Imtiyaz Hussain Ranushah and his band were performing at a resort in Goa recently where he was singing the old advertising jingles. Someone recorded the performance and shared a short clip of it on the internet and within a short span of time, the video went viral
When Imtiyaz Hussain Ranushah began singing advertising jingles, especially the ones from the 'golden' days of yesteryear, very little did he know that one day a random video of one such performance would become an instant internet sensation and he would become a familiar voice in several Indian households!
For a musician, it is always satisfying when the audience enjoys the performance of the artist and they sing along with her/him. This, probably, is the best compliment a musician- especially a budding one- could ever receive.
Imtiyaz Hussain Ranushah and his band were performing at a resort in Goa recently where he was singing the old advertising jingles.
Washing Powder Nirma, Pan Parag Pan Masala, Nima Rose...the playlist had every jingle from those days that you can recollect now while reading this paragraph.
Someone recorded the performance and shared a short clip of it on the internet and within a short span of time, the video went viral.
One could easily sense the nostalgia that had gripped the audience by simply looking at their smiles and the numerous chuckles.
They were not just singing in chorus with Imtiyaz Hussain Ranushah and his band, but they were loving every single memory that the songs must have brought alive.
A LinkedIn user shared the video and wrote- "These jingles belong to a certain period in India. They are memorable to a certain set of people in an age group. For the younger lot, they may have arrived as borrowed knowledge and hence not as memorable (or nostalgic) as it may be to the set of people who lived through it. This shows the power of memorable advertising jingles that could rival the popularity of films songs in terms of legacy."
In conversation with Partha Prawal for The Story Mug, Imtiyaz Hussain Ranushah speaks more about his music and the journey so far.
Partha: How were you introduced to music?
Imtiyaz: As a child, I was fascinated as to how can words form a melody and this strong instinct and the urge of creating something of my own got me into music.
Partha: Who inspired you to make music?
Imtiyaz: Just how rain is inspired by water, I have been inspired by Music. I grew up listening to Sufi music from legends like Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, Kailash Kher and Master Salim. This drew my soul into the world of music.
Partha: Recently, a mashup video of old advertising jingles has gone viral. How was the idea conceived?
Imtiyaz: We never had access to YouTube or any other source to learn music and advertising jingles that were played while watching TV were the only source of music played repeatedly. So I started singing it.
Initially, I sang it among friends for fun but when I coincidently sang it in one of my shows, I was stunned to see the response.
Partha: Did you ever think it would become an instant hit?
Imtiyaz: People have loved it whenever I have performed these jingles as they get nostalgic. But yes, I never imagined it would be an internet sensation.
Partha: What's hard- the beginning of the journey thereafter?
Imtiyaz: It’s difficult to be famous but maintaining it and standing through peoples expectation every time is even more difficult.
Partha: What has been the support of your family on this journey?
Imtiyaz: My relatives have always criticised my passion but I have been very fortunate that my family played deaf ears to their criticism and supported me throughout.
Partha: How would you describe the music that you typically create?
Imtiyaz: As quoted by Rabindranath Tagore, “Music fills the infinite between two souls”. The music created by me is to fill that gap.
Partha: What are your songwriting and music creating process like?
Imtiyaz: As breathe is for humans, water for fish similarly music is for a musician. To put it in words music doesn’t live in me rather I live in music. Be it day or night, dull or bright I keep thinking about music and keep trying new things.
Partha: What are the instruments you like to play?
Imtiyaz: My favourite is the guitar. But I would also love to learn other instruments.
Partha: What is it about music that makes you feel passionate?
Imtiyaz: In a world, which is filled with sorrows and depression, through music we can add happiness to everyone's lives.
Partha: Describe your favourite and least favourite part about being a musician.
Imtiyaz: Favourite: Love which I get from my audience.
Least Favourite: Anyone who spoils music for personal gains.
Partha: Are there any links between music and ethics?
Imtiyaz: Music and ethics are indispensable. Like any work must be done with complete integrity the same applies to music as well.
Partha: Any artist you would like to collaborate with?
Imtiyaz: I would love to collaborate with all the talented artists.
My dream is to work with legends like AR Rahman, Shankar Mahadevan and Kailash Kher.
Partha: Do you like any musician or band from the northeast?
Imtiyaz: From the northeast, I love Zubeen Garg and Papon.
And I also love the work of Anjan Dutta- the famous singer-composer from West Bengal.
Partha: Anyone from the northeast you would love to collaborate with?
Imtiyaz: I would like to collaborate with Zubeen Garg.
Partha: Did the COVID-19-induced lockdown had an impact on the musician in you?
Imtiyaz: Yes, like everyone in the world, I was disturbed and affected as well. But it also helped me to create more music in my free time.
Partha: What are your plans for the future?
Imtiyaz: I have created some songs and I would love to launch them soon.
Partha: Any message for the upcoming musicians like yourself who might be reading this interview
Imtiyaz: Whatever you do, do it wholeheartedly. Come what may, but never lose hope!
And if you want to watch the viral video, then click here.
Partha Prawal (Goswami) is a Guwahati-based journalist who loves to write about entertainment, sports, and social and civic issues among others. He is also a published author.