It is not often that men or women glow so bright with their first work, but Rahman did and became a huge hit with the masses.
I first heard AR Rahman in 1992, whose debut music composition in the 1992 Roja (Rose) featuring the lyrics of Vairamuthu literally blew me away. The song, Chinna chinna aasai, sung by Minmini from Kerala, is one that I still consider Rahman's best till date. It was also his very first one. Still lovely to hear. And of course, there is Thamizah thamizah, also in Roja, lyrics by Vairamuthu again and music by Rahman, sung by Hariharan that is certainly one of the best patriotic songs I have ever heard anywhere in the world.
Rahman and Roja heralded a new era in Tamil movie music. Chinna chinna aasai was listed as Time magazine's 10 best soundtracks of all time, and the film also fetched the National Award for Best Music Direction for Rahman and the National Award for Best Lyrics for Vairamuthu.
It is not often that men or women glow so bright with their first work, but Rahman did and became a huge hit with the masses. He once said in an interview with The Guardian that "I often meet couples who got married with my music or young actresses who tell me that when they were girls, their mothers would put them to bed by playing my music".
With well over a hundred movies to his credit and skilled in Carnatic music, Western classical, Hindustani music and the qawwali style of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, Rahman writes film songs that amalgamate elements of these music systems and other genres, layering instruments from differing music idioms in an improvisatory manner.
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