Catching up with Vishal Dadlani – Musician Extraordinaire

VishalD

Who doesn’t know Vishal Dadlani? Vishal is part of a duo with Shekhar Ravjiani and is responsible for many successful soundtracks in Hindi, Telugu and Marathi films.

Pentagram is a four-piece Indian rock/electronica band started in 1994 in Mumbai, India. Regarded as one of the pioneers of original Indian independent music, the band has received major recognition.

Pentagram is fronted by Vishal, with Randolph Correia on guitars, Papal Mane on bass and Shiraz Bhattacharya on drums. All of whom have recently been actively involved in the Bollywood music business.

pentagram vishal
Photo Courtesy Shiv Ahuja© (www.shivahuja.com) @ShivAhuja

Making his mark in the music industry in Bollywood and beyond, this man has achieved a status that many dream of having. His humility is something that just cannot be faked, a thoroughly genuine person with a no-nonsense approach to life. I managed to catch up with Vishal for this exclusive one on one and I must say I am more convinced than ever that such honesty and wit cannot be faked.

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If you weren’t Vishal Dadlani who would you be?
Dunno. I’d have loved to have been someone like Stephen Hawking, or, perhaps, Lennon. It’d still suck, not to be me, though.

Were you headed towards being a singer or a music producer? You do both with such ease and success.
I wasn’t headed towards either. They came to me, and I’m grateful they did. I didn’t know I’d have anything to do with music until I was about 19!

How do you deal with fans who clamour all over you, especially when you’re having a bad day and really don’t feel like any human interaction?
I try and be nice. It shocks most people, cuz most people are afraid of me, for some unfathomable reason.

If you weren’t in the music industry, what would you be doing?
Not the first clue, but I’d be good at it, and I’d be self-made. These two are certain.

Vishal Shekhar

You work very closely with Shekhar. Your chemistry with him is very apparent in the music both of you create, your live performances and even recently, as we saw on Indian Idol Junior, both of you seem to get on really well. Has there ever been a time you’ve wanted to leave chalk marks around each others’ bodies?
I’m sure Shekhar feels that way, more than I do. To quote a Pentagram song “I’m only made of Human Failings”.
We do get along really well, though. I think it’s because we’re respectful of each others’ talent, and also because we’re both utter and absolute goofs.

It’s impossible if you say the pair of you have never argued professionally. How do you guys make up?
We talk, we grab some coffee, or we write a song or do a show. That usually sorts it!

He scrubs up well!
He scrubs up well!

You’re always so well kitted. From the posh suits you wore as an Indian Idol Junior judge to the rather funky tees you always seem to wear, who dresses you?
The suits were by a designer that the show hired for me! Given a choice, I wouldn’t go near ’em!
The t-shirts are just part of who I am, and almost always have been.

Can you cook? Like REAL cooking and not the bbq and boys night out cook out thing.
I burn a mean slice of toast.

What has been the biggest extravagance in terms of spending your hard earned cash?
Nothing major, really. Possibly my car, but it’s nothing too fancy or expensive.

You’re so popular and going by your Twitter account, you’re adored by many. What drives you to be Vishal Dadlani?
I don’t really have the option to be anyone else, do I? Besides, I’ve learnt to really sit back and revel in being me. I wasn’t quite convinced, for a long time, but somewhere along the way, I learnt to love myself for everything I am. Bumps and bruises, included.

You’re actually one of the few celebrities I know who isn’t stuck up or has his head up his back side so far that the lips get mistaken for an extra kidney. You also make a point, whenever you can, to reply back to fans. Why do you think these so-called celebrities behave the way they do? Is it beneath them to be nice to the people who adore them and actually afford them their star status?
The thing is, I’m no celebrity. I’m a musician. I don’t make music to be famous, or to make the papers. I make music because I have no choice. The rest of it, is superficial.
Celebrity comes with a certain head-up-ones-own-ass-ness, but sadly, I’m not particularly flexible in that way.
Why other people do what they do, is their problem. I’ve never given it a thought.

What’s your opinion on Man-Bags? Do you carry one? What’s in it?
I’m ok with em. I own one, carry it when I travel. Headphones, phone chargers, passport, keys, that sorta thing.

On a scale of 1-10 (10 being highest) how scared are you of dogs growling and foaming at the mouth with fangs for teeth?
I’ve come across a few, and it’s a little scary, but nothing I haven’t overcome. So I’ll give it a 2.

Tell me of 5 things you will not leave the house without.
Shoes. Clothes. House-keys (although I have been locked out, several times).
And two phones. There. That’s 5.

Quickfire Round

 Samose or Pakore
Samose

 Rain or sunshine
Rain

Ferrari or Lamborghini
Lambo

Live concert or playback singing
Writing with Pentagram.

Twitter or Facebook
Yes.

Coffee or tea
Coffee

Gym or jogging
Gym. I’ve got bad knees from years of jogging, as a kid.

 iPhone or BlackBerry
Whichever battery hasn’t died on me!

 

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One thought on “Catching up with Vishal Dadlani – Musician Extraordinaire”

  1. Loved the frank, honest and entertaining interview! Confession time… I’m among those fans who until recently was very scared of tweeting Vishal! I could, without thinking, pull Sujoy’s or Shekharj’s legs but NEVER dared to do the same with Vishal! I think though he is a gentleman and I have never seen him being rude to a lady, he has this “private space” vibe that makes you reluctant to be goofy Witt him! I love both Vishal and Shekhar’s interaction with kids … Coz with them the duos true persona shines thru… Out and out gentle, kind and souls! One of the main reasons they are my Fav music duo! Keep rocking Vishalji and yes … Bring those funky tees back Plz 🙂

    Like

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