A. R. Rahman

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A. R. Rahman, the Mozart of Madras

Allah-Rakha Rehman (born A. S. Dileep Kumar on January 6, 1966) is an Indian composer, singer-songwriter, music producer, musician, multi-instrumentalist and philanthropist. He has redefined contemporary Indian music. His works are notable for integrating Eastern classical music with electronic music sounds, world music genres and traditional orchestral arrangements. Time has described him as the world's most prominent and prolific film composer. He has won two Academy Awards, two Grammy Awards, a BAFTA Award, in addition to numerous Filmfare and other awards. His extensive body of work for film and the stage has earned him the nickname "the Mozart of Madras". In 2009, Time placed Rahman in its list of World's Most Influential People. The UK based World Music magazine Songlines named him one of 'Tomorrow's World Music Icons' in August 2011. He has also been honoured with the Padma Bhushan, one of the highest Indian civilian award of the Government of India.

Quotes[edit]

  • The reason I love 'Slumdog' is because the music is all world cultures, all celebrating. In India, I know people feel other film scores [of mine] are closer to their hearts. But when you are doing a film, it's very important to make the film look like one full piece of artwork. I think scoring 'Slumdog' with every kind of music possible, from Chinese to hip-hop to M.I.A. . . . was really fresh ground for me.
  • I think musicians here [India] get ripped off. Music production houses take good care of artists abroad and though the upfront signing amount is much less than what I get here, the royalty takes care of future returns.
  • Bombay, which sold about 120,000 copies, is widely rated as my most successful work, though Roja is definitely the score that brought me where I am today.
    • In “A R Rahman: Composing a winning score”.
  • An ideal world can definitely be created with a pure mind and optimistic results.
    • Superheavy. Official website of ARRahman. Retrieved on 16 December 2013.
  • I'm always fascinated by the innocence of children and the baggage that we carry as adults which manipulates our decisions.
    • Infinite Love. Official website of ARRahman. Retrieved on 16 December 2013.
  • The first day I was in a daze thinking, ‘What am I doing? What’s my role?’ and then slowly we started writing with each other, and it was great. It took me way back to my high school days when I was playing in a rock band.
    • During the recording of music “SuperHeavy” quoted in "What Is Superheavy?"

Original Score[edit]

#ixzz2nc9lDMhz Original Score. Time.com (22 February 2011). Retrieved on 16 December 2013.

  • I wanted to produce film songs that go beyond language or culture.
  • It's an approximate count. If you have a hit film, you'll sell 5 million or 6 million CDs. Of my movies, at least 20 or 25 were really big hits. [Mind you, he adds], in India, we don't get royalties. Otherwise I'd be a very rich man. I wouldn't have to come to America!
  • Musical theater had become very predictable. I think Andrew felt that Bollywood musicals could be a new treat for the Western audience.

A R Rahman: In tune with life[edit]

"A R Rahman: In tune with life". Times of India. 30 September 2002. Retrieved on 16 December 2013. 

  • My mother's belief in spiritual healers grew stronger after our family went through a rough patch following my father's death. Sufi saint Karimullah Shah Kadri changed our lives and all of us converted to Sufism. But it wasn't an instantaneous decision — it took us 10 years to convert. The change in religion was like washing away the past.
  • I never exert pressure on my children: I encourage the children, Katija and Rahima, to pursue their dreams. Rahima is embarrassed by autograph-seekers and doesn't want me to visit her school. In fact, I have never attended a single PTA meeting or gone to pick up the report cards of my children.
  • Ever since I embraced Sufism, I have learnt to separate myself from my desires and my success. Now, I can distance myself from all the adulation showered on me.
  • I had been doing the same kind of stuff for 15-16 years and was desperately seeking a change. But there was no opportunity to reinterpret Indian music. With Roja, we wanted to strike a new note. Mani's amazing visuals, Mutthu's romantic lyrics, relatively unknown singers... we wanted to impart to Roja an international flavour — and we succeeded.
  • It needs a lot of courage to pick up someone from another country and support him. When I first heard from Andrew Lloyd Webber in 1999, he praised my work. But I must say that choosing me over others to compose for Bombay Dreams was a brave decision.
  • In my case, dust has become gold: Today, I work with people I grew up admiring. But, internally, I am the same person I always was. Ever since I embraced Sufism, I have learnt to separate myself from my desires and my success. Now, I can distance myself from all the adulation showered on me.
  • What one thinks is possible might not always be so. I try to do my best but, finally, everything lies in God's hands. I consider my skills as a musician to be a blessing from God. Even today, before I perform, I am unsure of whether I will be able to move my audience. I leave everything to Him... He pulls the strings in my life.

The A R Rahman Chat[edit]

The A R Rahman Chat. Rediff,com. Retrieved on 16 December 2013.

  • The way I work takes more time for me to get satisfaction. So it's better to take lesser load and do better work. Money can be earned anytime.
  • The trend in the north is more Punjabi folk and simple music. But, in the past, people like Naushad experimented with Hindustani classical music which I think has been completely forgotten. People don't experiment anymore and think that Hindustani classical music won't work. For me, coming from the south, it was just a little step to learn Punjabi music. The nuances are louder in Punjabi music. Songs like Mukkala muqqabla or Humma humma had more of the Tamil folk music in it.
  • Jazz was my passion for a little while. I felt that all other kinds of music were stupid when I was into jazz. But I got over the addiction very soon
  • The ultimate enjoyment for a composer is when his compositions get recognised and appreciated. For me, a small village in Kanyakumari is as important as New York or France.
  • Yes, 6 songs... Thiruda Thiruda: Great. I felt honoured since it was the last song Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan did before his death. We miss him a lot, it was an emotional bond in the 50th year to bring a synergy between India and Pakistan.

About A.R.Rahman[edit]

Rahman with his Oscar Awards
  • Rahman, the world's most prolific and popular composer, lent his irrepressible melodic gift to Danny Boyle's Slumdog Millionaire, set in Rahman's native land, and nearly tops himself here with music that is tense, oppressive and finally exalting.
  • The billboard outside the Broadway Theatre reads, A R RAHMAN'S BOMBAY DREAMS. That name may mean little to musical-theater devotees, but in the rest of the world it's golden. Like Gershwin or Lennon-McCartney, the name stands for melody, quality, energy, instant hummability — a sound both personal and universal, devouring many older forms and transforming them into something gorgeously new.
    • Richard Corliss in Time quoted in "The Mozart of Madras".
  • In India, a country of a billion inhabitants, where film and pop music are one, A.R. Rahman, 43, dominates the music industry so totally that he has supplied the sound track for a whole generation. He enjoys the godlike devotion of India's youth, but everyone from the street child who sweeps train platforms to the middle-aged doctor in Mumbai's posh Malabar Hill hums his tune.
  • Now the "Mozart of Madras" has the world's foot tapping along with him.
    • Padma Lakshmi in "A.R. Rahman".
  • [Rahman sees music] as a way to connect to spirituality and embrace it [and for] creating harmony in troubled times.
  • Commended, multi-talented and innovative Rahman for bringing East and West closer through music and for making the world look at Indian film music more seriously. Diversity of his styles and themes was appealing to different sections of the society.
    • Rajan Zed in “Hollywood calling Rehman”.
Rahman with his wife Sairaa.
  • I've always told him, a composer is someone who composes soulful music. There are some of A.R.'s songs that have made me very emotional and I have cried. It is something that he creates from within.
    • His wife, Sairaa in "Slumdog Composer Competes for Oscars".
  • The Oscar is definitely the biggest moment in my life. I know he has won so many awards. But this one is special because he is representing India.
    • His wife, Sairaa in "Slumdog Composer Competes for Oscars".
  • He's not imitative, he spaces himself out unlike other directors who sign up whatever they can get and are looking at quantity rather than quality. As a result, in 60 per cent to 70 per cent of the cases he delivers.
    • Amit Khanna in “A R Rahman: Composing a winning score”.
  • He works less but he has given Indian music a completely different sound which has worked.
    • Mani Ratnam in “A R Rahman: Composing a winning score”.
  • We didn’t know what kind of music we’d make, we didn’t know if it would be any good, but we hoped we’d have fun. He brings so much musical knowledge, amazing musicianship, melody and singing power from a different culture.
    • Mick Jagger’s views Superheavy. Official website of ARRahman. Retrieved on 16 December 2013.

Film fraternity hails Rahman, Pookutty for win[edit]

On Rehman getting Oscar Awards for Slumdog Millionaire"Film fraternity hails Rahman, Pookutty for win". Indian Express. 23 February 2009. Retrieved on 16 December 2013. 

  • As A R Rahman and Resul Pookutty scripted history by picking up three Oscars for "Slumdog Millionaire.
  • What a film and what a team to work with. The spirit of the film is reflected in its team. [Rahman] with "changing the entire face of Indian film music.
    • Gulzar, the lyricist of the film who was also mentioned in the Oscar award
  • May he win such an award every year. He is a genius. Rahman's music is a blend of a little South Indian music and what we commonly call Hindi film music.
  • Rahman is a genius and has made the world sit up and take notice of Indian talent with his success. He has put the Indian film industry on the world map."

External links[edit]

Wikipedia
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