What’s On Santhosh Narayanan’s Playlist?

‘I used to love Ed Sheeran’, says the composer as he gets ready with his 25th release, Vetrimaaran’s Vada Chennai.  Here’s a list of artistes that inspire his music
What’s On Santhosh Narayanan’s Playlist?

I'm going to name a few genres of music. Can you give us your inspirations in each of them?

Rap / Hip-hop:

Currently, I'm listening to a lot of Kendrick Lamar. In hip-hop, I loved Babyface, his R&B tracks and especially Usher's work with him.

I also love Erykah Badu. Of course, then there's the earlier days of Jay Z. I have also enjoyed Tupac and his earlier albums.


Now, I follow Jacob Collier a lot. Of course then there are the greats I keep listening to.


I listen to a lot of blues too but the names don't stick.

Western classical:

I think my interests have changed a lot in these years. Initially, my favourites included Adiemus, the band. Karl Jenkins was one of my favourites among modern day western classics. I'm not naming the classic composers…they're all great without doubt.

I also like Ennio Morricone's soundtracks for films. Even John Williams and his compositions for Spielberg.

Pop. I can sense a Coldplay influence in there somewhere.

I think it's the alternative rock. Anything alternative I try might sound Coldplayish because they are the most recognisable alt rock band in India. There's this chord progression of theirs that I love.

I love what Bruno Mars is doing in certain songs. I would call Jacob Collier a popular artiste…just to help him become more popular for what he's doing.

The earlier days of Ed Sheeran. He was Amazing. He was independent yet popular. Now he has become a megastar and has gone into that zone of sounds. I love Adele and Norah Jones. They are still independent, yet popular. I love that space.

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