R D Burman

Profession: Singer , Actor, Art Director, Lyricist, Music Director, Supporting Actor
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Personal Details

  • Also Know as :- R D Burman
  • Profession:- Singer , Actor, Art Director, Lyricist, Music Director, Supporting Actor
  • Gender :- male
  • Birthdate:- 24 Jun 1939
  • Status:- Married
  • Debut Year:- 1961
  • Active Years:- 04 Jan 1994

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R D Burman
Indian Film History
R D Burman
Indian Film History
R D Burman
Indian Film History

4 Photos

R.D. Burman did his higher secondary level studies at Ballygunge Government High School or BGHS located at Kolkata in West Bengal.

He completed his HSC from Tirthapati Institution located in Rash Behari Avenue, Gariahat, Kolkata.

Rahul Dev Burman aka R.D. Burman was born on June 27, 1939, to legendary film music composer S.D. Burman (Sachin Dev Burman) and Meera Dev Burman. Few are aware that R.D. Burman's mother was also a competent singer and dancer. Thus R.D. Burman inherited music in his blood from his parents.


Lore has it that as a baby R.D. Burman cried in the musical rhythm with emphasis on the syllable ‘Pa' –The fifth note on Hindustani Classical rhythm Saregama. Hence he was lovingly nicknamed Pancham. He began displaying his passion for music at a tender age. He had a passion for playing a Mouth organ. Once his father noticed him playing Mouth organ and was delighted at his creative skill. He soon arranged a Tabla Master ustad Pandit Brijen Biswas as his Music Teacher. Later he learned sarod from Ustad Ali Akbar Khan, and Sitar from Annapurna Devi, wife of Ravi Shankar. R.D. Burman also developed a flair for Bollywood music from music composer Salil Chowdhury.

R.D. Burman had a rough marriage with Rita Patel that lasted for five years and the duo separated in 1971. However, when R.D. Burman and playback singer Asha Bhosle began to work together they slowly came together. Asha too had a failed marriage with Ganpatrao Bhonsle. The musical tuning of R.D. and Asha developed romantic chemistry and the two got married in 1980. They had a happy married life until R.D. Burman's sudden demise.



S.D. Burman used Panchan's tune when was just 9 years old


Though R.D. Burman's career started in the 60's when he became an independent filmmaker but Pancham displayed his genius as a child. His father used few of his tunes in his movies like Ai meree topee palat ke aa…….(Fantoosh -1956), Sar Jo Tera Chakraaye……(Pyaasa - 1957). Since Pancham played Mouth Organ brilliantly hence his father used him to play the Mouth Organ in his song Hai apna dil to aawara …. (Solva Saal -1958). Besides, in the film Dosti (1964), Pancham played Mouth Organ for the handicapped boy under the music direction of Laxmikant Pyarelal. Even in the film Sholay, the Mouth Organ that Amitabh Bachchan plays is played by Pancham.


Pancham began as assistant music director for his dad at the age of 18years


When R.D. Burman turned 18 he frankly told his father that he plans to become a Music Director and wished to become his assistant. His father agreed. Thus Pancham began his career as assistant music director with Guru Dutt's classic film Kagaaz Ke Phool and did many classical musical hit films like Chalti Ka Naam Gaadi (1958), Baat Ek Raat Ki (1962), Bandini (1963), Meri Surat Teri Aankhen (1963), Guide (1965), Jewel Thief (1967), Aradhana (1969) and Talash (1969).




Pancham becomes Independent Music Director at the age of 22 years 


R.D.Burman turned an independent music director in 1961 with the film Chote Nawab when he was just 22 years. The film was produced by actor Mehmood. In his very first film, Panchan proved his genius scoring the super hit classical hit song Ghar Aaja Ghir Aaye Badara Sanwariya… sung by Lata Mangeshkar. The film had another soul string sad song sung brilliantly by Mohd Rafi. The song was Ilaahi Tu Sun Le Hamaari Duaa, Hume Sirf Ek Aasra Hai…..


Pancham hits a jackpot with Teesri Manzil


Filmmaker Nasir Hussain had an ear for music and he had proved his genius by making a row of musical hit films like Tumsa Nahin Dekha, Dil Deke Dekho,

Jab Pyar Kisi Se Hota Hai and Phir Wohi Dil Laya Hoon. When he started Teesri Manzil he had signed Dev Anand in lead and gave R.D. Burman a chance to prove his mastery. It was a golden opportunity and Panchan grabbed it by both hands. However, thing went haywire when Dev Anand got busy with his film Guide and opted out of the film.


In his palace, Nasir Hussain signed Shammi Kapoor. This proved a hurdle for Pancham as Shammi Kapoor was known for working only with music director Shanker Jaikishen. Hence when Shammi Kapoor came to know about Pancham he was skeptical but Nasir Hussain was confident of Pancham's ability. Hence he requested Shammi Kapoor to have a sitting with Pancham and listen to his compositions. Shammi agreed with a heavy heart but when he heard his tunes he was thrilled. The music of Teesri Manzil was chartbuster all the songs were rocking hit Aaja Aaja Main Hoon Pyaar Tera... . The song O Haseena Zulfonwali Jaane Jahan….reached Binaca Geetmala while the song O Mere Sona Re...went on to acquire the second position in the prestigious Binaca Geetmala Hit parade 1967.


With Ek Chaturnar Karke Singaar… Pancham made his mark in the '60s


After the success of Teesri Manzil, Panchan made his mark composing his hit songs like Chunri Sambhal Gori… (Baharon Ke Sapne), Wadiyan Mera Daman… (Abhilasha), Tum Bin Jaoon Kahan….. (Pyar Ka Mausam) but the song that made Panchan famous was Ek Chaturnar Karke Singaar… from Mehmood film Padosan.




Pancham won ‘Real' success with Dum Maro Dum…


When Dev Anand started his film Hare Rama Hare Krishna his original choice was S.D. Burman for the film's music but senior Burman did not like the theme of the youth addicted to drugs. Hence Dev opted for R.D. Burman, who was influenced by Western Music. Pancham liked the subjected and created a mind-blowing composition Dum Maro Dum… while Dev Anand and the film crew was excited senior Burman was upset. Nevertheless, the song proved a trump card for the film's success. The song was a chartbuster and topped the famous Binaca Geetmala Hit Parade in 1972.  This number not just gave a new lease of life to Pancham but it also brought him closer with its leading singer Asha Bhosle with whom he experimented a wide variety of songs.


R.D. Burman hit Gold with his chemistry with Rajesh Khanna


R.D. Burman came close to Rajesh Khanna when Panchan created the romantic Roop Tera Mastana……' from the film Aradhan (1969) that made Rajesh Khanna a superstar overnight. Though Aradhana had S.D. Burman's music but Rajesh Khanna was not satisfied by the tune that Senior Burman composed for Roop Tera Mastana… but when he heard the tune composed by Panchan, Rajesh Khanna was overjoyed. The Jodi of Panchan and Rajesh Khanna became concreted after Pancham composed songs for Kati Patang and Amar Prem. The song Chingari Koi Bhadke…… (Amar Prem) made Pancham's father Senior Burman very happy and he had tears of joy in his eyes. Rajesh Khanna and R.D. Burman gave many hit films like Mere Jeevan Saathi, Apna Desh, Namak Haraam, Aap Ki Kasam, Ajanabee, Mehbooba, Kudrat, Agar Tum Na Hote


R.D. Burman ruled the 70's with many hits films


R.D. Burman ruled the 70's with the sexy Piya Tu Ab to Aaja from Caravan (1971) becoming a hit. This was followed by Apna Desh (1972), Jawani Deewani (1972), Yaadon ki Baaraat (1973), Khel Khel Mein (1975), Sholay (1975) and Hum Kissi Se Kum Nahin (1977), etc. Mohammad Rafi won the National Film Award and

Filmfare Award for Best Male Playback Singer from the song Kya Hua Tera Wada… (Hum Kissi Se Kum Nahin). R.D. Burman had to be satisfied by Filmfare Nomination for Hum Kissi Se Kum Nahin.


The R.D. Burman and Kishore Kumar Jodi


Under the music direction of R.D. Burman playback singer Kishore Kumar gave some of his most super hit songs. Who can forget mesmerizing songs like Kuch Toh Log Kahenge…….;  Pyaar Deewana Hota Hai…….; Rim Jhim Gire Sawan…..; Aane Wala Pal Jane Wala Hai…. ;  Humein Tumse Pyaar Kitna…….. What is most amazing is that under R.D. Burman, Kishore Kumar won three Filmfare Best Singer Awards viz. Roop Tera Mastana………….(Aradhana);   Hum Aur Jeene KI Tamanna Na Hoti Agar Tum Na Hote… (Agar Tum Na Hote) and   Saagar Kinaare………(Saagar). Surprisingly while Kishore Kumar won awards, R.D. Burman was always ignored!!!


The incredible Jodi of R.D. Burman and Gulzar


R.D.Burman and filmmaker –lyricist Gulzar formed a formidable team. The duo has given some of the most timeless melodies that shall remain immortal for centuries to come. Songs like Beeti Naa Beetayee Raina..( Parichay)', Dil Dhoondta Hai Phir Wohi…(Mausam) ,  Tujhse Naraz Nahin Zindagi (Masoom), Aap Ki Aakhon Mein Kuch …(Ghar), Aaane Wala Pal Jaane Wala Hai…( Golmaal), Mera Kuch Saman…( Izaazat)'  and above all the movie that ultimately brought R.D. Burman into the class of top music directors was unanimously Gulzar's best film Aandhi. Each song was a pearl in itself like Tum Aa Gaye Ho Noor Aa Gaya Hai …, Tere Bina Zindagi Se Koyi…and Is Mod Se Jaatein Hain …. Under Gulzar, Pancham always gave the Best of the Hindustani Classical Tunes, a quality that made the songs timeless.




The 80's witness R.D. Burman winning 2 Filmfare Awards in a row


The 80's started on a high note as R.D. Burman's  Love Story (1981), became a big hit. Fortunately, in the early '80s, Burman's lesser-known music in Kamal Haasan and Reena Roy film Sanam Teri Kasam (1981) won him his first Filmfare Best Music Director Award in 1983. Interestingly, the next year in 1984,  R.D. Burman won his second consecutive Filmfare Best Music Director Award for much deserved film Masoom. The year also won him Filmfare Nomination for his good music in Betaab (1983). His other hit films were Saagar (1985) and a brilliant one like Ijaazat (1987) that had the hit song Mera Kuch Samaan which won Asha Bhosle the National Award. The other classic film was Parinda (1989) that had the melodious song Tumse Milke Ke Aisa Laga …




R.D. Burman became immortal with the film – 1942: A Love Story


Towards his climaxing career, Pancham stunned the nation by pulling the ‘ace' of his career in the movie – 1942 : A love story. All the songs were based on classical ragas. Ek Ladki ko Dekha…., Kuch Na Kaho…., Pyaar Hua Chupke Se…., Rhimjhim Rhimjhim…… and Rooth Na Jaana…..The songs left the music critics dumbfounded. The film was released on 15 April 1994 and its music became a national craze. The film won Filmfare Best Music Award but alas R.D.Burman was not alive to watch the laurels and honor!!!


Filmfare started an Award in honor of R.D. Burman


Surprisingly Filmfare Awards always ignored R.D. Burman's best work in the 70's films like Jawani Diwani, Caravan; Yaadon Ki Baaraat; Amar Prem; Andhi; Ghar; Mehbooba; Hum Kisise Kum Naheen etc. Readers would be surprised to know Filmfare nominated Panchan 15 times and awarded just 3 awards!! However,  after R.D. Burman died on January 4, 1994 due to heart attack, Filmfare initiated ‘The Filmfare R.D. Burman Award' - A new category of award to honor new talent in break new ground in composing music.





On January 4, 1994, R.D. Burman died due to severe heart attack.

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