“Modern music is like junk food, it’s everywhere”: lyricist Sameer Anjaan
Lyricist Sameer Anjaan has been in the industry for many decades now, having given us several hit songs in films from the 80s, 90s, early 2000s and also the current decade. The ace songwriter, however, is also aware that the music in Indian films has changed now, and that there is more attention given to the “sound” than the actual “lyrics” of a song.
In a press release, the lyricist mentioned that he had always “dreamed of teaching people to be songwriters.” âThere are a lot of nuances to consider when writing lyrics, but if you know how to approach whatever challenges you come up with, you can really be good at it. “
The Guinness World Record Holder recently interacted with indianexpress.com, and spoke more about running an exclusive Unlu course to teach aspiring songwriters how to write lyrics, the new wave of “modern music”, and so on. He regretted that nowadays people want the song to be ready without taking into account the nuances of the lyrics, resulting in some deterioration of the “lyrical value”. Extracts:
Do you think the pandemic has changed the way people consume and enjoy music these days?
I have been in the industry for over 40 years now. I have seen a drastic change in the music industry. Yes, definitely the pandemic has changed the way people consume and enjoy music. During the pandemic, it was largely just the music that kept people sane in sad and lonely times. It was during the pandemic that people came to understand different aspects of music.
What is your take on modern music, especially the one we see in Bollywood movies now, from a purely lyrical point of view?
As a lyricist, I feel like the change that has happened now is known as âmodern musicâ. The new generation brings its own mentality, its own color and its own thought process. I believe the lyrical value is changing and deteriorating now and the sound is gaining in importance. It’s more like junk food like it’s everywhere, but the audience needs a new sound. This is not good for the future, however. At the start of my career, the music industry was too different. Every 25 years the music industry changes because of the new style coming up.
During your long and illustrious career, what are the obvious changes that you have witnessed in the industry, both good and bad?
There has been a major change. Previously the details were given more attention, but now they just want the music ready.
You are the Guinness World Record Holder for writing the most songs. Do you also encounter creative blockages? How do you treat them?
Now there is a creative block, no attention is paid to the story line. Producers and directors are not ready to discuss their scripts for the music. I try to hold back from these creative blockages.
In your opinion, how has the pandemic affected the Indian music industry, and in the future, what can we expect?
The music industry suffered a major loss during the pandemic. Now we are all trying to cope with the effect that has been caused to all of us including the creators, music directors, etc. However, the damage is done.
Through your lyric writing course, what would you like aspiring songwriters to learn first?
I joined Unlu because I wanted to share my experience, my mantra for success. It’s the right platform to connect with aspiring songwriters and give them the most you can.
A myth about writing songs that you want to demystify …
At the start of my career math was fixed for songwriting, it wasn’t too open or flexible like it is now. But now you have to be open to new trends and new ideas.
While you’ve worked with some of the best songwriters in the business, is there anyone you’d like to collaborate with again, or someone whose craft you particularly enjoy?
My best collaboration has been with three musical directors Nadeem-Shravan, Himesh Reshammiya and Anand Milind. As I have worked with them for a very long time and frequently. I would love to collaborate with them again in the future because their craft matches my writing. We tend to be on the same page mentally and our thought processes are similar to each other.
Can you tell us about your own initial difficulties when you were a newcomer? How much have things changed now?
My career graph has been odd, as I come from a very middle class family from a small village. It was a big fight for me to find a place in the industry. At first, I fought my battles alone. I started by working in a bank, then I came to Mumbai. It has been a difficult time for over eight years for me. Because there were already big names and legends who made their mark in songwriting. My father was a songwriter himself, so I learned a lot from him.
I have had my own ups and downs in my career. I have proven myself time and time again. I believe that a designer never gets old, because his job only gets better. Everyone in the industry has their own story, you have to be mentally prepared for whatever happens. Today’s generation is not ready for the drudgery that one has to go through to be successful due to lack of patience.
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