15. Thirakadha Kaatu – En Swasa Kaatre (1999)
The fabulous and typical Rahman song which was slightly revised in 2014 Hollywood film “Million Dollar Arm”. The melodious song grabs with the melody and sublimes into rhythmic enchantment. With great vocal modulation back in 1999 which sounds fresh today exclaims the brilliance of the maestro.
Opening line of the Tamil song left me speechless:
(Translated) We became like the unborn children (of the womb), in this untouched forest, Like the prancing deer, our modesty seems to gone away, lost in the wilderness.
14. Snehidhane/Chupke Se – Alaipayuthey/Saathiya (2000/2002)
Sadhana Sargam’s only song which I love is undoubtedly one of the best contradictions of the melody. Comprising of two opposite melodies weaved perfectly to make a soulful song was shot beautifully on the banks of Narmada at the Maheshwar Temple. This is one of those albums which I find amusing and fresh till date, Alaipayuthey/Saathiya is an everlasting love-struck album.
13. Kaalaiyal Dhinamum– New (2004)
In the year where albums like “Swades”, “Meenaxi” and “Yuva/Aayutha Ezhuthu” dominated the world of Music – this small song was suppressed under them. An ode to “Mother” which was pictured with a husband-son singing for his pregnant wife-mother is accompanied by Rahman’s basic instrumentation, sung soulfully by Unnikrishnan. The song literally brings tears. Following is my favorite part of the melody and lyrics starting from the instrumental part before the first paragraph where an orgasmic piano plays:
Niraimaatha Nilavae Va Va (oh, the pregnant moon, come come)
Nadai Podu Methuva Methuva (you walk slowly slowly)
Azhagae Un Paadu Arivaen Amma (oh beauty, I know and can feel the pain)
Sumai Alla Baaram Sugamthaan Amma (the pain is not burden, but its pleasure)
12. Vinnaithandi Varuvaayaa – Whole Album (2010)
I think I may lose my (already short) vocabulary and this soundtrack might just take away every bit of my soul. Impeccable! This is the one album when I become a “devotee” of Rahman. Also, the Hindi version “Ek Tha Deewana” has the lustful (additional song) “Kya Hai Mohabbat” wonderfully written by Javed Akhtar. My picks from the album are “Broken Promises, “Maanipaaya/Sharminda Hoon” and “Aaromale”. The Tamil film just flourishes beautifully with this musical feat achieving the love required to dive deep into the heart.
11. Dil Gira Dafatan and Rehna Tu – Delhi 6 (2009)
What a complex composition “Dil Gira Dafatan” is! With Ash King’s voice cherry topping it supported by Chinmayee and shot magically (dreamy affair) in the Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra film. This is a mellifluous composition with the pour of Rahman’s divine touch, best song in the album. “Rehna Tu” creates the aura of enchantment and magical romance; I was just taken aback by the smitten love which the song delivers freshly. Another song “Arziyan” best describes my feelings for these two songs: “Maramat Muqqadar Ki Kardo” which literally translates as Mend my fate, Almighty! (in this case, referred to Rahman).
10. Nenjekulle – Kadal (2013)
Shaktishree Gopalan renders a soul-stirring melody which has Rahman’s wholehearted voice icing the song. The song irrespective of the language did infuse into the hearts of people with its loving melody lit with Spanish Guitars. I remember back in 2014 I was fascinated by the song that it was always on the top of my playlist; soon after meeting new classmates, a group of them imbibed the song into their playlist with immediate liking. And when you get to know the lyrics, you will be blown away. Though the song wasn’t justifiably shot/used in Mani Ratnam’s critical and commercial failure “Kadal”– although the soundtrack won all the prestigious awards.
09. Shauk Hai – Guru (2007)
“Shauk Hai” was used in the film but didn’t feature in the album until later. The song intrigues me with its simple composition and beyond my world lyrics by Gulzar. Soumya Rao’s beautiful and soulful rendering sways into the soul immediately. Arguably the most simplistic composition excelled by Rahman.
Kaash Ye Zindagi, Khel Hi Khel Mein Kho Gayi Hoti (I wish this life were lost in its own play)
Neend Ki Goliyon Ka (I aspire of those sleeping pills)
Khwab Ke Loriyon Ka (of those lullabies that have dreams stored in for me)
Bezubaan Aus Ki Boliyon Ka; Shauk Hai! (I aspire of the words of these mute drops)
08. Luka Chuppi – Rang De Basanti (2006)
The maternal instinct song was one of the most anticipated songs. Here, lyricist Prasoon Joshi writes a heart-wrenching Mother-Son song. Rahman magically intervenes the sensational play of guitar accompanied by classical Tabla. He has sung so passionately like a caring son and this is probably an ode to Lata Mangeshkar, who has never sounded so beautiful in the recent times. I remember watching “Rang De Basanti” in late 2006, I was in standard five and the song hit so hard in the due course of the film, I was literally weeping; one of the first weeps while watching a film. Perfect Encore!
07. Dil Se Re – Dil Se.. (1998)
Mani Ratnam who introduced A R Rahman to the world is one the rare directors who have the vision and capabilities to utilize Rahman’s musical interludes perfectly. Sadly, no one saw this now considered as a gem film when it released back then which had a terrific cast and crew consisting of Mani Ratnam, A R Rahman, Santosh Sivan, Ram Gopal Varma, Shekhar Kapur and Shahrukh Khan. The song set amidst the Kashmir Insurgency delivers visual compliment along with the awestruck-ing lyrics by Gulzar. Such simple subtext to the story-line:
Do Patte Patjhad Ke Pedo Se Utare The (two leaves from the autumn had come down from the tree)
Pedo Ki Shakhon Se Utare The (they had come down from the branches of the tree)
Phir Utne Mausam Gujre, Wo Patte Do Bechare (then all these seasons passed by, both those poor leaves)
Phir Ugane Ki Chahat Mein, Wo Sehraon Se Gujre (to be born again they passed through this wilderness)
Wo Patte Dil Dil The (those leaves were hearts)
06. Hai Rama –Rangeela (1995)
A R Rahman’s first official Hindi album took the nation by storm with an unusual soundtrack shot spellbinding by Ram Gopal Varma. Hariharan and Swarnalatha take the classical intonation to an orgasm level, to cherry top it – there’s Urmila Matondkar and Jackie Shroff heating up the screen.
05. Thee Thee –Thiruda Thiruda (1993)
I got to know about this song when Amit Trivedi discussed about his favorite songs. Mani Ratnam-A R Rahman’s second collaboration “Thiruda Thiruda” (1993) was a commercial failure but it is an underrated soundtrack which eventually found its way into the hearts of the musical earbuds(?). This is an erotic extravaganza for the ears and Rahman’s deadliest composition till date. And this is one Rahman song which is played on loop, by default.
04. Kun Faya Kun and Nadaan Parindey – Rockstar (2011)
Imtiaz Ali’s “Rockstar” is the first film which took me to the theater twice and I couldn’t resist but to let myself surrender to the passion and the breeze of romance uplifted by A R Rahman’s phenomenal soundtrack. Two things: I was at a vulnerable age when the film came out and Rahman’s Kun Faya Kun just miraculously soothed me so I had to hear it inside a full-fledged Dolby Theater. Is is necessary to write about these two songs? Rahman’s grand vision proved himself to be a real Rockstar.
On the Music CDs, the following was quoted: “I hear music when I close my eyes. When I open my eyes the music does not go away. I often can’t follow the words that people speak, but I get the music of their soul. It’s good that way, because words can lie but music cannot. Pleasant or disturbing, music is always the truth.”
AND THERE’S SO MUCH TO WRITE ABOUT THE TOP 3, ALL THE THREE ARE UPHELD BY LYRICS AND PERFECT MUSICAL INTERLUDE IN THE FILMS. ALL THREE ARE SHOT BY THE DIRECTORS WHO JUSTIFY RAHMAN’S MUSIC ON-SCREEN. ALL THREE WRENCH MY HEART EVERY-TIME I HEAR THEM. I MAY BE BIASED ABOUT THE TOP 3, BUT THAT’S PURE RAHMANIAC SPELL…
03. Agar Tum Saath Ho – Tamasha (2015)
02. Nenje Ezhu – Maryan (2013)
01. Yeh Jo Des Hai Tera – Swades (2004)
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