I get a new energy while performing in Chennai, says A R Rahman

Chennai: “Whenever I perform in Chennai, I get a new energy, seeing the audience here. I always wanted to give the best concert in Chennai compared to the other concerts,” says AR Rahman, ahead of his Live-in Concert at YMCA Nandhanam scheduled 10 August, Saturday.

Rahman says that his team has been working hard for the concert for the past one month. He also spoke about the singers, his debut film as script-writer, 99 Songs and much more

Excerpts from the interview
Q: What is special about this concert?
A: In between the previous concert and the upcoming one, there are many new songs that has been composed so this concert will feature some of them. Also the arrangements differ with the old songs with different singers performing it that gives a freshness to the concert. Mostly we will be performing Tamil songs but it will also have some Hindi songs.

Q: You have done various concerts around the world, but how do you feel when you perform in Chennai?
A: Whenever I perform in Chennai I will get a new energy, seeing the audience here. For making the show special our team, comprising the musicians are working hard for over a month now. This is my home where the resources are huge and the love and the encouragement I receive is big so I always wanted to give the best concert in Chennai compared to the previous concerts.

Q: Will there be professional musicians from abroad, performing in the concert?
A: Definitely, there will be musicians from abroad. The main reason for this is to make our audience hear them sing live and also it will be a new experience for the singers.This is a kind of cultural exchange and there is something to learn always through this which is a good thing.

Q: Who are the artistes performing in the show?
A: Singers Benny Dayal, AR Rihannah, Neeti Mohan, Jonitha Gandhi, Shweta Mohan, Haricharan, Sid Sriram and rappers ADK, Rajakumari and Shiv apart from myself and Lydian Nadhaswaram, who is my favourite student from the KM Music conservatory, will be performing in the concert.

Q: You have already recreated Urvashi song with new lyrics few years ago, now what is the reason behind another #RecreateUrvashi?
A: Five years ago we have changed the lyrics. Those lines have become old now so this time without including anything related to politics we thought of going in a much more comical way. I have seen lot of new lyrics as of now and I am impressed with a few. Still I have to see a lot as everyday interesting and new lyrics come up.

Q: Your son Ameen too has started his career, so as a father what advice will you give him? Is he performing in the concert?
A: No, he is not a part of this concert. As far as advice is concerned, I have stopped advising him. Kids nowadays know everything through internet and so they know what is good and what is bad. They have to experience life. If they do good, good things will happen to them and if they do bad, it will hit them back hard.

Q: Can you shed some light on when the movie, 99 Songs written by you, when can we expect its release?
A: 99 Songs is a new attempt with new faces, new script, new director, but the budget probably is three times more than what would usually be the budget if newbies are involved in a film. Because of the budget we had to go slowly in terms of the distribution of the film.

Aaditya Anand M