A.R. Rahman scored big in Hollywood last year with the soundtrack to Slumdog Millionaire, though of course those of us who have been listening to him since the 1990s know that in fact Slumdog was far from his best work (my favorite, Dil Se… was actually my first; those songs completely changed how I thought about Hindi film music). In the wake of all the Oscar love, I was fully expecting Rahman to get some calls from prominent American directors for upcoming films.
Well, Rahman is going to make his debut with a Hollywood soundtrack this fall. But he’s not working with Steven Soderbergh, Steven Spielberg, or Clint Eastwood. Instead, his debut soundtrack is for a Vince Vaughn comedy called Couples Retreat.
The soundtrack hasn’t been released yet, but you can listen to the tracks on the Soundtrack website: here.
As a partial relief, the soundtrack sounds great. I think “Sajna” sounds especially nice, but even some of the instrumental tracks are cool (try “Undress”). Tamil-speakers might also like “Kuru Kuru Kan,” [update: track removed]. (Anyone want to do some translation help?)
I’m still trying to digest the decision to debut with what looks like a second-rate sex comedy. From what I have heard from the soundtrack so far, it sounds like Rahman has made some great music for this film. But will anyone be paying attention?