Guru Randhawa: The Punjabi Popstar

Making us hit the dance floor and shake a leg on every song he’s sung, Guru Randhawa has created a platform for himself in the music industry. He expresses his gratitude towards his fans, shares his experience working with numerous Bollywood celebrities, and much more while in conversation with Just Urbane. 

Words Amisha Shirgave

When one follows their passion and pours their heart and soul into it, they can achieve anything and everything they want to. Our February coverstar Guru Randhawa not only believes in the same mantra but has also had a great journey following the mantra. Guru has established a strong foothold in the Punjabi music industry, but his passion for music started at the ripe age of seven, and ascending the ladder of success at the age of 21. Over the years he has given many super hit songs and some have even crossed the ‘most viewed song’ record on YouTube. “I was born in Gurdaspur, Punjab and I had a decent upbringing. I realised my passion for music at a very young age as I started writing songs in my school days. I decided to pursue my dream and my family was very supportive of me. I used to perform as a singer at small gatherings, events, and parties in my hometown. I had to face a few failures after I moved to Delhi for my higher education. Again, with the help of family I was able to overcome all of it and I kept moving on,” said Guru while talking about his early days. A few years later, Guru met an artiste named Arjun in UK and they released a music video together. “I remember saving up some money to shoot the music video and it meant so much to me which is why it holds a special place in my heart,” said Guru. His next project was with singer/rapper Bohemia, one of Guru’s well-wishers. Together they released ‘Patola’ and during that time, he came across T-Series honcho, Bhushan Kumar and the rest as Guru says is history. 

This isn’t the first time when Guru has been on Urbane’s cover though. Yes, he was our coverstar back in February 2020 too. A lot of things have changed since then. When asked about his achievements during these two years he said, “I am sure you will agree with me on the fact that our lives have changed since the pandemic hit. Adapting to the new norms was a challenge but as they say ‘the show must go on’, I did not stop writing songs, composing them, and recording. During the pandemic, I became conscious about my fitness. I dropped 15 kgs for my transformation so I think the lockdown turned out to be pretty fruitful for me.” Later that year, Guru worked with renowned actresses such as Mrunal Thakur and Nora Fatehi for the songs ‘Aise Na Chhoro’ and ‘Dance Meri Rani’. He introduced Afro Beat in the song ‘Dance Meri Rani’ and was showered with love and appreciation. The pop star also revealed that he has recently signed his Bollywood debut movie with Endemol India. He says that the movie is based on the life journey of musicians and that he is also working on the music for the movie. He also revealed that he is working on a new album that will be out soon. 

When we look up to self-made personalities like Guru and the path they have paved for themselves, we often wonder what must have inspired them or who must have been their mentor? Guru says that he takes his inspiration from everyday life. “We are surrounded by people who have done great work in their respective fields. I also take my inspiration from many musicians and actors. It was an absolute honour to have worked with some of the greatest personalities in Bollywood such as Shah Rukh Khan sir, Akshay Kumar sir, and Irrfan Khan sir. Irrfan Khan sir inspired me with his grounded personality and his humbleness. He will always be remembered for his work and the legacy he has left behind. I will forever be a fan of his movies. In fact, he was the one who inspired me to represent my music on a global platform.” Guru also said that he would never on earth forget to mention his loving fans who have been his greatest inspiration.
Guru has had the opportunity to work with numerous Bollywood celebrities. Talking about his equation with them, he says, “I have been fortunate enough to have worked with talented actresses such as Nushrat Bharucha, Nora Fatehi, and, Mrunal Thakur for my music videos. I had a great experience working with them and I did learn some acting during the time we were working together for the music video which required playing different roles.” When asked whom did he enjoy working with and if he had any special experience to share, he said, “I can't select a particular co-artiste as they bring their unique style and approach towards acting, so my experience with each one of them was different and memorable. But the moment that’s going to stay with me for a long time is when Mrunal Thakur and I were shooting for ‘Aise na Chhoro’ at a picturesque location in Kashmir. The temperature had dropped down to minus 10 degrees. It was freezing and we had to shoot a snow fight and make it look fun. As mesmerising as it looked, it was challenging too.”

In my opinion, the music industry has grown too versatile over the past decade. As a listener, I feel that most of the songs these days are made with the sole purpose of making them a trend on Instagram reels. Since Guru has seen it all a bit closely and is a part of the industry for years now, he has a different perspective. “I have seen many music artists’ uplifting their craft and in recent years we have witnessed some of the Bollywood songs rule the global charts. I think music artists are carrying a more open mind and are being more creative towards adapting new skills to produce great music. As far as Instagram reels is concerned, I look at it as a digital medium to directly connect with the audience and get their instant reactions. I believe if a song has the ability to connect with the audience, it will find its destiny, with or without Instagram.”
Nora and Guru make a good on-screen pair. Don’t you agree? With the singing and music Guru has to offer and with the sexy dance moves Nora showcases, their songs blow our minds off. Their recent song ‘Dance Meri Rani’ is a global hit. “My experience of working with Nora on both music videos has been amazing. She is a dear friend and she brings a very friendly environment to work. Nora is extremely talented and a dedicated artist when it comes to working. It’s been my pleasure to have worked on two hit songs with her. ‘Dance Meri Rani’ has been a visual treat right from its location, direction to cinematography. Our team pulled off this song with great efforts amidst all the obstacles and I’m glad for that,” said Guru. He has worked with the international artiste and rapper Pitbull as well. He expressed his gratitude and his surreal experience working with the international singer. He said that it was like a dream come true as he has grown up listening to Pitbull’s songs. When asked if he wishes to collaborate with another international artiste he said, he would love to work with Bruno Mars and Justin Bieber as he is a great admirer of their work. 

From the very beginning, we have seen the Punjabi pop star being as stylish as he can be and he pulls off everything he wears. He has a good taste in fashion and when asked about his definition of fashion he said that for him fashion is comfort. All he wants is for his style to make him feel comfortable, sleek and casual. “When you have comfort in your outfit, it gives you the confidence to take over the world. If you ask me about my go-to outfits, I’ll always choose T-shirts, shoes, shades, and jackets.” He feels blessed to have fans and admirers who care about him and pay attention to such little details of his life. They have always been supportive of his work. As far as trolls are concerned, Guru says, “I have always welcomed healthy criticism. I’ve been someone who likes to concentrate on the positives of life and not the other way.”
As we concluded our interesting chat, I asked Guru to share some words of wisdom as a music icon. “Always believe in your dream and your skill and work towards it regardless of the barriers. If you are true to yourself, you will achieve everything you dream of. And never forget that there are no shortcuts to hard work,” said Guru. And we cannot agree more!