Salim Sadruddin Moledina Merchant, better known as Salim Merchant, is an Indian singer, music director, and score composer. He composes music along with his brother, Sulaiman Merchant, and the duo is known as Salim-Sulaiman. He mainly works in Bollywood. He came into the limelight after scoring the sound of the Bollywood film “Bhoot.”
Salim Merchant was born on Sunday, 3 March 1974 (age 45 years; as in 2019) in Mumbai. His ancestral town is Mundra, Kutch, Gujarat. His zodiac sign is Pisces.
He did his schooling from Mumbai’s St. Peter’s High School and went to KC College to pursue his graduation. Salim developed an interest in music at a very young age; since his father was a music director. After completing his graduation, Salim enrolled himself in London’s Trinity College of Music to master the piano. Thereafter, he went to Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, Delhi to learn Harmonium. His guru was Ustad Sultan Khan.
Height (approx.): 5’ 10”
Hair Colour: Black
Eye Colour: Brown
Family, Caste & Wife
Salim Merchant was born into a Muslim Family. the ismaili His father, Sadruddin Merchant, was a music director. His father used to lead the Ismaili Scouts Orchestra in India. Salim was very close to her mother. He has one brother, Sulaiman Merchant, who is also a music director.
Salim is married to Jeanne Micheal Merchant, a singer and lyricist. The couple has a daughter, Ayesha Merchant.
Salim started his career by composing “jingles” for TV advertisements. In the mid-1990s, he switched to pop music and produced albums for musicians like Voodoo Rapper, Style Bhai, Shweta Shetty, and Jasmine Bharucha. In 1997, he, along with his brother, received his first Bollywood project of composing the ‘Background Score’ in the film “Hameshaa.” Subsequently, he gave the music composition in the film “Ghaath.” The duo shot to fame after giving the background score for the film “Bhoot.”
Subsequently, he composed the music and background scores for Bollywood films like “Ab Tak Chhappan” (2004), “Mujhse Shaadi Karogi” (2004), “Dhoom” (2004), “Neal ‘N’ Nikki” (2005), “Kaal” (2005), “Krrish” (2006), and “Fashion” (2008).
In addition to being a music composer, Salim is also a great singer and has sung many popular songs in Bollywood. In 2014, his song “Ishq Wala Love” from the film ‘Student of The Year’ went on to become one of the biggest hits of the year.
He, along with his brother, has also created the Bollywood remix of Lady Gaga’s songs “Born This Way” and “Judas.” They have worked on Enrique’s song “I’m A Freak” and have also composed music for the Hollywood film “Sold.”
He has judged the season 5 and season 6 of the singing reality show “Indian Idol.” Salim has also judged the season 2 of Indian Idol Junior and season 2 of The Voice of India.
In September 2019, the Pakistani singer, Farhan Saeed accused Salim Merchant of copying his song Roiyaan. He alleged that Salim’s song “Haareya” was a complete copy of his song “Roiyaan.” However, Salim called it a mere coincidence.
- Star Screen Award for Best Background Score for the film “Bhoot” (2003)
- Star Screen Award for Best Background Score for the film “Dhoom” (2004)
- Zee Cine Award for Best Background Score for the film “Ab Tak Chhappan” (2005)
- IIFA Award for Best Background Score for the film “Mujhse Shaadi Karogi” (2005)
- FHM (magazine) Award for Best Dressed Music Composer (2007)
- Filmfare Award for Best Background Score for the film “Krrish” (2007)
- Syracuse International Film Festival Award for Best Music Director for the film “Fashion” (2008)
- Mirchi Music Award for Indie Pop Song of the Year for the song “Cheene Re Mora Chain” (2013)
- Food: Japanese Cuisines, Grilled Fish, Butter Chicken
- Films: Ab Tak Chhappan (2004), Legends of the Fall (1994), Life is Beautiful (1997)
- Musicians: Sukhwinder Singh, Rahat Fateh Ali Khan, Shafqat Amanat Ali, Sunidhi Chauhan, Kailash Kher, A. R. Rahman
- Book: The Kite Runner by Khaled Hossein
- Restaurants: Kofuku Japanese (Mumbai), Tatami (Mumbai)
- His hobbies include reading books and playing Xbox.
- He is often spotted drinking on various occasions.
- From the list of all his compositions, his favourite composition is “Yeh Honsla Kaise Jhuke” from the film ‘Dor.’
- His surname was earlier ‘Moledina,’ but his uncle later changed it to ‘Merchant’ when he moved to Australia.
- His father, Sadruddin Merchant, was a veteran of the Telugu Film Industry, who moved to Mumbai in 1969 and started manufacturing musical instruments. His father used to play the piano, saxophone, guitar, and drums.
- His father was fondly known as the Mohammed Rafi of the Ismaili community.
- Much before his marriage, his wife, Jeanne, was a popular name in the Jazz music circuit in Mumbai.
- Since 2013, Salim’s wife Jeanne has been running a homegrown music academy for toddlers. Many celebrity kids like Hrithik Roshan‘s son Hrehaan, Farhan Akhtar’s daughter Akira, Ronit Roy’s daughter Aador have learnt music from her.
- In 2009, Salim, along with his brother Sulaiman Merchant, got nominated for the Daytime Emmy Award (an American accolade) for their song ‘We Like Being Small’ from Nickelodeon’s animated show ‘Wonder Pets.’
- In 2010, Salim-Sulaiman collaborated with the South African singer, Loyiso Bala and Kenyan singer, Eric Wainaina to record the anthem song “Africa – You’re A Star” for the FIFA World Cup. Till date (2019) they are the only Indians to record the FIFA World Cup Anthem.
- In 2016, Salim collaborated with Rahat Fateh Ali Khan for a Qawwali project. The song was “Tumhe Dillagi” and it was widely appreciated by the audience.
- Salim Merchant is an avid dog lover and has two pet dogs, Cookie and Daisy.