In a special programme, Atif Aslam Unplugged, the popular Pakistani pop-singer speaks exclusively to the BBC’s Deepak Sharma about his singing career, his entry into Bollywood, favourite songs, singers and actors and his fan following. The singer also shares with the BBC his childhood memories and his aspirations.
The programme, which is interspersed with Atif Aslam’s favourite Bollywood numbers as well as songs from his various albums, will be broadcast on Thursday 12 March on Radio One 94.3 FM in Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi, Mumbai and Pune. The interview will also be rebroadcast by the following BBC partner stations in India: Radio Chaska in Gwalior, Radio Choklate in Bhubaneshwar, Cuttak and Rourkela, Radio Misty in Siliguri, Radio Rangila in Raipur, Radio Tadka in Jaipur and Udaipur, Tomato FM in Kolhapur. It will also be aired by Radio Spice in Dubai, UAE.
Talking to the BBC, Atif says that training is not needed to become a singer and he, for one, is a born singer: “A singer should not be criticised just because he is not trained because, according to me, you do not need training for singing.”
When he was young, Atif wanted to be a cricketer and even was selected for the under-19s team. But he believes he was destined to be a singer and is enjoying his life today. It was Mahesh Bhatt who recognised his talent and, after listening to his song Woh Lamhe, introduced him to Bollywood.
Atif says that he is a big fan of Kishore Kumar: “It was Kishore Da’s songs which inspired me to become a singer.”