The voice behind the viral Bulleya cover, Diptanshu Tiwari is the next Sufi star to watch out for
Diptanshu Tiwari quit his high-paying corporate job in Bangalore to come back home to Kolkata and start a Sufi rock band - as cinematic as the trajectory sounds, any and every indie artiste will tell you the choice comes with its own set of challenges.
But Tiwari has been one of the lucky ones, his major Bollywood cover went viral this month, he has the opportunity to pursue higher studies in Hindustani classical music, his band has already got an album lined up, and he did some playback singing for a successful feature film. It’s safe to say, Tiwari and his band mates are on the right path and we caught up with the rising star to get to know more about his plans:
Your cover of Bulleya (from Ae Dil Hai Mushkil) did exceptionally well on all platforms. Why did you choose to cover it?
The song which was written by Irshad Kamil ji is inspired by Baba Bulleh Shah’s poetry, who was a philosopher and a Sufi poet from the 17th century. Since, our music also has its anchor in Sufi poetry and lyrics, and the song talks about the passion anyone should have to pursue their goal, it was a good fit.
Tell us a little about your band Malang
I have known my band mates for many years, and our music was actually our biggest common link. And I’m a huge Sufi lover, and I’ve admired qawwali and Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan for many years now, so a Sufi rock band made a lot of sense to us, since it’s inspired by spirituality, just like Sufism.
Do you have a day job?
All six of the band members (Arindam Dutta, Debashish Dutta, Anurag Dasgupta, Debasis Sardar, Saikat Dutta) are pursuing music full time; I did my B-Tech from Kolkata and got a job in a leading software company in Bangalore, but the strenuous shifts do not work for me.
I'd be working till around 8:30 and never had any time to practice. So I decided to come back home to Kolkata and now I'm also pursuing my masters in Hindustani Classical music from Rabindra Bharati University
How challenging has it been since you're an independent band?
There are indie musicians now who have a huge reach but like Prateek Kuhad, for instance. We aspire to have that kind of reach, especially as our music does have Indian classical leanings. It's really interesting because the words and the poetry comes from Sufi, the music we use is mostly Indian classical but the sound that we're creating is rock!
Have any artistes who have inspired you?
Sufi folk rock band Humsufi has inspired us immensely, it's been one of the biggest inspirations for us.
You also did some playback singing for a movie
Yeah, I did some playback singing for the Gujarati movie Chal Jeevie Layiye. The film has actually been a milestone in the Indian film industry as it did very good business.