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Meaningful Melodies

Lyricist AM Turaz talks to Bhakti Mehta about how he weaves poetry into his lyrics to make beautiful songs like the ones in the upcoming Padmavati


Everybody is tripping on the soulful, folksy music of one of the most anticipated movies of the year, Padmavati. AM Turaz, the man who made us fall in love with the lyrics of this movie’s touching songs, speaks about the overwhelming response he’s received so far. “I want to thank Sanjay Leela Bhansali for giving me this platform through which my voice reaches the audience. The fact that the audience likes my work so much, makes me happy.”

Going back to when the music of the film was still only being discussed, he says, “I was told that this is a period film and that I have to incorporate the culture in which it is set, into the music. A lot of hard work went into that. The songs had to flow with the narrative and, at the same time, be commercial. Although the audience has not yet watched the film, they are falling in love with the songs.”

Turaz also reveals the research that went into bringing out the folk flavour in the lyrics. “As a poet, I have travelled not only all over the world but across India too, to beautiful, remote places. In Rajasthan, I met a few people from whom I learnt about the importance of the song Ghoomar. Even the Internet provides loads of information regarding these topics now. All that came in handy. The film is set against a Rajasthani backdrop, so my work was leaning organically.”

On his hat-trick of collaborations with Bhansali, the lyricist remarks, “This is the third time I have worked with Mr Bhansali after Guzaarish and Bajirao Mastani. He made his debut as a music director in Guzaarish, which was my first film with him. So our journey kind of began together. He knows what I can do. He has an extraordinary talent to make these amazing films. As a music composer, he is fantastic.”

Turaz says it helps that Bhansali understands his poetic bent of mind. “I write the lyrics first, then he makes the music for it. These days, it’s the other way around, where the music is composed before the lyrics are written. Every aspect of his film has a theraav, which is very good for poetry to flourish.”

Talking about the yet-to-be-released songs from Padmavati, the musician says, “All the other songs composed by Bhansaliji are perfectly set in the movie. A lot of hard work has gone into it and they will exceed the expectations of the audience as they release, one by one.”

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