Aditi Rao Hydari on independent music: ‘If my voice is auto-tuned, I feel like I’ve cheated’

Feb 7, 2024

Aditi Rao Hydari in latest track of Coke Studio Tamil

Aditi Rao Hydari in the latest track of Coke Studio Tamil | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

before tamil movie Katru Veliyadai Hitting screens in 2017, there was a lot of discussion about its female lead Aditi Rao Hydari. Not just because of how she looks or the fact that she was cast in an important Mani Ratnam film, but also because of how she attracted people with her voice. During the promotions of the film, she suddenly made quite an impact by singing the melodious song 'Vaan Varuvan'.

In 2023, Aditi Rao Hydari – apart from acting in a few films in different languages ​​- is also turning heads with her music. Her latest outing as a singer, the techno-pop track 'Please Purinjukko' saw her pairing up with composer Sean Roldan and lyricist Vignesh Shivan for Coke Studio Tamil Season 2.

'Please Purinjukko', which reflects the nature of relationships in today's fast-paced world, marks Aditi's entry into the independent music scene. “When I go to sing, I have only one request: I don't want to be auto-tuned. I want whoever is listening to me sing to be happy with my delivery. I grew up with so much good music that I feel cheated if my voice has to go through the auto-tune process. The biggest compliment Shawn gave me for 'Please Purinjukko' was telling me he didn't need to use Auto-Tune for my singing,” she says.

She heard scratch tracks for the first time, something she was not usually accustomed to. “But even at that level, it had an earworm quality.”

Aditi is making big efforts for musicians working in independent projects, this trend has increased a good amount in recent times. Aditi explains, “Often, a musician is not able to express his musicality in his mainstream film work. In such cases, independent music helps them express it. I love song, dance and mainstream cinema, but when I want to express something I feel very passionate about, there are always short videos or short films I can try. Similarly, it provides that platform for independent music composers.

Aditi Rao Hydari and Shawn Roldan

Aditi Rao Hydari and Shawn Roldan

Shaun chose Siddharth to sing a song in Tamil film Lover And has worked with Aditi in 'Please Purinjukko'. Does the importance of actors adding their voices to a project increase? “Many of our great actors can sing and dance, and every scene requires some kind of musicality. There is no story or film, especially in India, in which a situation is not expressed through music or dance. It is important that the actors are perfect in that way. Having said that, it's not about actors boosting their egos; “It’s about adding value to the film,” says Aditi.

When Aditi came into films, her dream was to work with Mani Ratnam and Sanjay Leela Bhansali. In 2017, Mani roped him in and Bhansali cast him in the upcoming web-series Hiramandi, ,Hiramandi It's a period piece that I'm excited about. She says, “Working with Sanjay Leela Bhansali is a dream come true for me and you will know more about this project soon.”

Aditi also has director Kishore Belekar Gandhi talk, A silent film also starring Vijay Sethupathi, and a Tamil film by director Rajesh Selva, a thriller based on a female protagonist. She is looking forward to starting work on her Indo-UK co-production Lioness, directed by Kajri Babbar. “It is about two women, two centuries apart, and how their lives impact each other. I try to keep my work as exciting as possible.

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