MM Keeravani On Winning Oscar For Naatu Naatu: “Global Recognition Came For A Song That’s Not My Best”

Oscar-winning composer MM Keeravani, who is also known as MM Kreem, recently talked about winning the Academy award for the song Naatu Naatu in an interview with The Indian Express. Naatu Naatu (RRR) won the award in the best Original Song category at the Academy Awards 2023. The composer believes he won the award for the song which is not his best. When asked if the recognition came late for him, the composer-singer said, “See, late or early, the global recognition has come to a song which is not my best. That much I can say. But, when the recognition has to come, it will come somehow, from any corner. But late? Sometimes you feel it’s late because your lifespan is fixated, that’s how it is termed as late or early, when your life span is not fixated, it comes when it has to come.”

Sharing his thoughts on the changing scenario of Bollywood music, where melody takes a backseat nowadays, MM Keeravani said, “It’s giving respect to the melody. Melody can be anything, it can be fast or slow. In musical terms a melody means a musical graph. In a layman’s dictionary, a melody is soothing and a little bit slow. So, the slower the melody, it will remain in your mind or heart for a long time.”

A quick lookback at India’s big moment on the Oscar stage –  MM Keeravani said in his acceptance speech, “I grew up listening to the Carpenters and now here I am with the Oscars.” He sang the melody of the 70s pop hit Top Of The World with his own version of the lyrics: “There was only one wish on my mind. … RRR has to win, pride of every Indian, and must put me on the top of the world.”

Naatu Naatu defeated Applause from Tell It Like A Woman, Hold My Hand from the movie Top Gun: Maverick, Lift me Up from Black Panther: Wakanda Forever and This Is Life from Everything Everywhere All At Once to win the Best Original Song Oscar.

MM Keeravani composed music primarily for Tamil and Telugu films. He composed music for Hindi films like Criminal, Zakham, Jism, Rog, Saaya.