Allah Rakha Rahman alias A .Dileep Kumar was born on January 6, 1966, in Chennai
At the age of 11, Rahman joined Illaiyaraja's troupe as a keyboard player.
His acclaimed music compositions have led TIME Magazine to declare him the 'Mozart of Madras' and in film circles , he is called Isai Puyal
A R Rahman is married to Saira Bano. The couple have three children: Khatija, Rahim, and Aman
I have tremendous respect towards all the religions. After all, God have taught us to love each other.
I had some golden rules when I started my film career. These rules were good lyrics, good thought, good melodies, good recording and good presentation
I dream of a quiet environment where there will be music and not car horns
I am doing just two films a year, so I guess I should have all the time for my music school
Allah Rakha Rahman alias A.S.Dileep Kumar was born into to a musically oriented family. His father R.K.Sekhar was an arranger for producing music in Malayalam movies and had worked under the likes of music masters like Salil Chowdhary and Devarajan Master.
Rahman, he got his first break in advertising when he was asked to compose the jingles for ads. In 1989, he set up a small studio of his own, called Panchathan Record Inn, attached to his house. This studio has now become one of India`s most well-equipped and advanced recording studios.
In his established state-of-the-art sound and recording studio, he began experimenting in sound engineering, design and production. He also began collecting sound samples, creating one of the most comprehensive sonic libraries in Asia. Later, at an award function, he was introduced to the ace director Maniratnam, who signed him to compose music for his film Roja. The rest is history.
Q: How can you turn out breadth taking music only with your favourites like Mani Ratnam, Subhash Ghai and Ashutosh Gowarikar?
My comfort level with these people may be at a higher level. At the same time you can`t close your eyes to hit songs that I have done for other film makers like S.J.Suryah.
Q: Your critics say that Tamil film music has taken a back seat for you. Please comment.
Tamil film music is what made me. But I have to move ahead in life as opportunities knock only once at your doorsteps. When I composed songs for `Roja`, I thought that it would be my first and last film album and I was mentally prepared to go back and do jingles. I never dreamt that I would take the baton and perform live at the city of Birmingham Symphony orchestra. Today I have realised that music can change our society. I have not only been lucky but am showered with God`s blessings. I am a very happy and contended man.
Q: What is the kind of music that gives you complete satisfaction?
As a composer I like music that is able to stir my soul. My music is a spiritual exercise, like `Vande Matharam…`. I am very happy as people associate me with patriotism and nationalism”.
A.R.Rahman’s current passion to create an authentic Indian orchestra has recently come true. As a first step towards it, he has established the KM Music Conservatory as a bridge between music, technology and culture. The maestro formally launched the conservatory in Chennai
Rahman’s “KM Music Conservatory” is an attempt to recreate a world-class orchestra for the enjoyment of India`s people. Currently Indian composers must go abroad to find orchestras to record. The vision of KM Music Conservatory is to eliminate this obstacle and provide an exemplary orchestra here in India.
Says Rahman: “We want our Hindustani and Carnatic musicians to be able to read Western notations and adapt to playing with other musicians so that they can learn to play with ten other sitarists at the same time. That’s the sound we’ve never heard before”
Adds Rahman: “We are a country of 1.4 billion people and we don’t have our own national symphony orchestra. I have been having a burning desire to have something like that of our own. Our source of entertainment has always been monopolised by films but there’s a different kind of entertainment too- Orchestral music which is on the other side of art. If we educate our people, we could get that into the mainstream”
He says: “God willing, KM Music Conservatory will have our own campus in two years time. I have a place in mind that is about three to five acres, a quiet kind of environment where there will be music and not car horns” he says. Apart from visiting faculty from all around the world and guidance from veteran musicians, the students will have special classes from Rahman himself.
A. R. Rahman's Filmography
Sunday, 11 January , 2009, 18:57
Last Updated: Monday, 12 January , 2009, 11:15
Year Film Language
1992 Roja Tamil
1993 Pudhiya Mugam Tamil
Kizhakku Cheemayile Tamil
Thiruda Thiruda Tamil
1994 Vandicholai Chinnaraasu Tamil
Super Police Telugu
May Madham Tamil
Pudhiya Mannargal Tamil
Manitha Manitha Tamil
1995 Bombay Tamil
1996 Love Birds Tamil
Kadhal Desam Tamil
Mr. Romeo Tamil
1997 Anthimanthaarai Tamil
Minsaara Kanavu Tamil
Daud: Fun On The Run Hindi
Mona Lisa Tamil
Kabhi Na Kabhi Hindi
1998 Jeans Tamil
Dil Se… Hindi
Doli Saja Ke Rakhna Hindi
1999 En Swasa Kaatre Tamil
Kadhalar Dhinam Tamil
Taj Mahal Tamil
2000 Pukar Hindi
Kandukondain Kandukondain Tamil
2001 One 2 Ka 4 Hindi
Nayak: The Real Hero Hindi
Love You Hamesha Hindi
Parthale Paravasam Tamil
2002 Alli Arjuna Tamil
Kannathil Muthamittal Tamil
The Legend of Bhagat Singh Hindi
Kadhal Virus Tamil
2003 Parasuram Tamil
Warriors of Heaven and Earth Mandarin / Japanese
Enakku 20 Unakku 18 Tamil
Kangalal Kaithu Sei Tamil
2004 Udhaya Tamil
Warriors of Heaven and Earth English
Lakeer - Forbidden Lines Hindi
Meenaxi: A Tale of Three Cities Hindi
Aayitha Ezhuthu / Yuva Tamil / Hindi
New / Nani Tamil / Telugu
Dil Ne Jise Apna Kahaa Hindi
Kisna - The Warrior Poet Hindi
2005 Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose: The Forgotten Hero Hindi
>Mangal Pandey - The Rising Hindi
Anbe Aaruyire Tamil
2006 Rang De Basanti Hindi
Sillunu Oru Kaadhal Tamil
Varalaru - The History of the Godfather Tamil
2007 Guru Hindi
Sivaji: The Boss Tamil
Azhagiya Thamizh Magan Tamil
Elizabeth: The Golden Age English
2008 Jodhaa Akbar Hindi
Jaane Tu Ya Jaane Na Hindi
ADA: A Way of Life Hindi
Slumdog Millionaire English / Hindi
2009 Nairsan English
Eight by Ten Hindi
Dilli 6 Hindi
Chennaiyil Oru Mazhaikalam Tamil
Sultan The Warrior Tamil
Manavar Dhinam Tamil
The 19th Step English / Tamil / Japanese
2010 Endhiran Tamil
Rahman to fuse Western, Indian ragas
IANS | Monday, 07 April , 2008, 10:04
It took music maestro A R Rahman three years to finish the album for the stage adaptation of The Lord Of The Rings, working with 200 musicians and technicians for every song. The album, which has pushed up his international status, was released in February.
"Since it required more finances than I could afford, a private airline (Jet Airways) is sponsoring it," Rahman, who has recently opened a western classical music conservatory in Chennai, told IANS.
"Every song has a minimum of 200 musicians and technicians involved in it. Huge choirs and orchestras were brought into play. We recorded the album in London and mixed it right here in Chennai in my studios. The whole crew came down from all over the world," he added.
All songs are in English and in Elvish... the language of the The Lord Of The Rings. "I had lots of help from fellow-musicians like Christopher Nightingale. It took me three years to do the album. Without help from like-minded musicians it'd have taken five years."
With Rahman increasing his Western assignments, it looks like to be Bollywood's loss. Rahman is deliberately turning down big Bollywood assignments because of copyright and royalty issues regarding music sales. Rahman is reluctant to talk about the issue. "It's too complicated. But yes, the issue of publishing rights does stop me from accepting more Bollywood offers," said Rahman.
"Those who want to work with me in Mumbai are agreeable to my terms and conditions. Those who do but won't agree to my conditions are going to other composers." "At the moment, I've also cut down my film assignments because I want to focus on my western-classic music conservatory. With this conservatory I hope to bridge the gap between Western classical and Indian ragas. Imagine a thumri being played by an orchestra! Or a Carnatic raga being a part of a big Hollywood epic!" he added.
Commenting on his Bollywood assignments, Rahman said: "I can't be doing just films all my life. I need to take my music to another level now. But whenever I work in Mumbai, I give it my fullest concentration, as I did for Ashutosh Gowariker's Jodhaa Akbar, which I'm very proud of. The music takes both Ashutosh and me to another level."
Looking back, the talented composer is not the least content with his achievements.
"No matter how much you do, it's never enough. Music is my only therapy. There're so many awful things happening in the world. I wish I could heal the world. All I can do is use my music, which I do. My peace anthems like 'Vande Mataram' and 'Pray for me, brother' are a small candlelight in the storm. But you never know which candle will light a thousand other candles."