Gurj & Indie from Highflyers talk to Chakdey.com & set the record straight!
1. What comes first with your tracks: the music or the vocal?
Most of the time, the music comes first. For example, for our latest single “Aaja Hun”, we had an idea to make a fun, uplifting & catchy track. First we went about creating a melody that would suit the concept and created a minute long musical piece with the concept in mind, then followed Keyboards, Percussion (dhol, dholak, tabla) and a Drum beat. Then we contacted Lyricist Bhinder Khanpuri, discussed the concept and showed him the music we had created. He then wrote the lyrics, which was then approved by us; this is when we chose to get Jaswant Heera involved on the track. The vocal was then recorded & instruments such as tumbi, mandolin and flute were also recorded. Finally the track is completed, mixed and then mastered. However, sometimes a track can come together the opposite way, a singer could approach us with their concept, and we produce the music around the vocal. Either way is fine, but we prefer to have more control throughout the process…
2. There was negativity from some areas when your first album came out, particularly around accusations of ghost production; would you like to put the record straight for our readers?
We, Highflyers (Gurj & Indie), produce our own music. Anyone who knows us personally will know how much time, hard work and effort we put into our music. A BIG problem in the Bhangra music industry: every new producer gets accused of ghost production. When people ask if we produce our own music, or accuse us of ghost production, it gets annoying, knowing we spent countless hours trying to create a hit song, and then we don’t even get credit for it! But in some ways, we see accusations of ghost production as a COMPLIMENT, because it must mean that our music is on a similar level to the big named producers in the industry that people think produced our music, so this can only be a good sign.
We have also had other producers try to spread rumours that they produced our music to try to take credit for our work. If people take the time out to listen carefully, they will be able to hear that our music has a signature Highflyers sound, different to other producers. We will soon do a video showing how we produce a track from start to finish; hopefully this will makes things clearer for the listeners.
3. Your first three singles become sizable hits; is it difficult to keep up that kind of momentum?
It has been a challenge to keep up the hype that was created with our first 3 singles (“Baa Farke”, “The Shinda Duet” & “Daru Naal Yaari”), but we enjoy the challenge! We want to stay consistent, and make sure we always bring quality products into the market. If we are not happy with a track, we will not release it. This is why it has taken us 2 years to complete our 2nd album.
4. What’s your favourite track right now?
Our favourite track at the moment has got to be Diljit Dosanjh’s “Mr Singh” from the film Jatt and Juliet 2. With its catchy beat and entertaining vocals by Diljit, it’s sure to get the dancefloor rocking!
5. Who would be your ultimate choice for a musical collaboration?
We would have loved to have the chance to work with the late great Surjit Bindrakhia. His vocal power and style of singing can never be matched.