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Namesake Soundtrack

4.5 out of 5 stars 17 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Soundtrack, March 6, 2007
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

With The Namesake, Mira Nair found ways to link New York and Calcutta not only visually, but via sound as well. Like the story itself, the film's soundtrack traverses both time and cultures. "I love Indian classical music and I wanted to link that classical sound with the pulsating New York sound of today," comments Nair. "So the soundtrack not only crosses 25 years of time but also moves from Bengali folk music, Geeta Dutt's 'Jhiri Jhiri Choyetali' to hip-hop, 'The Chosen One.' And then there is Nitin Sawhney's haunting score mixed throughout. This is the privilege of cinema: to bring together the sounds, voices, instruments of that which you love and make it one with image."

Amazon.com

Fans of British composer Nitin Sawhney excited to see his name connected to this soundtrack should be aware that Sawhney's music accounts for just 26 minutes of this nearly 56-minute recording. In addition, most of the 12 tracks he contributes are plot-advancing cues, not fully realized compositions, which clock in at under two minutes (four run one minute or less). Eight other artists are represented here, including vocalist Susheela Raman with two tracks found on past solo recordings. Other selections range from '60s Indian vocalist Geeta Dutt and the traditional chant of Lakhan Das ("Baul Song") to Argentina's Federico Aubele ("Postales") and a brief rap from Mykill Miers. The divergent musical sources reflect the old world/new world conflicts that entangle an Indian family following a move from Calcutta to New York City in a film from respected director Mira Nair (Monsoon Wedding). For his part, Sawhney (principally using acoustic guitar and strings, often embellished with Indian vocalese and instrumentation) lends elegant, modern-traditional brushstrokes to the film's more reflective moments that underscore the characters' cultural conflicts. It is a broadly varied recording that on occasion beautifully captures--usually all too briefly--moments of deep inner searching. The disc concludes with "Falling," Sawhney's collaboration with Matt Hales from Aqualung, from Sawhney's 2003 release Human. --Terry Wood

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Shoes To America
  2. The Namesake Opening Titles
  3. First Day In New York
  4. Jhiri Jhiri Choyetali - Geeta Dutt
  5. Flight IC408 - State Of Bengal
  6. Airport Grief
  7. Mo's Affair
  8. Farewell Shoke
  9. Ashima Becomes A Widow
  10. Aftermath
  11. Ye Mera Divanapan Hai - Susheela Raman
  12. Baul Song - Lakhan Das
  13. Taj Mahal
  14. The Chosen One - Mykill Miers
  15. Max Arrives
  16. Boatman's Song - Kartik Das
  17. Postales - Ferderico Aubele
  18. Amra Reformed HIndus - Partha Chatterjee
  19. The Namesake
  20. The Same Song - Susheela Raman
  21. Falling


Product Details

  • Performer: Nitin Sawhney, Susheela Raman, Federico Aubele, Lakhan Das, Geeta Dutt, et al.
  • Composer: Nitin Sawhney
  • Audio CD (March 6, 2007)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Soundtrack
  • Label: Rounder
  • ASIN: B000H5VF2K
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #50,961 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By D. Pawl VINE VOICE on April 26, 2007
Format: Audio CD
The soundtrack was probably one of the most evocatively beautiful qualities in Mira Nair's THE NAMESAKE. For starters, "The Namesake Title Sequence" is so haunting and it really draws you into the story. Of course, a great deal of the songs, featured here, hint at the emotions and experiences of the Gangulis, the parents of the main character, Googol. "Shoes To America" is warm and humorous. This was when Googol's parents are first being introduced. I can still see his mother, Ashima, trying on the sturdy shoes of her future husband. The rest of the soundtrack makes me recall other wonderful moments from this story. There are elements of the soundtrack that deviate from the Eastern feeling of the film. "The Chosen One," a powerful rap, brings us forward, thirty years in this family's legacy. I won't give away plot elements here. I really reccomend this beautiful soundtrack, and I also reccomend that you go see the film that was its inspiration. You certainly won't be disappointed!
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Nitin Sawhney is an old hand now at indo-fusion and it is evident in some of the pieces in the soundtrack. He has used various iconic indo-fusion artists such as "State of Bengal" and "Susheela Raman" to bolster the soundtrack.

The pure flute numbers used as the core theme as well as for the titles are excellent. There instrumentals have a lilting quality with an outstanding melody.

The Salil Chowdhury-esque bengali ditty, "Jhiri Jhiri Choyetali" is a gem, sung wonderfully by Geeta Dutt. The kids will love it.

There are also samples of raw Bhatiyali and Baul music and the usual chill out fusion numbers. The Bhatiyali and Baul tracks may or may not appeal in this age of percussion heavy music, but it provides a glimpse into the culture of Bengal.

"Falling", the last fusion track on the album is excellent.

One other number that stands out is Susheela Raman's version of an old bollywood number "Ye Mera Deevanapan hai".

This album comes highly recommended.
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It's hauntingly beautiful and seems to fit the female lead's character so well. The title credits are like nothing you've ever heard before. So beautiful that it moves me to tears and that's not an easy thing to do. The main theme reflects so well the beauty of the film. Once you've seen it a few times you can play the soundtrack alone and see the film in your head. I really love so much that I play it over and over again. Enjoy.
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This soundtrack introduced me to several new artists, and brought back the magic and wonder of Mira Nair's movie!! This soundtrack and movie are a must to own!!
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This is an excellent soundtrack, has the music from scenes in the movie that are most provocative. Very well produced and fun to listen to in the car.
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I loved the movie and had to have the soundtrack. I love Indian music. It was inexpensive and worth getting through amazon. I love listening to it.
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I recently traveled to southern India and was looking for a good sampler of what I heard when I was in India. This was a great taste of the interesting and diverse music of India.
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I had a chance to see "The Namesake" last night and was immediately captured by the beauty of the music. UK-based Nitin Sawhney is to be commended for this pearl, which borrows from some of his underground lounge music work in the past decade blending it exquisitely with traditional Indian sounds.

The album brings to memory the sound of another brilliant soundtrack: Frida. This is clearly a masterpiece that you will be able to enjoy for years to come.
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