It is not every day you see a proper name become a metaphor. It happens but with a chosen few . Music maestro AR Rehman has entered that realm where his name brings to light hundreds of songs from various genres but as you face him and see him smile that slow, gentle smile……..it is all peace and quiet……observes Manju Ramanan.
Is there a soul of the UAE that would appear in your future compositions?
It is very strange. When I came here in 1995-96, I bought an oudh instrument but I used it in my Indian compositions. I gave it to my mandolin player Srinu. He never gave it back to me.
Do regions affect your compositions?
It depends on what movie I am doing. But over the years it doesnt matter where and what I am composing. I can do Indian classical sitting in LA or an opera in Chennai – so over the years I thinbk,the state of mind has become even more focussed.
Do you sub-consciously pick up regional flavours to music?
Yes, something are carried on in my sub conscious. In the UK, I always feel that certain energies are amazing. The place is so artistic that you feel compelled to think. I feel the same way about Chennai, it is different, so is Prague. I wrote the main love theme on the 3rd day of my arrival there.
Is it tough to arrive at simplicity?
There is a difference between simple and simplistic. There is an Italian word called Spatzura. it means having a very complex kind of thing happening but making it look very simple. But that is in everything. An apple computer for example is complex but when you use it, it is quite sorted out. Similarly after going thorugh a gamut of tough emotions, you arrive at simplicity. The surface is calm.
Is confusion creative?
During exploration there is always bound to be confusion. Most people appreciate music because it brings them to a zone of what is peaceful and uplifts them. In a concert, you go to the zone of confusion and then emerge out with clarity. You do that in symphonies too. But mainly in movies, songs are the redemption tools. Take Shankar’s films for instance, so many things happen in them, but when a song comes, it is redemption. I guess confusion, though i would like to call it chaos is part of the journey. So, lets create more chaos now!