The song brings together a unique blend of Rajasthani folk music and indo-western melodies. Expressed in Salim-Sulaiman’s signature style, the song weaves layers of traditional folk instrumentation with euphoric electronic production.
The music video, shot in Jaisalmer and Mumbai, is based on the true story of Manganiyar singer, Sattar Khan — a young singer, who crossed paths with Salim-Sulaiman and toured around the world with them.
Balaam Ji releases on March 2, 2018 on Apple Music, where it will be available as part of the Apple Music Hear It Here. First. program.
Our short conversation with the duo about the song:
1. Idea behind the song
We first heard this song in the voice of Sattar Khan, who was an Indian idol contestant and was just 15 years old. We later heard it again in his voice 7 years later at a mehfil in Udaipur. It was a reunion of sorts for us and at that very moment we decided to make Sattar a part of our live concert tours. This song is a celebration of colour and reunion and also fortifying our efforts to promote folk music and indigenous artists through our music.
2. This being your first Holi release, is there a specific reason why you want to release it on this day?
We have done a lot of songs with a Sufi/devotional touch to it. This time we wanted to do something different. Festivals are a great way to bring us together and the connect with festivals and music is unique and deep. We have always wanted to do a vibrant song for Holi and this was the perfect opportunity for us.
3. Any specific reason why you chose Jaisalmer as the shooting spot?
I think Jaisalmer captures the essence of Rajasthan, where this song originates from. It has the beauty of the dessert and also sattar comes from a town not very far away. To be able to capture an artist in his own surroundings was the original thought behind shooting the music video in Jaisalmer
4. Tell us your best memories from the making of the song
We had a lot of fun shooting the video. We actually created the atmosphere of Holi and played Holi with the local people. They play Holi in a very traditional way with colours and water. I think that memory will always stay with us.
5. What challenges did you face while making the song?
I think when you have lived a song for so much time it’s not that hard to create what you have imagined the song to be. The challenge is to make a traditional song palatable and clutter breaking from what is currently playing and create a niche for itself.
6. 3 reasons why one must watch this video
The video is a true story of Sattar Khan from our eyes and is vibrant yet has a beautiful story of love, respect and emotion, all weaved together against the backdrop of Holi in Rajasthan.
8. Your message to our readers
We hope that all our fans enjoy this video and have a wonderful and safe Holi.
Images courtesy: Dhiren Garg