Kochi, Oct 10 (IANS) Ace musician who studied music from the world’s premier institute in the US – Jerry Amaldev, who entered the Malayalam film industry in 1979 with a bang and after rendering music for 75 films, in 1995 went into oblivion is certainly not disillusioned, but is unhappy as today’s Malayalam film music has a fast food culture.
In a chat with IANS, the 80-year-old musician who thrilled music buffs through his hugely popular tunes, continues to be a hugely sought after professional, though not in the Malayalam film industry.
“The situation today in the Malayalam film industry is that it has a ‘fast food culture’ and certainly, I don’t think, that’s what is needed,” said Amaldev.
“Gone are the days when it would take days and weeks for the lyrics to be written up and then it comes into the hands of the musician and does his job. Today, what happens is everything is readily available and all what the person who wants a music to be done, has to just give the premise, if it’s a happy, sad or things like that. Immediately the music is ready and the job is done,” said Amaldev.
But Amaldev is quite busy and said, a musician’s job is just not restricted to the film industry and is presently busy with his own choral group, besides teaches music at a leading private school and his hands are full in his profession composing anthems for educational institutions and all those who require one
Tracing his past, he said, music was always his first love and that was why he decided to call time on his Catholic Missionary career after studying the Bible for a decade at a centre in Central India in 1965.
Straight from studying Bible, Amaldev returned to his passion and began his new career in music, under the legendary Naushad in Bombay, with whom he worked for five years .
Then to study music, he left to the US and after a decade, learning and teaching music at the prestigious Cornell University, he came back to pursue his professional career.
And the very first film that he did, “Manjil Virinja Pookal” a romantic thriller, in 1980 , became one of the biggest hits , especially the music scored by Amaldev won huge admirations.
Since then he had no reason to look back till his career in the film industry came to a premature end in 1995 , by then he had done 75 Malayalam films.
Even though he, in the past, always preferred not to give the reason on why he failed to do music for films, the general impression was that he did not fall into a ‘click’ that at that time ran the music industry.
And when asked about it, Amaldev laughed and said, that’s all over and the ‘click’, also might have forgotten everything.
Comparing his times in the film industry and today, he said, the heart of a song is the lyrics and I must consider hugely lucky, that I had legends like ONV, P. Bhaskaran, Bichu Thirumala and a few others who gave me the best lyrics.
“Today, cultural degradation that has taken place has affected the lyrics also,” added Amaldev, who added that after 1995, it was in 2016 that he did music for a Malayalam film- “Action Hero Biju”, which turned out to be a hugely successful film at the box office.
“It’s not that I was in hiding, I am very much living here, it’s because people do not want me to do film music,” added Amaldev and said two months back he did another film for Apple’, which was a super flop.
“Today I have a tendency to dissuade everyone who comes to me, be it for an album or a film, as I know, it’s difficult to go forward the way I see music and when it comes to music albums, I tell them that they are not going to make money out of it,” said Amaldev.
Despite being away from the film market, Amaldev said he is deeply happy and living life to its fullest as nothing is in one’s control.
“It’s always better not to worry about anything and hence I am perfectly happy with what I am doing now, films or no film, is not an issue,” said Amaldev and signed off.