The singer that recreated ‘Laila Main Laila’ magic with her charismatic voice – The Story of Pawni Pandey
20th July 1992
Sri Ganganagar, Rajasthan
Proudly says ‘imd1’ for
Having an inborn talent and soaring heights with that talent is nothing like but dream come true. Belonging to a family of music enthusiasts, this humming bird never neglected her inherent talent and worked hard her way to be counted as the rising singing star of today. Born in Sri Ganganagar, Rajasthan and brought up in Mumbai to pursue her dreams, her family has been more than supportive in her achievement. From reality show Sa Re Ga Ma Pa L’il Champs to singing the very famous spiraling rehashed track ‘Laila Mein Laila’ from the film ‘Raees’ and with many more songs in the pipeline; Pawni Pandey has proved that she has the versatile singing ability. An easy going girl who exudes a fresh breeze of vibrant singing!! She is now joined the bandwagon of reality show Sa Re Ga Ma Pa L’il Champs 2017; the only difference then and now is, earlier she was one of the contestants and now she is among the jury.
Pawni’s journey that began with being a finalist in a singing competition has made the table turn and won millions of hearts with her singing prowess.
Team imd1 had a chat with him a few days ago, read on to know her further!
We are really keen to know, how did your journey begin?
Music runs in our family. My parents are musically inclined and super talented. Though they have never sung professionally!! My mother is a very good singer and had taken part in singing competitions at state level. My dad was known as a Rock star due to his incredible performance & stage presence. Singing is present in our genes. I have learnt vocal from my mother. When I am on stage one can see a different me, and the credit goes to my dad. I used to hum tunes before even I started talking. I was nurtured to express myself musically. Since childhood music was within me. In family get together too, we sing and play different instruments. We are an amazing set of musicians in the family.
Quote for Life
“Success is not Final, Failure is not Fatal, it is a Courage to continue that Counts.”
Michael Jackson, Aamir Khan, A.R. Rahman & Sachin Tendulkar
Sunidhi Chauhan, Beyonce & Shakira
Food I Love
Food I Hate
Karela (Bitter gourd)
Had I not been Singer then…
In Defense - Air Force Pilot
Like Vacations at
Leh Ladakh, North East
Favorite Past time
Go on short road trips or watch documentary movies
‘Bade Bade Deshon Mein Aisi Chotti Chotti Baatein Hoti Rehti Hai’ from movie DDLG
F.R.I.E.N.D.S & Mahabharata
Amitabh Bachchan, Shah Rukh Khan, Hrithik Roshan, Rekha & Deepika Padukone
What has been your success mantra?
It’s still a long journey and oodles to be achieved. I have just started. But I am very patient and persistent. I do not leave things mid-way and work relentlessly towards it.
What were the hardships & hurdles you encountered and how did you overcome them?
In my genre there is lot of competition. This industry is flooded with talented new singers. Even music directors & music companies have various options available. Many a times my work was redone by senior singers. But I was always optimistic. New singers want instant success and recognition. In that way I am very patient. I give my best in every recording irrespective of the result.
Success is incomplete without its share of failures. How should one overcome them to move on?
There hasn’t been failure as such but at times I have felt truncated. I was doing my graduation when my friends & co-stars were doing well. Assignments came but never materialized. I couldn’t see any silver lining. Next I got associated with a big banner but again the project shelved. That pinched me as I expected that song to do really well. I was thwarted but then I moved on the next day with my routine and gave a new start.
Do you think Singing and its learning’s can be helpful in life even if one does not want to consider it as a career goal?
Learning is important in every field and gives life a new perspective. I have been learning music incessantly to refine my singing. I even did acting course for 6 months as that was one of my hobbies. It helped me to sing better as I could put myself into the character and learned how to project emotions in a beautiful way. There are some precious moments in everyone’s life which one must cherish and mould it in a right way. So, when I sing, I try to bring out the dynamics of singing and place the words in the best way possible to make it striking. Even if someone doesn’t want to make a career in singing, it’s a stress buster. Music is an incredible part of everyone’s life. An individual sing’s when alone and it gets easy to ward off your worries.
Who has been your influencer in your journey so far?
My parents have influenced me from day one. My entire family is in Jaipur. I was 10yrs old when I put forward my dreams in front of them. My dad winded up his business and shifted to Mumbai. I am interminably grateful to them. Professionally I am inspired by all those singers who are today on the top due to their hard work without any support.
Which was “that” moment when you considered yourself as “I am the 1”?
When I perform live on stage, the cheers from the crowd motivates me and makes me believe imd1.
Is your success backed by a formal training?
Initially, I was trained by my mother. I learnt some amazing aspects of singing from her. My formal training started when we relocated to Mumbai. During my singing journey I have taken lessons from some remarkable singers. Currently I am training under Ravi Jhule sir for classical music.
Could you reflect on the importance of systematic training in Singing?
To attain vocal mastery, systematic training is pivotal. Step by step training forms a strong backbone in success ladder for singers. There are few phenomenal singers who are god gifted and apparently never had any training. But I feel one needs to get polished to come out shining from an amateur singing. Get trained by a good guru who can teach you the basics of whichever music you want to learn. Understanding the dynamics and elements of what path you choose is important. Formal training teaches methodologies & techniques to find a way out when you are stuck in implementation phase. Last but not the least comes your self-training to practice and flourish further.
Are there any prerequisites like age, fitness or a mindset required to pursue Singing?
If you start from the age 7-8 years, it gives one more time to identify the talent and work on it. The child should have the dedication & discipline to make a progressive career.
How can one select an ideal ‘Guru’ for getting formal coaching?
Getting a right guru is matter of destiny and correct timing. One needs to understand the guru & his teachings, develop rapport with the guru and whether you are getting the required training. The ideologies of both Guru & Shishya should match.
What according to you, can be a scope of improvement in training for Singing in India?
We should encourage Indian classical music as that is the foundation of our music industry. Singers should have basic training in traditional singing to make their vocals strong & effective.
Your piece of advice to parents and new generation especially when some people are skeptical about career in extra curriculum.
Parents should encourage their children to pursue what they want. If the kids are talented, rather than worrying how they will earn money out of the career, support them in their present. There are many well educated people who are jobless and doing nothing. No career guarantees success.
How can one identify this talent in the family and encourage it?
Rather than being indecisive over a profession, one has to be inclined towards a particular passion and be dedicated completely towards it. Parents have to be aware of what your child likes. One needs to identify the talent within them and should be willing to work on it anytime of the day.
One thing which you feel you want to change from the past while you walk down memory lane…
It’s been a great journey with amazing set of supporters and family around.