Mumbai: The talented and versatile music composer and singer AR Rahman is the only musician from India to win an Oscar Award. Not only this, the music maestro is also a recepient of Grammy and has been inspiration to many. Also known as ‘Mozart of Madras”, AR Rahman made his debut as music composer in the 1992 film Roja by Mani Ratnam. And after that there is no looking back for him.
Apart from his music, his conversion to Islam still remains the talk of the town even today.
Born as Dileep Kumar in 1967 in Chennai , AR Rahman embraced Islam, along with his family, after his father RK Shekhar’s demise, who was also a music composer. He converted into Muslim jus before the release of his first major and debut project, Roja.
“It’s not about converting to Islam, it’s about finding the spot and seeing whether it presses the button in you”~ AR Rahman
In an old interview with Hindustan Times, AR Rahman said that he doesn’t believe in imposing his religious beliefs on others. “You can’t impose anything. You can’t ask your son or daughter to not take history ‘coz it’s boring, and to take economics instead, or science. It’s a personal choice,” he said.
The composer-singer further said that a lot of people if they would become successful on converting to Islam but he prefers to keep quiet. “It’s not about converting to Islam, it’s about finding the spot and seeing whether it presses the button in you.”
“The spiritual teachers, the Sufi teachers, taught me and my mom things that are very, very special. There are special things in every faith, and this is the one we chose. And we stand by it,” he stated.
Further speaking about the importance of ‘prayers’ in his life, Rahman added, “Prayer has been extremely beneficial. It has saved me from many falls. In between prayers, I think, ‘Oh, I have to pray, so I can’t do this mischief’. People from other faiths do the same thing and are peaceful too. For me, this works!”
More about AR Rahman, his work and achievements
AR Rahman contributed to several different industries, including Bollywood, Hollywood, Tollywood, and more, he is one of the few artists from India with a dedicated global fan base.
In Bollywood, AR Rahman has given several hit tracks including the songs from Bombay, Dil Se, Taal, Saathiya, Slum Dog Millionaire, Raanjhana and Yuva.
Apart from Oscar and Grammy, AR Rahman has bagged many prestigious awards including four national awards, two academy awards, two Grammy awards, a BAFTA awards, a Golden Globe award, fifteen Filmfare Awards, and sixteen Filmfare Awards south. The musician has also been honoured with the Padma Bhushan, the third-highest civilian award, in 2010 by the Government of India.