Mumbai, June 25 (Calcutta Tube) He got irritated when he found youngsters recognizing R.D. Burman only through remixes of his songs. That is when Brahmanand Siingh decided to make a film on the legendary composer.
Bringing R.D. Burman, popularly called Pancham, back to life was ‘no easy task… though a delightful journey’ says Siingh, whose film ‘Pancham Unmixed’ was released last year.
Reminiscing his experience on the 71st birth anniversary of Burman, Siingh told IANS: ‘Making ‘Pancham Unmixed’, an almost two-hour long film, was a delightful journey but not easy.’
Asked what motivated him to make the movie, Siingh said: ‘The most dominant reason that pushed me to make a film on Burman was that I realized that people today are forgetting his work and refer to his music only through remixes. It angered me that no one till now made an effort to make a film on him; so I thought I’ll do it.’
Elaborating on making the film, he said: ‘It was difficult because I tried to get in as many people close to him as possible and who have contributed to his life. That was a big task, because all those are busy people. But somehow I managed to bring on board most people.
‘In addition to that, editing was difficult too because there was so much to edit and you had to put the right things together so that the flow is not missing.’
It took Siingh three years to complete the film and around 1,500 hours of editing.
Released on DVD by Shemaroo Entertainment in November last year, ‘Pancham Unmixed’ features celebrities like Asha Bhosle, Gulzar, Javed Akhtar, Manna Dey, Shammi Kapoor, Rishi Kapoor, Vidhu Vinod Chopra, Vishal Dadlani, Pandit Hariprasad Chaurasia and Shantanu Moitra.
Burman is credited with revolutionizing Bollywood music and his style and techniques are followed even today. He was comfortable with all types of music, be it the romantic, cabaret or classical numbers. Songs like ‘Dum maro dum’, ‘Chura liya hai’, ‘Dilbar dil se pyaare’ and ‘Kuch na kaho’ speak volumes about his versatility.
Siingh had earlier made documentaries like ‘Ashgari Bai’ on an octogenarian legendary drupad singer; ‘A Burden Of Love’ on Alzheimer’s disease; ‘Uncaging The Body’; and ‘Rag pickers, Scavengers Of A Different Graveyard’.
His ‘Pancham Unmixed’ has travelled around 30 Indian and International film festivals, including the ones in Los Angeles, Karachi, Madrid, New York and Japan.
Along with the film, Siingh has also compiled a coffee table book on Burman called ‘Pancham – Strings of Eternity’. The book with some captivating text and rare photographs is an additional delight for all those who want to know the legendary composer even better.
Lots of exciting material collected while making the film could not be incorporated into the movie due to length and other technical constraints. Hence Siingh extracted and compiled a whole lot of anecdotes, insights and emotions that some of Burman’s closest colleagues and friends had poured out in the book.
If you want to live the moments of Burman on his birthday, ‘Pancham Unmixed’ is the ideal way.