Happy Birthday! AR Rahman turns 46


By Hindustan Times

Several awards and accolades have neither marred this man's singular simplicity nor stagnated his variegated diversity. Based out of Los Angeles now, the man spans two continents and his music breaks new grounds, every year.

What is the common strand running through the following four albums: Rockstar, SuperHeavy, Rock The Tabla and Gems The Duets Collection?

That's right AR Rahman features in all these in one or another way. But the fact that all these are products of the year 2011 speaks volumes about the artist.

From revving Ranbir Kapoor's angst in true Bollywood style to jamming with rock heavyweight Mick Jagger in Satyamev Jayate and 'rocking the tabla' with Hossam Ramzy, the Egyptian percussionist and composer to crooning in Gems - The Duets Collection, an album by Michael Bolton - he's done it all in 2011.

Things to come are also of a nature potpourri for this Oscar winner. As of now, he's composing for a Bollywood fare Ekk Deewana Tha, a Steven Spielberg canvas - Welcome the People and a Kannada film Godfather in 2012.

Power of four: Left to right - Covers of Rockstar, Rock the Tabla, Superheavy and Gems The Duets Collection
2012 seems to have begun on an exciting note for Rahman. Along with The German Film Orchestra Babelsberg the maestro is all set to write a new chapter in the history of musical collaboration with a unique endeavour titled "Classic Incantations - The German Film Orchestra Babelsberg performs AR Rahman". The concert tour is set to travel to five cities across India from January 20 through January 29.

He has won two Academy Awards, two Grammy Awards, a Bafta Award, a Golden Globe, four National Film Awards, fourteen Filmfare Awards, thirteen Filmfare Awards South in addition to numerous other awards and nominations. His extensive body of work for film and the stage earned him the nickname "the Mozart of Madras" and several Tamil commentators and fans have coined him the nickname Isai Puyal (Music Storm). In 2009, Time placed Rahman in its list of World's Most Influential People. The UK based World Music magazine Songlines named him one of 'Tomorrow's World Music Icons' in August 2011.

Allah Rakha Rahman, born as AS Dileep Kumar is an Indian composer, singer-songwriter, record producer, musician, multi-instrumentalist and philanthropist. Described as the world's most prominent and prolific film composer by Time, his works are notable for integrating eastern classical music with electronic music sounds, world music genres and traditional orchestral arrangements.