Being an avid listener of music, I’ve heard a lot of tracks in Telugu, Hindi and English. I’ve some favorite tunes, some favorite singers, and some favorite musicians. But I hope you agree with me that the musician who gives your favorite tunes becomes your favorite musician and the singer who sings them becomes the favorite singer, at least in most of the cases. My vote for my favorite tunes goes unanimously for the melodious ones. And one singer who baffles me all the time with his melodious singing is none other than Sonu Nigam.
I still remember the day when I noticed the spark in his singing. It was way back in 1998 or so. One fine day, I was alone in my house. I was watching TV when suddenly all the cable channels went off air and only DD1 was coming (this was frequent in those days). I had no option other than to watch whatever comes in DD1. Then there was this great song which I noticed many times but never heard with interest. It was “Ab mujhe raat din” from the album “Deewana”. I was mesmerized by the lyrics and the singer of that song. It was then that I noticed that the singer was Sonu Nigam whom I had heard of but never bothered to take notice. I started following his songs and got interested more and more with every song I heard.
He just brings life into every song that he sings, be it the perky “Ye dil” from Pardes(if I’m right), the moving “Sandesein aate hain” from Border etc. But the songs which I liked the most are from his private albums: Deewana, Yaad, Jaan etc. However, I feel that his ultimate song was “Tanhaayein” from “Dil Chahta Hai”(this song is sung by my favorite singer for my favorite actor ). This song is like a benchmark for singing capability in every singing competition. Even in the recently concluded “Indian Idol 3” final, the final contestants were asked to sing this song as the ultimate test.
Sonu, as he’s fondly called by fans, is also very choosy about the songs that he sings. I once read that he rejected a song in a Govinda movie as the lyrics were a little bit obscene. I cannot compare him with the all time greats, Mukesh Kumar, Kishore Kumar and Mohammed Rafi but still I feel that Sonu Nigam can claim his place among them. Long live his singing(if not him).