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A.R.Rahman (Fan Club) (Page 126)

dayita Goldie

Joined: 01 May 2006
Posts: 1896

Posted: 10 June 2006 at 8:01am | IP Logged
Siege the day: Spike Lee negotiates winner with 'Inside Man'1-6097
By James Verniere
Boston Herald Film Critic
Friday, March 24, 2006

Inside Man
Movie Rating: (R) | Critic: A
If I see a better mainstream American film than Spike Lee's "Inside Man" in 2006, I will be very happy - and surprised.
    The film, a thriller about hostage-taking bank robbers in New York City, is more than merely flawlessly cast and marvelously acted and directed. It is also a polyphonic, multiracial meditation on post-9/11 America and yet another Lee love song to the city of his dreams: New York, New York.
    Can you believe the whole thing starts out to the percussive beat of music by legendary Bollywood composer A.R. Rahman?
    Detective Keith Frazier (Denzel Washington with Kojak cue-ball head and added pounds), a sharp-dressing hostage negotiator, has his hands full. He's under suspicion after $140,000 goes missing during a bust. His freaky girlfriend (Cassandra Freeman) has got to have it (marriage, that is). Her brother, who lives with her, is a jobless drunk, and Frazier's superior (Peter Gerety) has assigned him to take over a standoff at the venerable Wall Street bank Manhattan Trust.
    Inside are 50 hostages representing a feisty cross-section of New York City and a band of masked robbers armed with AK-47s and a .357 revolver. Their leader (a commanding Clive Owen) has threatened to start killing them by twos and tossing their bodies into the street if his demands are not met.
    Arthur Case (Christopher Plummer), the wealthy, leonine banker who established Manhattan Trust shortly after World War II, has a dark secret. With the mayor's backing, the mysterious Madeline White (a lean, witty and, well, white Jodie Foster) has been given a place of authority in the negotiations. Along with his partner, Detective Bill Mitchell (Chiwetel Ejiofor, who makes George Clooney look homely), Frazier suspects the killers are stalling and that they have some other goal in mind.
    If you can imagine a modern-day American heist movie engineered by Simon Wiesenthal, you have some idea of the film's ingenuity. The script by first-timer and Tufts graduate Russell Gewirtz is taut, exciting, intelligent and fast-paced.
    Instead of the white-black duo most American films give us, we get two professional black men, negotiators who also "negotiate" the complexities of the New York City police department. A scene in which Frazier questions a racist but competent and courageous beat cop (Victor Colicchio) speaks volumes about ethnic politics in the American workplace.
    When we think of the great hostage-taking films, we think of Sidney Lumet's "Dog Day Afternoon" (1975), John McTiernan's "Die Hard" (1988) and the lesser known, if no less great "The Taking of Pelham One Two Three" (1974) - and "Inside Man" ranks with them. And like Lumet's landmark film, which is in fact named by Frazier, "Inside Man" is about much more than a bank robbery.

    All the hostages are dressed and masked to resemble the robbers, rendering them free of identity and race, if not gender. But when the cops unmask a blindfolded person sent outside with a package and find a bearded man in a turban, they immediately assume he's an Arab suicide bomber, although he turns out to be a Sikh named Vikram (Waris Ahluwalia). A white bank manager uses Kanye West's "Gold Digger" as his ringtone. Owen's thief is appalled by a racist and violent video game being played by the 8-year-old son (Amir Ali Said) of a hostage id=131876

dayita Goldie

Joined: 01 May 2006
Posts: 1896

Posted: 10 June 2006 at 8:02am | IP Logged
Siege the day: Spike Lee negotiates winner with 'Inside Man'1-1974
[continued from previous page]

Down to the the smallest role, the cast is first-rate, and the film may be worth seeing just to hear someone call Foster a very bad name and to hear her respond, "Thank you." When Washington is at the top of his game, as he is here, he doesn't speak his lines; he sings them. His greatest performances are a delightful form of behavioral opera and an aural delight.
    Working with talented cinematographer Matthew Libatique ("Requiem for a Dream") and veteran producer Brian Grazer, Lee demonstrates a masterful grasp of the filmmaker's art. Viewers should be especially amused by the unspoken connections he makes between a police siege and shooting a film on the streets of Manhattan. Frankly, I have been waiting for years for Lee to stop taking stands and just make a great movie.
    Here it is. Who's the "inside man" now?
    ("Inside Man" contains violence and profanity.)

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dayita Goldie

Joined: 01 May 2006
Posts: 1896

Posted: 10 June 2006 at 8:06am | IP Logged
First Night reviews

The Times March 24, 2006


The Lord of the Rings

Sam Marlowe at the Princess of Wales Theatre, Toronto

Listen to an exclusive demo recording from the stage version of The Lord of the Rings here Not unlike the red, lidless orb of the evil Sauron, the eye of the theatre world swivelled towards Toronto last night for the long-awaited opening of the stage version of J. R. R. Tolkien's epic trilogy.
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It is a collaboration between the director Matthew Warchus, Shaun McKenna (book and lyrics), the composer A. R. Rahman, who is best known for Bombay Dreams, and the Finnish folk group Varttina under the musical supervision of Christopher Nightingale. It is also an enterprise daring almost to the point of foolhardiness. Yet, on the whole, it works, without resorting to the slick but soulless spectacle of Cirque du Soleil, or declining into Gothic clich, a pitfall even Peter Jackson's celebrated films did not entirely succeed in avoiding. The stage version's great strength lies in the way its constituent parts combine in an organic whole. Warchus insists that the show is not a musical, and certainly there are few conventional show tunes here. Songs arise directly from the action and are less concerned with expressing an inner emotional state than with representing ritual or a fragment of an oral and musical history passed down and shared. Equally, Rob Howell's designs, exquisitely lit by Paul Pyant, are achieved with uncluttered economy rather than hi-tech wizardry, and with an emphasis on natural textures and colours redolent of the story's Middle-earth setting. The score is a bewitching blend of smooth and jagged, lush and sparse. Female voices keening in close harmony shiver like quicksilver beneath a confrontation between Gandalf and the treacherous Saruman; a hymn-like chorale accompanies the departure of the newly formed Fellowship from Rivendell. There are folksy wayfaring songs for the Hobbits and insistent, throbbing drums of war gathering pace and volume as events grow darker. Visually, the show's rough- theatre aesthetic is put to dazzlingly inventive use. Orcs leap and somersault on springed shoes; puppetry and stiltwalking ingeniously bring to life Shelob, the giant spider, and Black Riders that exude menace. In one breathtaking moment, the discovery of the ring on a riverbed by Gollum's ill-fated friend Deagol is enacted by the character's emergence from the dizzying height of the flies, swimming stagewards in a perfect shaft of watery light. There are, however, significant disappointments. The Balrog looks as if it has been made of baking foil. The Battle of Helm's Deep makes dynamic use of the stage's revolve and multiple moving levels, and of Peter Darling's bold, thrilling choreography, only to peter out in feeble flagwaving. James Loye is an appealing Frodo, and his relationship with Peter Howe's touchingly loyal Sam Gamgee is the show's beating heart. Michael Therriault is terrific as Gollum, full of bitter, sibilant wit, and squirming and convulsing with pain and repressed desire for his Precious. Evan Buliung makes Aragorn suitably virile and intense, and Carly Street is a dignified, pure-voiced Arwen. But Rebecca Jackson Mendoza is a lifeless Galadriel and is saddled with by far the worst song — an irksome and incongruous power ballad that she belts out slightly flat. Still less satisfactory is Brent Carver as Gandalf. Clearly young for the role, Carver does nothing to suggest the gravitas, wisdom or authority of age and seems hesitant and ill at ease, not remotely the powerful, world-weary wizard he should be. In the end, though, theatrical magic wins out over the weaknesses. "Stories we tell will cast their spell, now and for always," sing Frodo and Sam. With some fine tuning, this tale could hold its audience in total thrall. For now, its best moments are, like the ring, an intoxicating enchantment.

The show is due to arrive in the West End of London next year.

  • The title of the exclusive track is Lothlrien. It is played as the Fellowship emerges from Moira, and is offered refuge in the Elvish haven of Lothlrien. The music is by A R Rahman,  Vrttinwith Christopher Nightingale. This track is a demo version, not a recording from the production currently on stage in Toronto.
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    dayita Goldie

    Joined: 01 May 2006
    Posts: 1896

    Posted: 10 June 2006 at 8:08am | IP Logged
    Were Critics Dazzled by The Lord of the Rings in Toronto?
    by Staff

    2006 Manuel Harlan
    James Loye in
    The Lord of the Rings
    The stage adaptation of The Lord of the Rings trilogy has been so eagerly anticipated that critics from multiple countries flocked to Canada for its March 23 opening at Toronto's Princess of Wales Theatre. Did they enjoy their time in Middle Earth? Here is a sampling of what they had to say: Mark Shenton in his Review: "Transferring Tolkien's massive adventure fantasy to the stage may have seemed an epic folly. But as cleverly (if not necessarily always clearly) distilled by director Matthew Warchus, who has also co-written the adaptation with Shaun McKenna, a constantly unfolding pageant of character and confrontations between good and evil evolves across one hurtling evening that, though admittedly long at close to four hours (including two intermissions), is never dull... Like the fabled ring that can render its wearer invisible while giving him extraordinary powers, Warchus, too, is the invisible power broker who has seamlessly stitched together the collaborative efforts of a huge team into the common purpose to bring this story to thrilling stage life as a bold, spectacular piece of popular musical theater that delivers a knock-out visual and aural experience." Ben Brantley of The New York Times: "An hour or so into what feels like eons of stage time, one wise, scared little hobbit manages to express the feelings of multitudes. 'This place is too dim and tree-ish for me,' mutters a round-ish, twee-ish creature named Pippin, groping through a shadowy forest in the second act of the very expensive, largely incomprehensible musical version of The Lord of the Rings... You speak not the half of it, O cherub-cheeked lad of Middle Earth. The production in which you exist so perilously is indeed a murky, labyrinthine wood from which no one emerges with head unmuddled, eyes unblurred or eardrums unrattled. Everyone and everything winds up lost in this $25 million adaptation of J. R. R. Tolkien's cult-inspiring trilogy of fantasy novels. That includes plot, character and the patience of most ordinary theatergoers." Sam Marlowe of The London Times: "On the whole, it works, without resorting to the slick but soulless spectacle of Cirque du Soleil, or declining into Gothic clich, a pitfall even Peter Jackson's celebrated films did not entirely succeed in avoiding. The stage version's great strength lies in the way its constituent parts combine in an organic whole… Rob Howell's designs, exquisitely lit by Paul Pyant, are achieved with uncluttered economy rather than hi-tech wizardry, and with an emphasis on natural textures and colours redolent of the story's Middle-earth setting. The score is a bewitching blend of smooth and jagged, lush and sparse." Richard Ouzounian of The Toronto Star: "The problems with this version of The Lord of the Rings are so basic that you wonder how those involved with it could watch it coming together and still not see what was wrong. To begin with, it looks like no one ever decided what kind of show it was meant to be… There's a saccharine ballad between Arwen and Aragorn that's repeated endlessly, a lengthy dance number at the Prancing Pony Inn that stops the action dead in every sense of the word and a meandering new-age anthem for Galadriel to warble while dressed in disco finery. But when push comes to shove and the big emotional moments arrive, no one ever actually gets to sing… The script by Shaun McKenna and Warchus is also problematic. In its desire to compress three books into one evening, it sacrifices any kind of depth in the name of forward motion." John Coulbourn of The Toronto Sun: "Designer Rob Howell has woven a warren of roots into a fabulous set... The same sense of lavish determination is also evident in Howell's costumes and Paul Pyant's often magical lighting design. This show is, in short, everything they've promised it would be. And somehow, just a little bit less. Because, finally, it all falls victim to its own hype. After promising the world a unique experience--something akin to an explosive theatrical union between Cirque du Soleil and Shakespeare--what they deliver instead is a rather well-behaved child of a union between J.R.R. Tolkien and The Lion King, with more than just a hint or two of Slava's Snowshow thrown in for good measure."
    Story continues below

    Robert Cushman of The National Post: "The theatrical version of J.R.R. Tolkien's trilogy has its faults, most of them coming unshakably with the territory, but scenically, technically and imaginatively, it's a marvel. Under Matthew Warchus' implacably disciplined direction, hardly any of the effects are gratuitous... Rob Howell's sets, a forest of invention with withered branches as the governing motif, pull not just the stage but the auditorium into Middle Earth, as does Paul Pyant's lighting, which, in its beauty and variety, calls for the coining of new superlatives... The adaptation, by Shaun McKenna and the director, is outstandingly intelligent." David Rooney of Variety: "It's gratifying to report that in its elaborate design and massive scale, The Lord of the Rings channels all that investment into an imposing, often impressive visual and aural spectacle. Too bad this respectful but somewhat arduous trudge through Middle-earth never summons comparable resources in the storytelling department… The mega-musical (premiering in Toronto before a planned spring 2007 bow in London) is an emotionally hollow behemoth intently focused on ticking off its storyboard checklist. It hurtles through 1,000 pages of plot soup without pausing to investigate the heart of the beloved tale or its multispecies characters." John Mckay of The Canadian Press: "Clocking in at a hefty 3 1/2 hours (with two brief intermissions), the epic fantasy is full of energy and wonder. Yes, plot and character development are compressed, but the production's sensory-stimulating sound and light show is easily the match of those digital effects that set the Peter Jackson motion picture versions apart. And it easily surpasses the dazzle that has become the trademark of Cirque du soleil performances. There isn't a weak link in all the elements - the sound, music, lighting, costumes. The acting can be stentorian at times but seems in keeping with the nature of the original dialogue." Michael Kuchwara of The Associated Press: "The joy of the Rings trilogy is not only in its entrancing, heroic tales but in its staggering detail--an entire world--brought to life. But what finally appears in this earnest theatrical incarnation has been severely condensed and flattened, drained of much of the spirit, emotion and peculiarities that make the Tolkien novels so appealing to scholars and fantasy nerds alike. Despite the simplification, what's left is a confusing and long evening - more than 3 1/2 hours--of theater that occasionally erupts into moments of satisfying spectacle and elegant design." Charles McNulty of The Los Angeles Times: "Neither a straight drama nor a traditional musical, the new production succeeds only as a dazzling spectacle. Even so, you'll need to bone up on the books just to follow what's going on, let alone enjoy the ride. Or better yet, get the DVDs, which for all their interminable length demonstrate how material as intractable as Tolkien's can be made dramatically addictive…. Pity the production can't be judged exclusively on its design--it would be roundly considered a hit." Chris Jones of The Chicago Tribune: "Warchus has indeed created an eye-popping musical pageant on a set that attacks the Princess of Wales Theatre with endlessly flexible hills, dales, precipices and thick, thick foliage. To their great credit, Warchus and co-author Shaun McKenna have managed to stick this sprawling narrative on a stage without losing scale, dignity or coherence. Tolkien fans will love them for that. And it will be enough to avert this ambitious show from collapsing in an ocean of Canadian disappointment. But behold a paradox. Lord is now viable on stage because of the popularity of the movies. Yet even at this stunning budgetary level, theater can't compete with film unless it finds its own, distinctive language. That hasn't sufficiently happened here. And as a result, the iconography of the show isn't fresh enough. Yet, at least." J. Kelly Nestruck of The Boston Globe: "The show's international creative team has created a stage epic that is surprisingly smart and visually stunning… While The Lord of the Rings leaves behind most Broadway musical conventions--though Saruman's send-off of the orcs to capture the hobbits does conjure up a certain Wicked Witch telling her monkeys to 'Fly, fly!'--Tolkien-heads will be pleased to know that the stage show hews very closely to the books, more so than Peter Jackson's movies, and leaves little out. Less reverent audience members will wish that more had been left behind, as the show stretches to 3 1/2 hours with two intermissions."
    2006 Manuel Harlan
    Evan Buliung & Carly Street in The Lord of the Rings
    Tony Brown of The Cleveland Plain Dealer: "With a $23 million budget, a cast of 55, a 3-hour-and-45-minute run time and special effects raining down from the ceiling, the new musical version of J.R.R. Tolkien's epic trilogy is expensively, lengthily and unspectacularly dull, dull and dull. After all the money and months of rehearsals and previews leading up to Thursday night's media-blitz opening, the mega-enterprise smells of pipeweed smoke and funhouse mirrors…. Eleven composers take credit for the music (A.R. Rahman, Christopher Nightingale and a nine-member folk band from Finland called Varttina). But there are hardly any songs. It's almost all underscoring and little of it as elegant as Howard Shore's film scores… It all plays more like a term paper than a play." Martin F. Kohn of The Detroit Free Press: "For Detroiters, is it worth the 4 1/2 -hour drive and tickets that top out at $107(U.S.)? It is… Visually, LOTR is stunning… Musically, The Lord of the Rings is an improbable hybrid that works… The cast is vast--55 actors--and admirable." Charles Spencer of The Telegraph: "There is nothing here to rival the imaginative visual coups and heart-tugging emotion of such great family shows as Billy Elliot, The Lion King and Mary Poppins. And though the musical score, by the Indian film composer AR Rahman, the Finnish group Vrttin and the show's musical supervisor Christopher Nightingale is an engaging mixture of folk rock, trippy-hippy mysticism and eastern chants, it doesn't, at least on first hearing, seem to offer any memorable take-home numbers… There's a 55-strong cast, but they are often under-employed… Peter Darling's folksy choreography isn't a patch on his dazzling work on Billy Elliot."

    Kamal Al-Solaylee of The Globe and Mail: "[The Lord of the Rings] may boast of its record-breaking cost, but it still looks a lot like unfinished business. The blueprint for the adaptation--a heroic, if misguided, undertaking billed as a hybrid of drama, music and spectacle--is now in place. All it needs is an engaging storytelling approach, an emotional arc, credible performances and a more coherent musical score. In other words, what's missing from this adaptation is the essence of theatre itself as that divine place for sharing stories and forging emotional connections between the audience and the performers.
    dayita Goldie

    Joined: 01 May 2006
    Posts: 1896

    Posted: 10 June 2006 at 8:19am | IP Logged
    A startling but very logical coincidences between two of the greatest men of 90's/......they characterised the 90's and were icons of the youth at that time(including me)......just see the startling similarities between these 2:

    Comprehensive similarities between A.R.Rahman and Sachin Tendulkar:

    Entry into their respective fields:
    A.R.Rahman: 1992
    Sachin Tendulkar: 1989

    They were an instant hit because:
    A.R.Rahman: Blasting music, classical songs at a very young age
    Sachin Tendulkar: Swashbuckling batting and a great cricketing sense at a very young age

    How they stood out from others?
    A.R.Rahman: First to bring digital touch to Indian music and compose fusion that no one else dares to think off
    Sachin Tendulkar: First to explore the first 15-over restriction, score centuries at bouncy, tough tracks like Perth.

    As time moved on:
    A.R.Rahman: Stopped producing blasting music, instead delivered Classical melodies like Taal & swades out of maturity.
    Sachin Tendulkar: Stopped going over the top to bowlers, instead played exquisite drives and late cuts and produced innings with a lot of maturity

    Character similarity:
    A.R.Rahman: Shy towards media and lets his keyboard answer his critics
    Sachin Tendulkar: Shy towards media and lets his bat answer his critics

    Media point of view:
    A.R.Rahman: Darling of Mumbai and London press
    Sachin Tendulkar: Darling of Mumbai and London press

    International attention:
    A.R.Rahman: Admired by Andrew Lloyd Webber , Micheal jackson ( who wore a t-shirt having Rahman's photo on it) and many other international music reviewers who want him to compose for Hollywood films.
    Sachin Tendulkar: Adored by the man himself the "DON", Mike atherton( who compared sachin to W.G.Grace) and a never ending list of Australian,English,Kiwi,Westindian players.

    A.R.Rahman: Draws 1 Crore/ film, ambassador of Bharti telecom, sizzled with the Airtel ad
    Sachin Tendulkar: unimaginable money on contracts with big commercial giants and sizzles in Pepsi ads

    A.R.Rahman: 4 national awards, 16 filmfare awards, his music sold 200 million copies around the world and success rate of 80%+ album sales in Indian movies.
    Sachin Tendulkar: Look at this for a record: 37 ODI centuries, 35 TEST centuries, 13,000+ runs in ODI's, 44+ average in ODI's and 58+ average in Tests. What else u can ask for?

    A.R.Rahman: Has a huge fan following in India and in south he is a demi-god and captures the imagination of NRI's throughout the world
    Sachin Tendulkar: According to a survey, he is the most popular man in the Country edging out Prime minister and Shah-rukh-khan. He is popular in places like U.S where even the game is not that popular (featured in an exclusive article in an American sports magazine)

    Career Graph & Present form:
    A.R.Rahman: Had fabulous nineties with all his albums doing well in this time. Reached dizzying heights during this period. Have had flops with major banners since 2001, which got the critics interested. Had a great 2003 within this lean patch with Boys creating sales records. His fans base however is intact, proved that with success of A Ah album.
    Sachin Tendulkar: The star of 90's, his batting propelled him into a youth icon status in India and was concurred with many awards from the government. Being pressurized by the detractors for a imaginary loss of form and injury worries since 2001. Had a great world cup 2003 scoring runs at will. Recently has had a good innings in a one-day match to prove that he is still fit.
    (Their career-graph is one of the most fascinating things I have ever noticed, they always seem to have good times together. Bad times also coincides for both of them)

    A.R.Rahman: Die-hard fans want him to go back to 90's style of composing
    Sachin Tendulkar: Never say die fans want him to take up 90's style of swashbuckling batting.

    A.R.Rahman: His successors like Yuvan shankar raja and himesh reshammiya are more successful than him right now but no way near to him in terms of class
    Sachin Tendulkar: Yuvraj Singh, Mohammed Kaif are more popular with people than him right now but as the old west-Indian saying goes: FORM IS TEMPORARY BUT CLASS IS PERMANENT.

    A.R.Rahman: Has a duplicate called Harris jeyaraj who not only copies his music and composing style but also his hairstyle and way of speaking in interviews.
    Sachin Tendulkar: Virendar sehwag, a natural duplicate of sachin with looks and batting style similar to him called "Najafgarh ka Tendulkar". (Najafgarh is Virendar sehwag's hometown.)

    Where will they end up?:
    A.R.Rahman: Probably will put India into the world map of music and create records which upcoming Indain M.D's can just dream off
    Sachin Tendulkar: It would probably take an android or a special species of human being to erase his record in Cricket. Will always be remembered as the greatest ever Batsman of modern era.

    dayita Goldie

    Joined: 01 May 2006
    Posts: 1896

    Posted: 10 June 2006 at 9:23am | IP Logged
    A R Rahman

    With his mop of curls, T-shirt and jeans, he looks like a teenage college student, but his first film score, Roja, fetched him the National Film Award, in 1992, and thrust him into the limelight.
    In the five years since Roja, he has created music for blockbuster Indian films, including Pudhiya Mugam, Gentleman, Kizhaku Seemaiyilae, Duet, Kadalan, Bombay, May, Madham, Indian, Muthu, Kadhal Desam and Love Birds. His 1995 soundtrack for Bombay crossed 5 million units and Rahman arrived as the King of Indian Pop" with sales of more than 40 million albums over a period of 3 years.

    Allah Rakha Rahman was born A.S. Dileep Kumar on January 6, 1966, in Madras, to a musically affluent family. Dileep started learning the piano at the tender age of four. But at the age of nine, his father passed away. The pressure of supporting his family fell on Dileep. At the age of 11, he joined Illaiyaraja's troupe as a keyboard player. All this had an adverse affect on his education, and finally he dropped out of school altogether.

    Eventually, he played with various orchestras, and accompanied Zakir Hussain on world tours. All this experience enabled him to earn a scholarship to the famed Trinity College of Music at Oxford University from where he obtained a degree in Western Classical Music.

    After he returned, he continued to be a part of various music troupes and local rock bands. Rahman branched out into advertising in 1987, when he was asked to compose a jingle to promote a range of watches. The ads were a success, and over the next five years, Rahman would compose more than 300 jingles. He also released his first album, of Muslim devotional songs, titled Deen Isai Malai and the English album, Set Me Free. Both went unnoticed in the market.

    In 1989, he started a small studio of his own, called Panchathan Record Inn, attached to his house. This would later develop into one of India's most well equipped and advanced recording studios. In his established state of the art sound and recording studio he began experimenting in sound engineering, design and production.

    He also began a collection of sound samples, creating one of the most comprehensive sonic libraries in Asia. The move to movies came during an advertising awards function, where he met Mani Ratnam. Mani requested for a sample of his wares. The composer readily complied and invited the director over to his studio. Mani was hooked, and signed on Rahman to score the music for his next film Roja. The rest is, as they say, history.

    Rahman's blitzkreig continued, and his first break with Hindi films came with Ram Gopal Varma's Rangeela. Rahman unleashed his tunes and created mass frenzy. His Tanha tanha was seduction personified. Mani Ratnam picked him for his first Hindi film, Dil Se, and the rest, as they say, is history. His flirtation with Hindi films continued, and Subhash Ghai's Taal landed on his lap next. The composer displayed his versatility with the tunes he composed. Rahman also got an opportunity to work with Deepa Mehta, on the music of Fire and 1947 Earth

    The maestro promises a splash in 2001 with One 2 Ka 4, Love You Hamesha and Aamir Khan's long-awaited Lagaan. The genius remains unstoppable!

    (Source :
    dayita Goldie

    Joined: 01 May 2006
    Posts: 1896

    Posted: 10 June 2006 at 9:36am | IP Logged


    Allah Rakha Rahman! A music director known to have brought a revolution in the Indian film music scenario, when it was needed the most. Born on January 6th, 1967 this whizkid is the son of a music arranger and conductor R.K. Shekhar. Rahman was nine years old, when his father passed away. By the age of eleven A. R. Rahman performed on television. After his personal tragedy he did some soul searching and decided to convert himself in Islam.

    This genius is the most sought after music director of the generationext. In his career spanning eight years, Rahman has bagged as many as eleven filmfare awards and two national awards.

    While working for a music band, Rahman also worked for ad-jingles. Mani Ratnam signed A. R. Rahman as his tunes sounded fresh and least influenced by the South India's music icon Illayaaraja. By 1992 Roja (Ye Haseen Wadiyan) was Rahman's first film. So enticing was the music that the numbers even defied the language barrier. The tunes were heard and loved by non-Tamilians. Soon Gentleman followed Roja, and 'Chiku Biiku Raile' became a chart-buster. Rahman was now the uncrowned Prince of music.

    A. R. Rahman though a known name now in Bollywood, composed for his first Hindi film Rangeela (Hai Rama,Pyar Ye Jaane) for Ram Gopal Verma in 1995. The film went on to become Rahman's biggest hit and the most original score of that year. Then other films like Hum Se Hai Muqabala (Muqabala,Urvashi Urvashi), Hindustani (Telephone Dhun), Thiruda Thiruda (Chandralekha), Jeans (Ajooba Hai, Columbus) Kabhi Haan Kabhi Naa (Tu Hi Tu, Mere Dil Ka), etc followed. Rahman was being accused of being repetitive. But with films like Bombay (Tu Hi Re, Kehna Hi Kya), Vande Mataram (Maa Tujhe Salaam, Only you), Iruvar (Naramugaye), Dil se (Chhaiya Chhaiya, Jiya Jale, Dil se re) and Taal (Ishq Bina, Taal Se Taal, Ramta Jogi), 1947 Earth (Rut Aagyi Re,Ishwar Allah), Alaipauthey (Saki) Rahman silenced his critics and transmogrified them into his fans.

    The reason for A. R. Rahman becoming so successful could be attributed to, his knack for creating foot-tapping music with a different sound, the melodious arias also were unique due the western orchestraisation with an ethnic touch. His songs also stood out due to his usage of fresh voice instead of the tried and tested singers.

    Entrance of Rahman paved the way for new breed of singers like Hema Sardesai (Awara Bhanware), Minmini (Dil Hai Chotasa), Sukhvinder Singh (Dholna), Ronu Majumdar (Shabba Shabba), Shanker Mahadevan (Jumbalika), Sreeniwas (Oh La La La); etc. He also consolidated positions of established singers like Udit Narayan (E Ajnabi), Sonu Nigam (Satrangi Re), Kavita Krishnamurty (Kehta Hai), S. P. Balasubramanium (Anjali Anjali)and Hariharan (Thoda Thoda Pyar). He also has the privilege of working with living legends like Lata Mangeshkar (Jiya Jale, Ik Tu Hi Bharonsa) and Asha Bhosle (Rangeela Re, Tanha Tanha) he also worked with the late Pakistani Sufi Legend Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan (Chanda Suraj Lakhon Tare).

    Other chief traits of Rahman that separates him from the rest is his habit of recording songs late at nights which leaves many egoistic producer directors grumbling. Rahman takes his own sweet time to compose songs, Rahman prefers recording in his Madras studio a hassle for Bollywood producer. Nevertheless the results are worth the trouble.

    Currently the one to be fascinated with A. R. Rahman's music is none other than Andrew Lloyd Webber who is producing an English play 'Bombay Dreams' which will have music by A. R. Rahman. Michael Jackson also rendered his voice for a Rahman tune! With a resume so good even sky is not the limit for this small wonder.

    (Source :

    dayita Goldie

    Joined: 01 May 2006
    Posts: 1896

    Posted: 10 June 2006 at 9:43am | IP Logged

    Profile and Interview

    AR Rahman is one of the foremost musical artists in India. In a music industry dominated by film scores, Rahman has churned out more than two dozen hit singles over a span of 8 films, all of which surpassed sales of 2.5 million units. With his mop of dusky curls, t-shirt and jeans, he looks like a teenage college student, but his first film score, Roja, fetched him the National Film Award in 1992 (similar to an Oscar), and thrust him into the limelight. In the five years since Roja, he has created music for blockbuster Indian films including Roja, Pudhiya Mugam, Gentleman, Kizhaku Seemaiyilae, Duet, Kadalan, Bombay, May, Madham, Indian, Muthu kadhal Dasam, Love Birds and others. His 1995 soundtrack for Bombay crossed 5 million units and Rahman had arrived as the "King of Indian Pop" with sales of more than 40 million albums over a period of 3 years.

    AR Rahman is today the most sought after music director in the business. Roja proved that traditional tunes can also be blockbuster hits. Songs such as "Thiruda Thiruda", "Gentleman", "Rangeela", "Kadhal Desam" and "Minsara Kanavu" established him as a prodigy. Modest, religious and totally dedicated to his craft, Rahman has a great penchant for fusing music of different traditions. Bach, Beethoven, Mozart, reggae, rock and Carnatic music are his musical preferences.

    His inspirational, infectious numbers have won him nationwide praise in India. The Tamil film Minsara Kanavu got Rahman the award for Best Music at the 44th National in May, '97. Rahman also been honored with a Rajat Kamal Award for Best Music Director, the Filmfare award, Cinema Express award, Telegu Academy Purashkar award for the year 1992-94, Bommai Nagi Reddy award, Sumu award, Rajiv Gandhi awards and others.

    Renowned world artists including Nusrat Fateh Al Khan, with whom he performs a duet on Vande Mataram, have hailed Rahman as a musical genius. Rahman has in collaborations with artists such as L. Shankar, Zakir Hussain, David Byrne, Talvin Singh and Apache Indian - both recording and on tour. On a recent trip to India, David Byrne met Rahman and was so impressed that he went on to record some sessions with Rahman for a project he is currently completing (as yet unreleased).

    Singing has always been Rahman's personal passion and very few of his fans are that he has sung on a number of his film tracks. Vande Mataram, his first pop album, will also be the first to showcase Rahman the singer, and his ambition is to put his unique Indian sound on the world music stage. Today, Rahman restricts his work to only 2 or 3 film tracks a year and has made only a few live stage in recent years. A sold out concert was held in Kuala Lampur (Malaysia) in October 1996, where he performed to an audience of 40,000 fans.

    AR Rahman, 30 years old, was born into a musically affluent family. His father, K.A. Sekar, was a well known music director based in the Southern India. Growing up in a background filled with music, Rahman began playing music from his early childhood. After his father died when he was only 9, Rahman began performing on the keyboards, and later as an accompaniest for various music directors in the South Indian film industry including Ramesh Naidu, M S Viswanathan and Illaiyaraja. His work with these musicians placed him in good stead through some very difficult years. Finally, Rahman overcame these hardships and qualified for a scholarship to the Trinity College of Music (London).

    Afterwards, Rahman returned to Madras with a dream to bring an international and contemporary world perspective to Indian music. He established a state of the art sound and recording studio and began experimenting in sound engineering, design and production. He also began a collection of sound samples, creating one of the most comprehensive sonic libraries in Asia.

    Rahman started his commercial musical career in advertising, where he spent 6 years composing jingles. Some of his memorable ad campaigns were with leading Indian corporations such as Parry's, Tata, and Titan Watches. It was a chance meeting at a party with Trilok Sharadha, cousin of Mani Rathnam, brought him in contact with the renowned director and launched his stunning debut as the music director of Roja.

    AR Rahman was born A.S. Duleep Kumar, but adopted the name AR Rahman when he coverted to Islam. Ar Rahman is the first of a thousand names of Allah, and Rahman is a profoundly religious person. As an individual, Rahman leads an extremely devout religious life and credits all his musical inspiration to Allah. He comes across as an extremely reticent and humble individual and says, 'Music speaks, statements don't. Nobody can be completely original because the notes are already there ... from the notes we form a raag and from the raag a tune ... it is a process. As far as possible, to my conscience, I try to be original. The rest is up to Allah.'

    As Rahman considers taking his new project, Vande Mataram, to the world, he reflects on his immense popularity on the sub-continent and whether the rest of the globe will follow his musical lead, "music is international - only cultures are different".

    Indian Music Background [ top ]
    Indian music has been dominated by film music as a genre for years and had settled into a complacent rut towards the late eighties and the early nineties when along came a 25 year old who prefers untrained voices and breathing spaces between beats to the typically layered, cramped orchestration. Within the first couple of years of his Bollywood career AR Rahman established that he was here to stay, with his digitized sound based on pop-rock and reggae fused with traditional Indian - mainly Carnatic-folk idioms. Carnatic is a classical Indian music form whose leading international proponents include L Shankar (the violinist of Shakti fame), M S Subbalakshmi - the vocalist, Vikku Vinayakam (the percussionist from Shakti). To quote one of the leading South Indian music directors, 'Rahman's music is of the computer age. It is digital but intelligent, not just noise. He concentrates on his melody and has not deviated totally from his traditional sounds."

    Questions & Answers [ top ]
    Given below are a few excerpts from interviews he has given over the last few years. Sources - The Hindu - a leading daily.

    Q. How did you come into films?
    A. My father, R K Shekar was a music director in Malayalam films. He assisted Salil Chowdary, Devrajan and others. He died when I was nine. At eleven I came into the field, playing on the keyboards and later as an accompanist. I worked under various music directors in Tamil, Telegu and Malayalam- Ramesh Naidu, MS Vishwanathan and IllayarajA. It started becoming a bit monotonous. I thought advertising would be a good alternative. This went on for three years. I built my studio and took to different forms of music- pop, rock and so on. It was then that I met producer Tirlok Shardha, cousin of Mani Rathnam at a party. He (Mani) came to my studio and heard some of my tunes. We agreed to work together though we did not decide on which movie. Only later he told me it was to be Roja, which he directing for K Balachander.

    Q. Despite your success you do not seem to be working on a lot of films?
    A. Rather than making money I believe in making people happy, all other things are secondary. That is why I am not interested in al Lot of movies but only in one at a time. I like directors whom I can vibe with. Ten years of experience in this field has made me quite frustrated. I've evolved a technique, which requires a lot of time. Other music directors record a song in 7-8 hours. But I am different. We do a basic sitting and we record it. We record the voice and I add instrument by instrument to improve the quality.

    Q. Do you use computers in your film tracks?
    A. No, not computers. The technique is different. In fact they say the music in Roja was computerized. As I said earlier the recording takes time. You can hear the same flute in a different way. It is not computerized music. Nearly 40% "Veerapandi Kottayily" (a song from "Thiruda Thiruda") that does not sound like computer music and "Vellai Mazhai (from Roja) is synthesizer oriented. I do not restrict the musicians but ask them to play whatever they feel. Then I record what I want. I spend a lot of time on lyrics too. It takes around 4 days. We write something in the first instance and then improve. So it take about a week to complete a song.

    Q. You say you are choosy in your projects, but you also go in for populist songs. Why so?
    A. Different people need different songs. I want to go down to the people at various levels. When I toured Tamil Nadu, I found that people wanted songs that would make them happy. There is nothing vulgar in my songs. I want my music to reach everywhere. If I play rock, only youngsters will understand, while older people will say, "Why is he shouting like this?" Each category of music reaches only one circle; for the class audience "Thiruda Thiruda" and for the masses "Gentleman". I am learning Carnatic classical music from Dakshinamurthy and Hindustani from Krishnan Nayar. I like traditional music. I want my job to be interesting and fun. I just don't want to get stuck again in monotony.

    Q. Are you being repetitive in your musical style?
    A. In recent times I've done films with a similar outlook. These films are aimed at the young generation and therefore have to be beat oriented. Yet I've tried for a distinct sound every time. After Bombay I haven't got stuck in the hip-hop groove. What I did for Rangeela and Indian were zestful and fast paced but quite unlike Bombay. As for the gentler paced songs of 'Kadhal Desam' if you care to notice they are rooted in melody.

    Q. What are your views on the Indian film music scene today?
    A. Its going through a cyclical process. The techno stuff has reached a saturation point. Soon we'll be back to simple and soulful melodies. When you here the songs of 'Aanandam' you'll see I've used an acoustic rather than an electronic base on three of the songs.

    Q. How does it feel to be on the top (of the film music industry)?
    A. I don't really think I'm at the top. Basically I came into this field not intrude on anybody else's success.

    Q. What music do you like?
    A. Bach, Beethoven and Mozart and Carnatic music. I was into rock and fusion. I like to bring all these into my music.

    Q. Your views on film music in India?
    A. Film music in India is like pop music in the West. Movies are the channels for this music.

    (Source :

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