'Raj' of Kannada music

His previous film’s soundtrack plays at every party, every IPL game in the city and even has non-Kannadigas bowled over by it. While musician Charan Raj’s Tagaru tunes were a huge sensation, the artiste is now back with Hemanth Rao’s Kavaludaari, whose soundtrack has music buffs bombarding it with compliments. From the jazz-inspired Samshaya to Nigooda, which belongs to the synthwave genre, Charan has boldly experimented with the film’s music.

“Once Hemanth was almost done with the movie’s script, he told me that he had an idea and r Puneeth sir’s production house PRK would be producing it. He gave me a brief on the kind of music and mood he wanted. Whenever Hemanth calls me, I get excited as I love working with him,” smiles Charan.

He adds that the filmmaker was very clear that the music should help the narrative of the film. “It’s been great to hear people say that the music is not disturbing any part of the movie. We were particular that the sound doesn’t get too loud and that it should help the movie rather than spoon-feed emotions to the audience,” adds Charan, who’s also composed the background score for the flick.

With five songs in the movie’s soundtrack, one of Kavaludaari’s unique elements is that the team collaborated with the Macedonian Symphonic Orchestra.

“Hemanth’s a big fan of orchestral music and considering we had the luxury of experimenting, we went ahead. Orchestral music is an old-school technique that’s slowly vanishing now. After I got to know about the Macedonian Orchestra, I contacted them and sent them my tunes. They were happy that mine wasn’t the usual music and when musicians appreciate you, it’s a very fulfilling feeling,” says Charan.

Interestingly, when Hemanth and Charan started working together, the latter assumed that it would be an easy journey as they knew each other’s tastes. But as work progressed, Charan realised that the neo-noir genre was a tough one to crack. “I had to unlearn few of my own tricks and brush up my skills of writing music as we don’t use it quite often here. I had to revise my old techniques. It was tough, but was a dream come true to write the music,” shares the artiste.

With music aficionados calling him ‘the next big thing’ in music, Charan admits that it does make him nervous. “I’m still learning my craft — I want to get better and better. I want more and more people to listen to Kannada music. I want people from other states and all over the country to listen to our music. We have to put out our music internationally. It’s hard, but we can do it. We have a good bunch of musicians doing really well now and with good writers coming up with great ideas, we can make Kannada music more popular globally,” states the musician, who looks up to artistes like Gustavo Santaolallaand Trent Reznor.

On a parting note, he gives a special mention to actor Puneeth Rajkumar and his wife Ashwini and adds, “They gave us the liberty to experiment. Puneeth sir never said no to anything!”


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