The very talented Brianna Supriyo is fearless in thoughts. Daughter of celebrated singer and Member Of Parliament Baabul Supriyo, this young mellifluous voice is confident and focussed to take big strides in the realm of music and entertainment.
She runs her Youtube channel and her Coke Studio video is liked and revered by music lovers. IWMBuzz media network ensures that we speak and discuss ideas with young talent who are a step away from flying high. In a freewheeling chat with us, Brianna speaks about her love for music, future plans, the nepotism debate, and much more.
To begin with, tell us about your first-ever memory of getting associated with music. Were you naturally inclined towards it or there was an influence coming from your father?
(smiles) Well, I would say it came extremely naturally to me. I still remember that during my childhood, whenever I used to see my father perform on stage, I would literally cry to be there. That’s who I was. I was about just 3 years old when I made up my mind that music is an integral part of my life. I still remember, I was at an award show sitting next to Hrithik Roshan and he had asked me whether I wanted to become an actor or a singer. Trust me, it didn’t take me even a whisker of a second to say a ‘singer’. Obviously, when you are a child, people don’t take you seriously much as it’s quite natural that with age, one’s interests change. It happened to me as well but music always dominated any other interest. And my parents have been so supportive. My father was never really… ‘Oh you are a daughter of a singer…so you have to be one.’ He gave me the complete freedom to pick what I wanted to for my life and it’s truly a blessing to have supportive parents like them. There were moments of self-doubt earlier but once I made up my mind, there really wasn’t any looking back to anything else but music.
Well said… so any genre of music that appeals to you the most as a creative artiste?
Well, I will be very honest when I say that I listen to all kinds of music. As far as Hindi music is concerned, I literally grew up hearing songs of the legendary Lata Mangeshkar & Kishore Kumar. Even today, if someone asks me to sing a Hindi song, I will invariably pick up an old melodious beauty of Kishore Kumar or Lata Mangeshkar. But as far as me as an artiste is concerned, I trained in classical music for about seven years and eventually, my personal taste and liking tilted towards western pop. I started taking lessons in Mumbai and I believe, it is something I want to incorporate in my music as well. Also, I really like the ‘Indie’ music scene. It is something that used to happen in the 90’s where people would come up with their music albums. My dad has an MTV award for Sochta Hoon song. Eventually, the Indie scene kind of drifted apart when the entire Bollywood culture came in but now, I guess it’s slowly returning.
(thinks) I love Taylor Swift as well. Her albums are amazing. Overall, sound production is a very important aspect according to me. If it’s made well and if it is pleasing to the ears, I don’t really think the genre matters much.
Your father is a celebrated artiste and you are also into music. So what’s the environment at home? Do you get to jam together?
(flashes her pearlies) Well, it used to happen when I was younger. Creativity catches up with anyone who enters our house. But now, due to Covid-19, things are a little different. It’s been six years since my father has moved to New Delhi after being actively involved in politics and due to Covid-19, it’s been about 6 months since I have met him in person, which is difficult as we are really close. But we did connect on video calls and I always ask him to sing a song for me, we sing together. My grandfather is above 80 years old and still he has this routine of singing every night after 10.30pm. He says his day doesn’t get over without singing. Sometimes, we add him on the call as well and we sing together, it is beautiful. My dad and I are each other’s best friends and critiques at the same time. I take his advice very seriously. At the end of the day, he’s someone who’s been here in the industry for so many years and when you want to follow the same path, that trust is very important.
Tell us a bit about your YouTube channel? How do you actually plan to grow and make it bigger?
Well, I actually had an entire plan in store which Covid-19 kind of ruined. But I took a break from YouTube for some time. If you read about YouTube algorithm, it’s more about the quantity than the quality sometimes whereas for me as an artiste, it was always very important to keep up the quality. I want to give out the kind of music which I would personally want to hear and not just put out something for the sake of it. I know it probably works for a lot of people but it’s not something I want to do and hence, I take YouTube very seriously as well. Also, I was doing my graduation and hence my attention was kind of divided. I didn’t want to give my entire attention to music, hence the break was justified. I will get back to it shortly. I think YouTube and Instagram have helped artistes immensely. I have started this new series on Instagram called ‘Supriyo Sundays’ where I just come in front of the mike and sing my heart out.
You are a daughter of a famous personality, does it scare you in terms of responsibilities or is it a blessing?
Well, I am really glad you brought this up because the ‘nepotism’ debate has been going on for some time now. As far as I am concerned, I take it both as a blessing as well as a challenge. Yes, there is a bit of pressure as there are many eyes on you already because you are some famous person’s son or daughter. But I also feel that ‘You can take the horse to the river but it has to drink the water on its own’. My dad can help me go to the river till a certain extent but I can drink the water only if I am talented and deserving. Because of my father, I have been fortunate enough to be at certain places and there are always some people who are looking in a questionable manner and probably feeling whether I deserve to be there or not. At the end of the day, I am extremely motivated to prove that whatever I am doing or will eventually do, it is because of what I deserve and not just because I am someone’s daughter. I am totally up for it.
Talking about nepotism, do you think it is more prevalent for actors rather than singers? Is it easier for an actor’s son or daughter to get his or her first movie compared to a singer’s son or daughter and his or her first major song?
Well, if you look at it that way, I feel it is kind of true. Acting at times is a lot about face value which really isn’t the same with music and singers. It is extremely difficult for a singer to prove his or her mettle especially at a time where with technology, almost anyone who cannot sing can still be termed as a ‘singer’ because technology has given you that scope now. So, it is all the way tougher for singers. Also, I feel for the longest time, singers have been called ‘playback singers’ which in a way signifies that the singer is kind of helping the actor to do what he or she is doing on-screen. So, the face value factor is there in acting unlike music and it is absolutely true.
Lastly, where do you see yourself five years down the line?
I think I am a little bit of a planner when it comes to that. I had plans but Covid-19 kind of played a bit of a spoilsport. But yes, 5 years down the line, I see myself completely being a part of the entertainment industry. Right now, I have taken baby steps and I am learning and experiencing the feel of it for example the Coke Studio song that I did earlier. In the next 5 years, I want to tour the world and do live shows because performing live on stage is a very important part of every musician who’s passionate about music. We want to see the crowd enjoy in front of us. Also, I want to take Indian music to the world. I also wish to put out English singles in the future, maybe a record label. Let’s see what happens. At the end of the day, it is all about being motivated and dedicated throughout to reach your goals. I hope I am up for the challenge. Fingers crossed (smiles)