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AR Rahman Recalls How One Interaction With Lata Mangeshkar Changed His Life

AR Rahman with Lata Mangeshkar

AR Rahman with Lata Mangeshkar

AR Rahman had collaborated with Lata Mangeshkar for some of his most-remembered tracks, including Dil Se's popular song Jiya Jale, picturised on Shah Rukh Khan and Preity Zinta.

The Queen of Melody, one of the greatest singers of our country, Lata Mangeshkar, passed away on Sunday morning after succumbing to her illness. Condolences have been pouring in from people from all walks of life. The entire music fraternity has been recalling the impact the Nightingale of India have had on them. Ace composer AR Rahman shared a video message, where he recalled working with the legend and talked about her influence on his music career.

He began, “It is a very very sad day for all of us. When people live, we take it for granted and somebody like Lata Ji is not just a singer, not just an icon. She was part of a soul, part of a consciousness of India, Indianness, Hindustani music, Urdu poetry, Hindi poetry and Bengali- and so many other languages she sang. And this void is going to remain forever.”

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“In my experience with her, it goes back to my dad, who passed away when I was very young. He had a picture of her near his bed. He would wake up looking at her face and get inspired to go to his recording. So it starts there. Coming to me also, I’m luck to recorded a few songs with her, sing with her, be a part of her show, where I learnt probably one of the most important things about performing on stage,” the singer continued.

Rahman had collaborated with Lata Ji for some of his most-remembered tracks, including Jiya Jale, which was picturised on Shah Rukh Khan and Preity Zinta in Mani Ratnam’s film Dil Se.

“I have never taken my singing seriously because I have always imagined myself as a composer and a musician. When I few songs I have composed for her, after the rehearsals at 4pm, she would go to this room, sit with her assistant and would start singing very slowly, every lyric clearly. I just passed the room, and I said is that her practising for the show? That one incident changed my life. From then on, every show I went to, I would go off, and put the tanpura on and practise, get some warm-ups done. I would go over every lyric and the intention behind the song.”

“One day, I was speaking to her, and she said, you know those days, Naushad saab (veteran Hindi film musician) used to make us come for 11 days for rehearsal. You then understand how the depth of each song has so much of investment of time, love spirituality, and passion, (a lesson) especially for the younger generation,” AR Rahman concluded.

He had also shared an iconic photo with the Queen of Melody, where he could be seen sitting at her feet. He wrote, “Love, respect and prayers.”

Lata Mangeshkar was admitted to Mumbai’s Candy Breach Hospital on January 8 after testing positive for Covid-19. She passed away due to multiple organ failures.

May her soul rest in peace!

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first published:February 06, 2022, 13:57 IST