Prakriti Kakar’s latest song ‘Hawa Hawa’ is garnering praises and the singer is extremely elated with the audiences’ response. Prakriti has a twin sister Sukriti who also happens to be a singer, so naturally she faces lot of identity crisis but she states that with time people will learn to differentiate between them.
In a candid interview Prakriti opines that actors should turn singer only when they are classically trained and actually knows how to sing. She also thinks that Sunidhi Chauhan is the perfect alternative for Arijit Singh and there will be a time when female singers will get their due in this industry.
Here are the excerpts:
How did you bag ‘Hawa Hawa’ from MUBARAKAN?
Gourav & Roshin the composer of this number heard some of my previous song and they asked me to come and try 'Hawa Hawa' because aaj kal aise gaana toh mil nahi jaata you have to sing a scratch first. So when I went to their studio they told me it’s a dance number and it’s going to be a promotional song filmed on Arjun Kapoor and Ileana Dcruz. After I gave the song a shot they were really happy how it sounded and I don’t think they tried any other singer after me.
What was the best feedback you received for this peppy song?
A lot people have been telling me that I am sounding very different in this song and that in itself is a very big compliment as this is my first ‘Dhamaal’ song and that too with Mika Singh! So that’s very exciting for me. As a singer you need to constantly keep experimenting and try new things, so when you do that and the audience accepts it then it’s a beautiful feeling. With this song I think my career has taken a different route and may be after this I will be singing more of party songs.
Since you belong to a family of singers how easy or difficult it is to maintain your individuality?
It is actually very difficult because firstly I have a twin sister who to a lot of people even sounds like me! So sometimes it is very difficult to deal with this whole identity crisis but I guess slowly we are coming out of it. We both have sung in MUBARAKAN but our songs are very different. Her song is a Punjabi number which is the title song of MUBARAKAN while mine is a groovy dance number ‘Hawa Hawa’. Many a times it happens that my song releases and people congratulate her or tag her and vice versa. I had kind of given up and would simply say thank you. A person has to really spend some time with us to know exactly how different we are from each other. But ultimately we are twins so that twin trouble is going to stay. But the positive thing is that there aren’t any twin singers in Bollywood so we try to use music to our advantage and perform together; it’s a very exciting offer. With time to come our fans won’t get confuse as they would know who has sung which song. This year a lot of different songs of ours will be releasing so I think with time people will start to differentiate between us.
And as far as Akriti is concerned she is our elder sister and she has been singing for so many years she has literally been our mentor, she has taught us everything that we both know and we have grown up listening to her and see her perform. So eventually with time people will come to know who is who.
So do you people take advice related to your projects or career from Akriti?
Yes we do. She has always been part of our decisions and even today not just career advice she gives us a lot of personal advice as well. She is literally like our second mother. So we go to her with everything even if it’s some crisis in our personal life I go to her. She is always there for us and has always been super supportive of everything I and Sukriti do. As a child I always wanted to be like my sister Akriti, she is my role model.
If not a singer then what else you would have been?
Actually I have not thought about it as I was very clear that I wanted to sing. Right from my school days I always wanted to pursue music. I have seen my sister and I have seen her highs, lows and her struggles, my mom is a music teacher, so music has been a very important part of our lives. And very few people get to make it their profession as most of them have music just as their passion. So yes I have never thought of anything else other than this.
'Having a twin sister sometimes makes you deal with identity crisis'
Do you feel these days Bollywood is relying too much on re-created songs?
Yeah it is. I wouldn’t say it is bad thing as I am singing few remakes myself this year but I feel like every remake is fair as long as the song doesn’t lose its charm. It’s great that songs are coming back and I would like to see them in a positive way because ‘Hawa Hawa’ is 80s song, so for anyone born in 80s it would be like ‘arre yeh toh pehle ka gaana hai’ but lot of people from newer generation don’t even know this song. So the fact that we are recreating old songs is amazing because young people are getting a chance to know these classic and legendary songs. So if we redo the song and make it a bigger hit it’s only good for the audience.
You are so young and have already worked with some versatile singers like Sonu Nigam, Mika Singh and Ankit Tiwari. So how was the experience of working with them? Were you intimidated?
Ankit Tiwari has given me my debut song in Bollywood. It was with ‘Katra Katra’ which was for Bipasha Basu. I was a 19-year-old when I sang that song. I am very thankful to Ankit who thought of me at first place. At one point I used to perform a lot with Ankit Tiwari and I guess that’s how he thought of using my voice in a Bollywood number. My voice just suited Bipasha’s character and then one thing led to the other. Ankit is super supportive and even today supports anything that releases from my end. So I am super grateful to him for giving me that break, that early in my career. Sonu Nigam and Mika Paaji, they have literally seen me grow up as they used to sing with my elder sister a lot. I did MTV Unplugged with Mika paaji as backup vocalist so when today I get a song to share with him it’s a great feeling. He is very supportive and I look up to him as a mentor.
Do you have any special wish list of composers with whom you would love to work?
There are lots. First of all would be Pritam Da as I am a very big fan of his music. I love his song choices for his singers actually. He gives very unexpected songs to singers so one day when I get a chance to work with him I would love to know what song he gives me. Then it’s Vishal-Shekhar and very soon I will be singing a song for them. Third would be Amit Trivedi, I absolutely adore his work and look up to the music that he makes. Then how can we forget the one and only A R Rahman sir I would love to work with him as well. Lastly it would be Mithoon as I am a huge fan of his music as well and until now have not got a chance to work with him.
Currently in Bollywood lot of actors are turning singers so what’s your take on this?
As long as someone like Parineeti Chopra who can sing well, this trend is fabulous because this is how it happens in the west as people sing and act in Broadways, also they know how to sing and have been classically trained. But here people use actors to sing in their films because the producers feel like that’s going to help the film being promoted. Anyways there aren't enough songs for female singers as mostly everything is very male-oriented. You barely get a good song for females and if by chance there is a good song even then hardly 5-6 lines will be there for the female singer. So it’s a very rare that you get to hear a good female song. I would just say that may be actors should confine to acting as long as they consider themselves to be a non-singer like Alia Bhatt said that she is not that good singer but she still sings. Shraddha Kapoor is at least better because she can sing and has proved herself in ROCK ON 2.
She even sung ‘Sab Tera’ brilliantly. So Shraddha Kapoor singing is still okay but to promote the film you get actors to sing that is really unfair to singers. We have hardly good songs for female aur agar woh bhi actresses’ gaa lengi then we will be left with nothing.
'If you get actors to sing for promotions, then that’s very unfair'
Since you have mentioned that there’s hardly good songs for females, why is it that we don’t have any female equivalent of Arijit Singh in Bollywood right now.
I think everybody is looking for a female Arijit Singh. All of us just need to find her and get her up from somewhere (laughs). Be a boy or girl everyone in industry respects Arijit Singh for how far he has come. Today his songs are more popular and a film doesn’t do well without an Arijit song. He is literally like Kumar Sanu of our generation. He is the most versatile and I personally don’t feel that there is a better singer than him right now.
That’s true but then why is the female Arijit Singh missing in Bollywood right now?
I don’t know I think that is a question I would love to ask to every composer. Anyone who sings as good as Arijit Singh then she should get her due, you know this is why there isn’t any song left for women. I think in the time to come there would come a change as people like us would try to evolve and bring a change in the industry as there are so many good female singers out there who just need to get their due.
If given a chance to choose a female equivalent of Arijit Singh, whom would you choose?
I will choose Sunidhi Chauhan and my sole reason to choose her would be like the way Arijit can sing any song right from ‘Palat’ to ‘Aayat’ to ‘Channa Mereya’ he can literally do anything and everything. Talking about Sunidhi she can also do anything, she can make you dance, fall in love; she is classically trained so even she can sing anything and everything. Hence I think she would be the right alternative for Arijit Singh.
Any plans to come up with your own album, single or any collaboration with your sisters?
Yeah actually we are working on it, I and Sukriti are working on a single which will be sung as well as composed by us. So that’s pretty exciting. Right now we are still in talks with a label so may be people would get to hear it later this year or next year.
Any message for your fans?
All I would like to say is a big thank you for all the love that has come my way for ‘Hawa Hawa’. Keep the love coming and thank you for all the support and there is lot of stuff coming up so stay tuned.