Read on Rediff a tribute to R.D.Burman, by none other than our own Anu Malik. Excerpts below (read the full article here):
I could see that suddenly, at the last moment, he (R.D.Burman) changed whatever music he had composed and whatever his musicians were playing.
Today, I find the same trait in myself -- I change my music at the last moment if I find it is not gelling.
Whoa, there !! Anu Malik and R.D.Burman ? Its like comparing sandal and cowdung, for chrissakes !!! Note that my point of comparison is cowdung, indicating that I actually have a lot of respect for Anu Malik - for cowdung is worshipped as Goddess Laxmi in India ;).
The self-proclaimed maestro doesn't stop:
He was a complete and versatile composer. He could give you an 'Amar Prem' and a 'Teesri Manzil' at the same breath --which, if you notice, I have done when I did while I composed 'Judwaa' and 'Refugee' and 'Virasat' and 'Border'. They are two different genres of music.
Then Malik must probably have re-read what he'd written, and had a major guilt-attack. I say this 'coz Malik goes on to write:
He could twist tunes so well. He would pick up foreign tunes and make it his own tunes. If you remember 'Chura liya hai tumne jo dil ko' [from the 1973 movie 'Yaadon Ki Baaraat'], or even if he lifted from Abba, he would turn the antara [the chorus of the song] so well that it changed the whole tune. I think that is one thing that any composer can learn from R D Burman. Rather, you could say that is what I have learnt from him.
Crediting his own plagiaristic tendencies to poor old RDB - some tribute this is turning out to be. Yeah Malik-saab, all of us noticed the subtle variations you made to that 'foreign tune' (Macarena) you lifted for 3 different movies at the same time.
The only decent passage in the whole article was this:
I remember going to a music company and while I was sitting there I saw Panchamda. He saw me and hid from me -- because he had come there asking for work. That was the most painful moment of my life - that one of the greatest composers, a living legend, was looking for work. This was just few years before his death.
Somehow, this whole me-too attitude of Anu Malik reminded me of placebos that drug companies manufature. Anu's out to market himself desperately, and what better way than to hitch himself on to Pancham-da !! Dunno why he's so desperate, since he's actually doing pretty well right now - loads of hit numbers, the choicest of movies and all that. Makes for entertaining reading, though !!