"Indian music consumption is still dominated"
Hip-hop artist MC Altaf has stated that Indian music consumption is still dominated by Bollywood.
MC Altaf rose to fame after appearing in Gully Boy and while the film made hip-hop a bit more mainstream in India, he feels it is still too soon to say whether the genre has become widely accepted.
He explained: “I feel pop and Bollywood music has always overshadowed hip-hop, which has largely been an underrated genre.
“First it was imitation rap which was replaced by Desi hip-hop, then gully hip-hop and I hope there comes a time when hip-hop doesn’t need any such sub-genres and all Indian hip-hop is considered as mainstream.”
He added that for the genre to be more accepted, “labels and promoters to believe in the genre and that rap and hip-hop artistes can command the same influence, respect and loyalty as commercial artists”.
In most cases, there has been a need for Bollywood film music to help push other genres.
MC Altaf admitted that sometimes you need that one big banner film or actor in order to endorse a product or service in India for it to gain recognition.
He continued: “Sadly, Indian music consumption is still dominated by Bollywood.
“Punjabi artistes were never popular till they began signing film deals and had well-known actors endorsing their art.
“I guess it’s the same logic.”
MC Altaf recently launched his new track ‘Likha Maine’ and said the song is inspired by his reality and what surrounds him on a daily basis.
He also has big dreams for hip-hop in India.
“I want the next Eminem, Jay-Z, Cardi B, Nicki Minaj and Drake coming out of India!”
On whether there are enough people to back up Indian hip-hop talent, MC Altaf said:
“There are lots of upcoming artistes who aren’t yet exposed to large audiences.
“To keep the momentum, we’ll have to support new talented artistes who have the potential to bring a breath of fresh air.”
He also believes that digital platforms should start documenting more about India’s hip-hop journey in order to create awareness.
MC Altaf added: “It’ll also encourage the artistes.
“Hip-hop is not limited to writing about struggle, gully life or women and vices but it’s far beyond, which our listeners will take time to understand.”