Singer, composer Mohit Chauhan on a melodic route

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By : Sanjeev Verma

The Himachali voice got some national recognition during singing talent hunt contests with couple of local boys making it to the final stages, but there has been one guy who has consistently kept voice from the mountains alive in Bollywood, and yet you are bond to be surprised hearing that his journey towards success started from Himachal Pradesh.

Unlike celebrity actors like Preity Zinta, Kangna Ranaut or even Anupam Kher, Mohit Chauhan, known for his soft romantic voice, is hardly recognized as a Himachali face in the glam world. Nevertheless, influence of music from the hills can always be felt in his rustic voice, and thus he continues to be an inspiration for many a aspirant. Mohit got noticed in the music world with his first album ‘Boondein’ with Silk Route, where the song ‘Dooba Dooba’ was highly appreciated by people. In Bollywood, his career got a flying start when he was approached by none other than AR Rahman to sing a song in ‘Rang De Basanti’, where ‘Khoon Chala’ got wide appreciation. Mohit has given his voice in many Bollywood movies like Road, Mukt, Main Meri Patni Aur Woh, Rang De Basanti, Jab We Met, EMI, Welcome to Sajjanpur, Kismat Konnection, Fashion and the latest Delhi-6.
Some excerpts from an interaction with Mohit Chauhan during his recent visit to Delhi:

How did you start your journey in music?
I was born and brought up in Himachal. I am from Nahan in district Sirmaur. Music was always a part of my life since I was a small kid. Though I was a science student having done MSc from Dharamshala College in Himachal Pradesh, I was always attracted towards music. After completing my education in Himachal, I came down to Delhi to pursue my career in music and met some people. This was how we formed the Silk Route, which gave me a start in the music industry.

Where did you complete your education from?
I did my education from different districts in Himachal. I did my college from Bilaspur, Mandi and Nahan. Finally, I completed my MSc from Dharamshala.

Did you take some music classes or any formal training?
No. I never took any formal training in music and have learnt all by myself.

When did you start your Silk Route Band?
We started Silk Route in 1996. Boondein was our first album, which was appreciated by the people and we got recognition in the music society because of it. But it doen’t play any more. Now it is just Mohit Chauhan.

Do you have any future plans of forming a band?
I think about it sometimes. Though I perform now with a group of people and it’s like a band, but we haven’t named it formally. In future I hope to start one.

Which was your first Bollywood movie?
My first Bollywood movie was Road by Ram Gopal Varma.

Which are the forthcoming movies in 2009 for which you have given your voice?
The two forthcoming Bollywood movies are  8 X 10 Tasveer and Sikander. There are some other movies also in the pipeline for which I am singing and composing as well.

What are your future plans of launching an album?
Presently, I am busy with the recording of my first solo album, which will be launched soon.

How was your experience of recording the album of poems written by former President APJ Abdul Kalam?
Last year I composed an album of six poems ‘Kalaam’ written by Dr.Kalam. I was fortunate to get a chance to work for him and indeed it was a great experience for me to give voice to the poems of the former first citizen of our country and an eminent personality. I will always cherish my interaction with him when he took me for a walk in the Mughal Gardens.

After the success of your first album, Boondein, there was some time gap when people did not notice you. It took you some time to establish in Bollywood as a playback singer.
Yeah, I was not in a hurry to push myself in Mumbai. I was meeting people, making contacts and trying to establish myself in the industry.

Do you have any plans to compose an album in Himachali?
I usually put one or two mountain songs like Kuch Sailadiyan, Amma Puchhdi, in my performances wherever I perform.  Hopefully, I may compose one in the coming days.

As you have worked with AR Rahman, what would you like to say about him?
I have worked with him twice. He is a great inspiration and truly a great singer and composer.

Born and brought up in Himachal, what would you like to say about it?
Himachal is my home and mountains have given me inspiration. It has always taught me to be humble. Whenever I come to Himachal I like meeting people. It is a great place to learn from the nature.

What would you like to do for Himachal, being the ambassador of a small and beautiful hilly state?
I would love to inculcate respect for the traditions, culture and the heritage which we have.

How do you assess young Himachali singers like Vicky Chauhan, Karnail Rana, Kuldeep Sharma and others?
They are good singers and performing well. I respect them and wish them all the best.

With parliamentary elections approaching near, what message would you like to give to the citizens?
My message to the youth is to balance themselves. Try to make your environment clean and think before you cast your vote. We need harmony and not violence or strife.

23 COMMENTS

  1. Mohit is no doubt gifted with a soothing, touching, attractive voice with his unique style of singing.

    Mohit has lent his voice to some very lively singing be it the albums or the film songs and not to miss in mentioning his very lovely song 'Tumse Hi' from the film 'Jab We Met'. Quite nostalgic with his voice, one gets into.

    I and my family happened to hear him live when Mohit performed at Delhi Haat couple of months back, infact 14th February when he just mesmerised one and all of all the ages with his great style of singing.

    I personally feel he is just a great performer as he is fully engrossed to give out his best with all the involvement down right from his heart and feelings.

    I also find him a nice human being as he was also kind enough to have allowed us to be with him for a very brief tete-a-tete.

    I know he has a great potential in him and shall surely reach great heights with his singing.

    Wishing him the very best of future.

    With kind regards

  2. Mohit is a very popular singer, his first song made him a star..but vey few kniws about his life..and it is really nice to read about this notorious singer who have won many hearts

  3. Mohit Chauhan has got really sweet voice and is a versatile singer, one of ma faovorite. Nice article!! Keep up the good work

  4. owesm sanjeev it is an actual luk into the life mohit and his life journey i loved the way u presented it.

  5. It's a fantastic written piece.Mohit really is true representative of the hill people. He is also very proud of his Himachali background which is so heartening to know..lets cheer the voice of this naturally talented singer..

  6. it's really nice to know about this great personality. I love his all songs. And I love the one in himachali "Amma Puchhdi" this song is awesome.

    Thanks for sharing this conversation.

  7. Really a very precise and informative interview, i didnt kno so much 'bout Mohit Chouhan, thnx for lettin me hv a noicey peek-a-boo into his roots. well done sanjeev. keep up your xcellent xpresns ..long way to go!!yo! 🙂

  8. hi sir i am from himachal pradesh i am struggler singer plzz give me chance bcoz its my dream ,my life & all

  9. Mr. Mohit Chauhan,

    I am huge fan of yours… . When I chanced to listen to 'Guncha' it left a huge impression on me. I looked for the singer and found that you were the lead singer of Silk Route. Where were you all those years? I am glad you are back and churning out one melodious song after another. Thank you sir for bringing melody back to music. I will buy a ticket worth $100 if you ever plan to perform in San Francisco.

    By the way following is the list of your best songs –

    "Ek meetha marz de ne" -Welcome to sajjanpur – THE BEST

    "Dooba Dooba" "Humsafar" – boondein

    "Guncha Koi" – Main, Meri Patni aur Woh

    "Tum Se Hi" – Jab We Met

    "Is This Love (Kahin Na Laage)" – Kismat Konnection

    "Yaad Teri Aaye" – Ugly Aur Pagli

    "Kuch khaas" – Fashion

    "Aankhon hi aankhon mein" – EMI

    "Masakali" – Delhi 6

    "Gulon Mein" – Sikandar

  10. It is always heartening and delightful to see one of our own making it big in any field in these competitive times.Well Mohit ! keep yourself firmly grounded , true to the himachali spirit and that will take you places even further.

  11. Mohit is amzing singer….The richness of his culture that he brought in his music album is highly appreciated…

    But i really want to him to create the earth music from himachal, the way he did in his private albums…His bollywood songs are amazing but i still want more "Thanda paani" kinda songs from him…

  12. Hey I simply love his song

    " Sabse peeche hum khade"… From Lets Enjoy…

    Reminds me of my college days!

    No doubt this guy has good voice!

    God Bless!

  13. he is gret guy …. he is awesom………i am great fan of him……..

    i am proud that he is a himachali>>>>>>>>>>>>>meeee toooo

    • Dear Mohitji, URGENT….!!!!!!! This is VIVEK KHOKAR from Jaspalji's office from delhi- Year 1994. I have been trying to reach you from many months . PLEAsE GET IN TOUCH WITH ME> MY MOBILE NUMBER – 96546 99895 – Am in DELHI NOW. AND HOPE TO SEE YOU SOON.

  14. hello sir..

    this is preet here…

    sir i wanna say dat m having few themes or i can say excellent themes in ma views……..so if u r intrested we can work on those thems if u like dem….and i ll be doing choreography upto dat mark…..sir am not at all intrested in money,i just wanna ma name dats it….

    so sir if u r intrested we can work..

    thnx…

    regards,

    Preet….

  15. thank for sharing his interview excerpts with us. I am fan of his music.

    What a talented singer. His music simply rocks!

    Check out this article to know more about him

    MOHIT CHAUHAN – Route to Success

  16. hi , mohit sir i am too happy to see you in music ka maha mukabala, i hope that you are going to win this mukabala. Please keep singing himachali songs as well don't forget. byeeeeeeeeeeeee

  17. Best Wishes Mohitas! You introduced our Pahari gayki to rest of the world..

    I am waitng for your next Phahri Album… Good Luck 'n Cares:)

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