Rajeshwar Singh ‘Raju’
“If one wants to excel in any field, one has to put in best of efforts with all creative innovations and that is possible only after getting refined by the experts of the field and continuous rehearsals and practice. When you step on stage to perform, it’s only your sheer talent that speaks about your potential. The opportunities that come in the way have to be grabbed to full extent but no compromise should be made with whatever art form you have. If you wish to establish yourself at an international level then you should have the confidence to present your art with all creativity as the opportunities never come back the same way.”
These are the words of Jitender Singh, an eminent vocalist from the temple city, Jammu who has brought laurels not only for the Jammuties but for the entire state by proving his worth as Ghazal, Bhajan and Sufi singer of India. Initially, he sought inspiration from his father Rajinder Singh, who himself was a good classical singer. When father realized about the passion of Jitender for music, he decided to impart him training at professional level. Therefore R.A. Daskkar, an eminent artist hailing from Maharashtra, who ran Nutan Sangeet Vidalya at Exchange Road, Jammu became his first Guru.
Meantime, he completed his graduation from Science College Jammu and sought admission in Law Department at University of Jammu. During his visits to outside state in connection with musical performances at Youth Festivals of University, he realized that he will have to come out of Jammu for getting advanced training in vocal and thus Delhi became his destination. He had full support from his parents to pursue his career as a vocalist and thereafter he never looked back.
In Delhi, Jitender’s voice was modulated to traverse the octave of Khayal by Pandit Mani Prasad of Kirana Gharana, a prominent name in the field of music.
It’s a fact that influence of different Gharanas and maestros has helped Jitender to evolve a style of his own that is unique.
His exceptional voice, noted for its power, range and sensitivity has made him a versatile singer. He has rendered voice to so many music albums that have been released by different Music Companies.
It is pertinent to add here that he has been a Top Grade Ghazal artist from All India Radio, which is a rare achievement as only a few have reached to that level.
His powerful voice has been used for Radio Commercials as well and he has sung more than 500 Jingles for different national and international Brands like 502 Pataka tea, Priya Gold biscuits, Vishal Mega Mart, Narpa Masale, Tops Jams, Airtel, Idea, Vodafone, Nescafe, Vatika, Big Babol, Ruby Oil, Dabur, Meswak, Dil baag Paan Masale, Nokia, LG, Delhi Metro, goodyear, Mr Muscle, Jeevan Jod, Odonil etc. and has also given his voice for about 200 caller tunes for Airtel and Vodafone. . As a singer he has also given voice for so many Ballets like Ghalib, chaitanya Mahaprabhu, Meera, Tulsidad, Prithviraj Chauhan, Navras, Krishnayan, Yugantar, Nrityom, Chandalika, Sanjeevani, Nav Chetna, Himachal A ballet for Govt of Himachal, Kumar Sambhav, Meera for Anila Sinha Dance Academy, Chicaco, USA etc and plays like Rumi-Unveil the Sun, Mahabhoj, Mahim junction and many others.
His tremendous work in the field of music has been widely recognized by different Governmental and Non- Governmental Organizations by honouring him on different occasions. He has performed not only throughout India but has enamored the audience with his captivating voice in different countries too like United States of America, United Kingdom, Mauritius, Oman, Singapore, Germany , Sweden, Spain, Italy etc.
It needs to be added here that although he sings Bhajans and Sufi songs with all ease but he has gained immense popularity in music arena as a Ghazal singer and is inspired by greats of Ghazal singing like Jagjeet Singh and Mehdi Hassan. He feels that his background as the classical singer helps him to sing Ghazals in a unique style that is appreciated by the audience too. It’s his passion as well.
He, being a very soft spoken feels proud of his roots and loves his city that has produced artists of not only national fame but internationally acclaimed legends like Ustad Allah Rakha and Pt. Shiv Kumar Sharma. He admits that music field demands sacrifice and one who is ready to go for it, he or she should never think twice to devote all time to flourish in this particular art form. But for that the dedication level has to be very high.
At the same time, he shows his concern that maximum of the students seeking training in vocal or even in other art form have only one point agenda of getting job only and ironically, they do end up with opting as a music teacher in schools.
Financial Security might be a problem but it drags them from their initial goal of achieving something worthwhile in life by excelling in particular art form which is possible only when the inclination is to concentrate on the target like fish eye and achieve same.
Let us hope that the established names like Jitender Singh will inspire the youths aspiring to become singer and they will follow a path that will lead them towards their actual dream destination. Rest depends on their talent and their dedication.