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Saturday, July 12, 2003

Naushad Remembers RD

Pancham fan Indranil Bhattacharya found an article by Naushad (the composer) about Pancham, during a train journey. The article originally appeared in the June 2003 issue of Bangla magazine Anandlok. Here's an exceprt translated by Indranil.

"In 1989 he had undergone Bypass surgery and I thought that after such a major scare he would stay clear of all such things which took him to such a state. Even he promised to me that he will not touch wine after the operation. But he did not keep his words and again hit bottle to fight loneliness during that time. A genius who ideally should have sailed in the Ocean of music and presented us with rare pearls of sur and taal instead immersed himself in the sea of wine.. ..gradually pushing himself to the doorsteps of death. What a waste of potential and talent! Why Pancham, why did u do this?

"A creative and a versatile genius who had lots of music left in him to again transform moribund music scenario of todays and I believe only he could given a new direction to hindi film music died suddenly and a flower wilted before its full blossom.

"Pancham u did not keep your words."

Check the complete post at Pancham group.

Friday, July 11, 2003

From an Interview of RDB published in Filmfare in 1984

"Somewhere along the way I developed a taste for jazz. I used to accompany friends to their sessions. The musicians just take a sign line and improvise. This brings out your creativity. If a music director doesn't know jazz, he knows nothing. That's how I feel. Spontaneous improvisation is the hallmark of a good musician."
What should be the equipment of a good composer? "He should be well-versed in classical music. This is an absolute must. Some knowledge of jazz and orchestration also helps. He must also have the instinct of picking up cues—say from a car horn or the ringing of a bell."

Complete article text

Tuesday, July 08, 2003

Sport celebrates the victory of difference

"There'll always be beauty in sport, just as even the most hideously remixed RD Burman song will always have the template of a brilliant melody. The metronomic precision of Australian cricketers can't detract from the savage beauty of Gilchrist and Hayden in full flow. But every once in a while, even as you applaud their record-breaking successes, you wish for something different. That's why we like Federer, need Ralf and yearn for Dhanraj."

'Fresh' movie of young Amitabh : scoops@glamsham.com

"Amitabh fans can now go back and see a fresh a 'new' movie with Big B and Shatrughan Sinha. Sounds weird! But the news is that 'Yaar Meri Zindagi' which was completed during the days of Kala Patthar and Dostana was somehow delayed in the cans. The movie was directed by Ashok Gupta and the music was given by Panchamda (R D Burman). Not just Amitabh and Shatrughan, one can also get to see yesteryear artists like Sudha Chandran, Aruna Irani, Padma Khanna, Sharada and Ranjeet. "

Monday, July 07, 2003

indya.com - vindia - The Chosen One: R D Burman

"Most certainly the God of music in the Indian Music industry, R D Burman. The man who added his unique dash of pep and verve in to Hindi film music starting with the 60s. The first music director who brought Rock n' Roll to Hindi tunes, creating a brand of music so distinctly his own.

Panchamda has been and will continue to be an inspiration for many a inspiring musicians. In fact there are a lot of contemporary music directors who still reflect his style. A musician who revolutionised the world of music, the only one whose music was ahead of his time, a versatile music director, he could compose any kind of song, be it classical, modern, love song and make it sound brilliant.

Channel [v] pays tribute to the maestro this July and takes its viewers down memory lane through the melodies in the life of Panchamda. So stay tuned and do not miss this magical musical journey"

Running out of RD remixes
By Narendra Kusnur (mid-day)
At the rate at which music companies are churning out newer and newer remixes everyday, one shudders to think about what will happen two or three years later.

By then, the full form of A&R would have changed. Instead of 'Artiste & Repertoire', it would stand for 'Adapt & Rehash'.

The two most successful A&R managers would probably be called 'Assault & Rape' maestros for their expertise at slaughtering old songs. Needless to say, this is a title they would be utterly proud of.

Keeping this in mind, let's imagine what would happen when a record label's president meets the A&R director on December 31, 2005.

The room is filled with garlanded pictures of RD Burman, and both people salute all pictures 20 times. This is how the conversation goes:

Boss: The major highlight of our performance this year is that while all our other departments have closed down, the remix department is very strong. Congratulations, Mr A&R.

Manager: Thanks, chief. We beat all the other companies hollow this year. Of the 432 albums we released this year, 429 are remix albums. Of these, 401 exclusively contain remixes of RD Burman songs.
(link thru Jaideep Kulkarni)

Sunday, July 06, 2003

By Dr Rajiv Vijaykar (G magazine)

Amit speaks with some authority as he was one of the very few people privy to the information that Pancham was planning an album of his own songs that were to be 're-created' in the proper way. Says Amit, who had listened to some of the basic compositions, 'That album would have been 10 years ahead of today!'
Popular playback veteran Kavita Subramaniam (nee Krishnamurthi) looks at things from a different angle. Even though so many non-talents and music companies are earning parasitically from Pancham's treasury, she feels that even after death, Rahul Dev Burman is 'providing work (read livelihood and a possible passport to fame) to so many aspiring singers and musicians.' But she adds, 'I hate the videos. He was one of our greatest composers whose music communicated to every music lover. Imagine a 21-year-old composing a semi-classical in-depth song like 'Ghar aaja ghir aaye' (Chhote Nawab)! I personally preferred his weightier compositions.' She admits that it is 'reducing his worth' when all that his self-styled current bhakts love or know about Rahul Dev Burman is a couple of dozen 'trendy' or fast numbers. 'Pancham-da was not just about 'Dum maro dum', 'Piya tu ab to aaja' and 'Mehbooba mehbooba',' she points out.
Says Sonu [Nigam] wryly, 'I completely agree that most of his so-called fans even among the film music fraternity do not even know what Pancham was! If you played a '60s fast Shanker Jaikishan song to them, and told them it was Pancham, they would be ignorant enough to believe it! I happen to know that even when RD was alive, Jatin-Lalit were asked to compose songs 'like Pancham', while Pancham himself sat at home without work!'
R.D.Burman's one-time contemporary and friend Pyarelal sums up the situation aptly. 'I agree that it is very sad that his better songs are not being highlighted as much as his relatively ordinary ones. But times have changed and we have to accept this. The re-mixes are often done well musically, but where the singing and videos are often terrible. But finally we cannot afford to forget that within their limitations, all the people concerned are motivated by great affection for this great composer and they are showing their love and respect for him in the best way they can.'

Saturday, July 05, 2003

Indiantelevision: Channel [V] to pay tribute to R D Burman this July

"Even after his death, almost a decade ago, R D Burman aka Panchamda continues to enchant a generation of viewers. Channel [V] will be paying tribute to this music genius in the month of July. He is the Star music arm's The chosen one of the month.

Pumping in a unique dash of pep and verve in to the Hindi film music, R D Burman invigorated the 60's scene. He has been credited as the first music director to bring Rock n' Roll to Hindi tunes and creating a brand of music so distinctly his own. He continues to live amidst the heart of music lovers inspiring a spate of remixes. Even entire films have been made as tribute to him. Channel [V] will take its viewers down memory lane through the melodies in the life of Panchamda. "

Wednesday, July 02, 2003

Oh that dhinchak jhinchak
By Khalid Mohammed (mid-day)

"Be-bop-a-lula. Dear RD Burman's spirit is being rekindled over a choolah. Choke, let there be smoke-clouds-vapours-'n'-guitar-thwang-a-thwangs. Indeed, the late genius composer's accorded the status of god here, what with a prayer being performed before his padlocked apartment.

His vintage hits are recalled, rue-mixed and.. dhinchak jhinchak... bended-blasted-'n'-bombarded out of sound and shape.

Oh oh, surely the potentate of movie music must be rock-'n'-reeling in his heavenly grave.

This despite the die-heart, fan-like intentions of first-time director Sujoy Ghosh to pay his tha-tha-thaiya tribute to Panchamda."

Aao Twist Karen: RD style
By Chaitanya Padukone (from mid-day)

Says Asha [Parekh], "Actually I consider myself lucky that Panchamda was my co-star as a funster in Pyar Ka Mausam. He had a perfect sense of timing for slapstick comedy and even off-screen he was a lively, jovial man. This is evident in his hilarious composition Ek Chatur Naar from Padosan.

Nobody can replace Panchamda -- he was ages ahead of his time. It really hurts to see how his classy songs are being badly tampered with and then it's so embarrassing to watch some of the visuals," grumbles the former chairperson of the Censor Board.

Veteran music composer Anandji (of Kalyanji-Anandji) recalls how RD was so unassuming and low-key. "Pancham always packed his signature punch in almost every song. He could have hit real big time, but being a shy person, he hated hyping himself in the media.

In fact his melodies were instrumental in launching star actors like Amitabh Bachchan in Bombay to Goa, Sanjay Dutt in Rocky and Sunny Deol in Betaab.

RD was a 3-D personality -- a futuristic composer, an innovative singer and a gem of a human being. Very sad that a maestro like him had to go through traumatic times during his last few years. We will always miss him," asserts Anandji.

Tuesday, July 01, 2003


Nabadwipchandra Deb Burman, sitarist, married and had issue.
* Sachin Deb Burman, born 1906, married and had issue. He died 1975.
****Rahul Deb Burman, born 27th June 1939, singer and actor, married Asha Bhonsla, born 1932, daughter of Dinanath Mangeshkar (died 1942), and sister of Lata Mangeshkar, born 28th September 1929 at Lahore. He died 1994. "


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