Dr Arora composer Sunny MR revives the music of bygone decades for Imtiaz Ali’s drama-comedy on a sexologist
Given that he is an ’80s kid, Sunny MR counts himself among the most appropriate musicians who could have done justice to the task of creating songs reminiscent of the ’70s and ’90s. He says the tracks of Imtiaz Ali’s upcoming project, Dr Arora, have been deftly penned by Irshad Kamil, who did justice to its sensitive subject of sexual issues.
“Imtiaz wanted the songs to [be reminiscent] of the era, and still seem like ones that haven’t been heard before. Bewafa mashuka is the one that is set in the ’70s. It talks of how life is bewafa, with us. The ’90s track, Ishq ishq, is of a love-boy, and has a Kumar Sanu-vibe. It has been rendered by my friend Shloke Lal.”
In a bid to ensure that their creations didn’t come across as ones that “mocked the past eras, but paid tribute to them”, Sunny says he abundantly consumed the music of both eras before getting to work. “I was a fan of the songs shot on Dev Anand, and other artistes. In the ’80s, the radio was influential, and my parents often heard a lot of music too. The musicality in the era was different. In Bewafa mashuka, we’ve used classy and soothing instruments like the ukulele and accordion. The ’90s track is influenced by the tabla and dholak, and the mandolin, which was popularly used then.”
The ’70s track, he reveals, is one that particularly caught his interest. “I’ve heard [the music of] Mohd Rafi and Kishore Kumar, and the structure and treatment is something I was always [drawn to]. I’ve worked with Imtiaz in the past, but this time he wanted me to present the songs only on the piano, because he didn’t want to be influenced by the arrangements. That was impressive.” Set to release on July 22, with Kumud Mishra in the lead, the drama-comedy revolves around a sexologist who helps people address their concerns.
In 1997, Asha Bhosle earned her first Grammy Award nomination (Best World Music Album) for Legacy, with Ustad Ali Akbar Khan. Her second nomination came in 2006