he came to Bollywood with dreams of making it big in playback singing,
many had felt that he could fill the void created by Md Rafi’s death.
Singer Sonu Niigaam’s tryst with Rafi takes a new turn this week. Sonu,
who considers Rafi to be one of his biggest inspirations, is proving
This week, Sonu will start recording
18 of the legend’s evergreen hits in Mumbai with the City of Birmingham
Symphony Orchestra. “This is probably one of the most rewarding moments
of my career as a singer,” says Sonu.
The orchestra, which had long been
planning to do an album of Rafi’s songs and was looking for the right
voice, zeroed in on Sonu last month. The album has been titled Rafi
Resurrected and will be released in July. The album is the brainchild
of the orchestra’s composer-arranger Tim Pottier, who listened to
Rafi’s songs for over a year. Pottier then did extensive research
before picking 18 songs.
“I didn’t have any idea that the offer
would come to me. Saregama had been saying that they were looking for a
dream project for me and last month they offered this. It’s really a
dream come true,” says Sonu who feels popularising Rafi’s songs in the
west is a big responsibility.