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Advertisement Jingles: Best Training For A Melodic Composer Advertisement Jingles: Best Training For A Melodic Composer

Topic started by Melody and Her Reincarnation in India Thru A R Rahman? (@ 205.188.200.28) on Sat May 4 19:33:41 EDT 2002.
All times in EST +10:30 for IST.

Sid Ramin was a famous Ad Jingle composer of the 60's. He composed "Music To Watch Girls By", which I think is one of five most amazing and thrilling 'tunes' of all time. The other that are: "Never On A Sunday" a Greek folk tune, an Ilayaraaja area; "Strangers In The Night" a romantic tune that is so sentimental like an MSV number. Of course, Rahman's 'melody', "Ennavale Ennavale". And, IsaiGnani's second interlude in the song O Baby O Baby in Kaadhalukku Mariyadhai, though a phrase for instruments. (I will soon open a thread about the vast ocean of IsaiGnan's 30 second preludes interludes that have no parallel at all in the history of music. Check out the first interlude of Ennodu Paadungal in Pattakkathi Bairavan.) Unfortunately, the Maestro did not believe in singer predominance, which was his openly declared modus operandi. That was the gap exploited by Rahman, who believed that musical power is all about the voice not about the instruments.)

" Music to Watch Girls By " was originally a Coca Cola jingle! (I don't generally think of most western tunes as melodies in the purest sense, though they are melodious, they don't appear to be rigourous melodies in the richest Indian traditions. Western themes are more mood oriented like Ilayaraaja's composition, who in my opinion is the Maestro of Moods, Tones and Hues of Music, howmuchever that implies the depth of Ilayaraaja' intellectual breadth.)

A number one benchmark for a complete melody is: Ennavale, Ennavale song of ARR. It's consummate perfection is no less attributable to the sharpness in the melody or Indian classical music training as to it's original cause of inspiration as I suspect it to be - two of the most beautiful melodies of Indian films composed by non other that IR: Oru Vaanavil Pole by PJ / SJ from Kaatrinile Varum Geetham, and Geetha Sangetha by PJ / SJ in Anbey Sangeetha. You can see another similarity. ARR used Unnikrishnan, a PJ clone for such soft romantic 'melodies'. Rahman type melodies already were prevalent in Tamil and Malayalam films but Rahman's ad jingle training gave his versions the possibility more sharpness and more substance, thus making a mere tune a complete melody!

I am feeling that Rahman while he accidentally got into composing ad jingles, it could've been the best thing that happened to him and for Indian melody. He has helped Melody re-emerge with very sharp features and a fully developed face and a flowing body helping it stand on its own shapely legs. The heaving demands of Ad Jingle composing and his wide exposure under IR and Zakir Hussain led Rahman to compose such sharp, edgy tunes that are more melodic than any other musical discipline could've forged. Full immersion in Indian Classical musical genre alone has not fully realized that as we've seen in pre-ARR era. Look at Ennavale Ennavalae; Malarhale, Malarhale; Thoda Thoda; Sakkarai Vaahamo, Aathangarey Maname and also a few other amazing and so very precise tunes of Rahman the likes of which were possible only in Ilayaraaja's 30 second preludes and interludes! (And, this is a major reason for Ilayaraaja not being fully appreciated rest of India and abroad, because the focus anywhere is on the singer and not on the musicians. As a natural extension to his musical beliefs, IR composed a Symphony unfortunately IR found Western classical music has no mass appeal.) Coming back to the question: How much does the singer have versus who cares about what the musicians play! (Humans generally prefer vocal expression more than music from instruments.)

Thus, does not ad jingles composing provide the discipline that the composer must have to focus on producing very attractive tunes that results in a full bodied melody? Does it not impose restraints on the composer to not waste notes for an excellent result in 30 seconds that appeals to the vocal imaginations? Don't you think ad jingles as opposed to folk tunes and classical traditions inspires or rather forces the composer to give consummate 'melodies' rather than just tunes when the composer enters the wide arena of non-ad jingle arena of film music composing?

In my opinion and research, I feel yes. For one, you must listen to 'Music To Watch Girls By'. Go to
http://www.spaceagepop.com/ramin.htm for its many versions. I would pick up Andy Williams for vocal version, and the James Last orchestral version is equally fantastic.


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