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Rambling on: Let the music play - part 5

Thursday, October 21, 2004

Let the music play - part 5

car stereo has fresh supply of cds…love it when it gets an audio makeover ….ie. loving the morning drive to work too....

my colleagues don’t like it one bit….but who the hell cares….they can catch on and get used to ‘jewel of rohi desert’….(pathanay khan) or shut the hell up...

attempts at explaining the nuance of sufi music to them have come to naught. they are much more religious than i and this stuff should make sense to them but ..... i guess i have failed....

’82 brother’s birthday gift to dad was lata’s ‘chala vahee dais’ which became part of my collection….and stayed with me during college..during one of my late night sessions in front of the terminal, an Indian doctorate candidate, who knew me as someone who regularly burned the midnight oil in the lab, asked me what I was listening to on my walkman….before this conversation, except for exchange of pleasantries, usually initiated by me, we had never spoken…..almost all my friends in college had been Indian but relationship with them only flourished if they came out of their shell…something indians had a strong tendency to have….well atleast that had been my prior experience.

so I was a bit shocked and delighted that alok finally broke the shell….i think, at that time, I had pathanay khan, abida parveen and lata mangeshkar tapes in my bag and told him so….I may have given him a copy of pathanay khan that evening to give it a try….

we met a few days later and he told me that he had liked the tape a lot…his grand mother spoke the language on the tape and after migration they had left dera ghazi khan and settled in delhi…..he looked genuinely pleased….and that point on, I gave him a few more tapes and the ones he gave me blew me away….he was an avid qawali fan and one tape was earlier works of nusrat fateh ali khan…..i told him that it was strange that I was listening to lata’s bhajan’s and he had been listening to nusrat’s qawali…..

alok’s friendship meant a lot to me…..the semi classical tapes that he shared with me especially pandit kumar gandharva…..and the story of how the pandit, as a young musician was hailed as a child prodigy…..and who continued to sing despite lung infection that would permanently restrict his ability to prolong the alaap….it was and is a moving experience to listen to these tapes…in the background one can the pandit’s wife as backup vocalist just to make sure that this is no break in the notes....

i wish sometimes that i could follow all the lyrics as they are gujrati and/or marwari….who knows maybe when the indian visas are easier to obtain and there is no surveillance on movement, i could just take the train to gujrat and ask some one what the pandit sings beyond the first line “Ur jayay ga, ant-a akaila” …(in the end, the bird will fly, alone)

Lata’s voice on the bhajan album is much more crisp, she has the purity that lifts up the spirit …there is so much celebration so much devotion….she makes every track her own…like it is her story…as if it is her that is roaming the kutch desert in search of truth and union with divine spirit….

(to be continued)

6 Comments:

Blogger (w)alter ego said...

Thanks, I think.
You don't say if this is to be continued.Is it?
I shall have to get rid of a lot of biases to learn anything from this :)

4:09 PM  
Blogger Deevaan said...

in the words of master shakespeare ""if music be the food of love, play on"....so why must i not continue this....unless you want me to stop...in which case i will but the discussion on music will go on albiet under a different subject line....Naveed

5:38 PM  
Blogger (w)alter ego said...

No, why would I want you to stop? I only asked,because normally you put 'to be continued' at the end and I was a little apprehensive to not find it there today.
You go bro, carry on the good work

6:41 PM  
Blogger Deevaan said...

part 5 now edited to indicate that this is is work-in-progress....:) Naveed

10:59 PM  
Blogger (w)alter ego said...

Three words and such an impact on mankind, major street riots have been averted.Please know that your audience is not just picky and impatient but also very literal minded.

1:03 AM  
Blogger Deevaan said...

can't comment on the audience/readers..as for me..i blog to please :) Naveed

10:10 AM  

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