The actor-singer lets us in on his musical journey and why it would be incomplete without the three Khans.

You’ve never trained in music. How did it become such an integral part of who you are?

Ayushmann : You know I used to get classical training as a kid but I never took it too seriously. In fact, in college I had to make a choice between music and theatre and I chose theatre because I thought it was more wholesome as an experience. While performing street theatre in Chandigarh, we used to compose our own songs, write our own songs, and sing our own songs. So, I think with theatre, dono ka riyaaz ho gaya –abhinay ka bhi aur sangeet ka bhi.

What was the soundtrack of your life at that time?

Ayushmann : You know I’m a 90s child. That’s why Dum Laga Ke Haisha had such nostalgic value in my life. Of course, the three Khans have really inspired me and I’ve grown up watching them and listening to their songs. That’s what I do even in our concerts. My band Ayushmann Bhava rehashes 90s songs and plays them.

Listen to Ayushmann’s favourite Khan hits here:


What do you listen to when you’re sad?

Ayushmann : Generally, I’m not sad. I’m intrinsically very happy and contended in life. But, of course, I’m a human being so I get sad a little bit. I think I listen to retro songs. Also, I listen to my own songs that have done well. But you don’t have to be too filmy and play the guitar or the piano jaise Rishi Kapoor sahib Karz mein bajaate the!

You had said in many interviews that acting was your first priority and singing, second. Is that still true?

Ayushmann: As far as music is concerned, I’m a purist at heart. I would prefer a classically trained singer over a textured singer or a studio morphed sound singer. So I would always consider myself an actor first. I always thought acting is easier than singing because singing has a set of rules, acting has no rules. You can just perform one scene in 10 different ways but in singing aap saath sur se bhatak nahi sakte.

What’s the one song that you keep going back to?

Ayushmann: I guess it has to be Paani Da Rang. I’ve lived with that song for at least 12 years. We composed that song in first or second year of college and we used to sing it almost every day in the canteen. Thankfully kisi ne churaya nahi us time pe! While travelling from Chandigarh to Bombay for theatre festivals, I still remember singing our own compositions and collecting money from the passengers in second class sleeper trains. We used to collect so much money that we could sponsor our own Goa trips after that.

Listen to Paani da Rang from Vicky Donor here



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