Monday, 30th October 2017

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Vocalist Madhu B on her bombay journey

‘Patience is a very coveted virtue in a city where everyone is always in a hurry’

By Arindam Chatterjee
  • Published 25.02.20, 12:01 AM
  • Updated 25.02.20, 12:01 AM
  • 4 mins read
Madhubanti Bagchi aka Madhu B. The Telegraph

There’s a reason why people call Bombay the maximum city and vocalist Madhubanti Bagchi could not agree more! She is absolutely loving it there! Madhubanti, who moved to Bombay two years ago from Calcutta, now considers Bombay her second home and goes by the name Madhu B. Her latest single Bhool ja has more than six million views on YouTube. She also features on the Love Aaj Kal (2020) soundtrack with the reprise version of the song Shayad. 

Who is Madhu B? How did the name happen?

Madhu B is the Madhubanti Bagchi most people haven’t seen. She does her hair in strange ways, listens to unconventional music and makes outrageous fashion choices! She’s what Madhubanti Bagchi always wanted to be secretly but couldn’t dare to. Soon after coming to Bombay, I realised that people were weary of long names. They’d start by appreciating how I was named after a raag, but quickly moved to, “Can I call you Madhu though? It’s a bit too long.” So I guess Bombay people have been calling me Madhu since the time I moved there. This time I just formalised it!

Madhu B is also getting into the fashion scene and she likes taking risks. She doesn’t care if she’s wearing the latest in fashion but just the way she speaks her mind, she wears clothes that speak her mind too.

There seems to have been an image makeover. What’s the reason?!

There’s a reason girls do makeovers! A makeover feels like a huge change internally. I was feeling mentally stuck for some time and I decided to go for an image makeover and it worked like a charm. Sometimes an internal change happens faster when you change yourself externally. People have been surprised to see this avatar of mine in the music video. People have been asking me if I’d consider acting after watching the video, which is a pleasant surprise!

How’s the overall feedback for the song Bhool ja? What’s the genesis of Bhool ja?

The overall feedback has been great! Countless people have been sending me messages on social media, congratulating me for the song. I see tons of people making TikTok videos of the song. So I’m guessing the young crowd has responded very well to the song. My friend Siddharth Bhavsar and I decided to work on a song that he had made three years ago. I loved the tune and immediately recorded the scratch. In a couple of days Siddharth wrote and composed the rest of the song and music producer Manash Borthakur lent his magic touch to make it sound like 2020. It’s basically a break-up song written and composed by Siddharth; a modern break-up song that doesn’t really sound sad, so you can groove to the song while mourning for your lost love!

The video for Bhool ja is shot beautifully. Tell us about your experience shooting for it...

It was a very interesting experience. The video features three young girls who take me away for a holiday post my (fictional) break-up. The entire team was staying in a large villa in Goa. When we were not shooting we were partying in the pool. We shot the entire day and post-sundown no one could bring us out of the pool. It was a classic ‘work hard, party harder’ scenario.

What are your plans for 2020?

In 2020 I’m not taking things for granted any more. Not my successes, not my failures, not my mental health, not my physical health. I am focussing more than ever. I have always been very laid-back as far as my career is concerned but this year ain’t gonna be one of those years.

How is life in Bombay now?

It is hectic and competitive, and a lot of that competition is with yourself. Every day you have to outdo yourself and keep yourself updated. Every day you have to keep a positive mindset even if your mind and heart tell you not to. You have to be able to grab every opportunity that comes your way. The best thing about Bombay is that opportunity comes to everyone, you just have to be ready to grab it. So you have to be super ready for that one chance. There is hardly any buffer time and almost everyone is replaceable. Which is a great and horrible thing at the same time, so someone’s missed opportunity can be your golden ticket.

How tough is it to get recording calls for Bolly films now?

Things are changing pretty rapidly in Bollywood. The independent or the non-film music scene is growing rapidly and a lot of promising artistes are just concentrating on their solo careers rather than running after a Bolly break. And even in Bollywood, singers with a sizeable number of followers are cast more swiftly than the ones without. Interestingly, a lot of these singers have got their fame as YouTube stars where their non-film songs have millions of views without any star cast or a backing from big production houses.

Do you set goals for yourself?

It’s important to set goals for oneself and I have done it too. There are career goals, personal goals and fitness goals but those are just between me and my diary! In my two years in Bombay, I’ve learnt never to take anything for granted. Every ‘yes’ is a blessing and every ‘no’ teaches you a lesson. One must be grateful for all the things he or she has received from the city. This city can take everything away from you if you take her generosity for granted. Bombay rewards people with intentions of working hard. Of course, there will be ups and downs, but if one can maintain composure during the downtime and keep slogging, he or she will definitely be reaping benefits soon. Patience is a very coveted virtue in a city where everyone is always in a hurry.

How has been your journey in Bombay till now?

My journey has been interesting in many ways. I have discovered many things about myself after moving here. I have learnt how to stay alone and not feel lonely. And I have learnt how to deal with myself when I do feel lonely. I have learnt to stay creative even during the darkest of times. I have learnt to let go of things I cannot control. I have learnt to reduce expectations and be more realistic... the list is endless. Three of my singles released last year and I was associated with movies like Andhadhun, Uri and Judgemental Hain Kya? without really slogging much. I came across a lot of kind people who had faith in my music and without them it would have been very difficult for me to survive to say the least.