I want to be a pop artist like Beyonce: Dhvani Bhanushali

In an exclusive interview with Priyaanka Mathur, Bhanushali spoke about her journey from being a YouTube star to making her mark in Bollywood and how new media platforms are helping individual artists showcase and monetize their talent.


Having crossed 350 + million views  for her song 'Dilbar' and over 62 million views on YouTube with her first song featuring Punjabi Rock Icon Guru Randhawa, Dhvani Bhanushali (20) has lofty aims to conquer Bollywood now. The YouTube sensation is also experimenting with various genres to showcase her versatility and penchant for quality.

In an exclusive interview with Priyaanka Mathur, Bhanushali spoke about her journey from being a YouTube star to making her mark in Bollywood and how new media platforms are helping individual artists showcase and monetize their talent.

Edited Excerpts:

How has the journey been from being a YouTube star to making a mark in Bollywood?

I think you need to have something, a different kind of USP about yourself that you deliver in your renditions to make a mark and create an appeal to the audience. You need to put your best on these platforms, you never know when someone might like your texture and pick you, otherwise you might be a YouTube star and be one forever!

Has working with Guru Randhawa impacted your course as a singer?

The song 'Ishare tere' has helped me increase my numbers and followers on Instagram, Facebook and of course YouTube views. Initially I had 13,000 followers and now I have 40,000 followers on Instagram. I think the initial part of my journey has been really great and it's a great jump for me in terms of gaining popularity and increase in numbers from a marketing point of view.

Tell us about the Dilbar experience and the popularity you gained after the song?

I feel  privileged to be a part of the song 'Dilbar' that was so well accepted by the audience as it was the first video in India ever to cross 20 mil views in a day, the song made fastest 50 million and fastest 100 million in India and also it was the first Hindi film song to ever feature in billboards top 10 (ranked at no.3). I would like to thank Bhushan Kumarji for giving me an opportunity to sing for T-series, that is indeed a dream come true for me.

Do you feel training is important in today's music business?

 I took to music at the age of 15, it just happened that I met Himesh Reshammiya and sang in front of him and he suggested me to get formal vocal training. Eventually, I started learning western classical music in my initial years and now I'm undergoing Hindustani Classical Music training under Ankita Joshi. Even if you are really blessed with a great voice, some regular training is still needed that takes you to that finer edge, I believe!

You started off with soothing numbers and have eventually delivered more peppy songs lately, any reason for this experiment with new genres?

Well, I haven't thought much about pitching myself, it all just happened and I took assignments that came to me in the middle of my studies. I'm still finishing my last year of graduation along with which I am pursuing my degree in business management and entrepreneurship.
 How do you see YouTube as a platform and how does it help generate revenue for artists?

My song 'Gulabi Ankhe' Carpool Mashup with Sandesh Motwani got me some 55,000 subscribers and that's like a huge number. I haven't generated anything in terms of revenue from YouTube yet, because I cannot monetize on covers that I have done so far, since the rights are with the music labels or the artists who have sung the originals. But yes YouTube is good for original content.
 What do you think about using various marketing platforms optimally to create a wide appeal to showcase talent?

I think social media has a wider reach, on all these platforms Facebook, Instagram and YouTube, one can create content and upload. Although I feel 70% is still television and the various reality shows and others, that are showcasing artists to a greater audience.In our industry an artist is not paid initially and yes it's not been an easy journey for me either. You don't get paid for your assignments here and you are not expected to ask for it, unless you make a mark to get shows and earn a living as a musician. So initially one should try to seek opportunities, wherever you get to perform and showcase your talent. Once you get popular eventually a market builds up and so does the revenue. I think that's how the creative process works. One needs to grab opportunities and it all requires perseverance and a vision to survive long term.
 Where do you see yourself five years from now?

 I'm also into writing my own song lyrics and I want to grow and give my music out there and I want to be a pop artist like Beyonce.

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Dhvani Bhanushali T Series Guru Randhawa

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