On the occasion of the 50th independence of Bangladesh and birth centenary of The Father of the Nation, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, Oscar-winning musician AR Rahman gave his voice to the song, 'Bolo Joy Bangabandhu', which was penned by National Award-winning lyricist Zulfiqer Russell.
The project was initiated by the Bangladesh Cricket Board. Recently A R Rahman spoke about his experience of singing the Bangla song while collaborating with Zulfiqer Russell.
Q. Please share your feelings about composing two theme songs on the celebration of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman's birth centenary.
A. I think it was a great honour that they thought about me and came all the way to India to do this. India and Bangladesh have always had a very special relationship. We share the language — Bangla. We share a bond, a culture.
Q. Which aspect did you focus on while doing this work?
A. The aspect I focused on was trying to be more sensitive towards what instrument I am using, which melody I am choosing. Especially when singing in Bangla, there were a lot of back and forth iterations on pronunciation. So, we wanted to make sure that we did it right.
Q. How did you coordinate with the lyricist Zulfiqer Russell?
A. Zulfiqer came to Chennai. He was here for a week. We met and it was nice to have him in Chennai for the recording so that we could share the stuff and respond to it.
Q. You sang a theme song also in Bangla. How did you work in the linguistic space while doing this?
A. We all know from history that many of our thinkers and intellectuals have come from the region of Bengal. I studied some of them in Islam and we all share a common bond between the cultures. And singing in Bangla... I think the sound of the language is very sweet.
Like people call it the French of India; how French is very sweet. Bangla has got a beautiful flavour and any song in it sounds sweeter. I am very grateful for the love I have always received from the people of Bangladesh and the least I can do is make a song that they can all cherish. I hope they like it.