Musicians lose identity when composing for films: Karsh Kale

"Music is your own experience, your own thoughts, your wisdom," American musician Charlie Parker once said. But that holds no meaning when you compose for films, feels Indian American musician Karsh Kale, the man behind the music fo

Friday, November 30, 2012 | 11:18:18 AM IST (+05:30 GMT)
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musician Karsh Kale

"Music is your own experience, your own thoughts, your wisdom," American musician Charlie Parker once said. But that holds no meaning when you compose for films, feels Indian American musician Karsh Kale, the man behind the music for films like "Pyaar Impossible", "Karthik Calling Karthik" and "Chutney Popcorn".

A musician or a band loses out on identity while composing music for movies, he says.

"I think any time you are making music for a film, you are not making your own music any more. You are making music, which a director or a producer is asking you to make. Even if you put your stamp on it, it is someone else's vision. There is a huge difference there," Kale told IANS.

His music is certainly not conventional. He admits there are times when one ends up creating something completely new for a film.

"It depends on the film. Some of them call for true evolution and you end up doing things which you normally won't do as an artist. And there are films which don't," said Kale, who is a part of the music band Collectiv.

In the recent past, Bollywood has served as a platform for fusion bands like Indian Ocean and Agnee to bring in new flavour to film music. And they have successfully done so with films like "PEEPLI [Live]" and "Aalaap".

Kale, who has showcased his musical prowess, especially electronic fusion, in shows like "The Dewarists" and "Coke Studio", says such shows that promote raw talent should be encouraged as they create awareness about the hard work that goes behind creating melodious music.

"It is important for the music audience to get to know the life of musicians and see what they go through to make great music. Often, they only see the final product," he said.

"Shows like these depict the back story, the making and also the struggle of the artists. So, I think people get more interested in the music and artists rather than waiting for the final product," he added.

In times when music aficionados are listening to a melange of tunes - Bollywood, retro, hip-hop, fusion, reggae, trance, rock, pop and even classical - Kale prefers to be open-minded about what he composes.

"I try not to think about styles as there is so much of good music out there in the world. People's iPods have different genres of music and not just one. So when I make music, I pick up everything that influences me. It might be hip-hop, electronica, rock and different styles mixed in one," he added.

Kale, who was raised in New York and studied music production and performance at the New York University, feels the Indian audience needs to be exposed more to fusion music as they are craving to hear something different and unique.

"People must be exposed to new music. This was how fusion became popular in the rest of the world too. We see people thronging music festivals, so that is an indication that people are craving for different music and are asking for it," he said.

Kale recently played with his band Collectiv at the Chivas Studio 2012 in Mumbai. His band will release their new album by early next year, after which they plan to go on a musical tour.

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