These Bollywood composers don't duet
In an industry that ropes in multiple composers for its films' soundtracks, these artistes are helming entire scores
Given that a film's soundtrack plays a vital role in determining its popularity, it's common for filmmakers to rope in multiple composers to create songs of various genres, so that they can appeal to a diverse audience. However, resting the responsibility of composing the entire score on a single composer has its own benefits, especially when the narrative banks heavily on the music. Barring bigwigs like AR Rahman, Vishal-Shekhar and Pritam, few get the chance to helm the entire soundtrack. mid-day connects with those who prefer to fly solo.
Tamma Tamma (Badrinath Ki Dulhania, 2017), Tu Cheez Badi (Machine, 2017), Mere Rashke Qamar (Baadshaho, 2017) and Hawa Hawai (Tumhari Sulu, 2017) hitmaker Tanishk Bagchi has his second solo project in his kitty, after previously helming the soundtrack of Shubh Mangal Saavdhan (2017). "Ever since I started out, I wanted to do a solo film. Working as an independent composer is a great way to express your music, but it comes with many challenges," says Bagchi, who will compose all the tracks for Salman Khan's brother-in-law Aayush Sharma's debut film, Loveratri. Bagchi says the greatest challenge for a solo composer is meeting deadlines. "The album takes longer to complete because one composer has to work on the songs for every mood, including romantic, sad and peppy."
(Baa Baaa Black Sheep)
The music group comprising singer Shaan, and composers Gourov Dasgupta and Roshin Balu, has worked on the soundtrack of the Maniesh Paul-starrer, Baa Baaa Black Sheep. "The director [Vishwaas Paandya] didn't want multiple composers on board. He also did not wish to pick songs from music banks. We enjoyed the process of creating original tracks to fit every situation," says Shaan. Dasgupta adds, "These days, unless [a celebrated composer like] AR Rahman, Vishal-Shekhar or Pritam is involved in a project, it is rare for one composer to get the chance to work on the entire score. Vishwaas didn't approach any other composer because we delivered what was expected of us." Dasgupta likens the trend of approaching multiple composers for a film to "a shopping experience". "The makers approach composers who specialise in a certain genre. For example, item song chahiye, to iske paas jaao, romantic song chahiye, to uske paas jaao. But, when one composer makes the soundtrack, s/he harbours an emotional attachment with the film." Filmmakers, Dasgupta says, do not trust the younger crop of musicians enough to entrust them with the job of working on the entire score. "Of late, many solo composers have created terrible soundtracks."
Jasleen Royal, 26, has composed the soundtrack of Hichki, which marks her first outing as a solo composer. "When I met producers Aditya Chopra and Maneesh Sharma, I told them that after working on so many films, I wanted to do a solo album. They immediately agreed. They had immense faith in me. Since the music takes the film's narrative forward, having multiple composers on board wouldn't have worked anyway." Working on an entire soundtrack is demanding, but it's worth the toil, she says.
Mannan Shaah, who composed the soundtracks of Commando (2013) and Commando 2 (2017), is looking forward to working on the album of Vipul Amrutlal Shah's Namastey England. "He [Shah] believed in my ability. He heard a few of my compositions, which I had worked on for Namaste England. He then asked me to go through the script and compose the entire album," says Shaah. The nature of the script, he says, is the deciding factor for filmmakers when zeroing in on the need for one or many composers. "For a film like Namastey England, it was important that the music be consistent, and have an identity. Classics like Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge (1995), Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam (1999) and Kuch Kuch Hota Hai (1998) are remembered for not only their scripts, but also their music. They're solo-composer films."
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