Music maestro A R Rahman says composing the music of his debut Hindi movie “Rangeela”, which completes 25 years in cinema this month, felt like he was discovering one thing new.
The Ram Gopal Varma-directed romantic drama, starring Urmila Tatondkar as a backup dancer Mili, Aamir Khan as her ‘tapori friend Munna and Jackie Shroff as Bollywood star Raj Kamal, is considered one of the landmark musical hits of the ‘90s.
The 1995 film, which marked the arrival of Rahman in Bollywood, had seven songs composed by him including evergreen hits such as ‘Tanha Tanha’, ‘Rangeela Re’, ‘Yayire Yayire’ and ‘Kya Kare Kya Na Kare’.
His songs for “Roja” (1992) and “Bombay” (1995) have been dubbed from Tamil. “Composing the songs of ‘Rangeela’ was like discovering something new. The soundtrack arrived naturally and we didn’t feel the pressure for this movie because I was enjoying the new company I had in Ramu and lyricist Mehboob. We would just talk and joke and have fun. It was my kind of vibe,” Rahman informed PTI in an interview.
Crediting the movie’s crew, together with choreographers Saroj Khan, Ahmed Khan, actors and producerJhamu Sughand, Rahman stated he learnt rather a lot whereas engaged on the film.
“The first song that we worked on was ‘Tanha Tanha’ and then came ‘Rangeela Re’. The most important decision we made was getting Asha Bhonsleji to sing. Her voice brought something extraordinary to the music… She lent credibility to the soundtrack in a big way because Mehboob, Ramu and me, we were all new,” the music maestro stated.
Rahman nonetheless remembers Aamir’s yellow jacket that he says “stood out” through the scoring. “I was stunned, I still remember. And the way he acted was brilliant. And Urmila was brilliant,” Rahman recalled. The composer added he was already an enormous fan of Shroff, having seen Subhash Ghai’s “Hero”. What makes the movie stand out for Rahman is the truth that the crew trusted their instincts whereas creating the music.
“I think the whole soundtrack was an experiment. Apart from ‘Tanha Tanha’ and ‘Yayire’, nobody does a (‘raag’) Bhairavi for the beginning of a song, it is used at the end but I didn’t know that information. I was like happy tuning ‘Tanha Tanha’. There were strains of Bhairavi constantly in it.” ”‘Rangeela Re’, he stated, had an old skool melody, a 1950s type of factor.
“We simply glided by the intuition of ‘this is right, it feels right,” the Oscar winner added.
“Mangta Hai Kya”, the composer said, was another complicated song that “freaked people out because they did not know what to expect”. “It was just going on, almost like a trip rather than having the proper ‘mukhda’, ‘antara’. I imagine some folks stated the tune received’t work however as soon as it was picturised, folks favored the novelty of it, they actually cherished it. The manner Ramu picturised it was very cool.”
Lyricist Mehboob stated “Rangeela” marked his first collaboration with Rahman and the expertise on the movie turned out to be a life-changing second for him. Mehboob and Rahman later labored collectively on a lot of movies comparable to “Thakshak”, “Doli Saja Ke Rakhna” and dubbed model of “Dil Hi Dil Mein”.
“I am thankful to Allah and AR for accepting me as a lyricist and Ramuji for giving me a break with this big film and believing in me. While writing the lyrics, I never thought it will become such a massive hit,” the lyricist stated.
There have been many tributes to “Rangeela” by numerous artists together with Bollywood Brass Band over the previous 25 years and Rahman stated he’s ”moved” by the love and appreciation for the movie’s music.
“I’m very moved because that means the music has spread a lot. It’s a kind of validation for the music. And it”s probably the payoff that we all need in our work. We”re blessed that we do something different and it gets recognized. So I always feel grateful.”