First things first, this post is dedicated to each & every member from A R Rahman Yahoo Fan Group which has been an integral part of my daily life for past years and even though this post maybe amateurish but had to finally write about a musical genius called A R Rahman whom I respect a lot and without which, music would not have been so life inspiring.
Rockstar was in news quite early when UTV was supposed to produce it with John Abraham as its lead, but neither did take off nor Imtiaz Ali was a hotshot director as he is today after Jab We Met and Love Aaj Kal. The only great feature being ARR would be music composer but that seemed uncertain after Pritam gave music to Ali’s earlier ventures, so this collaboration was awaited with bated breath just because of its theme which is Devdas meets Rockstar, Ranbir Kapoor as its main lead and expectations of a full blown musical.
Now as the music is out and after countless repeated hearings, ARR shows us who is boss when it comes to his department and a very special mention and applause to Irshad Kamil whose lyrics are truly imaginative.
Jolting down my thoughts on the soundtrack as per listing on CD and a very personal take on it.
Phir se udd chala[Mohit Chauhan]: Mohit Chauhan who has an astonishing 9 tracks with himself, a rarity in these days as a single voice for the main protagonist and a first for ARR as far as I recollect, kick starts the proceedings of an aspiring individual who wants to dream and fly. With a very catchy hymn at start and complimenting lyrics; this song on an early morning can do wonders for anyone’s confidence. Especially note the way it progresses after 2:30 and you know who is in control.
Jo Bhi Main[Mohit Chauhan]: The first song promo that came and was very much sure that we were all in store for a musical orgasm. Soft rock combined with a feel of live audience and words like ‘’Jo bhi main kehna chahoon, barbaad kare alfaaz’’; this composition will be heard in years to come irrespective of the movie’s fate.
Katiya Karoon[Harshdeep Kaur Additional Vocals by Sapna Awasthi]: A Punjabi number which seems a permanent fixture as per Imtiaz Ali’s past efforts at filmmaking, you can feel ARR and his stamp exactly at 2:59 where we know it’s a collaborative effort. Harshdeep Kaur gives it her best shot and would love to hear her voice more in future projects.
Kun Faaya Kun[A R Rahman, Mohit Chauhan, Javed Ali]: “Kadam bada le, Hadhon ko mita le, Aaja Khaalipann mein peeka ghar tera” with lyrics like these and a call to the almighty ARR, Mohit & Javed Ali achieve a song which can put you on a divine trance and seems the character goes through a range of emotions in his life to seek this especially after Mohit Chauhan enters into fray. Nobody can match ARR in these songs and is an absolute favourite of this album.
Sheher Mein[Mohit Chauhan, Karthik]: Surprise!!!!Surprise!!!! The protagonist seems to have got a break in recording his first number but in disagreement to the way and advice it must have been rendered. It requires a genius to make a song enjoyable which seems more of a word play and some dialogues in between to bring a smile. “Chitti daali thi aaunga main tere ghar, mail bhi kiya tha tere id par” will always linger after this song gets over.
Hawa Hawa[Mohit Chauhan, Additional Vocals by Vivian Chaix, Tanvi Shah, Suvi Suresh, Shalini]: Musically enriching with Latin/Spanish/European sounds; this is a super experimental track but on some repeated hearing will transform you in its imagery with closed eyes; bringing an operatic feel. There is a tale being narrated about a Queen and her expression to free herself which is so beautifully orchestrated; you can feel the hard work which went behind this song.
Aur Ho[Mohit Chauhan, Alma Ferovic]: In its first hearing it gives a feel of Mera Yaar Mila De from Saathiya, but once you hear in its entirety; this is one song which suffocates your feelings of hurt/helplessness/anxiety and a haunting assault on your senses. Irshad Kamil deserves all praises for some great lyrics and will find a lot of appreciation as days progress.
Tango for Taj: An instrumental which just adds more value to an already power packed soundtrack. Always been a great admirer of such gems in ARR albums for few in contemporary composers even give background score to their own films.
Tum Ko[Kavita Subramanium]: Kavita Subramanium(Krishnamurthy) makes comeback with a song which is the female version of Tum Ho(Mohit Chauhan) with pain stroking sarangi and tabla given for good effect. Brings certain nostalgic feel when Kavita was a more prominent singer though; I have my apprehensions on its running time in the movie.
The Dichotomy of Fame [Feat Balesh on Shehnai & Kabuli on Guitars]: Jugalbandi between 2 artistes and which is well we will see last of Shammi Kapoor on screen as this musical piece plays from your one ear to other if given minute attention and can be more enjoyed on screen too. A good headphone can stimulate your mood for this instrumental.
Naadan Parindey[A R Rahman, Mohit Chauhan]: ‘’Sau dard badan pe pheley hain, har karam ke kapde maile hain’; ARR sings it with so much pathos that your knees go weak to return to your roots, old self, pure love with some exquisite guitar work. Completely spellbound with this song and is an emotional journey of anyone who has lost touch with himself. Sure to win all hearts of genuine music lovers. “Kyun desh videsh phire maara, Yun haal behaal thaka haara. Kyun desh videsh phire maara, tu raat beraat ka banjaara.” Awesome in one word.
Tum Ho[Mohit Chauhan, Suzanne D’mello]: A very soft number which has some real haunting back vocals by Suzanne D’Mello . Don’t agree with a lot of critics as being a leftover to past numbers by ARR which seems more as a case of not feeling the intensity and missing out on little nuances, maybe because of the times we are living in.”Khud ko main haar gaya hoon, tumko main jeeta hoon.” Soulful is the word here.
Saadda Haq[Mohit Chauhan]: Now it’s time to let go your rage in a song which is well turning out to be an anthem of gigantic proportions. With some terrific rebellious words, kick ass guitar by Orianthi and energetic vocals from Mohit Chauhan, this song is attitude personified. Hindi cinema never had a rock number this electrifying and “Main Khuda” from PAANCH is the only one I distinctly remember. Palangtod chartbuster.
Meeting Place: Ranbir Kapoor verses a short line by poet Rumi and you can expect where this movie is heading in its climax which goes by “Pata hai…..Yahan se bahut door…..Galat aur sahi ke paar…..Ek maidaan hai…..Main wahan miloonga tujhe.” I am sold here itself for the movie.
Once in a while comes a soundtrack which makes you excited, pumped , liberated and blows your theory about how a single person in all these 20 years have raised a bar for consistent quality music. A R Rahman take a bow, RESPECT in bold.
Last but not least I am grateful to Shivani, Sid, Indro and my lovable Meetusaki without whom my aspiration on writing a musical review would have been incomplete as I share some beautiful memories corresponding with the music of this film.
Eagerly awaiting for the movie just because of its music and will be a treat if sound recording is in 7.1 surround to have an audio-visual treat at multiplexes. Till then just immerse yourself.