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Wednesday, December 3, 2008

The sound of my soul




For the first time in an indian studio, there was a gentleman who came up and spoke to me about RAP... real rap music history.. to the legends... to the way it worked.. and that he loved the Baba Rap! To me, he was the ultimate man of musical knowledge unlike anybody i have ever known.

Mr. H Shridar.

Wisdom personified.

Ever since my first meeting with him at Panchathan studios, to every single song i have ever done with A R Rahman, he has been the man behind the sound. He taught me, ' how to hold a mic - correctly.' yes - he taught me how to monitor myself. He taught me how not to get caught up in this hustle of an industry, and he has patiently made sure that everytime my voice is on a song, it would sound 'just right' because he made sure it did.

When we toured the US, he was so amazing ! He was a man who would do so much work, and still be smiling. His smile was infectious, and i long to see that smile again. A longing which is not allowing me to think or write in clear ways. ..

During one of the tours in the US, we were at a huge basketball stadium, and he was engineering the sound for our concert from the centre on his console... on the walls around were jerseys of famous basketball stars, and as i shot that on my vdo cam, he mentioned that i should give him a copy... it still is with me... i need to give it to his sons, though my guilt is killing me for my laziness to act then.

In Atlanta, during our last tour, he came with me to the music store and he told me to buy my current 'in-ear monitors.' He was very busy, but took the time out to get me that set and taught me how to use it too. I joked that one day, i would use it a concert where only he would do my sound...

recently when the credit lists for yuvvraaj were out and my name was missing, i had been told that he wrote the credits and yet they printed wrongly... due to all the mess, it finaly came through that he had Indeed written it correctly, yet they* messed up.. he was truthful, sincere and a gem of a human being. I miss him a lot.

About 2 weeks earlier, on the last few days of slumdog millionaire mixing, i spent some nice nights with him in studio. He was smiling, working and puffing along... he reminded me not to smoke! He spoke about so many things that nobody else knew about rap. who will i talk to now?

He then mentioned how he had made my voice sound so smooth on the Dating song, for its hindi release and he had enjoyed it. He was there to make sure we sounded good, always.

He spoke to me about the thirukural song, 'Respect,' which i dedicate to him, as he loved the way he had mixed the voices so precisely... When you guys out there hear the song, you will know what i mean. Respect to you, Sir.. Respect for your life's dedication to music... Respect to your loved ones... Respect to Sound... ... for your sound lingers in my heart always and forever... in all i do... and all i hear... With Love... and prayers... ... ... though i may never have told you straight up - I love you man ...

24 comments:

adimodi said...

Peace be with you Sridharji. What you have said above, B! is from the heart and a great teacher, a great father, a great friend is lost. May his soul catch up on the many many years of lost sleep to sound, & now sleep soundly.

Anonymous said...

Blaaze bhai.. may i kno what was the in ear monitor the legend of sounds recommended to you?

CoooolGuy said...

(igone my previous comment plz)
Blaaze bhai.. all you guys would be missing him a lot rt.. we could feel that when reading your post..
BTW im litle curious to know, whats that in-ear monitor this legend of sound recommended to you?
Thanks
Sunil

BlaaZe said...

hey adi, well said.. may he sleep soundly...

BlaaZe said...

hey sunil,

The in-ear set is 'SHURE - MODEL P2T-H2'

Bergin said...

As i read, my eyes are flooded. I dont know why. still tears roll on.

Sujith said...

I have grown up seeing his name in the credits of every new Rahman album. The name in some ways complete a Rahman offering for me. But now..... A deep shock to all rahman fans like me. A big loss to the music industry indeed.

Sujith said...

I have grown up seeing his name in the credits of every new Rahman album. The name in some ways complete a Rahman offering for me. But now..... A deep shock to all rahman fans like me. A big loss to the music industry indeed.

sreekrishnanv said...

We will miss him ....felt a lump in my throat ... some one who inspired me to to some research in sound engineering !! ...

Ganpy said...

Very moving eulogy Blaaze, if I may so. I cannot relate to your pain...of course. But I have met the man in person during the US concerts and I could tell, how humble a man he was...
Your words only confirm the same and how big of a loss this is to you, AR and the rest of the music world.
Thank you for sharing your grief.

Ganpy.

Sober_Hunting_Dogs said...

Hey BlaaZe! I know how it feels when you no longer can hear the sound of air comin' outta the flute, the sound of the treble when the sticks hit the pad.
Been a great fan of his works- will miss him too!
Peace
Raghav.

gypsy said...

the first time i knew that music was not just singers , composeres and instrument players was when the name H Sridhar got printed on to those lehre (lable name) cassette of roja,fresh ,soothing ...The master craftsman had taken my brain by storm....now therz gonna be a vacum ,,nothingz gonna be as kool as the Sridhar touch ,,,nothing....the encyclopedia of the craft of music making has gone ,,,my salaamz to you sir ,you live in each and every songz of ARR, man!Blaze i know wat u goin thru ,not just u but the whole of rahman camp ,,no words....

harshavardhan said...

blaaze sir... my heart has come up with something here...

the sound i used to hear...
made me feel the heaven is so near ...
all i could do now is just roll a tear ...
i fear...
the world might not get the best sound to hear...
coz it has already lost you this year...

sridhar sir... truely you still vibrate in my ear...

Syahida said...

hi Blaaze,i can understand how hard for u..he seems like a father and a friend for u..can see how hurt it is for u to see ur close one pass away.its a big loss to the music industry.even me didnt know he is the important person mixing songs for A.R.Rahman until i read abt him in some sites.A Great Man.and somehow tears came frm my eyes after ur blog abt this wonderful man.although i never meet H.Sridhar sir.May his soul rest in peace.God bless.Take care Blaze.regards,syahida,ur fan frm Malaysia.

Syahida said...

indeed a wonderful man,have grown listening to his music mixing.all was the best songs and still listening to them now.nobody can replace H.Sridhar sir.

harish said...

Hi blaaze anna...am new to comment in ur blog...suppose to be the first time am doing it :)

can i plz know what is actually meant by "The in-ear set"

BlaaZe said...

harish,

In ear monitors are devices used by performers to hear a mix of microphones and instruments that are on the stage. They are often custom fitted to the individual's ears and provide a high level of noise reduction from stage noise.

harish said...

Thanks a lot anna....I will be a regular commenter in your blog...Till then...Happy blogging...

Cheers Harish.... :)

VITHUR said...

BlaaZe Bhai.. Its really very saddening that Sridharji has left all of us. He was a genius and played a very important role in fine tuning Rahmanji's Divine Music. We all miss him always. It was a great moment that we all did something good remembering him last Sunday. I thank you for being with us

Rag_hav. said...

Hey BlaaZe!
This is Raghav, from Mobile AL, U.S.A. I have a friend here named Ashwin who is incidentally from Kitwe, Zambia. Came to know that you guys were knowing each other. Good to know some links that lead to great talents like you.
Thought i would share this with ya...you might feel like deleting this comment- i will not be offended. Keep in touch.
- Your Craziest Fan.
Peace.

Craze Maze said...

Pity that the greatness of people come out after they leave us. Basically I have seen his name in the titles in 'n' number of movies but have never realised what exactly sound engineers do/audiography is - And what happens behind the scenes of making a song.

After reading chinmayi's blog and yours - i feel emotional even though the only relation had with him is through the titles - obviously should not forget the quality he should have broguht into the songs.

JaJa Binks said...

After hearing your words, I can understand how much of a big loss it is for the music world. It is so nice to hear the kind of relationship that Mr. Shridhar and you have had.

I pray for Mr. Shridhar and his family.

His sound and sound effects will linger always...

Rams said...

Hi Blaaze bro,
Yes, it's a great loss to all of us in the world of music... Shridharji's name was almost omnipresent in every album that came out of Rahmanji's studios. His contributions will be greatly missed and your personal account on him is deeply touching.

Let peace prevail...everywhere..

Rahmaniac,
Rams.

amrita said...

hi its real nice to see u have made it after struggling for ages, i still remember when u did ur first album, i dont know if u remember me, amrita baliga, my parents knew ur mum n dad, mu used to work in the nursery?
i have seen the movie 'boys' i knew it was ur voice, even shivaji is great,the songs were good.my family is still in kitwe. amrita