AR Rahman shared a moving video on Saturday, remembering the legendary late singer SP Balasubrahmanyam. In the video, Rahman revisited some of his fondest memories with the singer, who sang over forty-one thousand songs in his career.
The video began with a clip featuring AR Rahman and SP Balasubrahmanyam in a fun conversation at one of the ARR concerts. Later, the Oscar-winning composer recalled how his first big performance was at SP Balasubrahmanyam’s birthday celebrations, organised by Suhasini and Mani Ratnam.
AR Rahman stated, “One of the very first performances I ever did in a big way was celebrating the birthday of SPB. It was around 1982-83. My life started that way. I played many recordings for other composers as a keyboard player, which he was singing. He would learn a song in 15 minutes, record it in 10 minutes and move on to the next. I don’t think I have ever seen a singer like that. So quick, so professional and so humble.”
The maestro narrated another fond memory he has of SP Balasubrahmanyam. “My other memory of him is when I recorded Kaadhal Rojave from Roja. He came into the studio and said, ‘How can a studio like this produce a cinematic song?’ I smiled at him. After the film released, he came back and said, ‘You proved that music can be created anywhere. It’s what you do with it.’ He has been part of my programmes. He travelled with us to the US and many other cities. So, all I can do is remember those amazing moments and lessons I have learned from SPB,” the composer shared.
AR Rahman said he learnt from SPB’s “kindness and the way he was approaching music, the way he would never say no to anything and was ready to experiment.” He also mentioned how SPB had “a different personality for every hero he would sing for.”
Rahman added, “I don’t know if any other singer would be as versatile as him. He was loved by everyone. Whether it is Tamil, Hindi, Telugu, Malayalam or Kannada, he did it all. All I can say is that we should celebrate his music, we should celebrate his life and his personality. SPB sir, we miss you.”
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Rahman shared how SPB’s voice was “a part of culture, he is part of our victories, love, devotion and joy” while growing up in South India. He said as SPB fans, instead of brooding over the loss, we should celebrate the gift he shared with us. He asked his and SPB fans to “be kind to each other, respect when people are there. Respect people who give you unconditionally.”
The video concluded with a slide that read, “Thank you SPB Ji for all the memories. Your music stays with us forever.”
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