Interview : Rajat Dholakia

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‘Didn’t expect THE GOOD ROAD to win National Award’

Music composer Rajat Dholakia, who has given music for several films in the past like HOLI, MIRCH MASALA and others, talks about giving music for the National Award winning film, THE GOOD ROAD. He also discusses how he recorded music in the deserts of Kutch.


How did you get this film?
Gyan Correa (the director of THE GOOD ROAD) and I have worked on a lot of advertising films together. His dream was to make a feature film. So one day he called me and came up with a script. He briefed me about the story which was about a family who travel to Kutch and a boy gets lost on the trip. It was a very promising script, which had a road as its script. Also, I have an association with NFDC. I’ve worked with them many times in the past on films like MIRCH MASALA, OM DAR-BA-DAR and DHARAVI.

‘We used iPad to record music of THE GOOD ROAD’

How did you give music for such a film which is based in Kutch?
I was looking for a new challenge and the film provided me one. The whole film is set in outdoors. So it required a lot of location sounds, which was a task. We recorded the entire music in Kutch. We had a tent in a dessert to protect the unnecessary sounds and we recoded the entire music and background score of the film in it. Even our sound engineer, Resul Pookutty was also very excited to record the sound. We called and coordinated with all the musicians there in the Kutch desert.

How was the experience working with Resul Pookutty?
Resul is now an Oscar-winning sound designer. In Kutch, even the wind makes good sounds. You feel the wind is talking to you. Resul has created those effects. So whenever the camera moves, you will find the sound of the wind. A very different kind of sound designing has happened in the film. The sound of this film has been created in a very international way. Hats off to his work for this film.

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Is it more challenging to record music on location than in a studio?
In this film, to organise the musicians in one area was a challenge. We were giving them the reference through an iPad. The folk musicians weren’t accustomed to the recording styles of a studio. So that was a challenge. But they supported us immensely.

What kind of instruments did you use for this film?

‘Kutch music is spiritual and unbelievably evocating’

We used all folk instruments of Kutch. We used instruments like Ektara, Morsing and Satara. Kutch music is spiritual and unbelievably evocating. All the folk musicians spiritually live at a very high level. We also used Dakla music, which is always played for the mother goddess. There is a belief that if someone is possessed, he/she can be cured by playing Dakla music.

Did you expect the film to win a National Award?
That was a big surprise. I knew that the film was submitted but I didn’t expect THE GOOD ROAD to win a National Award.

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