Fly easy, fly cheap!
Need a veena teacher?
The 'Ole ole' man's first private album showcases his soft, precision singing, and is an easy listening experience
Abhijeet moved from Bengal to Mumbai and had to wait for many years to establish himself as a playback singer. He was doing accountancy and would have ended up as a chartered accountant if his first love, music, hadn't given him a career.
In 1984, R D Burman called him for a song with Kishore Kumar, in a film starring Dev Anand and his son Suneil Anand (Anand Aur Anand). That gave Abhijeet a chance to work with his hero -- he says the Kishore style is his gharana -- but didn't make him a big singer.
Abhijeet's first hit was the energetic Saif Khan-Sangeeta Bijlani dance number Ole ole ( from Yeh Dillagi). Among his more recent hits are Main koi aisa geet gaaon from Yes Boss and Zara jhoom loon main from Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge.
Aashiqui , Abhijeet's first non-film album, has music by Nikhil-Vinay.
One quality that you notice is that Abhijeet sings with great control and sophistication even in the most energetic songs. Take Ole ole. Its beats and party atmosphere might have encouraged the singer to overdo the vocals. But Abhijeet brings in his voice like an artist using a dark but thin pencil, etching his parts with precision and unmistakeable style.
This is the quality you see consistently on this album. Most tracks are plain pop, entertaining and not demanding too much of the listener. The songs are not unbearably familiar and boring, as most Indipop albums are today. Faiz Anwar's lyrics provide no new insight into this emotion of love, but Abhijeet still sings the words with a certain freshness.
Yaad karne se tujhke enjoyed some channel exposure and was a pleasant surprise, evoking a bygone world with its sepia tones. The beat is engrossing, and the tune initially moves downwards on the scale instead of up as most run-of-the-mill songs.
Kya yahi pyar hai has some bachata and Latino nuances in the interludes and makes another simple, easy song. Tum saath might remind you of the Burmans, father and son, in the main melody, and in some of the interludes. You may remember songs from Jeevan Sathi or Dharam Karam, but thankfully there is no note for note plagiarism going on here.
Tu meri chahat hai borrows its beats from international pop and bhangra; its orchestra features a sitar, a keyboard-simulated flute and some undistinguished tones, and the tune is the only bad one on Side A.
Dheere se muskura ke is a slow ballad in praise of the girl's quiet smile. Sax, piano and violin sounds create a dreamy effect. Most of the tune, especially in the stanzas, jumps from note to note, creating a lively sense of movement.
Bahut yaad aati hai is a nostalgic number. Tuned like one of those Hindi film waltzes, but nothing outstanding. With the next song Tujhe dekha,
the liveliness returns. Surely there's a difference between being lively and being emptily peppy? Abhijeet belongs in the first category.
S Suchitra Lata
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