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Letting Go

Allahabad born Sashwat Singh’s local singing flavour in the song Wat wat was one of the key reasons why Imtiaz Ali chose him


I come from a small town, Allahabad in Uttar Pradesh. It’s known for its culture, beautiful rivers and simple life. My hometown drew out the artiste in me and is my biggest reason for being in the music world today. I started singing at the age of 10. My parents had poojas in the house every month and there were bhajans. That’s how I began singing. It was my indirect initiation into semi-classical music. I had not undergone any formal training and had very little knowledge about the things you could do with music.

First song

My first performance for Wat wat wat was in Etawah during AR Rahman sir’s concert. It was amazing because it was the first time I had performed in front of such a big audience. I will never forget that feeling.

On Wat wat

I had a Skype session with Imtiaz Ali sir. He was very happy to learn that I was from Allahabad and I was asked to do something very local. I had to picture myself as a rickshawallah and sing for them. It worked! Rahman sir made sure I got my expressions right. I believe that knowing the dialect worked in my favour.

On AR Rahman

Rahman sir is a magician and is totally in tune with himself, which reflects in his compositions. I was lucky to witness this magic once. He had heard me for the first time and composed the track in front of my very eyes! I kept singing exactly like he asked me to, and in no time he composed a beautiful melody.

On sharing space with Arijit Singh

Initially, I didn’t know that Arijit was going to be on the track. When I learnt of this, I was a little disappointed. But when I heard his part, I was mesmerised. I am a diehard fan of the man, who works with utmost honesty. I guess if I had known from the very beginning that he too was on the track, I may have done something I would have later regretted. The whole point of music is to let yourself go. And that’s what I did. I followed my director’s instructions without doubting myself. And I rendered my bit by getting into the character of the story.

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