The Iranian-Indian singer talks about his new album
Hello, Ali. You were in Dubai the other month, weren’t you? What did you think? Dubai was great; they liked the music, the clubs were fantastic – it was a great city with great people. I’d call it a second home.
Did your combined Iranian and Indian heritage help you out here? Yeah – it’s always good to combine two cultures, and when you go the Middle East you see Indians, Italians, English people – you see everyone, so it’s a great market to hit. How would you describe your debut album, Ishqamaan? I wanted to create a different sound that anyone from anywhere could enjoy. If the melody is good and if they understand the composition, people will enjoy it; these things transcend language.
What’s the overall mood? It depends – in Ishqamaan I have different melodies: romantic, emotional, bhangra, Arabic… It’s not like it’s all one thing; it’s six songs with international appeal.
Six songs seems short for an album, though. It’s about quality, not quantity – I’d rather give six great songs than give people chaff, or get abuse from people, because you can have six great songs and one bad song and you’re finished.
So what’s next for you? We’re launching this album in London and then, after a month or two, we’re going to do Ishqamaan Two and move ahead and hit all the markets. Right now I’m looking at what people like and how they respond to my music. People are loving it, but I want to take it to another level where it’s like Ricky Martin or Shakira; all these famous singers started on the same level as me.
Ricky Martin? Crikey. Are you a Latino fan? I love Latino; it’s a very pure, romantic kind of music that I’m interested in, but I’ll mix it with other cultures to make it more interesting. Anyone can relate to my songs; they’re about love, emotions, humanity and fun: all the flavours I have, from A to B.