Rapper Raftaar talks about his latest number Ghana Kasoota and working with Rashmeet Kaur
‘Ghana Kasoota’ which loosely translates to ‘totally awesome’ in Haryanvi, has desi swag with contemporary hip-hop beats
One of the most recognised names from the Indian hip-hop fraternity, Dilin Nair a.k.a. Raftaar, gave his fans a treat recently, by dropping a dance number, Ghana Kasoota along with Nadiyon Paar singer Rashmeet Kaur. Featuring television actor Surbhi Jyoti of Naagin fame, the track is steadily rising up the charts. ‘Ghana Kasoota’ which loosely translates to ‘totally awesome’ in Haryanvi, has desi swag with contemporary hip-hop beats. The video for the party song is brought to life by eclectic freestyle choreography put together by choreographer duo Piyush Bhagat and Shazia Samji. In a freewheeling chat with Indulge, Malayali boy Raftaar talks about his inspiration and his passion to create more good music. Excerpts.
Tell us about the inspiration behind the song.
It’s a song where a girl meets a boy and they share their feelings about each other. Shot in Jaipur, sung in Haryanvi, written in Mumbai, recorded in Chandigarh, the song has travelled everywhere. I was missing the old Bollywood song vibes, like when people used to run around trees and tell each other what they like about each other. So I wanted to create something like that. Also, Ghana Kasoota is inspired by the party and wedding season which brings people together to have fun and enjoy themselves after the pandemic and that is what we were aiming for with the song. So, bringing people together and letting them enjoy the party season together is what we were aiming for.
What was your experience singing with Rashmeet?
It was amazing. She is such a talented singer; she can sing in a coarse voice and then go into a more classical voice seamlessly. She trains every day and that sort of dedication to music makes it easier for others to sing along. The song is in Haryanvi and I had asked her to sing like she is speaking to her boyfriend in the language and not in a normal Haryanvi tone and she delivered.
The song also features television actor Surbhi Jyoti. What was it like on set?
It was great having her on board. Surbhi was very cooperative and knowledgeable. She even asked me how I got into hip-hop and the community. When you have a person like that who understands and is interested in what’s happening, the job gets easier.
How long did it take for you to write the song and shoot the music video?
I wrote the song in April but that was when the second wave of the pandemic had hit us. I didn’t feel that was the best time to release a dance number, as people were grieving.
What’s your creative process?
It differs from time to time. Sometimes I have a beat in mind, sometimes the melody or the words in mind. With Ghana Kasoota I came up with the idea of the first two lines “Mane Ghana Kasuta Lagge Se…” and then with the help of the entire team we got the video in place.
The song is shot in the beautiful Fairmont Hotel and Amer Palace in Jaipur. Tell us more about the locations.
The hotel we were staying in is very urban and luxurious from inside and from outside it is a heritage property. That’s what we wanted to promote through the song. One can be stylish from outside and yet is desi from the heart like me, a gao ka ladka who has vileti shauk (a guy from the village who has foreign exquisite taste). The opportunity to shoot at Amer Fort which has such a historical significance was a great experience. I wouldn’t have thought it in my dreams that I would seal off a portion of a national heritage place to shoot a video and people would like it. I hope it helps to increase tourism in the area.
As a singer, what interests you more — Bollywood playback singing or independent music?
Music is music and I am here to create music. Right now, the music industry is going through a great phase where every genre of music has takers and platforms.
More and more music, I just want to continue entertaining people.
Available on all major streaming platforms.