Radio resurrected (for me atleast)

BIG FM LogoThe advent of the television coupled with the streaming video etc. would make one think that it was the death knell for the radio. Who listens to the radio is what they say and many would agree too with that.
I would disagree. Given a choice, I would love to listen to the radio over TV. Why? The unpredictability keeps you guessing. And the music is cool as ever especially if you (like me) are a fan of Kishore Kumar and Panchamda. Imagine hearing two of your favourite songs back to back!! Sheer bliss as I experienced recently.
I got hooked to Win 94.6 in the early FM days when Malishka was on the air doing the Breakfast Show. We continue to remain in touch but honestly I don’t listen to her station much these days as the music is what Kavya and her ilk like.
Mumbai has 92.7 Big FM which only plays the hits of yore. The morning RJ, Siddharth is good too as he shares a lot of trivia and ofcourse plays brilliant music. For years, I have been used to the radio in the shower. So when I hear my favourite Panchamda number being crooned by Kishoreda, my spirits soar and my day is made. The best part is that they play all kinds of songs and not just Panchamda so Mom and wifey too are happy listening to that station on the home theatre. Just that Kavya is red-faced unless the song is one she knows. But I guess she will soon realise the worth of the music being played over what is being dished out presently in the garb of music.
The other show that I love is again on 92.7 Big FM and is called Suhana Safar with Anu Kapoor. Excellent research and helps me gather knowledge and most importantly the music is awesome too. Makes the journey to office so musical and enjoyable.
Thank you FM. You are filling in a big void in my life every single day,

My P7 Speech – A tribute to my favourite, R D Burman “Musical Heartbeats”

PanchamdaOctober 24, 2015 was when I presented my Project 7 speech. It was after I gave my Project 8 speech I know but there was a reason for that. Another TM was also giving his P8 so we could defray the cost of the projector that the club would have to shell out.

P7 is all about Researching your topic and the objectives are

  • Collect information about your topic from numerous sources.
  • Carefully support your points and opinions with specific facts, examples, and illustrations gathered through research

Here is the transcript of my P7 which was a tribute to my numero uno composer, R D Burman.

In the rhythm of life, we sometimes find ourselves out of tune, but as long as there are friends to provide the melody, the music plays on. Can music and friendship complement each other? Can friendship lead to magical music? For some it did and their music continues to enthrall us even today.

Toastmaster of the day, Fellow Toastmasters and guests – June 27, 1939 is when Meera Dev and Sachin Dev were blessed with a boy whom they named Rahul. Little did they know that their prodigy would be a trailblazer, creating magic with his music while frolicking with friends.

Rahul Dev Burman popularly knows as Panchamda was fortunate to have the right people who helped him in his musical milestones and become his long lasting friends.

Kishore Kumar was his dear friend. After Padosan, Kishore Kumar despite the songs he sung wasn’t getting any offers. He decided to return to his native of Khandwa in Madhya Pradesh. When R D heard of this, he said “Kishore, don’t go. I will speak to Dada Burman (S D) and get you a song in the next film.” As luck would have had it, S D fell ill during that film and Panchamda had to assume the mantle to compose the unfinished music. Kishore got not one but three songs in that film despite Rafi being S D’s favourite. The film was none other than Aradhana and the songs were Mere sapnon ki rani kab aayegi tu, Roop tera mastana and Kora kagaz tha yeh man mera. The rest as they say is history. But it was not only work that they did together, they even enjoyed. During the recording of Jai Jai Shiv Shankar for the film, Aap ki Kasam, the producer, J Om Prakash (Hrithik Roshan’s maternal grand father) was livid at the princely sum of Rs. 50000 to be paid to the musicians. He made no bones about it and Panchamda had to bear the brunt of his verbal attack. Pancham confided in his friend Kishore. Kishore in his inimitable style sang in the end “Bajao Bajao, imaandari se bajao, pachas hajaar kharch kiye hain”

Rajesh Khanna’s super stardom can be attributed to the hit music and all credit goes to his association with Kishore Kumar and RD Burman. The song ‘Yeh Jo Mohabbat Hai’ from “Kati Patang”, which is probably one of the most romantic numbers to date, has an interesting fact. This song was never planned to be featured in the movie. It so happened that the superstar Rajesh Khanna and Panchamda were travelling together on a flight to Delhi. In between the conversation Rajesh Khanna said “I am so jittery. Pancham why don’t you just hum a tune?” Panchamda felt obliged and the tune of ‘Yeh Jo Mohabbat Hai’ was heard. Rajesh Khanna liked the tune so much, that he prevailed on the director Shakti Samanta to create a situation in the film only to include the song which went on to become a blockbuster track and continues to do so even today. Small wonder that these two went on to make some of the greatest hits of all time.

Panchamda’s friendship with Gulzar started in 1972 with the movie Parichay which was also directed by Gulzar. The first song Panchamda composed was “Musafir Hun Yaaron” Panchamda went to Gulzar’s house at 1 in the night to hum the tune made for this song. Both of them sat listening to the tunes in the car and discussed it till morning! Like all geniuses, they were eccentric – definitely yes but extremely passionate. There were tunes that Panchamda composed and then would not give them to anyone else saying “Only he will do justice to this tune with his lyrics” So much was the mutual confidence. They were such thick pals that Gulzar was called Safed Kauva, white crow for he would always dress up in white. Gulzar in turn called Panchamda “Laal Kauwa” for his fetish for red shirts.

After Panchamda’s demise in 1994, his buddy Gulzar reminisced in his poetic style “Zindagi ko akele nahi jhela jaata. Hamaari to team hai. Aa jao ya bula lo!” which means “I can’t live this life alone. We were a team. So either come back or call me up there.”

A great song needs a mix of not just the music but also meaningful lyrics, singers to emote the lyrics and good artistes to picturise the song on. Panchamda was indeed very lucky to have such thick friends who helped him create magic that is enjoyed even today. I am lucky to have friends like these and do hope each one of you have such lucky stars in your lives as well.

The Billboard music of 80s

Thanks to my cousin, Pranav for sharing this brilliant compilation. Has all hit songs of the 80s that we grew up with. These songs bring back so many memories as we heard them during the college days. The fad then faded away as the music scene changed but these songs still remain in memory.

Another channel to listen to is http://www.sky.fm/the80s which I am hooked on to on Sundays when I am not listening to Kishore Kumar / R D Burman. Do give it a shot too.

2014 – A New Beginning

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The google doodle today is apt as it signifies change of guard from 2013 to 2014. As the clock strikes midnight tonight we will bid adieu to 2013 and welcome 2014. Wish you all a very Happy New Year. May the new year be filled with joy and prosperity. On this occasion, I would like to share a video by Suneel Agarwal – A new beginning.

Another song that has been buzzing in my mind since this morning cycle ride is from the film Mashaal sung by the evergreen Kishore Kumar. A song full of hope and very very lively. Do listen to it if you haven’t.

Kishore Kumar, R D Burman – True Legends

This morning on my flight to Delhi (by the ever faithful Indigo) I am entertained by the evergreen melodies sung by Kishore Kumar, the legend. I have a good collection of his songs on my iPod and believe me he still rocks. I have yet to come across someone who can sing and convey so many moods.

Another legend without whom Kishore Kumar would never have been able to show his talents is Rahul Dev Burman or Pancham as he was popularly known as. R D Burman is the greatest composer I have ever heard. So many songs and so many different types. I am listening to the songs from Harjaee, which has music by R D Burman and Kishore Kumar as the lead singer. For those of you who haven’t heard the songs, please do so …. truly amazing songs.

The duo of Kishore Kumar and R D Burman has give some really lilting numbers and these melodies have remained hits even till date. Indian Idol 5 had R D Burman special a fortnight ago and I have it recorded and watch it often. People try and imitate the two but they are just way too ahead. Both of them unfortunately died premature deaths and left a void which has yet to be filled in. We miss you Kishoreda and Panchamda.