Popular Rajasthani folk song Rumaal gets a contemporary twist
Popular indie band Maati Baani who are well-known for bringing folk songs and music to the forefront are basking in the success of their recent release. Rumaal, a Rajasthani folk song is presented in a contemporary version by the band's duo Kartik Shah and Nirali Kartik featuring folk singer Bhutta Khan. Released by Qyuki on YouTube, Rumaal has garnered nearly two lakh views and likes. In an interview to Indulge, the band shares its thoughts about the song and why they keep revisiting folk music.
You have always partnered with folk artistes and this time it is Bhutta Khan? Why him?
Bhutta Khan is a very talented artiste from the Manganiyar community. He has a unique voice, unlike the other Manganiyar singers we have worked with and he is well versed in Classical. We love the way he improvises so effortlessly and knows what will amuse the listener.
Why did you choose Leta Jai Jore song? While you have retained parts of the original tune, there are other rhythms and melody elements - how did you go about this process?
We literally decided the song when we met Bhutta Khan in the morning! He sang some other tunes but we picked this one because it is so beautiful and catchy. Also, the lyrics are very cinematic, where a woman says to the man she loves to keep her handkerchief for her memory when he's not with her. A lot of purists feel we should not change the lyrics of traditional songs, but we feel they need a new context and always end up changing them with our version. Nirali came up with some cool lyrics for her parts which she thought were more relatable today to the younger audience. We must have practiced it for 30 minutes and made all the new parts. Kartik comes up with these great hooks and melodies instantaneously and he started playing this catchy guitar riff. Then we had two amazing musicians, Govind on bass and Amit on Tabla. We went ahead for the shoot and recorded this song live.
You say the message behind the song is that of love.
The song is straight from the heart of a woman who is deeply in love with her man. Love is the tonic that keeps us alive. No matter how beaten down we are in day to day life, a good happy song can lift us up and put us right back at the top! This is that song.
Why did you shoot in Barmer? You could have chosen another place in Rajasthan.
We were invited by the Rajasthan Kabir Yatra to perform in villages in interior Rajasthan. These folks from the village had not even seen a band before! It was so amazing to see their reactions. We performed in two villages near Barmer to packed audiences. Most of the famous Manganiyar singers come from Barmer. It has a tradition of music which is unbeatable. Also, we had this amazing location at the Sanchal Fort resort so we chose to film this in Barmer. We are explorers and we will keep on traveling to find more rich music from India.