In a free-wheeling chat, Aaryan Banthia talks to Vinay Agrawal talks about music, his influences, his latest song and more.
Music can take you to places one has never been. These words ring true, particularly in the current scenario when stepping out of home feels like a herculean task to many of us. While taking a real getaway or even the idea of it may seem daunting to many, at least there is music to fill that void! And, then there is music of Aaryan Banthia. Uplifting and encouraging are the two words that describe Aaryan’s quality of music. Aaryan’s songs slowly grow on you to an extent of forming a connection with the listener. The YouTube numbers his songs get bear a testimony to this. On an average, his song fetches the views in the million bracket (his first song, ‘Yaadein’ crossed the magical number of million).
What role has music played in your lockdown journey?
Music is my entire life and lockdown has given me a lot of time to introspect and write music. The times are terrifying and uncertain and I am really grateful for the time I got in hand to express my creative self.
Can you share your lockdown playlist with us?
I have been listening to a lot of Hindustani classical music to understand it more deeply. Other than that, I have also been listening to a lot of guitarists with a lot more attention as compared to my younger days. To name a few: Mark Knopfler, Steve Vai, Joe Satriani, and my recent favourite ‘Plini’. The more you explore art and musicians, the more it will teach you about the art.
Can you tell us more about your new song?
‘Paar’ is a song for all of us, especially in these troubling times. It is a musical message motivating us to overcome hurdles in our lives. The pandemic has created an uncertain environment. I tried to express my own challenges and I’m glad it came out the way it did. There is so much struggle that the daily wage earners are going through these days. Even the LGBTQ community continues to deal with so much inequality and injustice.
We are also seeing the struggles faced by regular couples or people in any form of relationships on a day to day basis due to these uncertain times. ‘Paar’ touches upon all their battles and the music video shows all of that beautifully.
Were you happy with the way India handled the pandemic?
I don’t think this pandemic is something that can be handled very easily in a densely populated country such as India. I would like to believe that we have handled it in the best we could and in the upcoming months, the problem will get better.
Has your music-making approach changed during the last few months?
The taste and vision are the same. However, the approach to making music has changed a lot. I give a lot more time to research on sound, tones, mixing techniques, phrasing of notes before making music now. I had done the same earlier too. However, with the pandemic I have found more time for it.
Did you come across any struggle during these few months? Would you like to talk about it a little?
Well, both my parents had contracted the virus and those were difficult times for the family. However, things are better now. I urge the people of India to not take the virus lightly. With strict adherence to the guidelines provided by the government, we can beat the pandemic.
What does the future of music look like according to you?
I think the quality of Bollywood music has not been the best lately. I haven’t heard many great songs released in recent times. However, the good thing is that there are a lot of Indie musicians who can take our country’s music to the next level. Indie artists can really go a long way provided we support them. The future looks good but it involves a lot of hard work, research and innovation in music.