It took him years of struggle to break into the film industry. But Amit Trivedi has won himself a National Award for music for only his second film. For Anurag Kashyap’s Dev D, he composed a record 17 songs that covered almost the entire gamut of music genres.
But the young composer still can’t believe he’s received the country’s highest film honour especially since he didn’t have an inkling that he was even under consideration. “This news was such a surprise to me,” Trivedi smiles. “I have never kept awards in mind when I compose music, so I’m on cloud nine.”
Trivedi, who also won an award last month for his music in Udaan at the world’s biggest children’s film festival, Italy’s Giffoni Festival, is especially “trying to digest” the news that he was given the National Award over A R Rahman’s Delhi 6, which he calls a “masterpiece”. “I’m a die-hard Rahman fan and I can vouch for his album,” he says. “It is among the top 10 albums of his career, so I’m even more humbled to get the award over it.”
The composer, who debuted in 2008 with Rajkumar Gupta’s Aamir, first came into the limelight when his brass band inspired song, Emotional atyachaar (Dev D) became a chartbuster. But although he had another hit in Pardesi, he feels that the other 15 songs couldn’t find a bigger audience.
“I really hope the award will change that now,” he says. “People still have no idea that the movie had 17 songs. Hopefully, they will now go back to Aamir and Udaan too, which were experimental albums for small-budget films, and didn’t receive enough airplay.”
Trivedi believes he now has a tough journey ahead, since his venture into “commercial Bollywood music” with the soundtrack of Aisha proved to be successful too. “I did Aisha because I wanted to prove to myself that I can do commercial albums too,” he chuckles. “And the success of songs like Iktara (Wake Up Sid) and Gal mitthi mitthi (Aisha) has helped me gain confidence. So now, I want to continue exploring both, offbeat and mainstream music making.”