Thursday, February 19, 2009

The Oscar beckons the Madras Mozart.

Stepping into the Oscars weekend of 2009, the whole of India waits in anticipation for its most loved musical son to ascend the hallowed stage of the Kodak Theatre - A.R.Rahman. We need to celebrate the recognition of one of the best music composers who may have graced our land. Here are some of his songs- which were very popular, and some others- which were not so popular, but considered by me as absolutely un-re-creatable classics. Some made me very happy, some brought out the sadness in me, but every song has its rightful place in my heart. For someone in who's music I have lived an entire life, these words don't suffice. I wanted to post lots more, but limited it to just ten. Slumdog Millionaire is not one of his best albums, but Oscar or no Oscar, he is just too good! So here goes, have a good time listening :) Tamil tracks are included here and there, but I have largely kept it confined to Bollywood.

1. Al-Maddath - Mangal Pandey.

2. Chale Chalo - Lagaan.

3. Des Ki Mitti- Bose The Forgotten Hero.

4. Shauk Hai- Guru.

5. Khalbali- Rang De Basanti

6. Pudhu Vellai Mazhai- Roja(Tamil)

7. Ooh La La La - Minsara Kanavu (Tamil)

8. Tanha Tanha- Rangeela.

9. Bombay Theme- Bombay.

10. Ae Ajnabee- Dil Se.

I know some of you may not be satisfied with my selection , but let me tell you these are just what I thought of first. There are too many good songs to post here - may take me forever!

Friday, February 13, 2009


The coarse sand rubs against the soles of my Bata shoes. Distant chants of the Indian Music classes make my ears tingle. I turn around, and a hoard of little children, hands on the shoulders of the one in front- run about from one place to another. A floor above, the bell itches to chime- announcing a break. Stacks of food arrive on a cart to fill up the canteen's coffers. It is going to be a very busy half an hour for them. The clouds have come out in plenty today, announcing a surfeit of respite from the already muted December heat. A gentle moist breeze blows across the little ground- sandwiched in between a concrete jungle. The banners advertising the music season sway in unison- enhancing the effect of an otherwise harmless windy day. Muffled noises of the heavy mid-day traffic outside the school offer a perennial background score to an already noisy scene. Rows of classes piled like matchsticks upon one another, bursting with activity and the exuberance of youth- offer a beautiful sight. Closing my eyes, I can imagine every little action from the sounds accompanying them. Maybe is this what it feels like to be blind? If it were, I would still be happy because the scene I recreate from the things I hear, is probably more beautiful than the actual happenings itself. Wonderful, I say. God gifts everyone with something. Even the "oft-sympathized with" blind have something to feel happy about. Magical, the art of creation.

My eyes open- the lights of my cubicle come back into full effect. The song playing in my headphones seems to have ended- anyways, I do not even remember which song I was hearing to. But the moment, I realise, has transported me back ten years into my life. Everything was so beautiful then, I ask? Yes it was. Right now, it is more of a worry, nevertheless I still find an innate beauty to it. Now, I understand- even a lonely cubicle has something to offer- insight.

This Valentine's day, love the life you lived, are living and will live. You deserve to.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Those one and half minutes...!

The past two weeks have been pretty hectic for me, but I was kind of happy at the response that my review of Dilli 6 had got. Such good music deserves to be appreciated. So, coming to the point- what have I got to rant this time, then? I firmly believe that unless there is something worth writing about, I will not pick up the laptop to punch in whatever you are reading right now. And so it is, this time too. Over the two weeks of "hecticity" (which will probably worsen as winter fades out into spring) I went to a lot of buildings and did an awful lot of walking. When it comes to buildings, most of the American ones are embellished with generously outfitted lifts. Most of them are fast, extremely fast. Some may even claustrophobe you to a nausea- they are that scary. The first time I was in a lift in the US of A, I freaked out completely. My breath went for a walk, jaw dropped, teeth felt like falling out and the stomach felt as if it had been screwed up into my tonsil. The lift covered hardly four to five stories of the building, but it was insanely fast. I don't understand the need for such hugely accelerating lifts! What could people do with saving a milli-second or two? Foist in a date at Starbucks? (if the outlet is existent- I heard the economy busted even them).

Anyways, coming to the issue in question., this is a common experience everyone faces. What do you do when travelling with someone you don't know, in a lift ? I have encountered this problem of late... despite it being just a matter of a minute or two in total, I find it really difficult to remain to myself., keep off looking at what their cellphone looks like or who the person on the other end of the phone might be ( I am certainly not referring to any girl here ;) ) Seconds pass by like days, and the mind repeatedly asks me to look up at the person and give a gentle smile- only to be refused that by my neck muscles. I try to shut my mind and eye to the world, but the claustrophobic metal presses my forehead and pulls my eyelids apart. I proxy-open my cellphone to check non-existent missed calls and messages, only to realise the insides of the lift do not even receive cellphone signals. This is something I have no answer to- the "lift minute", I would say- is equivalent to a 100% busy day, or even more- in "mental confusion" terms. Despite having had so many tough moments in life, I have never come across something as awkward as going on a lift with someone whom you don't even know- for hardly a minute of fleeting company. Irony, they say- is the flavour of life. Bow to you, whoever said that !