Chennai-based Tamil rapper Adhi Wattabottles casually answered a call one morning but soon his eyes dilated in disbelief and his hands began to tremble. On the other side was a music director looking for fresh talent to sing a track for the animated film Smurfs 2. A volley of questions came rushing into his mind,but Wattabottles could hardly mumble a word or two in the entire conversation. There was no way he was going to turn down the offer but he had to call back just to be sure that he had heard it right.
Wattabottles,who founded the band called HipHop Tamizha in 2010,became a viral sensation on social networking sites when he came out with a music video titled Club le Mabbu le. Filling a void in hip hop Tamil music,the high-energy video hit over two million views in the first week. The frenzy not only drew fans by the thousands in south India,but also brought him to the notice of talent scouts at Sony Music who were looking for a new voice for Smurfs 2.
In the general scheme of things,an artiste would go from Tollywood to Bollywood and possibly some day to Hollywood. But,I was offered the big leap straight to Hollywood. I was at the studio,in the middle of recording my debut album with music producer Jeeva Beatz,when the call came. I was dumbstruck, says Wattabottles,adding that he had to go to Mumbai the very next day with a song in mind.
He shares that the song replaces Britney Spears Oh La La track in the version of the film to be released in India. No specific theme was given,so I could let my creativity take over. Beatz and I got jamming and came up with a feel-good song within hours of the phone call, he says.
When he performed a rough draft of the song at the Sony Music studio in Mumbai,it was much appreciated. He fine tuned the melodies that night and got ready to record the song along with the participants of Indian Idol Junior,the next morning. The video has the Smurf characters dancing and having fun,with the children and me rapping in Tamil. Pinky Poonawalla (a lyricist) helped me translate the chorus into Hindi. The song talks about how everyone is different,just like the characters in the film,but nonetheless,they are all equally important, describes the 23-year old,who is also a fan of the clumsy smurf.
Being an independent artiste,Wattabottles points out,gives him the freedom to make the kind of music that brings him creative satisfaction. Having recently completed his MBA,he plans to venture into singing for Tamil films and is tight-lipped about an acting assignment that he has bagged as well.