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Amaal Mallik on Heartbreak and Unrequited Love: 'It's Happened to Me, That's Why It's in The Songs' | Exclusive

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Amaal Mallik, music composer and singer, has been at the receiving and of love with his latest single, Tujhe Chaahta Hoon Kyun. The song has been sung and composed by Amaal, and is the latest addition to what we would like to call the ‘unrequited love series’- after Pyaar Ek Tarfa and Tu Mera Nahi. In an exclusive interview with News18, Amaal revealed if he has more songs on one-sided love and heartbreak coming up, and whether the songs were a result of any recent personal experience. He also opened up about his relationship status, on what conditions would he turn into a full-fledged actor, and whether fans would be able to see another collab with brother Armaan Malik soon. Excerpts…

Tujhe Chaahta Hoon Kyun is yet another song on one-sided/ unrequited love after Pyaar Ek Tarfa and Tu Mera Nahi. Are you, somewhere, finding inspiration from personal life here?

Right now, there is no ‘ek tarfa pyaar’ (one-sided love). Maybe in the year I made it- 2016 17- tha (it was there). And I’m always making music that defines people’s hearts and I see a lot of my friends and every one of us has been through this.

But the journey of Tu Mera Nahi to Pyaar Ek Tarfa and Tujhe Chaahta Hoon Kyun was special because they all speak about the story of one man- how sometimes situations, or his own career, or life itself has led him down and he has lost love. It’s happened to me that’s why it’s in the songs.

Also because I wanted to do something which also proves to a lot of young musicians that even without anyone you can put your music and do what your heart says. And it’s a really important message to put it out there. Nothing matters but good music and a good soul and a good melody with some good poetry. And Tujhe Chaahta Hoon Kyun completes the third part of this, as you call, unrequited love series that I have created on the internet with my independent career where this man is in the past, living in the past, not able to move forward from his previous relationship where he’s lost this person to fate, but he still loves her and he doesn’t know why he still loves them. And that’s about it. I think the journey gets completed here and hopefully the next song is not about unrequited love and it won’t be because it’s time to do some happy love songs also.

Do you feel that heartbreak is a stronger emotion than love?

I wouldn’t say that. Heartbreak is an important emotion. Obviously to respect and value love, everyone must go through heartbreak, to go through that turmoil of losing someone to find themselves and that is very important. Sometimes, if you don’t lose people, you can never find yourself. So everyone should go through that strongly and in a way that makes you proud of yourself. Love is the strongest emotion in the world and nothing beats that. Heartbreak is just something you have to deal with. And it grows your personality, it grows you as a human being and then when you find the right love, you value it.

What is the creative process you follow for singles? Is it the video first and creating music accordingly (like in films), or is it the melody first and the story later?

In the creative process for my independent music, the song always comes first. The lyrics, the melody, the production, the vibe (come first) and then we decide who’s going to direct it, who’s going to shoot it in terms of the cinematographer and where we’re gonna go and shoot it. All of that comes only after the melody and lyrics are in place and then the soundscape. It’s not like that in a film.

Sometimes it can also be that the last shot happened, but if someone comes with a great story on a concept, I can make a song around that because I’m obviously experienced in working that way for films. But independent music is all about making music first and then developing a story around it. And I love doing that because it gives me the role of a music director. Someone who directs music is also a director in his head. So I know what I’m writing about and I know the chain of events that I want to show in the video, the flow that I want to build; so obviously the music helps create the story.

The audience has been appreciating your acting chops as well. So after Amaal the composer, and Amaal the singer, will we see Amaal as a full-fledged actor?

The full fledged actor is impossible. I’m really not interested in films or acting or anything. And maybe if there’s something on the web which defines my musicality, lets me play a musician, helps me portray some good story revolving around music and I also get to score and do the songs for that show, then maybe I will think about it. But I’m not interested in acting at all. I’m only doing it for my fans and music videos tak hi karna chahta hoon (I want to limit myself to music videos) and I’m very happy doing that.

On a little personal note, what is Amaal Mallik’s relationship status?

My relationship status right now is single, very single and no time to mingle (laughs).

With the pandemic and people actually getting some time off, do you feel there would be more original songs coming up?

I think when I got some time off, I made about 25-26 songs in the pandemic and you know, none of them are released yet but they’re in process and I’m working on them. Some have gone for films and some have gone for other artists, some I’m doing myself. And it was a good break for a lot of creative people to get their juices running and create something that the heart wants- no briefs, no situations, just music that they resonate with them. I think every artist must have done their best during this time.

You have recreated a few songs. What is the process you follow while doing that?

Recreating songs is a very tricky space and I only take it up if the original composer is duly credited and respected. And I can add an Amaal Mallik sort of vision to that song without disrupting the original song. Taking away the love is wrong; sometimes you touch a song that is loved so much, and the audience loved it so much through the years and if you spoil it, that audience gets really bitter. So we have to protect the music, as it is about nostalgia. It connects to people in a very different way and it stays with you for life. So before I pick up any song to maybe reprise it or recreate it and give it my twist, I always take care that the soul of the originals remains intact, the original credits are given. And I can bring a little bit of my style and my musicality and my world of poetry to it that I like. If I can’t do these things, then just adding a beat and just releasing it is maybe something that a lot of other producers would like to do but I’m not really keen to do that.

Out of my 100 song career till now I’ve only recreated about five songs. The all the other 95 songs are my own. So I usually stay away from them. But I have done four or five recreations and all have been accepted and loved a lot by people. I’ve met people who have grown up on ‘Ghar Se Nikalte Hi’. They’re 60 years old, 50 years old, they still listen to my version and appreciate and say ‘you didn’t spoil the original’. The original artists have never felt bad when I’ve recreated the song. So I don’t think that there is a process except just keeping the soul of the original intact and giving something of your own.

What is next for Amaal Mallik? Will there be any collaboration with Armaan anytime soon? Are more global collabs on the cards?

Arman and I are both busy with our own labels. I’m handling MWM, he is handling AM music global and he’s doing his own songs there. But obviously, we will reunite very soon to do something maybe in the independent space or in films. And obviously for the Armaalians, the Armaanians, and the Amaalians who keep waiting for us to come together, we are working on something and hopefully it will come out soon.

More global collabs – I don’t know. I just did a collab with Dua Lipa, Armaan has done some really brilliant foreign collabs. And maybe together we might be able to do something global soon.

But, I’m happier doing music for my country and my people and I hope Indians all across the world, who’ve been loving my music, continue to do so. And both the brothers together in their journey are growing and it’s only because of the love of the fans and the blessings of our parents. We just continue to strive to do better and strive to make greater music with each release. And very soon, hopefully, when we come together, we will again make something immortal and eternal.

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