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Singing a different tune


NOT MANY had the kind of success that music director A. R. Rahman and director Shankar had as a musical combination. Together they have done only five films in Tamil during the last 10 years, and have sold more audiocassettes than anybody else. Last Saturday, their new film album, "Boys" was launched with a lot of fanfare. The film is also director Shankar's maiden attempt to make a musical with all newcomers.

After a long time, Rahman has come out with an album, which has foot-tapping numbers aimed at the youth! The lyrics are a mixture of Tamil and English and are sung by singers such as Lucky Ali, Adnan Sami and Vasundhara Das giving the album a wider acceptability. Songs like "Enakkoru ..Girlfriend..Venam..", "Dating... " and "Maro Maro... " are sure to be chartbusters. At the launch, two songs were screened for the audience, which were innovative and stylishly shot.

Now the big question is whether the album will make waves? Some years back, Rahman-Shankar's "Indian" cassette sold six lakh units in cassette and CD. Today, Star Music, the audio rights owners of "Boys", has orders for only 60,000 cassettes and CDs! The audio rights of "Boys" had no takers and was finally sold to Star Music at almost one third the price which was given to the combo's pervious hit "Muthalvan". Said Poonam Choudhary of Star Music: "In the good old days we would have sold a lakh of cassettes on the first day of a Rahman-Shanker audio release. Today I will consider myself lucky if I can sell the initial 60,000 in a month's time. A few hours after the "Boys" audio (Rs. 45) hit the market, pirated audios of the film were available for Rs. 15!"

SREEDHAR PILLAI

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