Wednesday, November 21, 2012

New light on a Controversy:

The Trend, NOT A.R.Rahman, to be Blamed
Playwright Girish Karnad recently at a function on Urdu poetry said that composer A R Rahman's music is beautiful but so overpowering that listeners miss the beauty of the lyrics.

Any study of current film songs may reveal that “sometimes you have to strain to listen to the lyrics," as observed by the filmmaker Uma Vangal whose doctoral thesis traced the ideological discourse in Tamil film music from the 1950s to 2000. 

The following discovery will clarify that the trend, NOT A.R.Rahman, is to be blamed for the above short coming.

The sounds of letters in a lyric in ancient music were governed by a grammar discovered from the ancient texts.
Disobedience to this grammar will lead to the drowning of the sound of the letter in the music notes rendered by a vocalist who strictly adhered to pitch accuracy (sruti suddam) of the related music notes of the lyric.
Since most of the hit songs have this short-coming, it reflects the trend of the music rasikas , mostly the students and the youth.

The current trend of the youth is the lack of respect to all classical norms. 

More than the language, the emotions is given more importance both in the lyric and music as revealed in ‘Kolai veri ti’ the unparalleled world hit song from Indian film music. Even in that song, the sound of the letters in the pallavi matched the music notes and hence the words were clear unlike the later portions.

The above observation suggests that even in current hit songs, the ancient grammar is selectively followed.  It reflects the current trend of the youth to selectively follow the rules and regulations ( in family,institutions, traffic, etc) ensuring their advantage to them. A further probe may reveal they now do it openly which some of the elders were doing in secret.

No music director including A.R.Rahman can afford to ‘disrespect’ the trend to safeguard their places in the music market.

Interestingly the trend is also under decay as revealed in the decrease in the number of hit songs as well as reduced market life of even hit songs. That may be a signal to the arriving of new Classical Music suggested in a post below. Probably the positive components of bold open un-hypocritical taste of the youth may define the contour of the new Classical Music.

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