Having recently released his debut single 'Nayo Lagda' - SimplyBhangra.com caught up with British born vocalist San2 for this exclusive interview.
You’ve literally come out of nowhere and taken the scene by storm – How was the response to your debut single ‘Nayo Lagda’ been for you?
The response has been absolutely overwhelming, I feel so honoured and privileged with everyones support and response to my new single 'Nayo Lagda'. Never in a million years did I think it was going to be this popular! I'm just so touched by all the well wishers and their support. To reach the number 1 position on iTunes and BBC Asian Network with a debut single is like being in a dream!
Where did your musical journey begin? And at what level have you trained vocally?
My musical journey began at the age of 6 singing in various competitions. I performed in a TV talent show on the Disney Channel that my mum entered me in. I spent time learning to play the Harmonium and tabla with my dad. I also performed at some charity/private events over the years
Your debut single is released on Virtual Records – A new label, is there naything in particular that drew you to sign to this label?
My Manager Raj Ghai (owner of Virtual Recordz) and I have been working very hard to get my single to launch stage. We've actually been working on stuff for over 6 months! It was almost inevitable that a new independent label would be created. I signed to the label as we have a great team and bunch of people that all work under the Virtual Recordz Label we are almost like one big family. There's a lot of stuff going on behind the scenes at the label which I'm not going to talk about or my manager will go nuts! But I'm sure you will hear very soon.
The video for Nayo Lagda was directed by Brit-Asian actor Ameet Chana – How did this come about?
When we talked about making the video we looked at a number of videos already out there and decided we would meet a few to discuss plans etc. However, my manager is actualy close friends with Ameet Chana and found out he was also directing other short films at the time, so he called him up and played him the single and mentioned that we were looking for someone who could see the finished product from a producer/director's point of view but just as importantly, from the viewers point of view. Ameet had been on both sides and knew exactly what to do. He loved the song and insisted on coming on board as director! The storyboard was done in a week and the rest is history. He did the most amazing job. The guys from Flying Solo productions played a huge role too.
In the build up to the release we saw you given support by many big names including Nihal (BBC Radio 1) and Rishi Rich – Was this threw your label?
Nihal and Rishi Rich are also close friends of my manager and Ameet. They introduced me to them at a private party and I ended up singing to Nihal outside the venue in the car park! Nihal's reaction seemed to be of amazement (as you can see in the short clip on YouTube) and he immediately said I should come to his studio at BBC Radio 1 for an interview. Both Rishi Rich and Nihal gave me support after for which I'm very grateful.
As an new artist, have you sat down with you label to create a plan? Or are you taking each release as it comes?
We have some great plans. Raj (my manager) has been in the music game for over 20 years and obviously has a huge contact base globally. We know what we are doing for the next 12 months but it is a little flexible as anything can happen in this industry. We are off to Mumbai soon and I have no idea what may happen while we are there. I know we have some interesting meetings lined up. I'll let you know!!
What other UK based & International Punjabi acts do you enjoy listening to?
I enjoy listening to artists like; Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, Ghulam Ali saab, Sardool Sikander ji, Rahat fateh Ali Khan saab etc so there's lots of artists that I enjoy listening to. It's hard to pick a favourite as my tastes are actually quite varied.
One thing we’ve noticed is how the newer breed of UK vocalist such as T-Minder & D-Sarb have been lending you support on social media, how heartening as this been for you?
It’s very Kind of artists from the industry showing love, I feel very humbled. It's important to realise that we are in a small community, especially in the UK. There's no space for arguing or hating each other. I know it happens but I don't want to be a part of that. I wish every artist or musician all the luck in the world and I feel so warm inside when other artists give me support. Love Music...Love life!
Can you give us an insight into the song that plays at the beginning of the Nayo Lagda video?
Yes of course, the songs called 'Gal Sunja' another song which is written and composed my father Deedar Singh. This song was recorded a while ago, not yet released but we decided to put a little clip of it in the intro of the 'Nayo Lagda' video. It was a kind of taster. We wanted to get a reaction from the viewers. Would they like it or hate it. Based on the comments and requests that we've had for it, we think it's a winner! Still not 100% sure that it will be the next release though!
Can you describe your ideal live performance?
My ideal live performance would be with live Musicians at my own concert. That's been my dream for ages. I love live music. It's a different world.
Your bio describes that you can sing in Hindi, Panjabi & English – is this something youll be showcasing in the near future?
God willing most definitely would love to showcase this in the coming future. I have already sung in different languages on radio interviews but that's just because people keep asking me to. Not sure yet when I will sing in English but I think Hindi is a real option.
Is a solo album something on the agenda or are you concentrating on singles? Do you think there is a market left for albums?
It will be mostly singles I will be focusing on. I'm not ruling out albums as I would love to do it, not for business purposes but just to give something back to my fans for supporting my singles and my career and also I would love to showcase various genres in one album.
What can we expect from San2 in the next 12 months?
With the blessings of my supporters, fans, family, friends and the teams behind me, you can definitely expect something bigger and better, and most important of all something that has never been done before from a UK born artist. I wish I could tell you more right now but I'd have to kill you! LOL
Any final words for the worldwide readers of SimplyBhangra.com
" want to thank everyone at SimplyBhangra.com and all of your readers, the fans and everyone who has supported me. Thank you