Pop sensation Lesle Lewis shares his thoughts on music and more in an exclusive interview with Yo!

singer, pop, musician
Lesle Lewis

Lesle Lewis is one of the first music composers to have introduced the Indian audiences to Pop and Rock music. The singer and musician, who was recently in Vizag to perform, gives us insights on his journey and more.

On being the first to bring Rock and Pop music to India

“As a child, I grew up listening to different kinds of music. Thanks to my father, Mr. PL Raj, who was a leading choreographer of Bollywood, I had the pleasure of getting tuned to the euphonious tunes of innumerable Hindi songs. I also had a penchant for listening to multiple western artists that included the likes of Jimi Hendrix and Eric Clapton among others. These commingled influences played a huge role in my creation of ‘Indie Pop’, which was relatively a new genre back then. In fact, the successful influx of this genre into the Indian audiences can be credited to be the predecessor of Bollywood’s employment of modern instruments for composing many funky and peppy numbers.”

On recently winning his first award for the best singer

“I am pretty happy with the award as, frankly, I am not as trained a singer as the other fabulous ones. But the fact that I sing straight out of my heart to communicate with my audiences is something that makes me relish singing. Also, for many years, I restricted myself to compose songs for other singers. Now that I don’t contain myself with such limitations has given me the liberty to compose songs that pertain to my strengths. Music has always kept me going and I am here to rock your space with my singing.”

On the changing trends in music

“Right from the times when the means to listen music differed, change has always been a part of this romantic journey. Nowadays, the digital technology has made it possible to beautify any given song. While this can be handy sometimes, it can prove disastrous in the hands of a person who might overdo the beautification to completely ravage the song by depriving it of its authenticity. I personally feel that the old school technique of live music, which was practiced by the Lata Mangeshkars and the Eric Claptons, is still the way method to record a song so as to preserve its original charm in the first place. As a matter of fact, my latest album, ‘Paise Ki Maa Ki Aankh’, has been recorded live by our band and the results are here to see.”

On his current ventures

“I am completely transformed as compared to what I was some decades ago. I am working with a younger bunch of musicians, reduced singing in English, and above all, have even started writing songs in Hindi. The fact that my Hindi songs are being loved by the audiences all over the world is a testimony to my belief that music has no language. I strike a chord with my audiences and their exuberant response to my music is what keeps me going. In fact, I have become more of a performer and am sure one of the most excited artists in the country that you will come across right now.”

Opinion on Vizag

My first visit to Vizag was many years ago when I came to the city to perform at a ‘Navy Ball’. I find the people here quite chilled out and open to different kinds of music. In fact, I feel that the people down here in South India are much more open and appreciative of the Western music as compared to those in the Northern region.”

Message to the young aspirants out there

“It is sad that many youngsters are detaching themselves from their roots. In today’s fast-paced world, it is imperative to stay bonded to one’s culture in order to stay true to oneself. Parents should imbibe the culture in their kids and instill them with enough faith and belief for achieving their aspirations. At the same time, if one is really passionate about achieving something, he/she needs to find a way to get it done.”

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