In the initial years of the talkie era songs were recorded with synchronous sound. But with technical modifications the scenario changed. Today the musicians use a lot of musical instruments for superb effect. One of the earliest musicians in the film industry has been KL Saigal. His songs would barely be accompanied by a sarangi or tabla. But his songs are remembered for soul stirring music and commendable lyrics. the later music directors in Indian film industry include O.P. Nayyar, S.D. Burman, R.D. Burman, Illayaraja, Shanker Jaikishan, M.S.Viswanathan-Ramamurthy, Laxmikant Pyarelal, Naushad, Johnson, Anu Malik, Jatin-Lalit, A.R. Rahman, Shankar Ehsan Loy, Karthik Raja, Pritam, Vidyasagar, Vijaya Anand, Vishal-Shekhar and others.
One man amongst them who had experimented with his work and changed the way of Indian film music was RD Burman. His music set a cult and proved to be an inspiration for the later generation of musicians. Some of the films to which he provided his music are Teesri Manzil, Yaadon Ki Baraat, Hare Rama Hare Krishna, Ghar, Parichay, Masoom, Sholay, Shakti, Abhimaan, Sanam Teri Kasam, 1942: A Love Story and others.
As far as today's composers are concerned it is AR Rahman who brought a new leash of life in Indian films. Roja, Thiruda Thiruda, Bombay, Taal, Iruvar, Dil Se, Zubeida, Lagaan, Saathiya, Swadesh, Rang de Basanti, Provoked, Guru, Anbe Aruyire, Jodha Akbar and others are some of his successful compositions.