"Deewangi deewangi" hitmaker Shaan has a strong belief in himself, and says he can compete with any artiste, including Arijit Singh — one of the busiest Bollywood singers. He also feels he is still relevant and has no reason to quit the industry anytime soon.
Shaan, 44, began his musical journey at a very young age. After doing some jingles, he burst onto the pop scene with his sister Sagarika in the 1990s. Thanks to songs like "Jab se tere naina" and "Chand sifarish", he became one of the favourite playback singers in the country. But a lot has changed since then.
Asked about the growing competition in the field, Shaan told IANS over phone from Mumbai: "I don't think there is competition in music. It's all about co-existing, finding your own space and evolving.
"I do have a strong belief in myself, and that is important. I believe that I can compete with any new (artiste)… Even if it's Arijit. That is my opinion about myself. I'm allowed that much. The day I feel I can't do this anymore and that people are miles ahead of me, then I will be the first one to leave. I'm still relevant."
He doesn't see why he should quit now.
"I can sing the same song, the same range with better clarity, with better energy, with more positive vibe which is required for today's generation. The song needs to reach out to them and comfort them. I see a lot of… sense of despair and helplessness even in the singing. There is no calm or comfort. There is a certain desperation. Even if it's romantic songs. It's gotta go," he said.
He has been keeping himself busy. Earlier this month, his project — a mash-up of "Gazab ka hai din" and "Bawara mann" for T-Series' "Mixtape" — released.
What about original songs?
"I've not been proactive in my career. I've been very lucky that people have come forward with offers of songs and TV shows. I've enjoyed this career without doing much for it. But at this point, I feel that when there are just a few more years, if I just sit back and have this attitude, work will dry out.
"So, I'm composing new material. I'm starting my own YouTube channel. I'm getting a little proactive now," said the singer, who has even hosted and judged singing based reality shows.
Any plans of teaming up with his sister again?
"The problem is that my sister is not here. She has her own space, and even when she comes here (in Mumbai), she is busy meeting all her old friends and catching up. Now, her kids have grown up so, maybe she can dedicate some time to music. Her voice is still magical. Time is running out and we should do something quickly," said the "Tanha dil" crooner, who gave hits like "Aisa hota hai" with Sagarika.
Shaan will soon turn 45, and his 'to do' list is an exhaustive one.
"I'm happy that I have not slowed down… physically. I play tennis at my own pace. I love sports. Maybe, I will be a little slower. My boys (two sons) are growing up. The elder son is faster than me. It's good. They keep me on my feet and keep me young," he said.
"My bucket list includes travelling and seeing a lot of places. I've been doing that and I want to continue doing that. Music wise… I want to do different genres of music. Maybe do a sufi song or an English single, collaborate with more young artistes," he added.
He surely isn't slowing down as he has a web series coming up too.
"I will be working on a web series. It's ambitious. I'm going to do a little bit of acting," he said.
This would be his next acting project after the 2014 dud "Balwinder Singh Famous Ho Gaya".
"I'd like to call that one big joke. The web series … it's too early to talk about. It's very interesting and wonderful. It's something that will be a landmark for me," he concluded.