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‘New’ year?

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Grew up with you, sir.

Be it the wait for a new album to be released

Be it ‘begging’ for the poster of ‘face to face’ from the cassette shop (shiv electronics, bhootnath Lucknow).

Be it your first ever concert I attended in Lucknow

Be it the first ever album I got ‘dubbed’ (In Search) or be it the last Concert I attended in September 2011.

Always had a sense of achievement whenever I listened to anything new or rare sung by you

It’s the so called ‘new year’ and the world has gone mad making noise about it. For few of us, the world came to an end on October 10, 2011.

Few of us are still thinking where your  first concert in 2012 would have happened

So for the time being, I will continue with the habit of not stopping a ghazal in between…

Sir Jagjit Singh…you are missed…more than I ever imagined.

Rockstar – Music review

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This post first appeared here – http://bit.ly/moifightclub

In the times of ‘gone with the click’ I cannot remember the last time when the curiosity of a music score being released was even half as it was for the soundtrack of ‘Rockstar’. Guilt is my witness as I shamelessly searched all the ‘shady’ sites to catch hold of this album because right from the first promo we could all smell ‘Rahman on the rocks’ soundtrack. Does it live up to the hype? (Yes T-series, we are talking about the artificial hype you created…Boo you for that by the way!)

1. Phir se udd chala – A folkish chorus of girls humming a tune which you associate with hill stations normally, welcomes you to this song with Mohit Chauhan taking over almost instantly. A song set up with a nomadic feel and the usually accused of being ‘Instrument heavy’ AR Rahman gives us a flavor of how can he blend the music in the background. The first 2 minutes successfully create the anticipation of the song taking off and Mohit chauhan doesnt disappoint throughout. A very positive song.

2. Jo bhi main – Guitar…Yes ‘THAT’guitar starts off with Mohit chauhan throwing his voice melodiously. If you hear attentively you will find the chorus (which is brilliant throughout the album) is set in a very theatrical and live concert style. It doesn’t give you the feeling that a few back up vocals were called in the studio to ‘sing’ (like the ones in the soundtrack of Rock On). The music setting is mostly soft and almost all the ‘hysterics’ are done by a wonderful mix of the ‘crowd’ and Mohit chauhan. Meaning wise, a very deep song especially the part where lyricist has revealed that all of us are just mirrors….I just cannot get the beautiful and very theatrical crowd effect of the song. Two thumbs up!

3. Kateya karoon – The punjabi folk sounds welcome you to a bubbly song mixed with good bass to begin with and then the characteristic (and almost continuous ‘hoye hoye’ chorus). Harshdeep Kaur has sung this song in a very ‘Jaspinder Narula’ style by occassionally making her voice heavy. A generally happy song. Personally speaking, It did not touch me at all because I felt that the song just couldn’t take off. The song iis just under 4 minutes so it just comes and goes.

4. Kun Faya Kun AR Rahman starts and is accompanied by a very ‘dargah like’ harmonium and Javed ali joins. The surreal atmosphere of this composition is very infectious and you would definitely end up listening to it more than once. The ‘beautiful romance between ‘claps’ and a slow guitar is ‘oh so very Rahman’. Javed Ali in between calls out to the power that be. Mohit Chauhan joins the party and gives the song his soul. The part where Mohit is reciting words with a very faint harmonium is what makes this song very very special. The near jugalbandi feel towards the end of the song is surreal and hasn’t been heard for a long time. A very pure song. If you feel it reminds you of ‘Khwaja mere khwaja’ then the purpose of the song is accomplished because when you call out to ‘Maula’, it doesn’t matter if someone else has remembered ‘Maula’ before you. Again, the way the song ends is very very theatrical with AR Rahman leaving a haunting echo.

5. Sheher mein Karthik and Mohit – Not a melodious earth shattering song but a funny song largely thanks to the overall sound of it. The ‘composer’ is very vocal about how should Mohit Chauhan sing this song to ensure that the song is made ‘caller tune’ and is a ‘hit in UP and Bihar’. Mohit by the way croons it well. This will be a treat to see in the film. Clearly the composer (in the film) wants Mohit chauhan to stick to the ‘hit formula’ and not ‘innovate’…but does Mohit listen? Melodiously NO!

6. Hawa Hawa – Acoordion, voilin and a catchy chorus start this retro feel song with somewhat Arabian undertone. A good song because of the way Mohit chauhan has sung it. Hear it attentively and you can almost feel Mohit chauhan dancing in the studio while singing this. The musical setting you might argue is very ‘Zubeida’ like but then hear it and you will hear words like ‘waat’ and ‘bhajiya’! Towards the end you do feel that may be the composer is trying a little too hard. Might grow when the film hits the theatres. (Mohit ‘Meows’ in this song by the way) : )

7. Aur Ho – Mohit and Alma ferovic – A sinking feeling. Thats what the beginning tells you and Mohit chauhan confirms it with very powerful lyrics. The song has a ‘satrangi rey’ (Dil Se) feeling. The instruments are usually repeating short notes to create an eerie feeling. Mohit chauhan at times fades and then comes back almost dreamy/drugged with Alma in the background crying out. A song perfect for theatre performances depicting pain. The song really ends on a high. beautifully.

8. Nadaan Parindey – AR Rahman and Mohit chauhan – Carol like start with electric guitar. The song starts with Rahman requesting one to come back. The song has a very pop feel to it (Ok Ok I will use ‘pop’ and ‘rock’ interchangeably). The words like ‘Har karam ke kapdey mailey hain’ means that the song is advocating peace. Mohit chauhan almost cries out the fact that you will come back home no matter which road you take. The ‘chun chun khaiyoo maas’ (lines from Kabir I guess) are a misfit in the song so I did not like them at all. You might.

9. Tum Ko -Kavita subramaniam – From the start of this song, I got a feeling that this song is an old Rahman song. I hate to mention this but this came across as the weakest song of the album. Although the use of sarangi and tabla is very ghazal like, the song didn’t touch me at all. May be it was because of the fact that the other songs didn’t have me believe that there could be a ghazal like composition woven in between.

10. Sadda Haq – Yes…HELLL YES! Orianthi starts the guitar and tells you quite clearly that this would be the song that will result in the demise of a lot of woofers and speakers all over the world. Kicking ass from the beginning Mohit recites some lines which are very ‘rebellion’ in nature and then the song reaches the HIGH when Mohit along with the chorus cries out ‘Sadddaaaa Haq’. Trust me, when someone sings from heart, it reaches your heart and this so called SCREAM does exactly that. Cannot recall a song in the near future which shakes you up (in a good way) as this one. I could write an entire post on this song but I will stop. Do check this song out even if you feel it is a rip off from here there or somewhere (because I know such tribe exists who cannot accept a good thing from INDIAN composer you see).

Special mention – Would have been too easy for Imtiaz ali and AR Rahman to have opted for Ranbir’s voice at the beginning of the song but thankfully they have used Mohit chauhan. Keeps the wholesome feel alive to the song.

11. Tum ho – Mohit and Suzanne – Romantica! Aha! Suzanne shines in the background (like always) and Mohit chauhan does a vocal waltz around that feeling of someone’s presence and how he has lost himself and gained love. The song lasts for about 5 mins. or so but ends leaving you wanting for more. Strange isn’t it? The tune is more or less similar to ‘Tum Ko’ mentioned above. I am yet to make an opinion about the song. Any help on this would be much appreciated

12. Tango for Taj – Here is a tango piece which is very old piece and signature Rahman. A typical song which if treated well will be a visual treat. The constant piano and the claps are just too good too be in a piece which just lasts for about 3 minutes. Two thumbs up.

13. The Dichotomy of Fame Shehnai! oh how i have missed you after ‘Swades’ song. After opening this piece beautifully the shehnai mixes well with the rest of the instruments, yet enjoys a ‘lead vocal’ status. Just too good a piece to miss.

14. The Meeting PlaceRanbir Kapoor says one sentence and vanishes…leaving you with much curiosity about the film. No, I won’t write it here. Go discover yourself. In a way, this piece might give away the ending of this film. Or may be not. Spoiler? Let’s see.

This album is undoubtedly a coming of age experience for Mohit Chauhan because he has shouted and romanced at many different levels. A special mention for the master lyricist Irshad Kamil. It’s almost taken for granted that a rock album will have a ‘woofer-phaadu’ music but the character of the songs come out when the lyrics are powerful and it is certainly the case here.

AR Rahman and Imtiaz Ali have gone to the press stating that they have invested a lot of time in this album and when you hear it, you feel they might be right!

Rating – 4/5

So which track are you playing on the loop?

GhazalJeet singh – Live in Bombay 16 September 2011

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Yet another concert ticket! So we went to listen to Jagjit Singh (I went to be awestruck because he is GOD). Anyway, here is a ghazal by ghazal update of the evening.

The signature ‘alaaps’ before all the ghazals were present so I will spare the reader those details.

1. The concert was kick started by the superb ghazal from the album ‘face to face’ , Zindagi tuney lahu le ke diya kuch bhi nahin. The crowd almost erupted when GhazalJeet Singh sang this antra – ‘mere in haathon ki chaho to talashi le lo, mere haathon mein lakeeron ke siwa…kuch bhi nahi’

2. Denewaley mujhe maujon ki rawani de de – Since the guitarist was not the regular one, the ghazal started with GhazalJeet singh trying to bring him up to A-Minor note..quite hilarious because you could see GhazalJeet Singh hand-holding the poor fellow who was obviously nervous. Quite a non-massy ghazal so most of the people were applauding it on a ‘per stanza’ basis. Treat to hear…to say the least.

3. Dosti jab kisi se ki jaaye – From the album ‘In search’ was the next one on the line. If you have heard this ghazal already, you would have been surprised because GhazalJeet Singh completely changed the tune and enthralled the audience. He even mentioned ‘Ye tune abhi banayi hai’. One stanza which speaks of ‘maut ka zeher hai fizaon mein’ was introduced by Jagjit singh ji as – ‘This one is for environmental pollution’ . Idiots like me had a huge grin. 🙂

4. Apni aag ko zinda rakhna kitna mushkil hai – A soulful ghazal, very relevant to the times we live in was haunted even more by the immaculate flute player who literally held the senses hijacked. Pity I missed out on music introductions as I was too busy ogling at Jagjit singh when the intro was happening.

5. Dil ke deewaro dar pe kya dekha – Originally a duet with Chitra Singh, GhazalJeet singh sang this keeping the original tune intact. Teri aankhon mein humne kya dekha, kabhi Qatil kabhi Khuda dekha…..And the auditorium exploded! Funny incident – GhazalJeet singh pointed out – Bhai Air condition On kar do (in between ghazal) and the auditorium resonated with a thunderous applause.

6. Koi Mausam – Another ghazal from ‘Face to face’ marked yesterday by an amazing guitarist was the next one in line. Again, GhazalJeet singh kept the original tune with some alaaps and minor changes in between.

7. Mai pila kar aapka jayega – Yet again a ‘rare and non-massy’ offering by GhazalJeet singh which was kept intact (tune wise) and was applauded per stanza by the crowd! The ‘ace’ Abhinav upadhyay (on Tabla) flirted with the flute and the result was a superb jugalbandi in between.

8. Pyar ka pehla khat – Another one from the album ‘Face to face’ but a relatively popular ghazal met with a thunderous applause, right from the beginning and throughout!

9. Medley – Began with tumko dekha to ye khayal aaya and for a minute we couldn’t hear anything thanks to whistles and loud cheers (No No I didn’t cheer..I just whistled…elegant no?) As has been very typical of GhazalJeet singh, he gestured to the audience to sing with him and thats it! The hall was humming, singing and swaying to the magician…(and my neighbor on the other side shouted in my ears – ONCE MORE), thats when Hothon se chu lo tum was woven into the ghazal and towards the end the punjabi geet ‘Mitti da bawa’ was introduced only to be taken back to hothon se chu lo tum and end it…quite a super normal experience for ghazalJeet singh fans.

10. Sarakti jaye hai rukh se naqaaab – Couldn’t hear much of this ghazal because the crowd (and yours truly was a part of it) was singing along, cheering, clapping and…well dancing! In the stanza Shab-e-furkat ka jaaga hu fairshton ab to soney do, GhazalJeet singh just mentioned – My dad used to snore so loudly that he used to wake up on his own sound of snores…(and then he snored on the mic!)

11. Tum itna jo muskura rahe ho – Which concert can be complete without this gem? Yet again, it was welcomed with a thunderous applause and some not required singing by the crowd. Sigh! fans I tell you! The champion on the keyboards made his presence felt and how!

12. Wo kagaz ki kashti – Self explanatory. If it isn’t, you don’t listen to good ghazals. You should, really.

13. Hoshwalon ko khabar – Yes, Yes Yes!! were the screams all around. The guitarist was having the same hairdo as mine (baldy) and Jagjit singh told him on the stanza – ‘khulti zullfon ne sikhai mausamo ko shayari – This stanza is for you…and the crowd erupted. Easily the most participated ghazal of the evening… There was a part in one of the ghazals where GhazalJeet singh mixed it with dekho sakhi piya rooth gaye hain as well…and I am yet to find words to describe how good it was.

It was just an amazing evening and this is not a ‘review’ not even ‘almost’. If you get any negative vibes about the concert from this write up, trust me the fault is totally and ONLY mine

Jagjit Singh, thank you for allowing us to exist in the same era in which you chose to enthrall us all…

Your servant, forever

Rohit

Happy birthday Gulzar Sahab

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koi dil ke paas hota hai, koi jaan nisar hota hai, lekin maalik to sirf ek hee hai, jiska naam #Gulzar Hota hai. Happy birthday sir.

Kalam se Qalaam nahin, zindagi ki boondein nikalti hain, #Gulzar sahab kaash hum kagaz ka tukda hotey…#HappyBDay #Gulzar sahab

Wo chehrey pe ainak, wo baaton ki baithak, wo urdu ki baarish wo shabdon ki bandish

Alsaai si raat, angdai leti subah, barasti hui dopahar aur na jaaney kitney lamhe, dastarkhan par rakhe hain #Gulzar ne hum sab ke liye

Din nahin guzarta jab tak Visal-e-Gulzar nahin hota #Gulzar #HappyBDay

Apne khayalon ka thikana Boskyana….#Gulzar #HappyBDay

Ainak ke us paar hain wo aankhein jinmein allah ki roshni basti hai..#Gulzar sahab, janam din mubarak ho.

Ye sheher bura nahin lagta jab sochta hu ye, is sheher mein ek makaan #Gulzar  ka bhi hai…#HappyBDay #Gulzar

Jo bhee padha aapka padha….jo bhee suna aapka suna kuch aur kyun seekhein hum janab, jab zindagi pe saaya #Gulzar sahab ka pada #HappyBDay

Surkh alfaaz mein dikhti hai jhalak ki ye nazm to #Gulzar ki hee hai… #HappyBDay #Gulzar

Alfaaz agar meethey lag rahe hain to jaan lijiye, inko kisi sher mein #Gulzar ne chua hai #HappyBDay #Gulzar

Ehsaas ko agar kuch alfaz choo gaye, to yakeen maniye unhein #Gulzar ne likha hai…#HappyBDay #Gulzar

Zakhmon pe jab kahin se marham lag gaya, to yakeen maniye aapne #Gulzar ko suna hai. #HappyBDay #Gulzar

Jalwa dikha rahey ho apni ghazal ka tum? kaash humney tumse pehley #Gulzar ko na padha hota…#HappyBDay #Gulzar

Wo zindagi ko apne alfazo mein dhaaltey hain, Main gareeb usko ghazal bolta hu….#HappyBDay #Gulzar

Siyahi tadapti hai ki bas ek baar #Gulzar ke kagaz pey bikhar jau, to chain aa jaye #HappyBDay #Gulzar

Gar Saans Ruk gayi to, mujhe rashq nahi hoga, keh dunga uppar waley se, maine #Gulzar ko suna hai #HappyBDay #Gulzar

Nazrana kya du? Khushi bas isi baat ki hai Ki #Gulzar ka janam din hai aur hum tweet kar rahe hain

Aye duniya barbaad hona hai to ho ja, Bas ek aur sher #gulzar ka sun lu to fanaa ho jau #HappyBDay #Gulzar

God lives in his pen…and life flows out of it

Thank you sir, for touching our lives in a way only you could have

(Pics borrowed by the book ‘because he is….by Meghna Gulzar’. Gulzar ALWAYS means Gulzar Sahab. Always.)

#SachinisGod

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While the world media (especially the sadistic lobby) is busy writing about how SACHIN RAMESH TENDULKAR (Name in CAPS – ALWAYS) hasn’t scored a 100 in Lord’s yet, hand on heart, I don’t think it matters. SACHIN has achieved more than what some cricket teams of 11 would never be able to. Cleanly.

Took this pledge way back that I shall never blog about GOD #SachinisGod because I can’t cage his description in words but here I am…

Keeping it short on the day when India shall be coming out to reply to England’s well made score  (478 is it?), I don’t give a damn if SACHIN RAMESH TENDULKAR makes a 100 or not. The fact is he is GOD and shall always remain so. Eeven Andaz apna apna doesn’t make me laugh as much as when I hear/read people say the sentence which has ‘SACHIN struggles….’ (Ha ha! really? struggles? Go and see some cricket boy!)

Like a recent Wall street Journal article quoted Shane warne saying – There is SACHIN and then there is daylight

See this article being categorized under ‘music’ section of my blog. You know why? Only SACHIN and music can touch my soul and make me cry when I am overflowing with happiness

No, I am not a fan boy of SACHIN….I am just a worshipper and if you don’t know what’s the difference, it is useless to try and make an effort to understand…

Almighty

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