Within a few days of its release, Ayan Mukherji's Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani, starring Ranbir Kapoor and Deepika Padukone, was well on its way into Bollywood's 100 crore club. It's not just the director and actors that are reaping the benefits of the film's success: the soundtrack, which has dominated Hindi music charts, brought at least one of its playback singers under the spotlight in a very unique way - as the Bollywood playback singer with possibly the most views on YouTube.
Benny Dayal is the voice behind the film's superhit track Badtameez Dil (lyrics by Amitabh Bhattacharya and music by Pritam Chakraborty). The official YouTube video now stands close to 5 million views. If you add the views from two other unofficial uploads of the same song, then the count reaches close to 10 million.
Another song featuring Dayal's voice (Daru Desi from Cocktail, released in July 2012) has almost 9 million views over various uploads.
But the feather in his cap remains Lat Lag Gayi from the January release Race 2. The track is a duet featuring Shalmali Kholgade alongside Dayal, and has been viewed over 19 million times.
These three tracks alone add up to 38 million views for Benny Dayal.
"Whoa!" Dayal says, staggered when presented the numbers in such a manner. "What can I say? It's fantastic. To have so much positive feedback is great. Working on all of these songs has been so much fun and I am so happy to see them getting so popular and doing so well."
What does he have to say about his meteoric rise to fame?
"I have not made it so big so fast," says Dayal, who was born and raised in Abu Dhabi. "I have been working hard for years. I have been singing for the past seven years and have taken the proper route which every singer takes: looking for work, polishing my skills. I have done what any singer needs to do to get anywhere. It's probably the last one or two years that have made me a popular name, but I have been singing since 2008, so my success is definitely not overnight."
Despite having been at the top for just a couple of years, Dayal has done very well: from loaning his voice to an icon like Aamir Khan to having worked with his childhood idol, the globally lauded composer A R Rahman.
"I am not chasing anything specific, to be honest," says Dayal. "I am just keeping my options open, looking out for good projects and working hard."
Follow us @LifeNationalUAE
Follow us on Facebook for discussions, entertainment, reviews, wellness and news.