Neel Dutt

Neel Dutt (born 7 March 1979) is an Indian music composer and singer from Kolkata. He received the National Film Award for Best Music Direction from the Govt. of India in 2012 for the soundtrack of the Bengali film Ranjana Ami Ar Ashbona (Ranjana I ain’t coming back no more). Dutt is the third person from West Bengal to win the Best Music Direction award. He is arguably the first music director in India to rearrange a Rabindranath Tagore composition with modern electronic music.

Neel Dutt
Neel Dutt
Neel Dutt
Background information
Born (1979-03-07) 7 March 1979 (age 42)
Kolkata, West Bengal, India
GenresUrban folk, Indian, soundtracks, pop
Occupation(s)Composer, singer
InstrumentsMusic, vocals

Early lifeEdit

Neel Dutt was born on 7 March 1979, in Kolkata. His parents are Anjan Dutt[1] and Chanda Dutt.[2] Anjan, an actor and filmmaker, is also a prolific musician from the 1990s scene of modern Bengali music. Chanda is a retired English teacher at St. Augustine's Day School, Kolkata.

As an infant, Dutt's first school was Mr. Pires Private School. Later, he moved to middle school at Seventh Day Adventist School, Kolkata. Following his high school education at St. Augustine's Day School, he studied English literature at Asutosh College, Kolkata. He completed his master's degree in English literature from the University of Calcutta in 2002.

Early careerEdit

Dutt was still in middle school when his father started writing songs in Bengali in 1993. That was when he first began to accompany him on the guitar. The two went on to become the first father-son musician duo in modern Bengali music. Playing the guitar professionally with his father from the age of 13 was his first experience in live music as well as studio sessions. From the end of 1993, the duo started performing live and they toured extensively. He received his first Gold Disc from HMV for their first album, Shuntey Ki chao, which released in 1995.

Film musicEdit

While studying for his post graduation, Dutt composed for his first feature film, titled Bow Barracks Forever, a film made in English. He scored and composed the whole soundtrack including the songs. A four-year long delay in the film's release made it the second released feature film with Dutt as the music director. It was showcased in various film festivals all over the world and has been a recipient of awards and accolades.

The feature film that became his first musical release is The Bong Connection, a bilingual film made in English and in Bengali. The soundtrack was the highest selling album in 2007.[clarification needed][citation needed] The film was screened at the Museum of Modern Arts in New York in 2007.

Musical origins and influencesEdit

Dutt grew up listening to a lot of sixties and seventies British and American musicians, whose influence seeped into every aspect of his musical performance. He started playing the guitar from the age of twelve when he was still in junior school. It began with picking up a few chords from his seniors in school and gradually developed into quite a love affair with the instrument. He began to take private lessons from one of the most prominent guitar players in the country, Amyt Datta, whom Rolling Stone magazine (India) announced to be one of the country's true live guitar gods.[citation needed] The guitar then became an inseparable part of his life.

In 2007 Dutt joined his friend and vocalist Arko Mukherjee, a fellow guitar player Rajkumar Sengupta and drummer Deboprotim Baksi to form Friends of Fusion (FOF), a contemporary fusion project. They started experimenting with Hindustani classical and folk traditions. The band released its self-titled debut album in 2009 from Saregama India which was considered to be a failure amongst the fans. FOF toured for three years and released its second album, titled 4/, in 2012. The band split shortly after this and Dutt moved on with his career in films.

When Byomkesh Bakshi released in 2010, it brought Dutt's abilities and his fondness for background scoring to the forefront. Dutt received the Etv Sangeet Puroshkar for the Best Background Score in 2013 for the film Dutta Vs Dutta.[citation needed] With the success of subsequent Byomkesh Bakshi films, Abar Byomkesh (2012), Byomkesh Phire Elo (2014) and the new revamped Byomkesh Bakshi (2015) starring Jisshu Sengupta, the Byomkesh theme has become quite synonymous to the legendary truth seeker's appearance on the big screen as well as on television.

Dutt's subsequent scoring for Anjan Dutt's Shesh Boley Kichu Nei (2013) and Srijit Mukherjee's Nirbaak (2015) received accolades from critics. In 2014, Neel composing for filmmaker Aparna Sen's experimental Hindi film Saari Raat. There on he composed for Sen’s next two films Sonata(2017) and Gharey O Baire (2019). In 2016, Neel rejoined Srijit Mukherjee for his film Uma. Currently he on going projects are Anjan Dutt’s Saheber Cutlet. This is a musical in the authentic way. For the first time in an Indian film the entire cast sang the songs themselves after rigorous training sessions with Neel. No playback singers have been used.


Music composerEdit



  1. ^ Zinia Sen (12 April 2018). "In a first, Anjan Dutt to put together a midnight jam". The Times of India. Retrieved 23 August 2019.
  2. ^ Arindam Chatterjee; Meghdeep Bhattacharyya (14 February 2015). "Neel Dutt interviews dad Anjan dutt just for t2". The Telegraph. Retrieved 23 August 2019.
  3. ^ a b Clutch, A., A; Guha, Nandini; Mukherjee, Promita (4 January 2009). "Tomorrow's stars". Telegraph Calcutta. Calcutta, India. Retrieved 9 July 2012.
  4. ^ "Song Connection". The Indian Express. 21 April 2009. Retrieved 9 July 2012.

External linksEdit