Sunday, 31 March 2013

Gospel of Love..

Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do’ said that great soul. What was great was that He said this when people were ‘nailing’ him literally on the Cross. How many of us can even dream of saying this at any point of time?
The greatness of Jesus Christ lay in his spreading the Gospel of Love. Love which is unconditional and without any expectations.
He strongly believed that Love alone can get rid of negativities, Love alone can stop calamities, Love alone can bring joy, Love alone can bring peace. Not only did he preach this but also practised it.
That is why, He was able to even love his enemy. In fact, inspired by this Bharati sang ‘PagaivanukkaruLvai nannenje pagaivanukkaruLvai’.
On this Easter Sunday, the day when Christ rose from the death, let us all take a vow to love not just our neighbours but also our enemies.
Like Love, Music is powerful too. Today’s Rare Gem is a song from the film ‘Avar Enakke Sontham’(1977). Many are familiar with ‘Devan Thiruchchabhai MalargaLe’ sung by PooraNi and Indira. But not many are aware of the Yesudass version which is not there in the album.
There is also a small story regarding the guitar piece which appears now and then and can be called as the leitmotif in the song. It clearly reminds one of the ‘Sholay’ theme music and Raaja was accused of plagiarism those days. Though he never clarified publicly, he revealed a fact-until then unknown- to a fan in reply to his letter.He mentioned in the letter that he composed that piece for a Kannada song as early as 1972 while working as an assistant for G.K.Venkatesh. Whether RDB copied from him or if it was a case of two geniuses thinking alike, one does not know. And one need not bother about this too.
The Yesudass version is more dynamic in terms of the rendering and in terms of the orchestration.Though the Pallavi and CharaNams in both the songs follow the same pattern, the arrangement and orchestration are totally different.
  The prelude is longer in this version with an extended guitar piece that takes us to an ethereal world.
‘Devan Thiruchchabhai malar idhu’ sings the majestically sweet voice.The Brass flue in between the lines is tender.
The Saxophone in the first interlude goes deep into our hearts while the guitar pulls the strings of our hearts.
The Sitar in the CharaNams and in the second interlude is scintillatingly brilliant while the whistle and the brass flute that romance each other are exhilarating.
A very different Harikambhoji in western classical style..
Music that makes us love everything.
Happy Easter!

Saturday, 16 March 2013

Waves of Music..Waves of Strokes..

In this world which is full of superstitions, it would be hard to believe that some of the greatest things have started with an anti climax.
Amitabh Bacchan- whose baritone voice charms even a kid now- was rejected by AIR way back in late ‘60s when he applied for the post of Newsreader. Reason? ‘Your voice is not good and not suitable for this position’.
Albert Einstein was branded as a slow learner and a boy with low IQ in school.
When Rajinikanth  first appeared on the screen, the sub-title card carried the words ‘Shruti Bedam’.
I can quote many more from history but let me stop here and focus on what happened today.
The batsman, who was making his debut was at the non-striker’s end.As the bowler delivered the ball, the shining red cherry slipped from his hand and disturbed the bails with the non-striker being out of the crease. Technically, he was out. But the ‘sportive’ Aussies did not appeal and all the players on the field had a hearty laugh. What a ominous start to a career of an opening batsman!
This young lad then massacred the bowling striking the ball to all the corners and making the Aussies chase leather. At the end of the day (literally and figuratively), Stark and Clarke must be really wondering as to why they did not appeal when ‘technically’ he was run out.
All left handers have an innate grace and elegance. In fact, that is why I love left handers. Shikhar Dhawan is no exception. All his shots today were classic cricketing shots. What one liked the most was the way he fearlessly stepped out showing absolutely no signs of any nervousness. The single he took to complete his hundred showed his adventurous streak.
No doubt it is a great day for Indian cricket and I, on behalf of this community congratulate Dhawan on his stupendous achievement and  wish that he surpasses the 287 scored by the Englishman Reginald Foster and even records his triple century, a record which will surely remain undisturbed for centuries to come (pun intended!).
  Now, go back to the first line in the post. Most of you know that the career of the greatest film music composer too also started with anti climax with power going off the moment recording started and to top it all, nothing getting recorded on the tape even after the power was restored due to a technical snag. Therefore, I find it appropriate to dedicate a song of his to Shikhar Dhawan. I am sure he too will like the song, though he may not understand the language for music has no boundaries.
This rare gem ‘Alai alaiyaai’ from ‘NaaLai unadu naaL’(1984) is another beauty in Pahaadi by the Pahaadi Master.
It starts with the guitar and the claps with the keys jumping with joy. Dhawan walks to the crease.The Pallavi-in the voice of Uma RamaNan- sings about the aspiration, desire and the dream of the young lad even as he proudly wears the India Cap.
The Trumpets blow.It is like his exquisite cover drive. The bass guitar smiles.It is like his on- drive. The stringed instrument sings.It is like his leg glance.
Each and every line in CharaNam flows like the clear stream denoting his fluent straight drives.
The unusual sounds from a new instrument in the second interlude are like the reverse sweep while the shrill flute and the strings symbolise the occasional edge and the lofted shots. The sudden change in the rhythmic pattern, with chatushram changing to Tisram and playing exactly 28 Tistams, typifies the grace, elegance, class, beauty and above all the guts of the young lads.
Yes, two young lads, one who as a 32 year old made his debut in 1976 breaking all conventions and shattering all records and winning the hearts of millions of people and  the other, a 27 year old who made his debut today and who will surely break record after record and make all cricket lovers love him!