Rossh is a rapper, musician and a songwriter all bundled in one. His debut original, Chillam, is one of the most popular viral tracks having garnered million views on YouTube. Born and brought up in Haryana Rossh has introduced Haryanvi rap in a unique style and it shows in his songs. We had a exclusive conversation with him while he was in city. Here are some of the things he told us.
How it all started?
Is it about the song or about the whole journey?
The whole journey. As you are from Haryana and we seldom see many rappers from the there. How it all started from Haryana to Mumbai?
I sang my debut track 3-4 years back. I was very fond of music and use to listen to lots of songs and I developed more interest in music. I use to write a lot during my school days and I got lots of songs with me as industry revolutionized and music scenario changed in India. I really got inclined towards rap and started creating my own beats. 2 years ago I prepared my song 'Chillam' and took it to many channels but nobody entertained us as it was a different track on a very different topic. Moreover, I was a newcomer so I put it on Youtube and that song became a huge hit and today it has around 10 million views and these are all organic views. I started getting calls from big names in the industry like Fazilpuria, Honey Singh and all. They all wanted to collaborate with me. I had multiple meetings with Honey Bhai, but things didn't work out due to some professional and creative differences. I have a great bonding with Fazilpuria. His all recent songs are penned by me. Apart from that my song 'Goosebumps' was also featured in Jacki Chan's 'Kung Fu Yoga'. One day my friend told me that 9XM has a separate talent management wing, send your track to them and let's see how they react. I sent the scratch of 'Chillam' to them and they liked it very much. They called me for the meeting and then we finalized the track. We started working on the track and video. This is how I came from a small town of Haryana to Mumbai.
Rossh is a unique name. Is there any story behind it?
Yes, there's a story behind it. When I use to sing in front of my friends, they use to react in a very different way. They asked me to do rap in English, Hindi or Punjabi as people like it, nobody will like rap in Haryanvi but I thought in a different way. I wanted to represent my Haryanvi language and wanted to promote it through my rap. So I took the name 'Rossh' from Roshni (light).
As you are very talented and gifted with good singing skills why did you chose rap instead of formal singing?
I have lots of tracks ready in which I have sung formally but when you are coming to an industry, you always want to put your best things first. So that people don't ignore you. So I decided to mark my place in the industry with my rap and then I'll definitely release a full album with my formal singing tracks.
Any particular inspiration? Was it self-motivation or were you inspired by anyone?
My inspiration in rap is from Drake and Wiz Khalifa. Because their work is unique. In India, we usually talk about girls or alcohol but their music is different and unique in every way. So I decided to mix my Haryanvi roots into this. I tried to do something different as well. Though I am inspired by Drake and Wiz Khalifa still I have a different style. So we can say that it's a mix of Drake, Wiz Khalifa, and Rossh.
Do you feel the pressure and competition from other contemporary rap artists of the country?
When I started 2-3 years ago I was scared, but when my debut track earned around 10 million views on Youtube I realized that people have accepted me. So from there onwards, I felt confident and then my songs and music were featured in big films. Now I believed that people have accepted me and they love me.
Who was your biggest support from family? Did you feel any opposition from family?
Yes, absolutely in Haryana, the family wants its ward to join the army or do something like this. My mother was very worried. In my initial days, I bore all the expenses for my first video but I was confident that I will succeed and when my song became a hit only then family started supporting. And now when my song is on 9XM, they feel elated.
What do you have to say about some double meaning words in rap by some fellow rap artists?
See as long as people are loving it and liking it then there should be no issue in it. According to me an artist will produce a tune which will be loved by the fans and audience and I believe people should get what they want, if they want these kinds of songs then there should be no restrictions, but yes if it's really dirty then I won't support it because then kids will learn that only. As long as double meanings, it's OK.
Where do you see yourself 10 years down the line? How do you see yourself inspiring youngsters?
After 10 years I see myself as an established international artist with fans and followers from around the world. And for youngsters, I want to say if you want to make your own name you should work differently from the league.
As you are already on the success path, what are your plans for working with Bollywood giants?
I have already made my Bollywood debut but if I get a chance I'll definitely work with them.