Heart

Melodies

These songs and the burnt, blackened forests that they stream from. Born in the pile of ashes that those twigs and leaves turned into once the raging fire engulfed the greenery where the deer and the hare galloped, the elephant bathed and the snakes swirled, danced and stung the bores. The leaves with the flames lost all that was damp and polite about them. They hardened, the chlorophyll evaporated and their skeletal remains chipped, cracked and fell to the ground. Those frames rested on the ground and poked the musician of nature to take pity and sing sing and sing.

The clocks kept ticking. Life needed an age to come back to work in the woods. The musician was all the time at work. No leave for him. When prosperous, songs of dance and tunes of romance got flourishing down to my soul and the time soon came when the deserted vacuüm sent across melodies of pain, destitution and recluse.

Heart felt miseries of love and loss and of heat and rain come in one place and make the mind swoon. The elixir of being a have not balances all the loss and it feels extraordinary to know or even think of how the orchestra must have went on when something was collected from the vicinity of the woods and then re recorded in the studios- places where most of the destinies of our eardrums are written every moment.

Times change, places change and so do melodies. What separates the fate of melodies from that of the woods and the elephants is that  sound has wings. It can flutter and fly across borders of taste and hatred. Mellifluous was the word invented not for the gallops but for the sounds those hoofs make. Sights disappear, sounds do not. Ever wondered why it is far more difficult shutting one’s ears than closing one’s eyes? A cousin of mine used to talk to me about a machine that would soon be able to recollect all the sounds that people in the world ever made. Amen!

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Ten Songs for the Day

It’s the 14th of February and here is a small list of the best songs about love from Indian films that I recommend. The special thing about each of them is the fact they are equally a pleasure to watch and listen. They span decades, artists and have stark differences in as much as they try to define the phenomenon human beings have come to call love.

  • Pyaar Kiya To Darna Kya 

I have on various occasions on social networking platforms voted it as the best Hindi song ever composed. From a huge film that Mughal-e-Azam was, this song stands for defiance and celebrates love like no other song does. “Ishq mein jeena ishq mein marna aur hamein ab karna kya”– We have to live and die while being in love, there is nothing else we have to do. Again “Maut wahi jo duniya dekhe, chhup chhup kar yun marna kya”– Death is one that is witnessed by the world, what is this dying in hiding?

  •  Jaaiye Aap Kahan Jaayenge

Unarguably the best song sung by Asha Bhosle, this brilliant OP Nayyar composition refuses to age.

  • Ae Lo Main Haari Piya

This mellifluous Geeta Dutt song with Gurudutt on the screen with Shyama remains a huge favorite for the occasions where the angry, annoyed lover is being persuaded to talk.

  • Yahoo

All energy that the emotion of love can give rise to. Rafi’s chartbuster.

  • Pal Pal Dil Ke Paas Tum Rehti Ho

Kishore Kumar’s quintessential romantic song. Lyrics here are a repository of the images romance in the Indian subcontinent is so laden with or atleast used to be. There is the aangan (courtyard), bandhan (ties) and that fear of expressing one’s love.

  • Ye Mera Deewanapan Hai

Mukesh’s greatest song. No listener can ever decide as to who rules here- the musician, the lyricist or the singer?

  • Yaar Bina Chain Kahan Re

Bappi Lahiri’s lovely composition from the 1980s where the music scene in Bollywood was unusually tragic. Such attempts however kept the scene lively.

  • Pyaar Hua Chupke Se

This national award-winning composition was Kavita Krishnamurti’s best song in my opinion. RD Burman’s last film as a music director.

  • Kasto Mazaa

Sonu Nigam and Shreya Ghoshal’s lovely, sweet song shot on a train going to Darjeeling.

  • Valiyonaisai
I don’t get a single word of this Tamil song. I watch and listen to it for the picturisation and Illayaraja’s music. The singers- a Marathi/Hindi speaking and the other one a Malayali are impeccable here (so I think).
Which one did you like the best? Greetings for the day!