Chanteuse Pavithra Chari collaborates with legendary musician AR Rahman

She is the recent most addition to a bunch of singers who have become famous thanks to their work with AR Rahman…

author_img Varsha V Shetty Published :  15th July 2023 04:21 PM   |   Published :   |  15th July 2023 04:21 PM
In frame: Pavithra Chari

In frame: Pavithra Chari

Indie musician Pavithra Chari has realised a lifelong dream by collaborating with music legend AR Rahman on the enchanting ballad Utchanthala in the just-released Maamannan. Known for her captivating vocals and previous work on the Grammy-nominated album Shuruaat, Pavithra has also lent her voice to notable composers and projects. In Utchanthala she showcases her exceptional vocal skills alongside esteemed artistes, solidifying her position as one of the main vocalists on this remarkable track that’s now in the news. We catch up with her to talk about music, the song and lots more.

How did the project with AR Rahman come about?
The opportunity to work with AR Rahman on the song Utchanthala for the film Maamannan is truly a blessing for me. I am incredibly grateful for the chance to sing to Rahman sir’s music. The composition of the song and the experience of recording it has been a great learning experience for me. As an indie artist, my aspiration was always to sing in films. I had my first break as a playback singer in 2021 for a film called Udanpirappe. Since then, I have been fortunate to be part of several film projects, across languages, over the past year. The opportunity to work with Rahman sir came through this journey.

Where are you based right now and what are the other music industries you have been a part of?
I am originally from Chennai and I have spent a significant amount of time in Delhi, as well. Currently, I shuttle between Delhi, Chennai and Mumbai, but I am primarily based in Chennai. I have had the opportunity to sing in multiple languages. My first project was for a Himachali film in 2015. Most recently, I worked on a Telugu film called Dasara, where I sang in Telugu, Kannada, Malayalam, Hindi and Tamil. This experience opened doors for me, and I have since sung in various South Indian languages.

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How did you cultivate your love for music?
My mother is the reason behind my pas s ion for music. She exposed me to music even before I was born and continued to nurture my interest throughout my life. She herself is a singer and comes from a musical family. When I was around five years old, she enrolled me in music classes to see if I enjoyed it. I instantly fell in love with music and continued my journey as a student of music. I started with carnatic music and later switched to hindustani classical music. I am grateful to my gurus for their guidance and inspiration.

What genres do you explore with your band, Shadow and Light?
Shadow and Light, consisting of Anindya Bose and myself, started as a studio music project where we wrote music purely for the love of it. Our music encompasses various genres and influences. We blend elements of hindustani classical, pop, jazz and more. I primarily write in Hindi, English and Tamil, while Anindya brings his influences from classic rock and electronic music. We don’t restrict ourselves to a particular category or genre and instead focus on what feels right for the narrative of each song.

Is Shadow and Light based in Chennai, as well?
Shadow and Light is based in Delhi, but we travel extensively for gigs and performances. We write all our music in Delhi and the nomadic life of musicians suits us well.

Do you have any upcoming releases?
I have been working on several exciting projects with talented composers. A couple of web series that I have sung for are set to release in the next few months. Additionally, there is a special project with a filmmaker I have admired for a long time, which showcases a different side of my compositional abilities. I will be sharing more details about these releases on my social media channels.

When can we expect the next release from Shadow and Light?
Shadow and Light recently debuted as composers for a web series called Dharavi Bank on MX Player. We are now interested in composing music for more visual media and have three to four singles ready for release.

Utchanthala is streaming now on all major audio platforms.