A boy band comprising for four good-looking men, you’d expect a bunch of spoiled brats who have gotten too used to female attention, but SANAM boys (Sanam Puri, Samar Puri, Venky S and Keshav Dhanraj) are unlike others. Ask these boys about giving in to temptation, given the number of their female fans, and they collectively insist, “Oh we’d like to say never. Never say never.” On the contrary, one of the four gentlemen, Venky, sums their advice on how to impress women is, “Always listen to the women in your life, understand their sentiments, be sensitive to their needs, wants and aspirations and improvise accordingly!”
MH Team: How did the four of you come together?
Keshav Dhanraj: We are friends first. Samar, Sanam, and Venky were part of their school band in Indian School at Muscat. I met Venky through the college rock scene in India and I formed a band (called ‘The Previous Band’) with him in Chennai. I moved to Mumbai in 2010 to work for a music distribution company - that’s when he’d connected me with Samar and Sanam, who had also moved to Mumbai to pursue a career in music. We hit it off at my garage in Colaba, worked on original compositions, played cricket and hit it off well. Our first gig was at a music contest which we won and Venky joined us in the finals. It’s been no looking back since then.
What are the challenges one faces before finding their ground in this competitive industry?
Sanam Puri: Making money is definitely the main concern for a musician. Whether one can get booked for gigs, sessions etc. It seems uncertain and highly dependent on factors beyond your control.
How does one overcome those challenges and beat the odds to make a name for themselves?
Samar Puri: You need to make a name for yourself by the quality of work you put out. Our manager Ben Thomas and his company constantly remind us that consistency is key to pushing yourself to put out work as an artist.
Do the four of you have disagreements? What’s your survival mantra?
Sanam Puri: All the time but we are good friends so we understand each other's points of view. It’s important to not take things literally all the time, take it easy and give each other space.
What has been your weirdest encounter with a good looking female so far?
Venky S: I was in a lift with a hot woman and the lift stopped working.
Dating tips for fellow men from the pros...
Samar Puri: Stay well groomed. A little extra time spent in the bathroom looking sharp goes a long way. Wear the right kind of perfume that compliments your personality.
How do you stay healthy and fit while touring, despite your hectic schedules?
Keshav Dhanraj: It’s important to eat clean and hydrate. Get as much sleep as possible and fit in minimum workouts even on a busy touring day.
A message you’d like to give to aspiring singers…
Sanam Puri: Listen to the greats in each genre of music, aspire to find your own style and way of expression.