From just another Rahman fan to a Rahmaniac – The journey

Warning: The longest-ever post in this blog follows! Read it if you have the time and patience.

Initially when I thought about what to write to mark the 15 years of completion of A R Rahman in the world of films, I couldn’t think of any specific aspect to focus on. Besides, I was thinking what’s so special on completing 15 years? After all, Rahman has been associated with/composing music for a period more than that. But, did I listen to his music before 15 years, knowing that the music that I was listening to was composed by him (Am referring to the jingles etc. here)? Hasn’t these 15 years made a difference to my life in a way it can’t be imagined? Besides, I thought I had said everything I wanted to say about his music in my earlier post. But, can proper justice be done to the magic produced by Rahman’s music in just a single post?! So, here’s my journey of how I transformed from just another fan of A R Rahman into a Rahmaniac.

The years 1992-1999:

As I had written in one of my earlier posts, I still remember the day when my dad got the cassette of Roja and how I loved all the songs. Then many more excellent albums of Rahman released. Pudhiya Mugam, Gentleman, May Madham, Bombay, Indian, Rangeela…. In all the movies, there were a few songs that became my all-time favourites. But, it was just that. I liked the songs and kept listening to those again and again. Nothing else special happened. It wasn’t until 1997 when Minsara Kanavu released that I slowly started realizing how much I like his music. Suddenly, I found most of the songs by other music directors at that time to be not quite as great as Rahman’s. I started telling everyone that Rahman is the best. 🙂 But, even at that time, I neither bought the CD/cassette of Rahman’s movies on the day of the release itself nor did I start discussing Rahman’s music with anyone who would be willing to lend an ear nor did I completely realize the effect his music has on me but, my passion for Rahman’s music seemed to be ever-growing. 😉

The year 2000 – Alaipayuthey and ARR Fan Club:

2000 is the year that was something like a turning point in my life. I had always been known as the most silent girl of the class though I had a few close friends with whom I did talk a lot. I had given my Class 10 Board Exams. That was the time when Alaipayuthey released and as you all know, I became crazy about the movie. 🙂

Thanks to the admission system in Tamil Nadu, I had to switch over to a State Board school and in the new school, I was not the most silent girl in the class anymore (Of course, I have not changed completely. Some part of the old-me is still left even now). The reason being, Alaipayuthey (the music and the movie) became a rage and everywhere, people were discussing about it. And I found it irresistible not to take part in those conversations. 🙂 When I heard someone rave about Pachchai Nirame (can any song ever come close to it? 🙂 ) or some other song from the movie, I too started joining in and before I knew it, I had made a lot of good friends thanks to Alaipayuthey and Rahman!

It was at that time that I slowly started using the Internet and thanks to my craziness for Alaipayuthey, I got introduced to the Yahoo Groups. I first came to know about Madhavan fan club. Then, I searched through the groups and stumbled upon Mani Ratnam and A R Rahman fan club. Seeing so many of them sharing the same excitement about Rahman’s music and discuss about it left me amazed, and before I realized what was happening, I became a Rahmaniac! 🙂 It felt great to know that there were so many others sharing the same passion (some even more!) for the man’s music. I realized that his music had always had the same effect on me ever since the beginning.

Following the messages in the group started as an activity which I pursued once a week or so. But, very soon it became everyday activity! (Since the group didn’t require a membership to read the messages, I didn’t become a member of the group till 2004 and till I started blogging, I never posted even a single message in the group!)

The year 2000 was a defining one since that’s when I realized that if I wanted to celebrate my happiness, if I wanted to cheer up, if I wanted to get motivated to do something or even if I was feeling very sad and didn’t feel like getting back to normal soon or when I was curled up with a book in my hand on a lazy weekend, I had a set of Rahman’s songs that would give me company!

2002:

I joined college and that’s where I got fully exposed to the Dappankutthu and Gaana songs (read sub-standard stuff according to me) since I was forced to listen to those in bus during industrial visits or even while traveling to college everyday. After listening to such crap, my passion for Rahman’s music grew even more. When anyone asked me what my hobby is, I would say listening to Rahman’s and Carnatic music! Wherever informal introduction was required, I started introducing myself as a fan of A R Rahman. When any of my friends came across anything related to Rahman, I became the first person they told that to. And, I became what I am today some 5 years back – a complete Rahmaniac! 🙂

Chinna Chinna Aasai, Telephone Manipol, Thee Thee, Aathangara Marame, Kadhalikkum, Tanha Tanha, Leo Coffee Ad, Thendrale, Kanava, O Rey Chori, O Bawre, Poo Pookkum Osai, Uyirum Neeye, Nenjinile, Kaatre En Vaasal, Do Kadam, Ishq Bina, Kabhi Meeti Lagti Hai/Tu Accha Lagta Hai, Des Ki Mitti, Yeh Tara, Vanessa Mae’s Raaga’s Dance, New York Nagaram,….. I started enjoying every bit of music composed by Rahman.

2007 – Dream comes true!

The thing that I never ever thought would happen even in my wildest dreams, happened – Meeting A R Rahman himself! Standing in front of him, I wanted to tell him so much, how much his music meant to me and all such stuff. But, as expected, I got tongue-tied. 🙂 All I wanted was to catch a glimpse of the man whose music has made a very big difference to my life and I got that. That was more than more than enough. Writing these lines has made me relive every moment of that day! It all still seems like a dream.

Never wishing to wake up from that dream and ever a Rahmaniac,
Aparna 🙂

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45 Comments

  1. August 26, 2007 at 8:09 am

    Aparna,
    Amazing post. And for the first time since I started following your blog, some personal information. I predict a spike in the number of commenters on your blog. This increase is totally apart from the normal increase one would expect on a brilliant blog like this.
    Not everyone is lucky enough to be able to clearly identify one’s passion, to say what makes one tick, what makes one happy, what can wipe away the single drop of tear. Congratualions on finding what makes you click.

  2. Durga said,

    August 26, 2007 at 9:09 am

    Excellent post! A memorable journey. The fact that we have been through it together makes it all the more special 🙂

  3. Aparna said,

    August 26, 2007 at 9:57 am

    Daneel,
    Thanks a lot!! 🙂
    //I predict a spike in the number of commenters on your blog. This increase is totally apart from the normal increase one would expect on a brilliant blog like this.//
    I should thank all you readers for the encouragement! Can’t thank you all enough for this! 🙂

    Durga,
    Thank you 😉 Yes that’s the best part of it! 🙂 I wish you would come up with a post too soon!

  4. Siva said,

    August 26, 2007 at 10:16 am

    Great post and definitely a tribute to the maestro.. I am sure you can qualify to lead the Rahmaniac’s club.. 🙂

  5. August 26, 2007 at 10:39 am

    The reason we all became Rahman’s fans is different. The choice of favorites may be different, and the way we enjoy the songs might be different. But if it is one thing that unites all us Rahman fans, it is the passion we have for his music. Just like the passion expressed in this post. Very nice post, Aparna 🙂

  6. Aravind said,

    August 26, 2007 at 10:55 am

    gud 1.
    enable full post feeds in your blog…

  7. Vinod R Iyer said,

    August 26, 2007 at 11:20 am

    Nice write up . It is amazing how one man has made a difference to so many lives !! I hope he carries on to do so.

    Nice write up.

  8. arvind said,

    August 26, 2007 at 12:19 pm

    hey …that wasn’t so long….
    seems my favourite is missing in ur list RANG DE BASANTHI
    and what about pray for me brother…

    cheers for the post !!!
    another RAHMAN-IAC 😛

  9. Ani said,

    August 26, 2007 at 12:59 pm

    Gud one Aparna …..its amazing how each passing day …the music of Rahman just continues to inspire us and make us happy even more.
    Talking about Rahman ..or writing about it ….well none of us Rahmaniacs can ever get tired of it too 🙂

    -A

  10. sreekrishnan said,

    August 26, 2007 at 1:38 pm

    OMG -you met rahman – i missed that post i guess … Thats one thing i havent had in my life !!

    BTW: He used to stay near that Samiyar Madam Bus Stop. And I used to go to that Computer Point for some Computer Training. Minsara Kanavu Released that time. Almost daily while going or coming back i would simply cycle round his house to see if ever i could catch a glimpse of this legend. I havent still managed to.
    My frnds named me psycho for cycling round his house while going and coming – i dont know why i did that – and if i didnt do that it would almost feel that i havent brushed that day !!

    Wish i meet him some day or the other !!

  11. Sathej said,

    August 26, 2007 at 1:51 pm

    Good post. Though I don’t listen to too much of his music, this made a good read.
    Sathej

  12. Nithya Sivashankar said,

    August 26, 2007 at 3:00 pm

    You met ARR :O
    Cool !! 🙂 Am sooo happy for ye 🙂

    HE simply rocks 🙂 All hail the maestro 🙂

  13. Sangs said,

    August 26, 2007 at 3:56 pm

    I’m not exactly a rahmaniac.But I do enjoy his songs.Roja was a landmark in Tamizh music.Tamizha Tamizha gave me goosebumps and Pudhu Vellai Mazhai made me feel as though I myself was in Kashmir ,watching those mountains :-)Esepcially ,that bit like glass crashing onto the ground and we get the first view of the snow capped mountains.
    May ARR produce more good music and salvage Tamizh cinema .

  14. Sami said,

    August 26, 2007 at 6:19 pm

    I copy sangs here 🙂
    He had given new blood, new dimension to tamil cinema and after that also he is keep on triying more things new. Which else music director can do this without affecting the producer? proud of calling him mozart of madras 🙂

  15. Ramya said,

    August 26, 2007 at 8:53 pm

    hi aparna,
    so sweet of u to share everything with us………i really njoyed reading it…….
    ARR rocks…….he is simply gr8……..i luv ARR….
    A BIG SALAAM TO OUR BOSS!!!!!!!!

  16. Ranjhith said,

    August 26, 2007 at 9:16 pm

    Good dig up of memories – shud have been a hard work until 3:25 am. 🙂

    Me infact started to enjoy from Day 0 – I mean from the jingles – the leo coffee ad & another ad – I forgot. The musical was so musical. 🙂 Thats how I felt.

    Had to go to my house owner’s house for a TV. Roja’s Chinna Chinna aasai was 1st played on a special oliyum oliyum prg in DD – Chinna Chinna aasai – started to grow – like periya periya aasai – wanting to hear more repeats of that song – those days no Casettle player & I had to peep out of the window – whenever my neighbour. Something was in there. Very refreshing than the illayaraajas.

    Also when ARR sang for 1st in Bombay – Even thou I heard it in Hindhi & even thou I didn’t know it was ARR – voice had that charm & mystic pull 🙂 Day 1 – I fell for it.

    Hope he scores tons & tons of music for generations to listen & enjoy.

    And looks like A in ARR is Aparna. 🙂 Nice post. Keep writing.

  17. Aparna said,

    August 26, 2007 at 10:32 pm

    Siva,
    Thanks. There are many more who are even more passionate about Rahman’s music 🙂

    Ferrari,
    Yes! Thank you 🙂

    Aravind,
    Thanks

    Vinod,
    Welcome to my blog. Thank you 🙂

    Arvind,
    Oh really? Then, I would have written 2-3 pages more 😛
    Well, those are my favourites too. I just listed the songs that came to my mind at that time.

    Ani,
    Thank you 🙂 Yeah

  18. Aparna said,

    August 26, 2007 at 10:40 pm

    Sreekrishnan,
    LOL. Hope you get to meet him soon 🙂

    Sathej,
    Thank you

    Nithya,
    🙂

    Sangs,
    //Esepcially ,that bit like glass crashing onto the ground and we get the first view of the snow capped mountains.//
    I love it too 🙂

    Sami,
    🙂

    Ramya,
    Welcome to my blog. Thanks

    Ranjhith,
    Thank you 😉 Good dig up of earliest memories of Rahman’s music from you too 😉

  19. biju syed said,

    August 26, 2007 at 11:32 pm

    once i finished reading this post i felt that you have written something that i wished to write.nothing more to say ,Rahmanic salaam to every one u in specific

  20. keshuvko said,

    August 27, 2007 at 10:26 am

    You spoke my mind. DOnt know much about ARH but am a fan of his music.

  21. Prabakar said,

    August 27, 2007 at 1:02 pm

    Really good one Aparna…

  22. Bharath said,

    August 27, 2007 at 3:17 pm

    Too short a post to describe the genius of the God of Music!!!

  23. SK said,

    August 27, 2007 at 7:06 pm

    Hey Good post. :–) Rahman sure can give us evergreen melodies. I like his dedication towards music. He hasnt let fame get to his head, which is great. Of course Roja gave a new dimension to Tamil music, let it be known all over India. :–) I am proud.

  24. Ramya said,

    August 27, 2007 at 8:17 pm

    hi aparna…..
    wat do u do??????? thanx 4 inviting me to ur blog……..gr8 joining a lot of rahmanaics……..
    long live ARR!!!!!!!!!!

  25. Mathangi said,

    August 28, 2007 at 9:50 pm

    hey super post!
    and btw i think that alaipayuthey bit applies to your sis too! 🙂

  26. Adiya said,

    August 28, 2007 at 10:37 pm

    🙂

  27. Rukesh said,

    August 29, 2007 at 3:26 pm

    Aparna,

    I was shocked up on seeing the news that ARR may go to prison for composing his own version of JanaGanaMana..i was worrying till the petition was rejected.

    Good Post

    -Rukesh D

  28. brinda said,

    August 31, 2007 at 12:37 pm

    hey apaprna,
    lovely post. just like u said, it feels great to know so many people sharing the same passion and love towards ARR. I feel strangely wonderful whenever i learn about another ARR fan. Its a great feeling. again, lovely post.

  29. praveen said,

    August 31, 2007 at 8:39 pm

    Hi…Superb yaar….did u saw ARR…..excellent………..keep rocking…
    😀

  30. Aparna said,

    September 1, 2007 at 3:07 pm

    Biju & Keshuvko,
    Welcome to my blog. Thanks

    Prabakar,
    Thanks

    Bharath,
    I see. But, enough can never be said about ARR’s music 🙂

    SK,
    Thanks. Yeah.

    Ramya,
    I work

    Mathangi,
    Thanks. A lot of things here applies to both of us 🙂

    Adiya,
    🙂

    Rukesh,
    Thanks. I seriously wonder where all these people were when Jana Gana Mana was released a few years back!
    Check out Siva’s blog: http://jillendruorublog.wordpress.com/ His posts on Ooh La La might interest you. I am not finding the time to write about the show. Besides, i keep missing some episodes & later watching it on the net only.

    Brinda,
    Welcome to my blog. Thanks 🙂

    Praveen,
    🙂

  31. Ravi said,

    September 1, 2007 at 3:08 pm

    ..wow… ARR … and a wonderfull post on it .. esaiyin azhaguku .. arr .. ezhuthin azhaguku .. (a..a) .. ha ha .. ( oru 500 inr .. dd eduthu anupidunga .. ) ..

    ..BTW .. this has been a regular practice for me to praise everytime i visit a new blog space .. (idhuvum apadithaan .. ha ha )

    .. ne’way … gud write up .. for arr fans .. ( naanum dhaan naanum dhaan )

  32. Aparna said,

    September 1, 2007 at 3:19 pm

    Ravi,
    //this has been a regular practice for me to praise everytime i visit a new blog space //
    I see

  33. Rukesh said,

    September 3, 2007 at 10:24 am

    Aparna,

    Yah..the lawyers who are sitting idle..want to hav some work and that is why may be a complaint was lodged..Thank you for the link.
    Hey, one of my colleague is part of V3 band..hope you could have saw her in first episode.the one who stood in middle of the 3.

    Rgds,
    Rukesh D

  34. Aparna said,

    September 4, 2007 at 3:29 pm

    Rukesh,
    Oh I don’t remember V3. 😦 I will check the vidoes on net.

  35. Compassion said,

    September 12, 2007 at 9:00 pm

    Hi,
    That was an intersting reading.I am pretty old guy so this article made me a little nostalgic.We all grow up associated with a great musician famous during our formative years.This impression lasts our life time.As we grow up in life the musics which made deep impressions,as ARR has done in your case,help us during both happy and diffucult times.coping up lifes pressures i mean.
    Enjoy the music to your hearts content and believe me it will last a life time
    if time permits do visit my blog

    CV

  36. Arjun said,

    November 11, 2007 at 10:03 pm

    great blog aparna,

    first time njoyed reading a long blog!.
    well ARR’s azhagiya tamil magan is superb.
    he’s tunes are really addictive.
    its like a must to hear at least a song by him daily.
    ATamil magan’s
    ; kellamal, madhuraikku, velayaptti,ponmagal,ezhapugallum,marlyn monroe..
    all rocks.

  37. Aparna said,

    November 13, 2007 at 8:20 am

    Arjun,
    Welcome to my blog 🙂
    Thanks!

  38. SREEKUTTAN.A said,

    April 28, 2008 at 3:43 pm

    FOR ME IT IS ARRRAHMAN AFTER GOD KRISHNA

  39. Raheel said,

    June 18, 2008 at 11:49 am

    Hi Aparna,

    I can understand when u said that you were tongue tied when u actually saw A R RAHMAN in front of u…..the reason is that i have met him when he was in here in Pune for the Premeire of kisna with all other celebs.

    I have been following his music since ‘i ever started likin music actually’. when i saw him, i went to him, walked almost eleven steps with him, told him ‘ I listen to ur music day in n out, its made me live a different life’, he said’ touching my jacket under which i was wearing a Tee with his name imprinted on it “Do u speak tamil?’, and i couldnt asnwer to it cos i was shivering when i heard him talk man…..
    i did not enter the screen as i was shivering for almost 30 mins and then called dad on his cell and told him that i actually met Rahman.

    One moment in life i will treasure till i die.

    Thanks Rahman, Thank god for making this happen!

  40. July 19, 2008 at 9:39 pm

    well 1st of all awesome stuff… Me totally in love with that line whr u started talkin to ur frnds & they keep mentionin abt u…and all… it happens to me all the time… wheneve someone criticizes ARR… they call me… Gr* work… i guess the fusion of tamil kutthu with western Rap!!!!Pettai Rap… awesome compostion & naina from water is the best till date

  41. santhosh said,

    March 3, 2009 at 3:34 pm

    hi, wonderful experience….hope you still cherishing those moments….
    by the way, why don’t you express the same in your mother tongue…? so that many of them can read about it. Now a days typing in an Indian languages in not a big task.

    Recently, I was searching for the user friendly an Indian Language typing tool…and found… “quillapd”. have tried that..really helps alot..why don’t you try it…? http://www.quillpad.in
    Jai Ho……

  42. vajrakrishna said,

    May 4, 2009 at 5:18 pm

    *smiles* A walk down memory lane, the things you describe evoking nostalgia, as within my context it is a parallel experience… all except for meeting Rahman, which I am yet to do…

    Do you enjoy understanding the ragas of his music? I’m starting a collaborative project to discover the ragas of his music and create a website… check this:
    http://vajrakrishna.wordpress.com/category/art/music/indian-masterstrokes/exploring-and-identifying-ragas/

  43. sailaja said,

    September 4, 2009 at 9:45 am

    hi aparna,

    that was a really nice n sweet post..keep writtin gal..

    ARR will keep rockin the World of Music..

    regards,
    sailaja

  44. cinematronix said,

    May 4, 2013 at 7:48 pm

    A.R.R will complete his 20th year this year! 🙂 Long live A.R.R! 🙂

  45. Hiran - Rahmaniac said,

    June 25, 2013 at 2:31 pm

    it is a usual story of millions of Rahmaniacs!! i feel really proud to say that i’m a Rahmaniac!!!


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