Allah Rakha Rahman. A person of few words. And at the first look, he probably wouldn't stand out. But from the time Rahman appeared in the scene in 1992 with Roja, the Indian music industry would never be the same. Music speaks a common language, and no other person than ARR has made this more evident. Indian music was ready for a new segment in the 1990s, and Rahman infused fresh blood into it, spawning a new generation in music. It has been 16 years since, and Rahman's music continues to captivate and fascinate us. The Oscar and golden globe awards are nothing more than an assertion to the marvelous talent of this little man. Among all the Indian music artists who have taken Indian cinema and art to the world, Rahman is definitely one of the fore bearers.
One the eve of his Oscar victory for Slumdog Millionaire, I present my top 10 favorite Rahman compositions.
10. Urvasi urvasi (1994) - I took a long time to choose this song, cos its the last on my list, and there were so many awesome ones to choose from. This again wins because its such a cool song. From the movie Kadhalan, Prabhu deva's first movie, Shankar's direction, and Rahman's score, all songs in this movie are very impressive. This one tops them all.
9. Dil Se re (1995) - This song is simply Rahman! The rhythm and base really sets the song going. Rahman's first Hindi movie. Lyrics dint entirely make much sense. But you cant stop tapping your foot to this. If you ask me, this song deserved an Oscar.
8. Anjali Anjali (1994) - Melody. SP totally rocks on this one. Though the movie was not a big hit, and the music never got much recognition, this is one of Rahman's early masterpieces. With a superb use of instruments, including Kadri Gopalnath's Sax, and soul stirring vocals, this song definitely deserves to be 8.
7. Humma Humma (1995) - No Rahman list is complete without this one. One of is most popular and earliest number that will get a crowd into a dancing frenzy. Evergreen song, no matter when you listen to it. Love the Shehnai on it. Rahman loves using it on all his songs, if you notice.
6. Yeh Jo des hai tera (2004) - Every NRI's theme. The music and lyrics certainly makes one to miss his homeland. The song lays out the two paths that lay in front of every Indian living outside of India. The choice of money and luxury over home and family. Its never an easy choice, and this song makes it obvious. Rahman's own voice makes the song an unforgettable piece. The instrumental version of the same song is just as beautiful, if not more.
5. Jana Gana mana (2007) - The killer number from Ayudha Ezhuthu. Set in a heart thumping beat, this song is sure to get u all charged up. My song for the treadmill. A great power song to get you going!
4. Ottagatha Kattiko (1999) - IT amuses me when I see that Jai Ho won an Oscar. No doubt its a marvelous song. But there have been so many songs of Rahman that have enthralled millions. This one is from the movie Gentleman. This song makes me want to get up and dance every single time. Awesome beat, wonderful vocals from SPB and Janaki, this song rocks! Shehnai again..!!
3. Vande mataram (Maa tujhe salaam) (2000)- Every Indian unofficial national anthem. What more do I have to say about this song. A masterpiece, worthy of an Oscar.
2. Konjam Nilavu (1993)- Though the movie Thiruda thiruda itself dint do so well, it was one of Rahman's finest compositions. Fact paced, and catchy...A musical delight. None of the songs in this movie really made a big impression. Another song "thee thee" is just as wonderful.
1. Kadhal Rojave (1993)- And we reach the end of the list and have come a full circle, back to Rahman's first movie, Roja. I still remember the time when Roja was released, and the kind of attention it received from everyone. Everyone was fascinated with the music, all from Rahman's keboard. Every single song in the movie is superb. With breathe-taking music and SPB's deep sensitive voice, this has to be my number one choice.
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