HYDERABAD: What started off as a passion turned into a profession for Pranav Chaganty, a 28-year-old rapper. “I wanted to be a writer actually. What type it would be wasn’t something I was really concerned about; I just wanted to write anything that speaks about the society and its evils,” explains Pranav. And so he took to Facebook to post his raps about various issues, including rape culture, evils of drinking, respecting elders etc. Although he vaguely knew that he wanted to write for movies eventually, he wasn’t actively looking for Tollywood offers. Gaining traction on his YouTube channel kept him busy. But about a year and a half since he began, Pranav broke into the film industry as a lyric writer with Naga Chaitanya’s last film, Yuddham Sharanam.
“Yuddham Sharanam isn’t actually the first movie I wrote for. I wrote raps and lyrics for more movies, but Yuddham Sharanam is the first one to release,” confesses the electrical engineer, who was also a part of the merchant navy before quitting to become a writer. Despite the new breakthrough Pranav admits that his real satisfaction lies in writing about social evils. “When I write for myself I get to choose the topic. I get to write about something that stirred me.
I enjoy writing for films but the challenges are different. In Yuddham Sharanam however, because the song was about the protagonists’ internal struggle with evil, it was right up in my alley” says Pranav, who wrote the song, Padmavyuham for the film. His song was appreciated by critics and audience alike and he particularly cherishes the praises that Rajamouli had showered on him at the audio release of the film.
Amongst the many ups he experienced in the last few months, the rapper cherishes his trip to Malaysia, where he was invited as a guest and was felicitated by Malaysian Telugu Association. “It was the first time I went abroad as an artiste!” he chuckles. While he laughs about how the traditional pattu shawl was a contrast against his hip-hop look he says that the experience turned into a lifelong memory because of something else. “The event was attended by Sirivennela Sita Rama Sastry garu. He is my idol and at the event I got to write and perform for him on his request. It was a dream come true,” he says.
While keeping busy each day, Pranav is prepping to come back with a bang to the online arena. “It’s been six months since I posted anything online. And I have been missing writing about socially relevant things lately. Although on YouTube I post raps that might be fun, I reserve my Facebook for serious issues. The goal has always been to write about human and social issues. If I am able to do so in movies as well, that is certainly a blessing,” says Pranav who is awaiting release of eight projects that he wrote songs or raps for.