My passion is music! Since I was a baby, I loved to sing. It was not until AR Rahman gave me a chance to sing with him for Slumdog Millionaire did I believe that I would become a professional singer. That seemed like a long time ago. I have had an amazing 10 years working with AR, Timbaland, Weezer, Ozomotli, Jeremy Soule, Brody Brown and many other amazing film and television producer. I put together a sampling of the some of the material I am working on, and some of the past albums.
The Oprah Winfrey Show
The Oscars were followed up by another fun night of after party performances. This segment shows the Oprah Winfre performance in Hollywood. The notable thing about this live performance was that we changed out musicians- a new drum section was choreographed into the segment and we altered the arrangements. The entire sound system was altered as well. The greatest thing about a live show is you can perform the same tune but each time it’s new.
Collaboration with Weezer
My first collaboration after the Oscars. Rivers had already written the song and the song didn’t need much work. However, we thought it could be great to do a second version to release on the album. My brother Ananda Sen came up with a interesting idea to add tablas. He began adding some elements in his studio and the chord structure lent itself well to a Bollywood inspired melody line. It was not until we did the final mix did we realize the full epicness of the sound we had created together.
Collaboration with Timbaland and Justin Timberlake
Timbaland has been a strong supporter of Indian and Middle Eastern music. Not only has he infused many of his tracks with Eastern sounds, but he went out on a limb collaborating with various Indian singers before the South Asian started popularizing in pop music. When I met Timbaland back in 2010, we found common ground in our ability and desire to mix together Indian melodies with western contemporary music, particularly hip hop. We began working extensively in the studio on projects for David Guetta, Pit Bull and Missy Elliott. When Justin Timberlake’s 20/ 20 presented an opportunity, we found just the right vocals and sounds to incorporate into the album.
Leonardo DiCaprio’s “Ice on Fire”
I began working with composer Jeremy Soule in 2017. Our task was to tell a story not only about climate chain but about the world as a living, breathing spirit and how delicate that spirit is. We came up with the idea of combining traditional Indian vocal techniques with an operatic execution. Finally, when we added Jeremy’s orchestration – delivered with it’s typical virtuosity – we believed we had something that sounded like “Earth” delivered through the voice of a female vocalist.