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Home > Movies > Bollywood News

A different beat in Hindi cinema

TusharJoshi | February 03, 2004 07:34 IST

A still from SatyaDrums, strings, bass and action! This is the new mantra of Hindi cinema. Background score has arrived.

Imagine a film with dialogues, interspersed with songs and then reverting back to dialogues. No sound in the background. Would it appeal to your senses?

Songs and dance are an impeccable part of our film industry, but not everyone has noticed that the background score has slowly started shifting to the forefront, making its mark on the films' overall appeal.

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Hollywood has a history where epic films like the Star Wars, Godfather or the recent Lord Of The Rings series have an identifiable background score. Since the Westdoes not have songs, except for musicals, the weight of emoting the script through sound lies on the shoulders of the man composing the background score.

Of late, theHindi film industry tooseems to make good use of background music. One such filmmaker is Ram Gopal Varma. No wonderhe expresses his ideas and emotions through the background score. Take Satya which, in a way, set the standards for background score.

The film dealt with the stark and hard-hitting subject of the underworld and was interwoven with a throbbing score, which took the audience inside the mind of its characters. Every time a bullet was shot or there were close-ups of actors, one could hear the haunting score, which had a hallucinatory effect on the audience.

A still from Company

Sandeep Chowta is another whiz at the background score. After scoring for several Varma films like Satya, Company, Kaun, Bhoot and Jungle, he moved on to being a full-fledged music composer. In fact, his work in Satya became so popular that it was the first Hindi film to have a background score album released.

For any film to have a background score that goes beyond being a mere filler, it needs the composer to be involved in the process of filmmaking. A successful score would be one which does not overbear the characters or scenes but subtly takes them forward, etching deep impressions in the viewers mind with its sound.

With films with few or no songs becoming a trend (Bhoot, Ek Hasina Thi, Main Madhuri Dixit Banna Chahti Hoon), the importance of background scores attains new heights.

Here is a list of some noteworthy background scores in recent times:

  • Lagaan: Who can forget the drums and the earthy sounds of victory, against the backdrop of a cricket match.
  • Parinda: Everyone who swears by the film, also swears by its deeply moving background score.
  • Bhoot: The score was scarier than Urmila Matondkar!
  • Devdas: A rich soulful score that supported the grand epic.

If you have other examples, why dont you write in to us!

A still from LagaanFilms will be made and stories will be told, techniques of narration will change and technology will improve. What will remain constant is the background score.

So next time you find yourself crying, laughing or at the edge of your seat, pay attention to the score in the background. That is the pulse your heart would be beating to.

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Number of User Comments: 3

Sub: Ilayaraja

Too bad, the author hasnt listened Ilayaraja

Posted by srispam

Sub: naming names

although you drop several films as examples, you name only Sandeep Chowta as a background score provider. Aside from A R Rahman (BOMBAY, LAGAAN), I ...

Posted by George

Sub: ARR's other best BGM's

A.R. Rahman is by & large one of the best BGM scorers available. "Bombay" & "Roja" are another examples his "mark" in BGM too. Apart, ...

Posted by Ajay Ram



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