AR Rahman and Will.I.Am interacted over an online video session and spoke about ‘Music, Creativity and Future Collaboration’. In a candid chat, the musicians shared their respect for each other’s works.
Rahman took special note of Black Eyed Peas’ ‘Action’ video song inspired by Indian action movies, including Enthrian and Singham, and appreciated the message in the video.
Rahman further clarified that beyond Bollywood, Indian cinema also has several industries including Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Kannada, Bengali and Punjabi, among others.
While Will.I.Am shared that he has been trying to remain creative and focused to keep him away from worries during the lockdown, Rahman revealed that he has been doing the opposite and spending more time with family to rest his mind.
“Music keeps you elevated. There is a whole other world on the news that makes you feel terrible and lose hope. But when you come back to music, it makes you think life is worth living and I’ve been trying to reflect that in my work,” Rahman said, adding that, “We all need an alternate world and music creates that for people.”
Opening up about what music means to him, Will.I.Am said, “Music is therapy for me. It helps me solve problems such as melody choice, rhythms, motifs and others. While I’m constructing this, it makes me clear about all the other things in life.”
They both felt that their aim has been to spread joy through their works.Sharing his process of work, Rahman noted that most music in India is for films and this gives film composers the freedom to explore different genres and it doesn’t bracket them in one zone. “I go with the vibe of the director and based on references we try to create something new to convey the emotion,” he said.
Speaking of ‘Urvashi’ song, Rahman noted that he has been working with director Shankar since 1993 and the filmmaker wanted a light-hearted song that complemented Prabhu Deva’s character in Kadhalan and matched the dance groove. “It took us three months to decide on the word Urvashi. We had a lot of patience back then,” he said, with a laugh.Speaking about Indian music, Will.I.Am noted that it’d be a dream come true to work with a singer such as Asha Bhosle. “When I listen to such singers, it broadens my imagination and I get inspired by that,” he said.
Further elaborating on how he sustained in the industry over the years, Rahman explained, “I think it takes discipline and integrity. Music and discipline are intertwined. If I lose my discipline, I lose my music. If I have to do music, I have to be a good person. So I refine myself as a person.”
Music is therapy for me. It helps me solve problems such as melody choice, rhythms, motifs and others. While I’m construc-ting this, it makes me clear about all the other things in life