Passion and Percussion - an interview with Srinivas, singer

Musician Srinivas shares his societal concerns with Marie Banu and Latha Suresh

Music invited us to Srinivas’s lounge. The kids were at home, and yet it was quiet. We sensed discipline all over the place. Srinivas, who had just returned from a recording session, stood in the balcony admiring the scenery. He welcomed us with his charming smile.

We have heard a lot about your social work. But why is there no media coverage? What inspires you to engage in charity?

No, it is not that. We actually don’t do as much social work as we can. Most of us are selfish and greedy. At least when we get opportunities we can be a good person. This is what everybody should be doing all the time. The world we see today is wrong and we are in the rat race. We do not have a choice. But you happen to be in this world which is materialistic.

If I can contribute in a small way, I will do it. And why media hype? Doing something good is a natural thing that people should do without any publicity rather than project it as doing something out of the way.

Is there a difference you feel when you sing for charities and when you sing for your regular music concerts?

I feel very good when I perform for charity.  There are people who exploit charity for personal gain. It is important to sift the fake and the genuine. So I do a concert for free only when I am sure that the people and the cause are genuine.

Which is the song that you like to sing in every music concert?

There are certain songs I want like to sing but am not sure if the audience want to hear them. Azhagae sugamma is one song I always like to sing. There are people who really like that song but a larger audience might not. Songs like Kaiyil midhakkum, Minsara poove and Ooh la la la, I have to sing whether they are my favourite or not.

Do you feel that songs would influence patriotism?

May be it can. ‘Vande Matram’ really inspired the youth. When you hear Rahman’s ‘Vande Mataram’ you really feel energised.

Which social causes are you passionate about?

Our world is full of issues. Ultimately we realise that we have also contributed to the problem. So, why not help to resolve the issue?

Education for the underprivileged is crucial for a country like India. We can save the world if we can educate the children now.

Religion has become a social issue! Religion which is supposed to be a saviour for mankind is turning against mankind today. I don’t think we should have religion at all. We should realise that all human beings are equal. Let us not say that I am a Hindu, or a Muslim or a Christian.

Your memorable achievements?

I think it is yet to come.

Do you intend to start your own charity in a few years from now?

I do charity in a small way and care more for my family and children and immediate circle. I hope I become a little more enlightened and start my own charity.

Does your family also get involved in your social work activities?

They do not have any objection in me doing charity. My wife and my daughters empathise with the causes I support, while they have their own causes that they are passionate about. I would like my children to be humane.

Your advice to social workers?

They are great and have an enviable attitude. Corporates, celebrities, businessmen, politicians and all of us should change their approach to society completely to make the world a better place to live in.