BENGALURU: Unlike many others in the creative and entertainment world, Sameer Rahat does not want to ride on the name and fame of his father. The Mumbai-based writer-musician answers only in short, crisp sentences any question about how Rahat Indori’s name has almost become synonymous on the social media with witty, dripping-with-satire Urdu couplets, especially on the current political and social ambience in the country. But he knows there is no escaping the fact.
“My father has been a household name for over three decades now. Now, social media has enabled his poetry against theregime to go viral,” says Sameer, who is in Bengaluru to record his six-track album, Aamad. “He has never been anti-government, he is against the establishment where people are against people. It is never about a single party. My music itself has been vocal, wherein I have taken influences from Faiz Ahmed Faiz, Ahmed Faraz. As artistes, we have the responsibility to air our views,” he adds.
Rahat, who has been getting noticed with his blend of music and Urdu poetry, says his new album will be out in 2020. “These are songs that I have written over 10 years. Aamad means ‘arrival’ and poetically in Urdu, it also means a thought that comes to mind without thinking. Kashif Iqbal from Parvaaz has agreed to come on board for production. With him, every song has got a fresh perspective, along with his contribution on guitars,” adds Rahat, whose has written songs for Dice Media’s Little Things, The Black Prince and a couple of Pakistani films as well.
Writing, needless to say, has always been present in his life. “My parents (Rahat Indori and Anjum Rehbar) are arguably the biggest Urdu poets in the country, and you get influenced by them on a daily basis. Writing songs for others is when is when your waters are tested,” he says. Rahat is also working on his first travel-photo-poetry book titled Ibtida, which documents his travels across countries, mainly in Europe. The book may also be released in 2020, he reveals. “I have been travelling for four years, spending 3-4 months at each place. The pictures I took during my travels inspired me to write. This book documents all the pictures, accompanied by a poem, ghazal or shayari,” he says.
His family background notwithstanding, Rahat feels that the independent music scene in the country is riddled with favouritism, and has been consumed by a handful of people. “The only bands that are shining right now are also my favourites, but they have got past the barrier of favouritism due to their talent. Not everyone can survive that. I have seen fellow artistes who released great albums and are yet to play at big festivals. On the other hand, you also have ones who haven’t released even a single and they take the big stage. Bands like Indian Ocean and Parvaaz have surpassed that barrier and it took a long time. So the bigger question is, ‘Why didn’t it happen for them earlier?’,” he emphasises.