Walks on the terrace and long conversations with his famous dad Harbhajan Mann, singer Avkash Mann is trying his best to stay positive through the general atmosphere of gloom and doom amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Avkash’s new track Jatt Di Star is an uplifting, fun number. The singer believes it can bring a stroke of positivity, which sure is the need of today.
How’s been the Jatt Di Star journey?
Shot just before the lockdown, it has this optimistic, positive vibe about telling one’s significant other that he/she is the star. Back then, we had no idea that something like this was to happen. This track is so relatable in the sense so many people are now ‘stars’ —essential workers, doctors, nurses and the armed forces. This one is to spread happiness among people, who are significant in our lives.
Release in the lockdown, how does it feel?
It’s a little tough. You want to play the song, meet people. Nevertheless, it’s also a different experience. One can look back to 2020 and say that we have seen time when we released a song from home too.
What’s your lockdown routine like?
My lockdown routine changes day to day. Initially, I binged on the Netflix series, when I ran out of it, I picked up books. By then, the song was getting ready for release, so lots of back and forth on that one. The lockdown has given me an opportunity to be with my dad. After a long time I am spending 2-3 months with dad in a row. He travels due to his shows and I live in Mumbai. Now that we are together in Chandigarh, we take walks on the terrace and have long conversations, which is really great.
What keeps you positive in the time of the pandemic?
There is this inherent fear. I do worry about dad and mom and our older relatives. So many people have lost their lives in America and Europe due to COVID-19. Even in India the cases are rising. But one cannot dwell too much on that. For, this is not something one can control. I am doing whatever little I can do—maintaining social distancing, hygiene and most importantly, keeping positive.
Who would you like to visit once the lockdown is over?
I would love to see my family in Canada. Unfortunately my mom, brother and sister are in Vancouver and dad and I are here. Though we Facetime and all, but it’s not the same.
What’s been keeping you busy?
I started with my favourite show, The Sopranos, all over again. And then different genres—documentaries on World Wars and stuff like Tiger King. Documentaries have a way of catching attention, it’s like one is accessing a piece of real life and our shared history.
Are you using the time to learn something new?
I have been learning Spanish. When I was in high school, I went to Cuba and fell in love with the country, its people and culture. I hoped that someday I could go back and do a project there. I am grateful to VYRL Original that made that dream come true. While shooting there, I faced language barrier. They speak Spanish. Now I am learning it.
What is the most prominent Punjabi trait in you?
I am a true blue Punjabi. If I had to choose one, probably the warmth of Punjabis is my most prominent trait. I am very loving towards people. I see the best in them. I realised that staying with my non-Indian friends. They say ‘you are so good to others’, I say, that’s Punjabi for you.
A word of hope for Punjab...
We are very resilient people, we will bounce back. It would take some time before life gets back to normal. But hopefully we would have learnt our lessons by then...be out of the material rat race. I hope we will slow down, appreciate, enjoy all that we have, and take care of the environment, and one another!
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