The popular American boy band Backstreet Boys is geared up to perform in India after 13 years as part of their Backstreet Boys DNA Tour 2023. Nick Carter, Howie Dorough, AJ McLean, Brian Littrell, and Kevin Richardson, the band’s five members, have arrived in Mumbai and were greeted in a delightful manner by the hotel staff.
Carter took to social media to share a video of the hotel staff dancing to a mashup of the band’s hit songs as a welcome gesture. He added the caption, “We had a wonderful surprise upon arriving at our hotel in Mumbai, India. The hotel staff put together a full-fledged Bollywood-style dance routine that incorporated all of our songs. I guess it’s true that we have fans all around the globe.”
Speaking of Bollywood, Hindi films have lured international music artists to record collaborative songs since the early 2000s. International singers, songwriters, rappers and percussionists have given us the tunes to many Bollywood thumkas. Curious? Here are ten artists who have lent their voices to iconic Hindi tracks over the years.
Calvin Cordozar Broadus Jr., widely recognised as Snoop Dogg, made a special appearance in Bollywood star Akshay Kumar’s movie Singh Is Kinng in 2008. He not only rapped for the film’s title song, but also appeared in the music video alongside Akshay. Following its release, the song became incredibly popular.
Kylie Minogue, the Australian singer and actress, was among the first global artists to collaborate with Bollywood. She showcased her singing and dancing skills in the song ‘I Wanna Chiggy Wiggy’ from the 2009 film Blue, which also starred Akshay Kumar among other prominent actors.
Shahrukh Khan, the Bollywood megastar, left no stone unturned to ensure the success of his ambitious 2011 project, Ra.One. The Senegalese-American singer, Akon, played a crucial role in the film’s popularity with his hit song ‘Chammak Challo,’ which became a club favorite across India. The track’s upbeat tempo and catchy lyrics made it an instant hit among fans and further cemented Akon’s popularity in the country.
The Thai-American pop sensation proved to be a natural fit for Bollywood with her impressive vocals and electrifying dance moves. Young’s unforgettable performance in the title song of the 2004 film Dhoom garnered widespread attention and became an instant hit among audiences. Despite not pursuing further Bollywood projects, Tata Young remains a beloved figure in the industry and is still affectionately referred to as the “Dhoom girl” by her admirers.
Natalie Di Luccio
Italian-Canadian singer Natalie Di Luccio has been affectionately dubbed Bollywood’s soprano due to her frequent collaborations with the Indian film industry. She made her Bollywood debut in 2010 with the film BandBaaja Baaraat, which starred Ranveer Singh and Anushka Sharma in lead roles. Since then, Di Luccio has lent her vocals to numerous Bollywood projects, including 10 more Indian films.
Renowned Indian composer and singer, A.R. Rahman, teamed up with the exceptionally talented Australian artist, Orianthi Panagaris, for the romantic drama Rockstar starring Ranbir Kapoor in 2011. Orianthi’s guitar mastery shone through in the track ‘Sadda Haq,’ which she strummed to perfection, earning her accolades from music lovers worldwide. The collaboration between the two gifted musicians was a huge success and is still fondly remembered by fans of the film and its music.
The 2011 Canadian film Breakaway, also known as Speedy Singh, was co-produced by Akshay Kumar and featured a special appearance by American rapper and actor, Christopher Brian Bridges, famously known as Ludacris.
The 2005 film Bluffmaster, starring Abhishek Bachchan and Priyanka Chopra, featured Iranian-Swedish singer Arash’s popular track ‘Boro Boro.’ The music video also included appearances by the singer, as well as Bachchan and supporting actor Riteish Deshmukh. The song’s unique blend of Iranian and Western musical elements made it a chartbuster and gained Arash a sizable fan base in India.
It may come as a surprise to some, but West Indian cricketer Dwayne Bravo is also a talented singer. He collaborated with Indian playback singer Ankit Tiwari for the song ‘Jager Bomb’ in the 2016 film Tum Bin 2. Despite their efforts, the movie failed to make an impact at the box office, and the song went relatively unnoticed. Nonetheless, Bravo’s foray into the Indian music industry was noteworthy and showcased his diverse talents beyond the cricket field.
In the 2016 action thriller film Shivaay, produced and starring Ajay Devgn, the title track featured British pop-rock band The Vamps. Devgn had invited the band to collaborate on the song to infuse it with an international flavor. While the film did not perform as expected at the box office, the title track featuring The Vamps gained popularity and received acclaim for its unique fusion of Western and Indian musical elements.