Bugged with Rahman

I know, I know – this is a pretty blasphemous statement coming from me. The two readers of my blog might be greatly upset. But that still does not prevent me from venting my feelings.

A.R. Rahman is a genius when it comes to music. There is no way around that. He has produced some of the best music in recent times (like the last 15 years). He has also inspired a number of clones to try and produce the similar kind of music. Imitation is definitely the best form of flattery. Of course, we all know that these guys regularly fail or start producing repetitive music. I should also add that 3 out of every 4 songs I listen to is made by Rahman (it could be even 3 of every 3 :)).

But recently, Rahman has started remixing his own music especially in Tamil. His recent one – Sakkaratti is a prime example. 3 of his songs are original and mostly range from good to awesome (Taxi anyone). Unfortunately the other 3 songs are a direct copy from Meenaxi, a Hindi film. Don’t get me wrong – the music is awesome. But sometimes it sucks to hear the songs in a different language. They were made for Hindi words and now they are supposed to sound good with Tamil. Really? I know all his fans will say that the song sounds good – sure. Meenaxi was an awesome album and the songs were brilliant as usual. But you need to ask yourself this – does it sound better in Hindi or in Tamil? Can you shake the original words out of your head? If you can, you are way better than me :). Shame on you ARR. For all your talent, are you telling me you cannot produce 6 songs in each movie. Do you have to actually take something from your hindi version and put it in Tamil (or the other way round)?

I have started to just forward these songs after I listened to them a couple of times. Please note that this is not a very easy task when I am running. So they probably will get kicked out pretty soon.

Anyway, I have officially started my training – by that I mean actually running and not just my rest day :). I did 7.12 miles in 67 minutes. It was an extremely hot morning and I was completely drenched by the time I completed the run. I could also have finished a little stronger. Tomorrow is my track workout.

I also bought my new ASICS 2130 – another 100 dollars down :). Same color – they did not have a bright orange one in REI.

Explore posts in the same categories: Music, Philly marathon, Running

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20 Comments on “Bugged with Rahman”

  1. ani Says:

    While I understand your frustration that some songs in this album were from Meenaxi, I still find it weird that if you like ARR’s music so much, you can accuse him without getting the facts right.
    a) 2 not 3 are from Meenaxi (corresponding Chinnamma and Yeh Rishta). So there are 4 original songs

    b) ARR had initially refused this movie. But the director and Bharatiraja persisted and told him they will wait for as long as it takes. They took 6 ARR songs from Hindi (including 3 from Meenaxi) and asked his permission to use them. ARR then obliged and used 2 and composed 4 original (and this is not a cooked up story …this is from ARR’s close aides as well as a well known press news item now)

    If you really love ARR and what he embodies – I would expect you to know him better and realise the pressure, the expectations, the criticisms each time he composes something – and he meets them almost every time. So I dont think he ever needs to be ashamed of himself.

    Apologise if I sounded harsh …but ARR bashing is something that really gets on my nerves 😐


  2. Vithur Says:

    Hi. I am very sad to know that you do not know the real story behind Rahman composing songs for Sakkarakatti. I quote what he said in the Audio Launch function, ” The Director approached me with the story. I liked their enthusiasm, and told them that I was busy with Hindi projects, and told them that he needed six months time to decide on the project. The Director, Kala Prabhu told he would wait indefinitely and wanted Rahman very badly. It was the Director who wanted songs from Rahmanji Hindi Movies in total. But seeing the enthusiasm of the Director, Rahman wanted to do fresh songs for them, and gave the remaining tracks. It wasnt Rahman ‘c choice to give songs from meenaxi. And dont comment something without knowing the truth, or the reality. Never again use words like ” Shame on Rahman”. Do you know Rahman’a calibre ?. Do you know his sincereity towards music ?. Have a track of what is happening, and what is reality before commenting something out of the blues..

    The Director of the Film Sakkarakatti wanted to wait for 10 years for getting the music for th film. See the love of the Director for Rahman’s music and calibre, and the songs are rocking.

    and Finally, even Meenaxi was done by Rahman, and he hasnt copied from anywhere and he has the right to use his tunes back.

    Remove the comments pls. You can cross check anywhere to find if what I had said is right or wrong

  3. Guppy Says:

    Ani… Yes, all three songs are not from Meenaxi. One does sound pretty close to the one in Rang De Basanti -but that is immaterial. I really dont mean to bash ARR – I actually love his music like I mentioned. In fact, my wife feels that I dont appreciate other music directors enough.

    That being said, I am still sad that he reproduced some songs from his Hindi movie – yes, I don’t know the full story. But the story I do know is that he took some of his own music and reproduced it. I listened to it just because it was Rahman – and as a fan, I have every right to feel sad that I did not listen to something original. He has raised my expectations of him to a very high degree and this reproducing of songs did not feel right. The director might have wanted it badly but as someone who has a say in what kind of music he creates (considering he is one of the great ones), I feel he should have said no.

    Maybe I have been reading too much Fountain Head but I think every genius has to do things as originally as possible. I am sure Rahman doesnt care too hoots about what I think but …

  4. Guppy Says:

    Farzad … I got the full story. That being said, i am still a little disappointed that he has reproduced his own music. I guess I should be happy that he feels like he is cheating his fans.

    Like i mentioned in my blog, I am a huge fan of his.

  5. Guppy Says:

    Vithur…I understand your feelings. But I also think that as a fan, I have the right to expect real good work and not a copy. That is the reason why I said shame on Rahman and I stand by it. Yes, the originals are his songs but still… Are they going to charge less for the CD just because I have the original for Meenaxi – the answer is a definite no. So I feel a little upset.

    Please note that I do know Rahman’s caliber and appreciate all his music. There are lots of films I watched just to see the video and see if it goes with his songs. Just because I appreciate his music and he is a certified genius doesn’t mean I cant criticize his work or express my opinions.

    Most of my runs, I still listen to his music exclusively and that is not going to change. I will also probably not listen to those three songs and that is not going to change either.

    So while I can see why your sensibilities are hurt, don’t expect me to take back my comment.

  6. senthil V Says:

    Well I think Rahman is doing a great service by bringing his awesome tunes to tamil from hindi which otherwise wouldnt have reached the ears of this marathamizhan:) I agree that some sound better in certain languages.

  7. Anand Subramani Says:

    Hi Guppy,

    no comments on the rehashed songs πŸ™‚ s!!. but an interesting tidbit, there are 7 songs, not 6 in the movie.


    the song “Goodmorning TamilNade” was advertised/discussed in the forums before the audio released, but for some reason, was not included in other websites. it is there in the above link, good one. check it out!!

  8. Guppy Says:

    Mani boy… I should have mentioned in my previous comment that I stole the original for Meenaxi from my cousin but did not have the heart to :).

  9. Anand Subramani Says:


    no issues there :), got one from Karthik, and no, i did not buy it from him :D.

  10. priya Says:

    Gups……….I appreciate that you a expressed your opinion in this case instead of blindly supporting ARR:-)

  11. catcharun Says:

    wow u made the arr mailing group..congrats da :)..as to my choice, the hindi ones are definitely better only because they came out first..the human ears (at least mine) get tuned to certain voices,inflections and tones and know when things change..that way the tamil version sounds quite different..but no way am i bugged with rahman πŸ™‚
    also there is no such thing as too much fountainhead…actually there is ..atlas shrugged πŸ™‚

    senthil – rather valid comment..that is exactly what i felt as well. the lyrics arent half bad but as i said above, the tamil ones just suffered the fate of coming out later

  12. Guppy Says:

    I made the what??? I guess I should be proud. I can go check my email from that group also – I have not done that in a while :).

  13. isparku Says:

    I can perfectly understand your feelings but I would tell you to think like ARR. The thing is ARR composes his music but according to the director’s requirement. Most of the music directors do. I have heard that he has CDs stacked with tunes he composes whenever he “gets” them (in his mind) which directors listen to and if find it interesting go ahead, else he does composing fresh. So now what if a director from south finds the tunes on a cd suiting his film, but an amused ARR tells him it is already in a movie called Meenaxi in hindi!! This is quite a possible situation. Else the director could have specifically asked for those tunes having liked them in the original. Remember that movie in hindi (it was a big flop dunno its name) which used all tunes from rythm? That was director’s requirement. One or two cases ARR accepts, was his own fondness for the songs , which has worked out well too!
    Keep running!

  14. Guppy Says:

    I agree that I did not look at it from ARR’s point of view. If I could, I would probably be a better man for it :). I gave my opinion as a fan and I see that I have ruffled a few feathers. I just wish that he wouldn’t give directors a copy of the tunes he has already made into music. That way, I get to listen to the other things on the CD and not just what has already been produced. Call me greedy :).

  15. Gopal Says:

    are you a recent fan of rahman?.my advice– stop listening to rahman. stop spending your money on cds.(you can first listen online then you can buy).
    do you feel cheated when some english/malaysian/korean tune is copied in hindi?

  16. Guppy Says:

    No I am definitely not a recent fan of Rahman. I have been listening to him since Roja came out. So no, you are not going to convert me to listen to something else :).

  17. Gopal Says:

    if you are a old fan then why these words—— ” Shame on you ARR. For all your talent, are you telling me you cannot produce 6 songs in each movie. Do you have to actually take something from your hindi version and put it in Tamil (or the other way round)?”———–???????…please edit them.

  18. Guppy Says:

    Just because I am a fan doesn’t mean I should not criticize him if he is copying his own works. I am a fan because I listen to his music, love it and think he is a genius. That also means I do get disappointed if he doesn’t maintain his high standards or the standards I have elevated him at. That is the reason I used those words. I wrote what I felt – I don’t see why I should be taking anything back :). And so, no I am not planning on editing anything.

    Is there anything that says fans should be blind and not criticize the person whose fans they are? If that is the case, we shall agree to disagree on our definition of fans.

  19. Guppy Says:

    And the question about being cheated if some english/malaysian tune is copied in hindi – no I will not be. I dont expect anything better from the random music directors. If it was copied by Rahman, I would definitely be disappointed. If you wouldn’t be, then that is perfectly ok.

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