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Tuning Into Destiny

Music composers Gourov-Roshin talk to Bhavi Gathani about their experience of composing music for Total Dhamaal, their journey together in the industry and more

In the last couple of years, composers Gourov-Roshin have been acknowledged for their music in films like Mubarakan, Kaabil and Munna Michael. The duo has recently been in the news for the music in the multi-starrer comedy, Total Dhamaal. “The journey has been mind-blowing. It has been mad, with the graph going up and down. The journey was also amazing because we have been together for such a long time, a decade. We were like brothers from the first time we worked together. That kind of equation is difficult to find in this industry but we have managed, survived and now we are here with you,” says Gourov. 

“I completely agree. Also, our taste in music was always similar. I really don’t know what more to say about Gourov paaji. We have been friends for such a long time and music was always our goal. We can’t think of doing anything else. Everything has been great in his company,” adds Roshin.

Recalling the experience of working on Total Dhamaal, Gourov says, “We have done music for Induji (Indra Kumar) for Great Grand Masti. When Total Dhamaal was happening, Induji asked us to pitch in. I think almost every composer was trying to pitch in for this film. So when we were told about this, we agreed immediately. We worked on the album for a while and then Kookie Gulati, who is the creative director of the film, began doing music sessions with us. He has made the music videos. We did one song at a time and that’s how we slowly moved forward with the album.”

Roshin adds, “It has been fun working with Induji (Indra Kumar) and Kookie Gulatiji. We enjoyed thoroughly making music for this film.”

Says Gourov, “However, it has been a stressful journey for us too. There was a lot of pressure. So many people were trying for this film and those were our seniors. Also, working with a veteran like Indra Kumar makes it different. He knows his music so well and knows what he wants. Each song was a journey. We didn’t know what was happening next. By doing one song after the other, we did a full soundtrack, which is fabulous. We feel that we are students again and have just passed our school exams and are breathing a sigh of relief.”

Talking about the recreation of music and the criticism it sometimes draws, Gourov says, “As composers, we obviously want to create originals. Any composer will say that. But the trend is such, and when in Rome, you have to do as Romans do. Of course it hurts, because you want to provide original material and we have so many original songs. In fact, for Total Dhamaal, we had only original songs initially. But then there is the record label, there are the producers, who figure out the market needs. We try to retain a little bit of ourselves in any recreation that we do, instead of just taking the track and putting the loop and making it. Here, there is an original part and then we just used the hook from the original song. That’s how it’s been. And the good thing is that it has worked.”

They also talk about their long standing association with the lyricist Kumaar. Roshin says, “With Kumaar paaji, we have done a lot of work.” To this, Gourov adds, “Kumaar is an amazingly talented writer. He has had major role to play in all our recent films. He has written some of the great stuff that we have done. We hope that even in our next album he has his name attached with ours. We had taken a break in between. At that time we were doing a lot of advertisements. And Kumaar told us, ‘Why don’t you guys come back and let us do something together?’ At that time I was in talks with Sanjay Gupta and Hrithik Roshan for Kaabil. We were already working on that so it all came together and several films followed back-to-back.”

Speaking further about tuning into Bollywood, Gourov explains, “Our background is not from Bollywood. Mine is more from a rock/metal space; been in a boy band, grown up listening to that kind of stuff. Roshin has a classical music background. So we try to experiment and bring a little bit of ourselves to everything we do. Slowly we have learnt the trick, the Bollywood formula, and we are still learning. The best is yet to come. It’s sad but I am also happy that we are saving the best for last. The kind of music that we would love to make has happened in very few films. Dus Kahaniyaan was one such film, our first film with Sanjay Gupta. Summer of 2007 was another. That film didn’t do that well but the soundtrack was awesome.”

“The film Knock Out also has a good album,” says Roshin.

Gourov concludes talking about the importance of being versatile, “We have learnt to adapt to each situation. It’s important to be versatile, and it’s fun. You go to different people for ballads, club songs, remixes and so on. I don’t believe in it. As a musician I feel we should be versatile. We make the most beautiful love songs, slow ballads. Unfortunately, only people who are very close to us know about this. We have a lot of songs like these. But everything will be coming out soon now. There is a time and place for everything in Bollywood. It’s not just about the talent. It’s about destiny, time and place as well,” he says.

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