Reliving RD Burman: An 80th Birthday Tribute

rd burman tribute

RD Burman was undoubtedly one of the stalwarts of the Indian music industry. I say “Indian” because of his voracious work across regional languages. From Bengali to Malayalam and more, RD Burman composed, sang and fascinated music lovers throughout his career.

We all have a favourite RD Burman song – and all for different reasons. Sometimes it’s the RD – Kishore Kumar magic and at others it’s the SD Burman legacy vivid in the melody. Sometimes it’s the Rajesh Khanna embodiment of a composition and at others it’s the Asha Bhonsle rendition.

A Melody For Every Mood

For any mood and every sentiment, there’s an RD Burman song ready for you to ride with. Or slow down to. And then wake up charged with emotion, facing every aspect of life in tune with RD Burman’s musical mind. From aching love to despair and loss, from life’s ponderings to the innocence of an infant – Burman captured and immortalised it for us.

Gone To Soon

RD Burman’s passing away came untimely, at the age of 55. It’s as though death played as whimsy as RD Burman’s naughty tunes.

All his life, despite the brilliance of his compositions ranging from the classical (Amar Prem, Kinara) to the popular (Yaadon Ki Baraat, Jawani Diwani), RD Burman never won a National Award. The Filmfare Award was posthumously his, for the evocative soundtrack of 1942: A Love Story. It marked the crescendo of this composer’s tryst with melody and melancholy.

RD Burman, we all know, started composing at the age of nine. Perhaps the early prodigal start brought on a shorter but fuller life. Or perhaps the world beyond ours needed the work of this icon to balm its aches. Or perhaps it showed that longevity isn’t the key to melodic beauty. Perhaps, Pancham da, perhaps.

Re-Living RD Burman

Enjoy these selected scores by Rahul Dev Burman on this Top 50 playlist I came across today. By no means encompassing the gamut of his talent but surely an appetiser for it!

-Anushree Chatterjee


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