Nikhita Gandhi, who has crooned the title track of Raabta, talks to Komal Sharma about her experience and her break in Hindi cinema
“I became a singer accidentally,” confesses Nikitha Gandhi. “I have been singing for Tamil films for two years, which was very accidental because I was in Chennai studying dentistry. In Chennai, I met AR Rahman sir and that’s where my journey in music started.”
She adds, “Music became an organic and dominant part of my life. As I was about to complete my dentistry course, I did my first song with AR Rahman and I simultaneously started my career in music too. I received so many opportunities that it became a full-time profession. Obviously, since I am more familiar with Hindi, I wanted to sing Hindi songs as well.”
Recalling the experience doing her first song with Rahman in the Tamil film I, Gandhi says, “Getting your first break with such an incredible person is like you are walking on the right path. AR Rahman is a man of few words and he starts working immediately, as soon as he enters the studio, and he is all about music. So I learnt so much from him.”
Gandhi is excited about getting a break in Hindi films with Raabta, where she has sung the remake of Kuch toh hai tujhse raabta from Agent Vinod. “The song is a little different from its original version. I wasn’t sure they would consider my voice as the final voice for the song. As a newcomer, you tend to think that you won’t get the project. But I believe the director liked my work and I was happy that I lent my voice for such a beautiful song.”
She says she was told that the song required a sweet but intimidating voice. “It was something I had to work on but I enjoyed recording it. Most of the South songs I have done are party numbers, very EDM tracks. But this Raabta song is very melodious and intimate,” reveals the young singer.
One of the inputs she was given was that Deepika Padukone would feature in the song. “So I had to keep her in mind while recording, not only in a very sweet, but mesmerising way. I had a totally amazing experience because my song will be picturised on an amazing actress,” she says.
About language differences in the song she sings, she says, “I don’t speak in Tamil very much as it is not very familiar to me but I understand the language. Not only do I have to picturise the emotion in the song, I also have to understand what the song is all about. In Hindi, it is much easier to get into the song as I know the lyrics, emotions and you understand the song easily.”