Rudramma Devi

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Re: Rudramma Devi

Post  kiru on Thu Apr 23, 2015 12:35 am

Raaga_Suresh wrote:True Kiru. I was mentioning to a friend one day about Raja's new songs where the orchestra is not just supporting the song but becomes a character itself. It questions the singer, answers the singer and so on. Was giving him the example of 'kalvane' from Megha, 'katrai konjam' from NEPV and 'galiya mathali' from Oggarane. In these songs the orchestra is just not to enhance the harmonic beauty of the song. It is integral to the song. In 'katrai konjam' the sax keeps talking to Karthik and without that sax the song is not complete. Same with 'galiya' where the strings keep the conversation going. I had done detailed analysis with him and as you point out, this is a very different Raja we are seeing, especially from the NEPV days. The orchestration has a very different flavor in many of his recent songs and all of them are enjoyable.

@Suresh, the instances you cite have also evolved to very great in IR's repertoire. But a song like mugilo mEgamO is an extreme example of the integration of the orchestra with the main melody that to me personally is an exciting new development. IR might have come to this point incrementally but I think it creates a break from the past (mostly - forget songs like en iniya en pon nilavE for a while) where the vocals is the only one carrying the main melody. I am not sure I have communicated my enthusiasm enough here. To an indian ear it is a paradigm shift. But a shift without losing the essence of the tune. (Note, I posted a link earlier here where even Tagore  asks Einstein, "has harmony negatively impacted melody in your country/music ?. I wish Tagore was around to listen to IR today !!!!!!! )

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Re: Rudramma Devi

Post  kiru on Thu Apr 23, 2015 8:12 am

crimson king wrote:Ha, that's a nice thought.  Would personally love for an Annie Haslam/Kate Bush collab with Ilayaraja.  Or to have Fripp or Hackett play guitar leads in his interludes.  Would be a great meeting of progressive minds.
@CK - you are a great music lover. I am embarassed that I have not listened to Kate Bush before. Anyways, I gave both artistes a quick listen. I still think Sarah Brightman is much closer to the genre IR is doing with songs like saRRu munbu /muthal muRai etc. Actually, I thought of her when I first heard saRRu munbu. Interestingly, wikipedia also calls her genre - classical crossover. I was one of the people who used this term for IR's music and apparently IR also agreed with this characterization (during the raajangahm days). Still, it would be awesome to artistes like you suggest work with IR, their mastery of their vocation would elevate IR's composition to the sky.

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Re: Rudramma Devi

Post  crimson king on Sat Apr 25, 2015 3:39 am

kiru wrote:
crimson king wrote:Ha, that's a nice thought.  Would personally love for an Annie Haslam/Kate Bush collab with Ilayaraja.  Or to have Fripp or Hackett play guitar leads in his interludes.  Would be a great meeting of progressive minds.
@CK - you are a great music lover. I am embarassed that I have not listened to Kate Bush before. Anyways, I gave both artistes a quick listen. I still think Sarah Brightman is much closer to the genre IR is doing with songs like saRRu munbu /muthal muRai etc. Actually, I thought of her when I first heard saRRu munbu. Interestingly, wikipedia also calls her genre - classical crossover. I was one of the people who used this term for IR's music and apparently IR also agreed with this characterization (during the raajangahm days). Still, it would be awesome to artistes like you suggest work with IR, their mastery of their vocation would elevate IR's composition to the sky.

kiru, Annie Haslam was kind of the unheralded forerunner of Sarah Brightman and Charlotte Church in the classical crossover genre.  Her 1985 album Still Life consisted of excerpts from classical compositions set to lyrics and Annie's vocals with orchestral accompaniment arranged by Louis Clark and performed by the Royal Philharmonic.  It did well in Britain but somehow failed, mostly due to lack of promotion, in USA and turned out to be a one off album.  Before that, in the 70s, Renaissance, the band she fronted/fronts, used orchestra in lots of their tracks (e.g. Day of the Dreamer, Song for all Seasons, Touching Once, Can You Hear Me, etc) but these were more ambitious and complex.  Title track of Still Life, derived from a Bach composition, posted here:





Kate Bush is a very idiosyncratic artist and defies classification but Andrew Powell (who also worked with Alan Parsons) handled the arrangements for her albums Lionheart and Never for Ever and orchestra creeps into some of the songs, particularly Wow!Wow!Wow!.  As such, the theatrical flavour of British art rock evokes an orchestral effect with its dramatic contours even when no orchestra is used.  

We can continue this in the rock thread if you are interested.  Smile  I remember giving Sarah Brightman a shot a few years back and feeling her work was too commercial for my tastes.  I am piqued now that you say Sattru Munbu reminded you of Sarah Brightman.  Any specific songs you were thinking of, would love to hear.

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Re: Rudramma Devi

Post  app_engine on Mon Apr 27, 2015 7:22 pm

avarE sonnAr Laughing 


Noted musicians from across Europe have teamed up with Ilayaraja to score music for Rudhramadevi. The most renowned London Philharmonic Orchestra has also teamed up with Ilayaraja. When Ilayaraja gave the notes to these internationally renowned musicians, they were awestruck and amazed at his musical knowledge. And they had tough time in understanding the musical notations that the maestro composed. This was revealed by Ilayaraja himself at an audio launch function of a Tamil film. Ilayaraja, in all his humility, has attributed to God his musical talent. He said in effect, that it is God’s gift and that it was like this from the beginning of his career.  He also confessed that he does not know much music, which is why he has been coming back to the recording theaters… to learn and experiment further.

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Re: Rudramma Devi

Post  kiru on Wed Apr 29, 2015 2:18 am

Was IR the first to use foreign musicians in Indian film music (in Guru) ?
(@CK - I have responded to you in the Rawk thread)

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Re: Rudramma Devi

Post  Drunkenmunk on Wed Apr 29, 2015 8:49 am

kiru wrote:Was IR the first to use foreign musicians in Indian film music (in Guru) ?
(@CK - I have responded to you in the Rawk thread)
He was. And also the first Indian musician to go abroad to use a symphony orchestra for Hey Ram. For Guru, he brought BSO's folks to Chennai (handpicked some 15 of their best players iirc) and used an elaborate 90 man orchestra of BSO's in Budapest for Hey Ram.

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Re: Rudramma Devi

Post  ravinat on Wed Apr 29, 2015 7:40 pm

If I recall correctly, Raja used the BSO players for the first time with Kaala Paani (Malayalam) in 1996. Subsequently, he brought them again for his Guru (Malayalam) in 1997. As DM says, he traveled to Hungary for Hey Ram in 1999/2000.

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Re: Rudramma Devi

Post  kiru on Thu Apr 30, 2015 8:02 am

Thanks DM and Ravi, I think IR is surely a pioneer and visionary, in this regard. I think the more and more he writes for the orchestra, we are in for a better and better music from him. I will take one meghaMo or auna neevEna once every 3 or 6 months. That is more than sufficient for me.

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Re: Rudramma Devi

Post  kamalaakarsh on Fri May 01, 2015 6:49 pm

Drunkenmunk wrote:
kiru wrote:Was IR the first to use foreign musicians in Indian film music (in Guru) ?
(@CK - I have responded to you in the Rawk thread)
He was. And also the first Indian musician to go abroad to use a symphony orchestra for Hey Ram. For Guru, he brought BSO's folks to Chennai (handpicked some 15 of their best players iirc) and used an elaborate 90 man orchestra of BSO's in Budapest for Hey Ram.
I remember my father telling me (when I was boasting about Raaja getting foreign musicians for Hey Ram and all) that Naushad did that long back. He said back then that Naushad recorded BGM for Aan in London. My dad was not computer illiterate and his source was just his memory.

 I looked that up on that internet back then and found some reference in a website I dont recall. Now I googled this up and again, and the search popped up these links:

http://www.filmkailm.com/naushad-marquee-magic/ ("Not many people know that long before conductor Zubin Mehta hit the headlines in the West, Nsushad was the first Indian invited to conduct the London Philharmonic Orchestra in the early Fifties, a rare achievement by any standards.")


http://www.india-forums.com/forum_posts.asp?TID=285326 ("During the background music of AAN which was recorded in London Naushad Sahab was a first and the only Indian to have been allowed to conduct the London Philharmonic Orchestra.")

http://www.indianmelody.com/naushadarticle1.htm (firsthand account by Naushad himself in this webpage)

http://old.thenews.com.pk/03-12-2010/islamabad/18489.htm ("Naushad recalling the process of film making believes that background music is more difficult than composing songs. He used 100-piece orchestra for ‘Aan’ and the re-recording was done in London. Also for the first time, Notation was brought on paper.")

And from wikipedia - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Naushad ("For Aan (1952), he was the first to use a 100-piece orchestra, He was the first composer to have developed the system of western notation in India. The notation for the music of the film Aan was published in book form in London.")

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Re: Rudramma Devi

Post  plum on Sat May 02, 2015 4:26 am

With due respect raagas I find it hard to believe.
This seems to me more of Rahghuman type rewriting of history "Raghu was the first to use WCM in Indian film music" meme that he floated two years ago.
Naushad's known history is full of meh orchestration and that too inconsistent and no discernible character of its own. And then we have Amaldevs and others pointing his lack of involvement in orchestration.

I really would take this with a bucket of salt

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Re: Rudramma Devi

Post  jaiganesh on Sat May 02, 2015 7:22 am

If anyone, I would have hoped to see CRamachandra to be that legend who could have
talked to an international orchestra on par..
Off course Salilda would have jelled well with them.
But only our man could have slapped them silly and make them faint in disbelief..
This is simply stating things as they stand..

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Re: Rudramma Devi

Post  crimson king on Sat May 02, 2015 5:23 pm

The question was simply whether any musician before IR had used foreign musicians in Indian film music and akarsh gave a very valid answer to the question.  Don't sweat it if IR isn't the first in that category.  Don't grumble and argue the point.  It happens; after all, he didn't invent music.  By no means does simply citing the example of Naushad amount to saying it is qualitatively the equal of what IR has done with the BSO.  

By the by, of all the old Hindi composers, Naushad was one of the very few who maintained stylistic integrity and consistency throughout in both melody and orchestration (Salil, MM and SD are the others I can think of immediately).  The songs of Aadmi (1968) are consistent with the style evidenced on Baiju Bawra (1952); nobody who knows a thing or two about music would doubt for a second that both are composed by Naushad.  That is why his music has remained ageless even though he composed for far fewer films than some of his contemporaries like Shankar Jaikishan or SDB.

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Re: Rudramma Devi

Post  Raaga_Suresh on Mon May 11, 2015 7:31 pm

I don't want to get into an argument here but Uttam Singh on stage told that Naushad was a great music director but couldn't write harmony. It was Uttam Singh who did it for him.

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Re: Rudramma Devi

Post  Drunkenmunk on Tue May 12, 2015 2:56 pm

ravinat wrote:If I recall correctly, Raja used the BSO players for the first time with Kaala Paani (Malayalam) in 1996. Subsequently, he brought them again for his Guru (Malayalam) in 1997. As DM says, he traveled to Hungary for Hey Ram in 1999/2000.
IIRC, he mentions to SPB in this interview that all musicians used for Kaalapaani were selected from Chennai and India in this interview to SPB I had shared here: http://ilayaraja.forumms.net/t149p15-must-read-must-see-ir-related-articles-and-interviews#17842

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Re: Rudramma Devi

Post  app_engine on Tue May 12, 2015 8:01 pm

 அந்தஹ் புரமுலோ அந்தால சிலகா


பிரம்மாண்ட பொருட் செலவில் உருவாகி வரும் படம் ‘ருத்ரமாதேவி’. படத்திற்கு இசை இளையராஜா. இந்த படத்தில் அனுஷ்கா, நித்யா மேனன், கேத்ரீன் தெரசா மூவருக்கும் ஒரு சிறப்பு பாடல் உள்ளது. அரண்மனையில் நான்கு தோழிகள் ஆடிப்பாடி மகிழ்வது போன்ற அந்த பாடலில், நித்யா மேனன் உயரம் குறைவு என்பதால் அவருக்காக அனுஷ்கா சற்றே குனிந்து நடித்துள்ளாராம்.

Laughing

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Re: Rudramma Devi

Post  kamalaakarsh on Wed May 13, 2015 2:51 pm

Raaga_Suresh wrote:I don't want to get into an argument here but Uttam Singh on stage told that Naushad was a great music director but couldn't write harmony. It was Uttam Singh who did it for him.
I would actually take Uttam Singh's claims with a pinch of salt. He must have written, but possibly for Naushad's later years output. Uttam Singh was born in 1948 and by the time he started writing harmony or whatever, I think his age would have been at least 30 or if he was a genius may be 20-25 (improbable) - which means... that he could have worn that "arranger" cap in the orchestra somewhere in mid-70s (debatable, but just a guess going by his age and all). Uttam Singh's wiki page says he partnered with another instrumentalist named Jagdish when venturing into arranging and those films included Rajashri productions - which were mostly productions from 70s, 80s and beyond. And Naushad's output by that time (70s) dropped significantly. Uttam Singh played for Naushad and he did arrange music for Naushad's swan songs in Aathwaan Sur (ghazal album - good one) and Taj Mahal (some good songs). 

Personally, I feel that Naushad's creme de la creme output happened in 50s and 60s. And the chances of Uttam Singh "helping" Naushad in that phase is highly improbable. Yes, there could be some other arrangers (telugu composer Master Venu was Naushad's assistant for some movies and Naushad's style of orchestration is evident in some of Master Venu's own compositions in Telugu) who might have helped Naushad. But Naushad did have a specific and distinct style of arrangement for which he became very famous too. So somewhere, I am inclined to believe that - no matter who helped Naushad write harmony parts, Naushad had a keen ear for such things and employed such arrangements, as evidenced in some songs from albums such as Udan Khatola, Shabab, Amar, Aan, Mother India etc. 

(diversion: I recently listened to songs of Amar again after a long time and loved the album immensely).

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Re: Rudramma Devi

Post  kamalaakarsh on Wed May 13, 2015 2:54 pm

crimson king wrote:The question was simply whether any musician before IR had used foreign musicians in Indian film music and akarsh gave a very valid answer to the question.  Don't sweat it if IR isn't the first in that category.  Don't grumble and argue the point.  It happens; after all, he didn't invent music.  By no means does simply citing the example of Naushad amount to saying it is qualitatively the equal of what IR has done with the BSO.  

By the by, of all the old Hindi composers, Naushad was one of the very few who maintained stylistic integrity and consistency throughout in both melody and orchestration (Salil, MM and SD are the others I can think of immediately).  The songs of Aadmi (1968) are consistent with the style evidenced on Baiju Bawra (1952); nobody who knows a thing or two about music would doubt for a second that both are composed by Naushad.  That is why his music has remained ageless even though he composed for far fewer films than some of his contemporaries like Shankar Jaikishan or SDB.
I thoroughly see this aspect in his repertoire and agree with you.

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Re: Rudramma Devi

Post  crimson king on Wed May 13, 2015 5:20 pm

kamalaakarsh wrote:
Raaga_Suresh wrote:I don't want to get into an argument here but Uttam Singh on stage told that Naushad was a great music director but couldn't write harmony. It was Uttam Singh who did it for him.
I would actually take Uttam Singh's claims with a pinch of salt. He must have written, but possibly for Naushad's later years output. Uttam Singh was born in 1948 and by the time he started writing harmony or whatever, I think his age would have been at least 30 or if he was a genius may be 20-25 (improbable) - which means... that he could have worn that "arranger" cap in the orchestra somewhere in mid-70s (debatable, but just a guess going by his age and all). Uttam Singh's wiki page says he partnered with another instrumentalist named Jagdish when venturing into arranging and those films included Rajashri productions - which were mostly productions from 70s, 80s and beyond. And Naushad's output by that time (70s) dropped significantly. Uttam Singh played for Naushad and he did arrange music for Naushad's swan songs in Aathwaan Sur (ghazal album - good one) and Taj Mahal (some good songs). 

Personally, I feel that Naushad's creme de la creme output happened in 50s and 60s. And the chances of Uttam Singh "helping" Naushad in that phase is highly improbable. Yes, there could be some other arrangers (telugu composer Master Venu was Naushad's assistant for some movies and Naushad's style of orchestration is evident in some of Master Venu's own compositions in Telugu) who might have helped Naushad. But Naushad did have a specific and distinct style of arrangement for which he became very famous too. So somewhere, I am inclined to believe that - no matter who helped Naushad write harmony parts, Naushad had a keen ear for such things and employed such arrangements, as evidenced in some songs from albums such as Udan Khatola, Shabab, Amar, Aan, Mother India etc. 

(diversion: I recently listened to songs of Amar again after a long time and loved the album immensely).


Ditto.  This is basically my point.  A composer can collaborate with foreign musicians without knowing how to actually write harmony or even if he knows, he may not bother to do it himself and delegate it to an assistant.  Nobody is disputing IR's ability to reel off original sheet music at lightning speed and there is no need certainly to reiterate this on an IR fan forum.

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Re: Rudramma Devi

Post  kiru on Fri May 15, 2015 3:08 am

I was the original poster who posed the question whether IR was the first to use foreign musicians. It does not matter to me if IR was second or even third. Re: a composer being able to use foreign musicians for harmony parts - I think a Music Director can do that. A composer SHOULD write all the parts, I think. In the indian film music industry, there has always been quite number of precedences with the harmony/western parts being delegated to some body else. Our Music Directors were experts in the indian classical music system and creating new tunes. I think IR is (atleast) one of the few who writes all the parts himself - either harmony or rhythm. I dont think this takes away the greatness of our past masters (like Naushad). Their music have always been tune heavy and WCM played secondary role. IR is increasing the visibility of WCM in our film music to a great extent. Post NEPV - even songs are WCM heavy. I wish IR is blessed with good health and longer life and when his experiments really mature, it is going to be a revolution, if not revelation, in music.

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Re: Rudramma Devi

Post  Raaga_Suresh on Sat May 16, 2015 3:43 pm

Kamal,

As Kiru rightly put it, it doesn't take away anything from Naushad or past masters if they did not know WCM. That was not their forte and that is fine. As you said Uttam Singh may have assisted Naushad at a later date but what he said on stage amounted to saying that Raja was the only complete musician in Indian context. All others including Naushad and Ramachandra needed help in some aspect or the other. From whatever I have heard, people did assist Naushad.

This brings us to other question of consistency. Not only Naushad but also C Ramachandra, Anil Biswas, Madanmohan were very consistent in their sound. It is well known and well documented (atleast in case of Anilda and Madanmohan) that they had arrangers who did the harmony. Using the same arrangers with whom they gelled well brought in this sort of consistency. The case in point is Anilda. There is such an extraordinary consistency in his musical arrangement that you cannot miss his signature. Yet, he is on record saying that his arrangements were done by one Ram Singh. You can say the same about K V Mahadevan. His signature is unmistakable in most songs and it is common knowledge that Pugazhendi did all the arrangements. 

So most of the masters were wonderful tunesmiths who took external help for other aspects of their music but ensured good quality control. That is why people in the know in music industry hold Raja in such high regard. For as Kiru mentions he was the only one who could deal with all aspects of music. 

As far as who used foreign players first, I agree with CR and Kiru. This is a data point and has no bearing on musical aspects. If a particular music director used foreign orchestra for the first time, then it is a fact. No one can deny that Smile

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Re: Rudramma Devi

Post  crimson king on Sat May 16, 2015 5:47 pm

Yeah, that was my only point, that factually speaking it is not wrong to cite Naushad's example.  Otherwise, it stands to reason that IR is one of the few, if not the only true composer, we have produced so far.  It seems that Salil Choudhry could write notes but other than that, I don't know anyone else who can actually write down all the music (for all instruments) that he wants performed.

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Re: Rudramma Devi

Post  ravinat on Sat May 16, 2015 5:52 pm

CK/Suresh

  Though I do not want to get into this debate, here is how our current crop of composers get away....

http://www.avid.com/US/products/SibeliusFirst

  I wrote about this when I reviewed EMT (electronic music technology) some years ago.

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Re: Rudramma Devi

Post  plum on Mon May 25, 2015 6:59 am

Raaga_Suresh wrote:Kamal,

As Kiru rightly put it, it doesn't take away anything from Naushad or past masters if they did not know WCM. That was not their forte and that is fine. As you said Uttam Singh may have assisted Naushad at a later date but what he said on stage amounted to saying that Raja was the only complete musician in Indian context. All others including Naushad and Ramachandra needed help in some aspect or the other. From whatever I have heard, people did assist Naushad.

This brings us to other question of consistency. Not only Naushad but also C Ramachandra, Anil Biswas, Madanmohan were very consistent in their sound. It is well known and well documented (atleast in case of Anilda and Madanmohan) that they had arrangers who did the harmony. Using the same arrangers with whom they gelled well brought in this sort of consistency. The case in point is Anilda. There is such an extraordinary consistency in his musical arrangement that you cannot miss his signature. Yet, he is on record saying that his arrangements were done by one Ram Singh. You can say the same about K V Mahadevan. His signature is unmistakable in most songs and it is common knowledge that Pugazhendi did all the arrangements. 

So most of the masters were wonderful tunesmiths who took external help for other aspects of their music but ensured good quality control. That is why people in the know in music industry hold Raja in such high regard. For as Kiru mentions he was the only one who could deal with all aspects of music. 

As far as who used foreign players first, I agree with CR and Kiru. This is a data point and has no bearing on musical aspects. If a particular music director used foreign orchestra for the first time, then it is a fact. No one can deny that Smile
Suresh, pls chk DM

My tkae:
1. Naushad wasnt exactly consistent with orchestration across his career or sometimes even in the same year. Unfortunately, dont have time to work out a phd post on this. Suresh, if you have time...
2. Not just Uttam, Jerry Amaldev has a lot to say even on Naushad's "tune making"
3. Yes, it doesnt matter who was the first. IR is the most complete, along with Salilda, even who is a notch behind IR overall
4. Of course, when ARR "writes" a "symphony", he will become the greatest ever IFM, and I hope I dont live long enough to see that
5. Apart from others, S Rajeswhara Rao is said to be the pioneer in studying WCM concepts and using htem in South Indian Film music. Of course no foreign orchestra cigar for him

6. Been hearing Vividhbharti for past few months regularly - and thus catching up with Hindi film music after more than 25 years - and it is clearly difficult to identify a composer from orchestration is the starkest realisation. Except for Salilda on one end, and Shankar Jaikishen on the other, it is hard to say. Lots of similarities. Sometimes Madan Mohan Roshan et al are identifiable by their tune structure and some of the orch but not consistently through orchestration. Naushad most certainly not. So much variation.

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Re: Rudramma Devi

Post  kiru on Thu Jun 04, 2015 9:09 pm

Well, I also (even though my opinion is not that valid, thanks to music ignorance) feel there is not much distinction between various hindi MDs in the compilations I have. To be fair, I'd think even IR's music is not absolutely unique from a high level. He might have his own style of tune and orchestration but the song in structure and concept is not very different from other MDs of the past. It is all basically founded on the idea of using the orchestra (mostly strings) to add harmony/grandeur to the monophonic indian melody. Later, chords and basslines were added to add more 'body' to the sound. Atleast, this is my understanding. I remember reading it was one English guy who goaded our musicians to use strings so that it will sound good (grand) with the big screen (dont remember the name). That is why I consider 'Indian Film Music' as a genre and credit IR to taking this to its pinnacle (and amazing it is still a WIP for IR, it looks).

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Re: Rudramma Devi

Post  app_engine on Fri Jun 05, 2015 4:11 am

June 26 movie


Gunasekhar's Big Budget film, Rudramma Devi is finally releasing. The movie which is lying in cans is now gearing up for release on June 26th. Guna had officially confirmed this update. There was a very poor response for the movie's trailer and the business is not moving as a result. Hence the movie is being delayed.

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