Singer Tulsi Kumar, who is the daughter of late music mogul Gulshan Kumar, is unfazed by criticism that she often receives online for having it relatively easy in her career than other artistes with no godfather in the industry. Tulsi says that it has taken her over 15 years to establish her identity outside of her family's legacy, and she continues to work hard to consistently achieve that.
"I have really cut all the negativity out of my life. I believe that I believe in my work speaking for itself rather than me going out and giving statements. I have always maintained that I have taken the slow and steady route. People who know my journey would know, 'It took her 15 years to reach where she is today.' Tulsi Kumar is not an overnight success story. I have waited for good songs to come to me. And, I have only got the songs that I have been called for. So, now I don't think any criticism or anything at all bothers me," the singer tells us.
Tulsi, whose discography includes hit songs like Humko Deewana Kar Gaye, Hum Mar Jayenge, Soch Na Sake, Tera Ban Jaunga and O Saki Saki, says her late father has been the root of her drive and inspiration to become a singer.
"My only goal in life is to make my father proud. My father came with nothing, no background in this industry. He made it on his own in the music field. And nobody in my family sings other than me, even though they all have an amazing ear for music. So even I have made it on my own. We are all carrying our father's legacy forward-- whether it's me, Bhushan (Kumar), or my sister Khushali. We have all been taught how you have to do everything single-handedly and nothing comes to you easy.
"For me, the biggest setback of my life that I can never forget was losing my father at the age of 11. And, I think my entire family has been so grounded and passionate about their work because of the way we have seen our father do it on his own. The rest is, my work is out there, and everybody has seen it. Bolne wale bahut kuch bolte hain, but I have stopped paying heed to that because there's no point wasting your time in these things," Tulsi adds.
Tulsi says being from a family with a musical legacy doesn't entirely insulate her from the infamous practices that take place in the music industry.
"A lot of times things have happened and I have recorded so many songs which have been overdubbed by other singers. I think it's perfectly okay. I have myself sung a lot of tracks that have sometimes not been approved and it's been a learning experience for me. Singing every track that has not been approved has taught me so much. I don't think there's any harm if your voice is not going for any song. I know a lot of people would think that it wouldn't happen to Tulsi Kumar but it happens to everyone and I'm just like any other artiste.
"It has taken me over 15 years to get to the place that I am in. I have really worked hard. I have got a lot of love also. But yes, when you come from a certain background, people have expectations from you. It's a little burdening for the artiste but I have taken it all in my stride. And, in the end, I have proved to my audiences with the kind of songs I've done. At the end of the day if your songs are working then you are in the industry, and if they are not working then nobody would want to work with you."
The singer further says that she would rather prefer to call the ups and downs of her musical career "a journey" than a struggle.
She says, "The word struggle is being misused a lot nowadays. I have learned so much in the past 14 years of my journey. I have failed sometimes, I have succeeded many a time. I have earned my love and appreciation from the audiences through my songs. It's been a journey of ups and downs for me. So, I would rather sum it up like this than any other term."
Tulsi recently collaborated with Armaan Malik and Amaal Mallik for their new music video Zara Thehro, which was shot during the lockdown. Talking about the same, she says, "Amaal and I have worked closely on several tracks before-- whether it's Soch Na Sake, Saiyaan Superstar, or Tere Bin Nahi Laage. Zara Thehro has a beautiful melody and a very soothing touch. So I think it was the perfect time to have a song like this out which kind of connects you to your loved one."