An Indian Civilizational Perspective

Unreal life of Reality Shows and the real life beyond them

Success requires hard-work and persistence. The reality shows on TV create a great platform for youngsters, but can these shows give them all glowing careers? Apparently some have cashed but not all. Everyone is on their own after the show and has to work hard. The fame and fervour that these participants and winners see during the show with millions voting for them evaporates very quickly into thin air! Then what?

One set of reality shows that I have watched and followed with great interest is the musical ones. Fame Gurukul, Indian Idol, and the grand dad of them all Sa Re Ga Ma Pa. These shows do it all to boost their TRP ratings through tricks like:

– fighting amongst the judges.. like Abhijeet and Bappi Lahiri; or Javed Akhtar and Annu Malik used to fight. This apparently creates interest amongst the viewers.
– creating religious or national controversies – like Zee did in the Independence Day special with three Pakistani candidates in the danger zone for singing Pakistani national songs as opposed to Indian ones. First of all, its just vanity and foolhardiness to want people of another nation (even though we are so close) to sing our national songs, specially on a day when its their Independence Day as well!
– create love triangles / love affairs – like Sumedha and Aneek Dhar – when nothing really is there.

After the show however all these gimmicks go away. Then what? At that time the person is left alone with his/her music and urge to excel. The fact that you once got millions of sms votes does not give the bread on the table now. So, its back to the fight and struggle to succeed. It takes a lot of effort to succeed in the entertainment business. And ultimately those who have talent remain there for a long time. Just like in 1980’s we have the horrendous set of singers like Mohd. Aziz and Shabbir Kumar burst on the scene and make a mince-meat of the entire music in Indian cinema. It took a person like Udit Narayan 8-9 years to break out in the open with QSQT.

So, what is life after the winning and losing of a reality show?

Qazi Touqeer, the charismatic Kashmiri from the Fame Gurukul is acting in a movie… and I think it is better for him as he had looks and style but very little singing talent.. Ruprekha Bannerjee, the other winner, has disappeared somewhere! Rex meanwhile has gone international. He is seen in different NRI functions and on cruises.

Debojit, the lucky winner of 2005 Saregamapa Challenge is still living in a rented apartment in Malwani Jankalyan Nagar and is waiting for Zee TV to find programs for him! Imagine Udit Narayan trying to create his career based on this kind of waiting game or Sonu Nigam looking at Zee to give him the songs and programs!

Debojit Saha, the winner of ‘Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Challenge 2005, is a sad man. He expressed, “Though Zee is supposed to fetch me programmes and shows, the bitter truth is that the offers for most of my shows have come directly to me and not through the channel. I am still living in a rented house at Malwani Jankalyan Nagar.” Qazi Touqeer and Ruprekha, the Fame Gurukul Jodi, is nowhere to be seen.

Also, I believe Karunya ultimately found South Indian movies to sing in.

These four boys from Indian Idol ’07 too have joined together to form a classy band – called F4 (Chang, Suhit, Abhishek, and Parleen). They are coming out with this album through Sony/BMG.. and they did not even win the thing. But they have used their brains and creativity to put together a killer proposition – a cool look band of some sensational boys!

I havent heard about the rest. After a few songs, most have gone away. But its not all vapour after all, Shreya Ghoshal, Sunidhi Chauhan, Kunal Ganjawala are some of the top singers today and their careers were started in one of these music reality shows too. But it took a lot more than just participation or winning these shows. It took real talent. Real talent – which does not wait on opportunities to come out. It creates them, awards or no awards. All you need to know about awards in music is that even Mozart never won even ONE! Losing or winning really doesn’t give you a great career. Ask any IIT graduate or a Harvard MBA. After they come out of their halo-ed colleges.. the fight starts THEN.

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10 Comments
  1. Desh says

    Anonymous – it will be better if you can explain what troubles you? Instead of shouting and displaying your own ignorance, you need to point out what’s wrong!

  2. Anonymous says

    Who the fcuk has written this article ??? Please learn to respect all the artist…..Tujhe kya samajh mein ata hai ???

  3. Desh says

    Anonymous – it will be better if you can explain what troubles you? Instead of shouting and displaying your own ignorance, you need to point out what’s wrong!

  4. Anonymous says

    Who ever singers uve mentioned in this has ruled this industry for years…..So respect all the artist dont show ur personal grudges here….what did u mean by “horrendous set of singers” That is ur pointing out all the great Md’s like Laxmikant pyarelal, Rd burman, Bappi lihiri,Anu malik as if they didnt had musical ears or in 80’s their knowledge of Suur had dissapeared?? I think u should get some more knowledge and more info, What info do u have about them? Kitne gaane Tu ne sune hai Bata mujhe??

  5. Desh says

    I talked about the singers and you are talking about the MDs. However, it is my opinion as a person who listens to music – and it is public who makes a song hit or a failure – that the singers in the time when Mohd. Aziz, Shabbir Kumar and the first incarnation of Kavita Krishnamurthi ruled the scene … we had the worst music ever. It was a saving grace that Udit Narayana finally came and added some respectability and Kumar Sanu gave something sooting (although he is not a great singer). Udit Narayana, in my view, is definitely one of the greatest voices to have sung in Indian cinema. He may not be as proficient as Sonu Nigam, but his voice quality is certainly legendary.

    And honestly, you can keep saying what you want but ultimately a singer or music director becomes great or useless because of the public not how knowledgeable he is! If you cannot connect to public you are useless. So as a member of the public I have the right to say my opinion. You may have your opinion, just say it.

  6. Desh says

    I talked about the singers and you are talking about the MDs. However, it is my opinion as a person who listens to music – and it is public who makes a song hit or a failure – that the singers in the time when Mohd. Aziz, Shabbir Kumar and the first incarnation of Kavita Krishnamurthi ruled the scene … we had the worst music ever. It was a saving grace that Udit Narayana finally came and added some respectability and Kumar Sanu gave something sooting (although he is not a great singer). Udit Narayana, in my view, is definitely one of the greatest voices to have sung in Indian cinema. He may not be as proficient as Sonu Nigam, but his voice quality is certainly legendary.

    And honestly, you can keep saying what you want but ultimately a singer or music director becomes great or useless because of the public not how knowledgeable he is! If you cannot connect to public you are useless. So as a member of the public I have the right to say my opinion. You may have your opinion, just say it.

  7. Anonymous says

    Then i think its not at all the Singers fault if they sang in 80’s Era……And Udit is also very senior to these Singers he also sang a song with Rafi sahab.Sabka apna time hota hai.Shabbir kumar, Mohd Aziz had also sung many great songs under great music directors which uve not appreciate at all.I have nothing to do with ur personal choice and opinion i dont care.But dont use such words which insults any artists hard work.Udit narayan is also sometimes very besura, and also his pronounciation goes wrong but that doesnt mean he is a horrendous singer, Its the music directors who make them sing to their tunes.I think itna to knowledge hoga hi??

  8. Anonymous says

    “I do agree with Mr.anonymous ” *mr Desh dont use bad words for such good singers of their time… nowadays music is like… for few days then kaha jata ha malum nahi chlta.. even kitna b acha singer ho… not longlasting… pehle ke singers are legends.. u should learn to respect n dont use bad words for any artist !!felt really bad to read ur Horrendous words for such legendary singers.. Mr Desh dont underestimate anybody…

  9. Desh says

    Thanks for your comments, dear anonymous. I have the highest respect for the legendary singers of Indian music, but to call Mohd Aziz and Shabbir Kumar as “legendary” – then I am sorry you have no freaking idea of music itself. I still remember those years when we had to bear those two singers and the music directors of those years just could not find a good singer.. or wont do so.

    Ask any self respecting and good person who understands music and he/she will clearly say that those were THE worst and most depressing musical years. And I am not sorry about voicing that! Even the kid singers in the Saregamapa sing better than those adults then!

  10. Desh says

    Thanks for your comments, dear anonymous. I have the highest respect for the legendary singers of Indian music, but to call Mohd Aziz and Shabbir Kumar as “legendary” – then I am sorry you have no freaking idea of music itself. I still remember those years when we had to bear those two singers and the music directors of those years just could not find a good singer.. or wont do so.

    Ask any self respecting and good person who understands music and he/she will clearly say that those were THE worst and most depressing musical years. And I am not sorry about voicing that! Even the kid singers in the Saregamapa sing better than those adults then!

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