Vee Kapoor, a UK-based rising singer, is known for soulful devotional songs like ‘Giridhari’ and ‘Saavaro’. After learning Indian classical music from a Guru Ji in Vrindavan, Vee is now exploring different genres. In an exclusive conversation with Bollywood Hungama, he recalled his journey while talking about his take on the scope of spiritual music. Besides these, he also, briefly, gave updates about his upcoming projects with B Praak and Jaani, and Afsana Khan. Here’s the excerpt:
From studying theatre in London to learning Indian classical music from Pandit Tarun Krishna Das in UP; How was the experience of this cultural transition?
So, I just went travelling in India. And when I was travelling in UP, I heard Pandit Ji singing. And I was just attracted to the sound that he was creating. I was mesmerised by how one can create such a sound from their voice. And that’s when I told him that I really want to learn from you. And he asked me – what do you exactly want to learn, and I just replied, anything that you will teach me. So it was just an experience that really changed me; that sound vibration was so powerful that I just wanted to be with him and learn. So then at that point, he said, you know, if you want to learn properly, then, you know, come and stay with me. So then that’s the point where I moved up for three years to learn with him.
What was the biggest challenge for you in this journey?
So the biggest challenge was that originally, I’m not a musical person. I never studied music, nor did I have any interest in music when I was in London. So the challenge was to understand the way he was teaching me, the words, the Hindi, and the musical technical language that he would use. So it took me a while to kind of become accustomed to that. So, after about a year of learning, I started to understand what I’m actually doing. So it took that time because it was completely new for me. Any new musicality was new to me.
My biggest learning would be that it’s a bit cliche, but I would say that if you put your heart to something and your mind to something and with dedication, like seeing my journey, you can actually achieve things. Even when you don’t understand anything, just by having faith in your teacher, that he’s teaching you correctly, and then over time, things start to sink in. So, my biggest learning is that with time, dedication and love towards one’s craft, one can really achieve and learn wherever he really wants in life.
What are your thoughts on the scope of spiritual music?
The reason why I released spiritual albums first, is because, for me, it was like – ‘I’m starting this journey of music. So why not start with the spiritual attribute?’ Also, when I was staying in Vrindavan, with Guru Ji, a lot of the Indian classical music that I learned is based on divinity and spirituality. So, I thought, let me start with something that I know properly. It’s like a blessing to start with something spiritual.
In terms of what the scope is, I feel that spiritual music will never be outdated. Especially within India as everyone has a spiritual connection. And that’s something that everyone connects with no matter where you’re from and what part of India you’re from and what genre you like. Even the youth, a lot of my friends, listen to spiritual music in the morning. It’s the first thing they do. So, I feel that spiritual music is evergreen, and there’s a lot of scope in India, especially when someone young or younger, sings spiritual music, it’s a point of inspiration for other people to know that this is also a trend, but a trend that’s never gonna fade away.
What did you enjoy the most, spiritual music or commercial music?
With commercial music, it’s obviously the vibe, the end goal. The intention of commercial music is completely different. The intention, the vibe, the way we record, it’s all very different from making spiritual music. I think with spiritual music, it’s not that much on the commercial level. Whereas, recording ‘Chhori’ with Sonu Kakkar was a great experience. Because you have that whole Bollywood flavour. We shot a video for that song as well with Nikki Tamboli and Tanmay Ssingh. And it’s a full-on masala-flavoured song and video. It’s just a different vibe of the song. So, I would say that they’re very different but again, very enjoyable.
Could you tell us briefly about your experience of collaborating with B Praak, Jaani and Afsana Khan?
At the moment the B Praak and Jaani thing it’s yet to happen, but I’ve recorded a song with Afsana Khan. And that was amazing. She’s a great vocalist. And for me to you know, it’s a new genre of music Punjabi. It’s a Punjabi love song, a sad song, a breakup song. So, to get those feelings out, was a great experience, and I’m really looking forward to those releases.