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Music Geeks

Arrangers-turned-composers Sachin and Jigar’s simple Gujarati background is a sharp contrast to their zany musical sensibilities.

Written by Sankhayan Ghosh | Published: April 11, 2013 2:23:16 am

Arrangers-turned-composers Sachin and Jigar’s simple Gujarati background is a sharp contrast to their zany musical sensibilities.

Meeting music composer duo Sachin Sanghvi and Jigar Saraiya — popular known as Sachin-Jigar — at their recording studio in Mumbai’s Oshiwara,and drawing parallels with their music reveals their openness towards music and life. From modest middle-class backgrounds — 28-year-old Jigar and 32-year-old Sachin are both self-confessed “Gujju-dhokla boys”. They socialise in a small circle of friends that include their respective wives,eat vegetarian food and don’t drink alcohol. Adjacent to their music production table displaying “samplers” and “synths” is a separate space for photos of spiritual gurus.

Their music,however,is very different. Their latest song to have hit the web and television is being pitched as the “trippiest” song of the year and is set to the visuals of a rave party in Goa. The lines go: Raat hai ek whore,hain maange more,tu loot ja slowly slowly,and dissolves into psychedelic trance music. “Our parents may disown us after they hear the song. Some people have genuinely asked if we were on drugs while making this,” says Sachin. The album of Go Goa Gone — a film being dubbed as India’s first zom-com (zombie-comedy) and their second outing with director duo Raj Nidimoru and Krishna DK — is made of similar stuff. “They told us that the music should not have any relation with zombies,” says Jigar. The rest of the album,five songs in total,has elements of country music,Indie-rock and reggae apart from the dominant presence of electronic dance music.

Starting out as music arrangers,Sachin and Jigar had been exposed to vastly different schools of music. They stepped into Bollywood by assisting,and later arranging for veteran composer Rajesh Roshan (a friend of Jigar’s father). With Roshan,they enjoyed the simple beauty of old fashioned “tabla-dholak” based music. “That was our introduction to 70mm music,” says Sachin,who came to know Jigar through fellow musician composer Amit Trivedi.

Later during their stint with Pritam,they started “working on 10 songs a day as opposed to one song for 10 days”. It not only became their initiation into cutting-edge,digital techniques of music production but also a springboard to becoming full-fledged Bollywood composers. “Pritam pushed us to go out and do our own thing even though we were reluctant,” says Jigar.

It has been four years since the duo took the plunge with the 2009 film Teree Sang. By now,they have been able to carve out a musical identity of their own — a synthesis of the soul and technology,with a penchant for catchy,melodious tunes.

 Their runaway party-hit from the 2010 film FALTU,the Chaar baj gaye song was their major breakthrough. But before they could be typecast with dance numbers,they came up with an eclectic score for Shor in the City,working with Krishna-DK for the first time. Even though they have tried their hands in various kinds of films,it is the alternative space where they are most comfortable.

However,their next big step is composing music for Maneesh Sharma’s next film with Parineeti Chopra and Sushant Singh Rajput,produced by Yash Raj Films. The movie set in contemporary Rajasthan will have a score riding on folk music,a contrast to their electronic music-heavy Go Goa Gone.

Their foray into arranging can be attributed to their obsession to get the “sound” of a song right. From an early age,Sachin and Jigar had been fascinated with the thought of how English songs sounded superior to the regular Hindi fare. They found an answer in the computers that had started producing music in India by the early ’90s,with the arrival of AR Rahman.

In what might appear surprising to many,as pro-technology musicians,the duo’s basic training ground has been scoring for plays — mostly Gujarati,but Marathi,Hindi and English as well. They have scored for more than 500 plays,and continue to do so. “It taught us how to translate emotions into musical notes in the purest form. That helps immensely in scoring the background music for a film,” says Jigar.

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