Associated acts Chandrabindoo, Metro
Music group Chandrabindoo
|Years active 2001–present|
Name Pritam Chakraborty
Spouse Smita Bhattacharya
|Born 14 June 1971 (age 46) Kolkata, West Bengal, India|
Occupation(s) Music Composer, Singer,
Labels Tips Industries Limited, Sony Music, Eros International, T-Series
Albums Race, Dil Bole Hadippa!
Parents Anuradha Chakraborty, Prabodh Chakraborty
Similar People Arijit Singh, KK, Mohit Chauhan, Amitabh Bhattacharya, Sunidhi Chauhan
Exclusive interview pritam chakraborty gets up close personal with koimoi
Pritam Chakraborty (Bengali: প্রীতম চক্রবর্ত্তী) (born 14 June 1971), better known as Pritam, is an Indian composer, singer, instrumentalist and record producer known for his works in Bollywood. He has won 3 Filmfare Awards, 4 Zee Cine Awards, 3 Star Screen Awards, 3 IIFA Awards and 3 ITA Awards among many others.
- Exclusive interview pritam chakraborty gets up close personal with koimoi
- Pritams Live performance at IIFA Awards 2014
- Early life
- Pre Bollywood
- Early Bollywood career with Jeet Gannguli
- Bollywood Career as Pritam
- New Musical Venture JAM8
- Songs and Movies
- Musical style
- Awards and Nominations
- Cultural Perception
After graduating from Film and Television Institute of India, Pritam started composing jingles for TV & Musics for TV serials. He was signed for the film Tere Liye along with his friend Jeet Gannguli, the duo was called Pritam-Jeet. The duo next composed music for the 2002 Yash Raj Films production Mere Yaar Ki Shaadi Hai. The music of the movie was a huge success and most of its songs went on to become chart-busters. Bollywood got a total new dimension of fusion kind of music by this album for the first time. After the film, Pritam-Jeet duo parted ways. Pritam started his solo carrier from 2003. He was then again approached by film director Sanjay Gadhvi to compose music for his second film, Dhoom, which received an overwhelming response.
Pritam’s Live performance at IIFA Awards 2014
Pritam was born into Bengali family to Anuradha Chakraborty and Prabodh Chakraborty. His father, who was an insurance officer, used to teach light music on western instruments to young kids for a nominal fee, till an accident forced him to quit his job and concentrate on the meager earnings from his music school. Pritam gained his early training in music from his father and learned to play the guitar while he was still in school.
After completing his schooling at St. James' School and Graduating in Geology in 1992 from Presidency College, Pritam dropped out of his M.Sc. classes in 1993 to chart a career of his choice from FTII, Pune where he took up Sound Recording and Engineering in 1994. During this time, he was offered a chance to compose background music for a film by Hungarian filmmaker Istvan Gaal. He also learned African music from musicologist Kedar Avati.
Pritam joined a Bangla band, Chandrabindoo. Before that he formed another band with his Presidency batchmates, called "Jotugriher Pakhi" for which, he used to play the Guitar. They even have a cassette released to their credit at that time.
After completing his sound engineering course from FTII Pune, Pritam came to Mumbai in 1997. He started composing ad jingles and became friendly with other young struggler's such as Shantanu Moitra, Rajkumar Hirani, Sanjay Gadhvi and Jeet Gannguli. Pritam composed renowned jingles for brands like Santro, Emami, McDonald's, Head & Shoulders, Thums Up, Limca, Complan and composed title tracks for TV serials such as Astitva, Kkavyanjali, Ye Meri Life Hai, Remix, Kashmir, Mili, and Dil Kya Kare.
Early Bollywood career (with Jeet Gannguli)
About his relationship with Jeet, Pritam said,
I was living in a humble suburb, and in the same building lived Jeet (Gannguly), who was also struggling. We used to jam in our spare time and decided to come together for films, though I always did my ad films and serials solo.
Pritam got his first break when Sanjay Gadhvi was signed on to direct Tere Liye and he, in turn, signed on his friends Jeet and Pritam as music composers. Though the music was well received, the film sank at the box office. However, in 2002 Yashraj Films signed Gadhvi up to direct Mere Yaar Ki Shaadi Hai, for which the Jeet-Pritam duo once again composed the music. All the songs from that movie were chartbusters, and the duo had hit the big time. Recalling that time, Pritam said
Abbas Tyrewala was the writer and lyricist (of tere liye), and we were all newcomers. But the film did not work at the box-office. However, Gadhvi was soon signed by Yash Raj Films for Mere Yaar Ki Shaadi Hai, and my song 'Sharara' became very popular. At that point of time, we could only get a small movie, Mudda - The Issue starring Arya Babbar. Jeet had taken ill, so when Hirani came and offered us Munna Bhai MBBS, we could not accept it.
Soon after, over some misunderstanding, Jeet decided to split and the partners went their separate ways.
Bollywood Career as "Pritam"
Pritam had built a name & brand for his compositions by finely blending Indian classical music with western influences. His compositions for Gadhvi's second movie Dhoom were a runaway hit. The title-track of Dhoom in two versions – Hindi (by Sunidhi Chauhan) and English (by Tata Young) – broke geographic barriers becoming popular in pubs in the UK, USA and the East Asia and won him a Zee Cine Award for Best Track of the Year. He received two nominations for Dhoom.
He followed this up with compositions for films like Gangster and Dhoom 2. His compositions for Anurag Basu's Life in a... Metro garnered him very positive reviews & brought him much fame. He formed a band called Metro with Suhail Kaul, Soham Chakraborty, Eric Pillai and Bangladeshi singer James for the movie.
He won his second Zee Cine Award for Best Track of the Year for the song "Mauja hi Mauja" from Jab We Met by Imtiaz Ali. Jab We Met won him his first Apsara Award for Best Music Director. He composed for two more Imtiaz Ali films, Love Aaj Kal and Cocktail which were critically and commercially very successful and gave him many awards and Nominations. The music of all three films were super hit.
His Sufi songs for the 2010 movie Once Upon A Time in Mumbaai were immensely popular with the masses and songs like "Pee loon" and "Tum Jo Aaye" were declared chartbusters. He teamed up again with Mahesh Bhatt and Vishesh Films for music of Crook of which the song "Mere Bina" got instant recognition with public. His Foot-Tapping numbers for Rohit Shetty's Golmaal 3 were also equally Successful. In 2011, he got to work for Salman Khan's Ready and Bodyguard. He recreated the famous 1971 song, Dum Maro Dum for Ramesh Sippy's 2011 movie of the same name. He then composed for the Romance Mausam which had a strong influence of Punjabi. The songs were phenomenal hits in Northern India with "Rabba Main To Mar Gaya Oye" being a rage among people.
In 2012, he composed several successful songs for films like Players, Agent Vinod, Jannat 2 and Vidhu Vinod Chopra's Ferrari Ki Sawaari, where he finally get to work with him and Rajkumar Hirani. Later that year, he scored music for Barfi! which won him two Filmfare Awards. Barfi is considered to be one of the most critically acclaimed soundtrack album of his career. By 2013, his list included Race 2, Murder 3, Yeh Jawani Hai Deewani, Dhoom 3 and Once Upon ay Time in Mumbai Dobaara which was his 100th movie as a Music Director in Bollywood. He started 2014 with compositions for Yaariyan and Shaadi Ke Side Effects. He then took a break in 2014.
He marked his return with three successful albums in 2015: Kabir Khan's Bajrangi Bhaijaan & Phantom and Rohit Shetty's Dilwale for which he was nominated for Filmfare awards. The Song, "Gerua" from Dilwale directly opened at the No. 1 position on the Radio Mirchi charts and became the first Bollywood song to cross 100 million views on Youtube in the shortest duration ever. It also ranked in the top slot in places like Malaysia, Oman, Sri Lanka and Bahrain. In 2016, He composed the song "Itni Si Baat Hai" for Azhar while the album of Dishoom was launched in July that year. All of his tracks in Ae Dil Hai Mushkil were chart-busters and were immensely popular among classes & masses. His upcoming films include Jagga Jasoos, Badtameez Dil, Tigers, Dangal, Raabta, Tubelight, The Ring and Golmaal Again.
Pritam is the only music composer who have worked with almost all superstars & directors in Bollywood after 2000's. In the beginning of his carrier.
Pritam used to work with Emraan Hashmi the most in the starting of his carrier. Pritam & Emraan started their journey almost at the same time. They both became star working together in many superhit films. Specially Emraan Hashmi is known for his superhit songs, whether his film's were hit or not but every album of Emraan Hashmi used to be super hit every time. A big credit goes to Pritam for this.
Pritam worked with Akshay Kumar a lot. Akshay Kumar's Comedy era's almost all film were done by Pritam & they were all super hit musically. Garam Masala (2005 film) , Bhool Bhulaiyaa, Bhagam Bhag Singh Is Kinng , De Dana Dan Khatta Meetha (2010 film) Action Replayy Thank You 2011 , Desi Boyz Holiday: A Soldier Is Never Off Duty are the movies which Akshay & Pritam did together & were super hits musically. Many songs of these movies still plays everywhere.
Pritam & Shahid Kapoor was always a great duo. Shahid Kapoor always wanted to rope Pritam in his movies & he always fights for this matter to grab Pritam as many time as possible. He always said that, "Every film of him which has become hits or super hits, always had Pritam in it."
Saif Ali Khan also worked with Pritam in few of his movies which were super hits & had a great friendship between Race (2008 film) Love Aaj Kal , Cocktail (2012 film) Agent Vinod (2012 film) Race 2 Phantom (2015 film) are some super hit films of Pritam with Saif.
Ranbir Kapoor said in an interview that "Pritam da is a genius, He is the best in music in Bollywood. Ae Dil Hai Mushkil's 80% contribution of hype is for him & his music. Pritam Da is like a god for me, every film of my life which is successful, had Pritam in it, wheather it is Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani or Barfi! or Raajneeti or Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani or Ae Dil Hai Mushkil , all are done by Pritam Da. He is such a blessing in my life. My all carrier success is due to him. I love him so much & thank god always that he send Pritam Da in my life. Source -.
Pritam is a very regular & successful composer for his Series movies. Dhoom (film series) are entirely done by Pritam. Pritam also replaced Vishal–Shekhar from Golmaal (film series) after they did the first one - Golmaal: Fun Unlimited. From then Golmaal Returns Golmaal 3 is done by Pritam . Jannat (film) Jannat 2 is also done by Pritam. There are many sequel films coming which are planned to be done by Pritam.
Working with all three "KHAN's"
Pritam is the only composer to work with all three khan's in Bollywood. Shah Rukh Khan 's Dilwale (2015 film) , Salman Khan's Ready (2011 film) Bodyguard (2011 Hindi film) Bajrangi Bhaijaan & Aamir Khan's Dhoom 3 Dangal (film) is the works of Pritam with Khan's. There are ongoing projects with Shah Rukh Khan & Salman Khan is going on.
List of Films & stars Pritam have worked with:
New Musical Venture - JAM8
Pritam’s Music Venture Launched with Shah Rukh Khan’s ‘Raees’ - Pritam's dream project "JAM8" will compose and produce two songs for Shah Rukh Khan's upcoming home production “ Raees (film) ,” giving its launch a go.
Talking about the initiative, Pritam said, “An initiative like JAM8 has been my dream since years, and I am overwhelmed that this dream has been finally taking baby steps since the last few months. But now with Shah Rukh Khan giving his support so wholeheartedly, I could not have asked for a more auspicious beginning.”
A first-of-its-kind talent pool for music in India, JAM8 , which is a music A&R (Artiste & Repertoire) venture, aims at nurturing and honing new talent in the music field under the mentor-ship and guidance from Pritam and give them a platform to showcase their work.
Earlier, talents from JAM (as JAM8 was previously called) made music for some events, a television show and the film “1920: London.”
Speaking to India West, Pritam said, “I had this plan long back, but could not execute it as I had no time and no one to manage it. Now, there is a team to do so, and I have some time to mentor them as I have limited assignments.”
“JAM8 is a platform for newcomer composers. We hunt for them from all corners and want to push their music into the mainstream, as the industry is open to multiple composers for a film now.”
A concept quite popular in the West, this is the first time that such a platform is being provided for musicians in India.
Pritam feels Bollywood has never really served as an incubator for newbies and that is the reason why the overall standard hasn't really risen. Determined to change the scene for artists that want to learn the ropes of production and composing. “Unlike the West, there is no concept of A&R in India, especially Bollywood. Thats why I started this A&R venture. I am someone who likes to promote new voices,” he says, citing how he pushes some of his more talented programmers and arrangers to turn composers. “I tell them, idhar aur kaam karke fayda nahin hai. [There’s no point wasting your talent in my studio].” As Example, There are Sachin–Jigar, Arijit Singh, Amaal Mallik, Amjad Nadeem , Sunny M.R. & many more who have worked with Pritam for very long time & came to mainstream music by him.
Songs and Movies
Pritam mentored and judged Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Challenge 2009 and was a judge for Chhote Ustaad on Zee TV. He was also a guest judge for the X factor and Zee Bangla's Sa Re Ga Ma Pa 2012-13. He also composed the title track for Hrithik Roshan's TV series Just Dance for Star TV which was sung by K.K. Pritam also appeared on the popular show MTV Unplugged (Season 5) as the top artist on 13 February 2016 where he sang some of his career's best songs. Pritam is the mentor and judge of Sa Re Ga Ma Pa 2016 alongside Mika Singh and Sajid–Wajid
Pritam also did two TVC for Titan Company for their Titan JUXT , The TVC also featured Kabir Khan (director) & Vir Das. You can see the TVC from here - & Also The Pritam's own acted version here -
Pritam has composed & composing in variety of genres including Rock (Life in a Metro), Sufi (Once Upon Time in Mumbai) and even Ghazals (Barfi) and Qawwali (Bajrangi Bhaijaan) & of course his signature Indian-Western Fusion music. His musical style is mainly characterized as a delicate fusion of Indian classical music with western influences.
In an interview given to Stacey Yount for Bollyspice, Pritam said "I really do prefer doing rom-coms over action films." Lyricist and singer Amitabh Bhattacharya said about Pritam, "It is very challenging to work with Pritam. Right from the day he cracks the song, till the day the song goes out, he is constantly working, re-working, doing changes in the song, He keeps me on my toes and that is very exciting to me. We debate a lot regarding our songs and ultimately the result is always good, His spectrum as an artist is vast. It is always good to work with composers who have range." Famous singer Kavita Seth said "Pritam's melody is very strong. You hear it once and it will stay with you, it is addictive.",
Pritam doesn't come on media much because of his very tight schedules, but he did several interviews in recent times , He talked about many things of music & how the music has been created in his movies . Interview link -
Pritam joined in [[Jio MAMI Movie Mela: Rajeev Masand & Anupama Chopra with Pritam]] , he talked about many of the secrets of film music & his journey in Bollywood on the interview. Interview link -
Talking about music & style , Pritam in an interview said "I am a mass-y guy, so most times, I know whether a song will click or not. Also, I like simple stuff. If you give me a complicated idea, I will simplify it. You see, commercial songs have to be simple, because they have to be understood by everyone,but there’s a trap there— you can’t get very simple also. So you always have to balance that. To use [filmmaker] Mukesh Bhatt’s golden words, ‘Make the new sound familiar and the familiar sound new.’”
Rolling Stone India , one of the biggest magazine published their February 2017 issue featuring Music Director Pritam, writing that , "Bollywood music-making follows a depressing, predictable pattern where a composer who hits jackpot with a new idea triggers a domino effect among others who try and crack the ‘formula.’ Fortunately for Pritam, he’s always found himself to be a trend-setter rather than a follower in the game of hits. His track record of chartbusters is unmatched with extremely huge margin. How did all this happen?"
In Answer , Pritam explained that - I credits this success to his inherently mainstream sensibilities. The current indie-meets-mainstream sound that Bollywood still can’t get over - Pritam concocted it. He was the one who pulled Nineties Indipop singers like Mika Singh, Neeraj Shridhar (of Bombay Vikings) and Mohit Chauhan (of Silk Route) into Bollywood, forever changing the playback paradigm of the industry.
He also said in the answer of current Bollywood music sound & style that - “See, A. R. Rahman changed the sound & started the journey of modern sound in 90"s. The current (After 2000's) commercial sound of Bollywood was shaped by three of us: Vishal–Shekhar, Shankar–Ehsaan–Loy and me,” says [[Pritam]] , “Till today, everybody is following the same template & style of ours. After our batch, nobody has changed the sound yet. We are, in fact, waiting for someone to change it.”
Read the full interview from here -
Awards and Nominations
Asia Pacific Screen Awards
Star Screen Awards
Asian Film Awards
Early on in his career, Pritam faced multiple accusations of plagiarism. In an interview with Hindustan Times, he admitted to having "made mistakes initially". Pritam continues to be accused of plagiarism today, although most accusations have been found to be baseless.
In an Interview in 2017 with Rolling Stone on their February 2017 Issue, Pritam talked about Plagiarism in details - [[From plagiarist to an unmatchable super hit-factory - Turning Back to become trend-setter]]
“I know your last question will be about plagiarism. It’s always the last question,” jokes Pritam, broaching the topic prematurely and rather sportingly so. “See, to be honest, I never thought it [copying] was a problem in Hindi films. As a kid, you saw legendary songs composed by the biggest [Hindi film] directors drawing influences from Western songs. Also, what happened with me was that in 80 percent of the cases, I was asked to remake a particular song, and I remade it. Most times, the director would come with it [the original track]. A lot of times, I was assured by the makers that the rights to the songs will be acquired, but it never happened.”
Pritam’s confessions about his own naivety are both alarming as well as strangely disarming. Although not one to deny he lifted tunes (“Everyone, including my lawyer back then told me that I should deny, lekin mere se nahin hota tha [I couldn’t bring myself to do it]”) he feels a lot of trouble could have been avoided if he had realized the gravity of the situation early on. “It was only in 2009 that I sat back and realized that something had really gone wrong,” he laments. But the damage was done.
Indian music plagiarism tracking site www.itwofs.com alleges 52 instances between 2004 and 2010 where Pritam’s songs are said to be “lifted,” “copied,” “plagiarized” or “similar” to those of tunes by other composers, who range from not-so well-known Arab and South-East Asian artists (such as Ihab Tawfik, Yuri Mrakadi, Kim Hyung-sub et al) to biggies like Boney M. and Damien Rice.
These were Pritam’s most inglorious years; trial by media was only natural. Tabloids splashed him on front pages labeling him the ‘Anu Malik of the new generation’ and YouTube playlists solely dedicated to juxtaposing the original and ‘remade’ tracks started doing rounds. Pritam became the laughing stock of the industry. “If I didn’t have to do those 10-20 songs, maybe things would have been different,” he regrets. “I used to be so busy; the pressure of delivery was immense and there was no time to fight. Also, I am not a fighting type. So I just closed myself in a cocoon and kept working… But the shadow follows you wherever you go. The baggage carries on and you don’t feel good about it.”
So strong was the backlash that for years to come, the music composer would find his name dragged into even those controversies that had nothing to do with him. Sometimes, he would find himself accused of what he calls the most ludicrous of things, like in 2015, when it was alleged that the sprightly chartbuster “Manma Emotion Jage” from Dilwale was lifted from American girl group Fifth Harmony’s hit “Worth it,” which had released a few months prior. “The only common thing is that both songs feature a trumpet part!” More recently, another one of his compositions, “Bulleya” from Ae Dil Hai Mushkil (2016), came under the scanner for being ‘lifted’ from American rock band Papa Roach’s 2000 single “Last Resort.” His defense? “Both songs feature a classic chord progression, which you will find on many other rock songs too. Today, no composer would dare copy a song. Copyright laws are so strong that nobody wants to take a risk.”
Rolling Stone analyzed : So how did Pritam the plagiarist reinvent himself and go onto to become the go-to person for guaranteed hits?
The reasons are many. First, Pritam’s hit-to-miss ratio has been so high and consistent throughout his career that even the worst of plagiarism accusations have barely managed to affect his business as a composer. Till as late as 2010, for filmmakers, nothing really mattered as long as they got a hit song—by hook or by crook—and Pritam kept his promise every single time.
Second, you can hate plagiarist Pritam all you want, but you can’t deny him his talent. The man has a way with sticky tunes like perhaps nobody else in the industry. Even during his most embarrassing years, he managed to deliver one (purely original) hit after another. His versatility and ability to cook up a hybrid soundtrack that has the right amount of rock, reggae, bhangra, sufi, folk and country—and appeals to both tier 3 audiences and hipsters—is remarkable. What else can explain the triumph of Singh Is Kinng (2007), Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahaani (2009) and Love Aaj Kal (2009)—soundtracks that dominated playlists at sangeet parties and Bollywood club nights for at least a decade?
Third, Pritam enjoys an invincible first-mover advantage that is almost impossible to beat even today. The current indie-meets-mainstream sound that Bollywood still can’t get over—Pritam concocted it. He was the one who pulled Nineties Indipop singers like Mika Singh, Neeraj Shridhar (of Bombay Vikings) and Mohit Chauhan (of Silk Route) into Bollywood, forever changing the playback paradigm of the industry.
Also, since 2010, Pritam has reinvented himself as a visionary who can add value to a film than just work up a tasty recipe for hits. Soundtracks to films such as Dangal (film) (2016), Cocktail (2012), Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani (2013), R…Rajkumar (2013) and Ready (2011) are definitely more on-point and woven into the script than any of his previous works. He says, “Post all that [plagiarism accusation], I have been very particular. [While working on a song] if someone says that a melody sounds a little like another song, I change it immediately… I have become paranoid…but at the same time, you can’t get back at every faceless person on the Internet who points a finger at you. Whenever there is a face to a name and an accusation is made, my legal team gets back to them with a notice, which is what happened with “[[Pyaar Ki Pungi]].” In 2012, Iranian band Barobax had to withdraw a plagiarism case and even apologize publicly to Pritam and the filmmakers after initially alleging that the [[Agent Vinod]] song was copied from their composition [[Soosan Khanoom]]. Turns out, the songs only shared a common groove and this commonality alone couldn't be used to press charges.
BulleyaAe Dil Hai Mushkil (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) [Deluxe Edition] · 2016
CutiepieAe Dil Hai Mushkil (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) [Deluxe Edition] · 2016
Selfie Le Le ReBajrangi Bhaijaan · 2015