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Rahul Dev Burman: A Biography
(1939-94)
Source: 'Encyclopaedia of Indian Cinema', British Film Institute, 1999
(By Ashish Rajadhyaksha and Paul Willemen)

Hindi composer also known as Pancham. Entered films as assistant to his father S.D.Burman,often playing the mouth organ in his father's orchestras.Trained under Ali Akbar Khan.

Independent career coincided with the the wave of early 70's Rajesh Khanna love stories (esp. Kati Patang, Amar Prem, Apna Desh ) and the new lease of life they offered to singer Kishore Kumar. Informally assisted his father in composing the seminal Khanna-Kumar combination, Shakti Samanta's Aradhana (1969). Breakthrough in Nasir hussain musicals,starting with Baharon ki Sapne and consoldated by the classic Zeenat Aman rock music teen-movie Yaadon Ki Baraat, having earlier scored her debut Hare Rama Hare Krishna

Some of his best music is assosiated with Gulzar's lyrics, e.g. Parichay and Aandhi.Brought Hindi film music into the era of electronic rock with a series of enormously popular youth movies,e.g, Narendra Bedi's Jawani Diwani. Worked mostly with singers Asha Bhosle and Kishore Kumar, providing much of the music that defines their reputations. Also produced independent albums, including one based on the samba and one with british pop star Boy George

Occasionally sang his own songs in a unique, grunting bass (e.g. the Mehbooba mehbooba number in Sholay ). 1942 : A Love Story, his last film released after his death, was a major musical success.



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