Geetika Kohli Amla
One of the renowned performers of Jammu & Kashmir, Anmol Amla, has been entertaining with his enchanting voice and guitar for over 20 years. A Pandit Shiv Kumar Sharma awardee, his contribution in the field of music range from a plethora of live band performances to playback singing and composing. His first Dogri album, Mitthiyaan Parchhaiyaan, a groundbreaking fusion work, was recently released at Amar Mahal, Jammu by Dr. Karan Singh. Anmol was also honoured by an opportunity to perform these Dogri numbers at India International Centre, New Delhi.
Anmol’s mother, Mira Amla, had acquainted him with Dogri folk songs when he was young. Simple and profound as they are, these songs left an indelible impression on his mind, and he resolved to promote the music in his work. Also, having noticed that the youth no longer connects to the language, and that our heritage is somewhere losing its sheen in the modern times, Anmol was more than convinced that his first album ought to be a tribute and in Dogri.
Anmol envisioned the album to contain a seamless fusion of our folk tunes as well as contemporary sounds. The rockstar, while retaining the soul in these songs, strived to adapt the music to suit the taste of youth around the globe. Mitthiyaan Parchhaiyaan consists of four songs, ‘Mere Hikdu’, Kanak Mandi Da Tanga’, ‘Banku Deya Chachua’ and ‘Dhaaren Dhoodaan Paiyaan’. Each number is a different flavour and highlights Anmol’s versatility. ‘Banku Deya Chachua’ unfolds a surprise in the album – Anmol presents it the melancholy voice of a woman whose husband has been away at work (contrary to the popular fun version). ‘Kanak Mandi Da Tanga’, a flawless orchestration with Spanish undertones, echoes both flirtatiousness and innocence.
Shubdeep Singh, well known composer from the state, joined hands with him, after understanding his vision and came up with the breathtaking expression that stands out in each song. Anmol accredits his mother for evincing his interest in the language, and his father, Ashok Amla, for supporting his efforts throughout. He exclaims, “Had it not been for Dr. Karan Singh’s magnanimity, the album would not mean as much to the masses, as it does today.”
Apart from his onstage adventures, Anmol has had several offstage stints including: production management with Doordarshan, ZEE TV Saregamapa open auditions, assignments with Times Group, coordination of international events for ICCR, three – day music workshop with Trinity College of Music, London, organising of fest auditions for IIT Kanpur and first – time participation of J & K students at IIT, and a number of commercial shows and brand promotion activities, the best being his gig at BITS Pilani, Goa. He is the director of Heritage Strings – School of Rock, a music institution in its twelfth year that holds the examination centre (Rock and Pop) for Trinity College, London. Now referred to as ‘The Father of Dogri Rock’, the future appears bright for this star that has already risen and the day is not far when this son of our soil will bring us laurels from every nook and corner in the world.
Geetika Kohli Amla