it was a great time doing this stuff.
You will be jamming with names like Darshan Raval who have already established their names in the music industry. How do u think your experience would be able to help them?
My experience, I have been watching these new singers and their styles, and the way they carry themselves and they are so confident about everything and their stage presence is impressive. Of course, there is a sense of learning in them also and the ability. Working with them is fun. They are very respectful. And at the same time, they were quite confident on stage and its good working with them. Great experience!
What’s it like to hear younger stars sing songs that you have performed or composed?
You get a different kind of tonality like I said, you know originally the songs sung by Vishal or Shekhar or me, have been presented so beautifully. What’s nice is that they don’t copy the original singer, they have their own voice, and their own personality rather than them copy anyone else or try to imitate others. So that’s a big thing to know.
What’s it like to hear young contestants on Indian Idol 10, how do you think talent-based shows such as Indian Idol have changed the Music industry?
I won’t say it has changed the music industry, but it has inspired a lot of people, given them the encouragement and the empowerment to come up, and improve themselves. It has given them that booze that if they have something special, they should definitely come up with their talent. They could work a little hard, actually very hard, they can work on their music and achieve their goals and desperation. Of course, it does entertain so many people watching it, but it defiantly inspires a lot- musicians and singers who hold something in them, it does empower them, to better themselves, to show them the way that it’s not difficult if you work hard.
Now that Jammin this season will be telecasted on Sony tv, what experience can the viewers gain especially the ones who have never been exposed to interference?
I guess this question is for the viewers, but I can tell you one thing, that this season of Jammin will give u experience like never before. It is an excellent way of celebrating music. Which we have been listening to, presented in a different light, different voice, different form.
What is your advice to young musicians today? How do you see music evolving now that TV and web world has become so big?
Who am I to give a message, I am myself learning, and there is still a lot to learn. But one thing from my experience what I have learned is, never give up learning. Never know that you know it all. Music is a beautiful ocean- the more you drown, the better it gets. It’s an ongoing process, a current school that you are going to. Every day is a new day of learning, of experiencing and learning the complexities of this incredible art form which is music. The more you do, the better it gets. And for all the upcoming singers and musicians, it’s essential to learn. And to listen. Because I think, 50% is listening and 50% is learning.
What is on your playlist?
At the moment, quite honestly, I am listening to my own music. I am releasing a new record which is coming out in 2019. I do hear a lot of music, but “Seal” is one of my most favourite artists and he has come up with an album called “Standards” that came last year, and I am still listening to it.
Watch Jammin starting 1st December 2018, Saturday and Sunday after Indian Idol 10 only on Sony Entertainment Television!
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