His music, often showcasing multifarious emotions, brings about an excellent blend of folk and Indie. Angaraag Mahanta (Papon) who grew up in Assam has finally come into his own. An album ‘The Story So Far’ that took 10 long years is a beautiful compilation of tracks that take you to the lands of mysticism, idyllic afternoons and blue skies. His rendition of Pritam’s ‘Jiyein Kyun’ in 'Dum Maaro Dum' was inarguably one of the best musical debuts in Bollywood last year.
About ‘Papon the story so far...’
This is my first Hindi pop album since I started producing music. It traces the music I’ve been making for the last 10 years; that’s why it is the story so far. I have lived through all these sounds, these thoughts, all these perspectives, these last 10 years, to be where I am today. The album comprises and consists of all my different moods, sounds, thoughts.In between this album I released two original Assamese albums, which I produced. To compile all these Hindi songs and to think of it as one album took me some time.
Stint in Bollywood
Bollywood is just Indian music. It has elements like folk, local and classical music. Bollywood is a film industry, which makes films, films need music and music for Indian films is Indian music. Bollywood is full of different genres and different types of sounds. It is just packaged according to different situations. Right now it is the best time; I also like the 70s and 50s.
I didn’t skip Bollywood, it just happened that I was in Delhi and busy finding my own music and making my own path. I was experimenting a lot with independent music at the time and that moved forward for me. I’m glad that I’ve started with Bollywood at this time, because Bollywood has really opened up to all kinds of different sounds and genres. It’s a really interesting time for Bollywood now. And I think it’s the right time for me.
There are lots of bands performing regional music across the country. With Hindi, you are able to tell your story to a lot more people, and your music reaches a lot more ears. In fact, today, the scene has really opened up. There are a lot of independent musicians who are a part of Bollywood and in turn Bollywood has opened up to many different sounds and genres - from drum and bass to folk.
Well, that’s true. Indian crowd need to be a little more educated about music in order to appreciate good music, but that’s also the responsibility of everyone, from the musicians to the media to the labels. A listener can only listen, and not create. It’s important to give listeners a variety of music, to give people a choice, and allow them to develop their individual taste in music.