He learned to play the guitar in school. After completing his schooling at St. James' School and college education at Presidency College, he went to a music school.
While studying in FTII, he was offered a chance to compose background music for a film by Hungarian filmmaker Istvan Gaal.
Apart from films, Pritam has also done music for TV serials such as Astitva...Ek Prem Kahani, Kavyanjali and so on.
Pritam composed the music for Sanjay Gadhvi's second film, Dhoom, which was a runaway success. The film did well and the music topped the charts.
After giving many flops, Pritam followed up the success of Dhoom with a string of chartbusting numbers with Chocolate, Garam Masala and Gangster. Also he composed the music for Dhoom 2, the sequel to Dhoom & Life in a Metro.
Pritam has been accused of plagiarism on several occasions, wherein he has copied the music for a number of his most popular Hindi film songs from various artists from around the world (especially Asia), without giving credit to the original artists themselves.
Pritam has been accused of plagiarism on several occasions, but in some cases he has bought the copyright and given due credit too. In 2009, producer Vipul Shah made Pritam sign an anti-plagiarism indemnity for his film Action Replayy.
He was nominated several times for Filmfare Award for Best Music Director, Star Screen Award for Best Music Director, IIFA Best Music Director Award etc in the years 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010.
In 2010 He won The IIFA AWARD, ZEE CINE AWARD as well as the APSARA PRODUCER'S GUILD AWARD for his music in Love Aaj Kal.
He also won Global Indian Film & Television Honors award for Special Music Director for his music in Once Upon A Time In Mumbai and Mirchi Music Listeners' Choice Album Of The Year for the same. He also won Most Popular Music in Star Screen Award 2011 for Once Upon A Time In Mumbai.
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