18 March 2011

For The Love Of Rock, And All That Jazz...

Music has been on my mind of late. For the love of the gods of melodies, for the appeasement of the sires of tunes, I have been reverently and passionately listening to the blessed ones sing and play. This is not to say that I had not been listening to artists in the past. I have been doing so for more than 5 years now. Listening to different genres of music, being introduced to new bands in rooms hazy with smoke, spending lazy afternoons discovering new ones on my own; all these have been inculcated in me now. But there had been something very amiss of recent and it took me surprisingly long to figure out what it was.

My first rendezvouses with music were in quite early years. For as long as I can remember, I had been surrounded by it in its various forms. Be it D's casettes of the latest songs (with "jhankar beats"!), or M's collection of oldies, or even the occasional "Ace Of The Base" that I heard when BM came to visit; I heard them all, enjoyed them all. Perhaps I never really biased myself to a particular kind of music. Or perhaps I was never given an option to do so. It continued thus.

My real infatuation with music grew its roots when I came to Delhi. I used to spend afternoons with DDJ. A man whose intellect I still hold in awe, but was too young back then to understand. It was on those afternoons that Indian classical went in through my ears and spread itself out over my brain cells. Numbing it to everything else in the world. I could sense being lost to the music. And then there were the Buddha Bar casettes that DC bought me. Oh! How I loved the fusion! How it all fascinated me! And then there were the usual boy bands, Limp Bizkit, ITv and the like with FB. Bryan Adams, Creed, Def Leppard, a bit of Gn'R, and I could tell then that my infatuation was meant to be more.

Then I came to college. It was here that music really swept me off my feet. I fell in love with her. Rock, metal, trance, techno, ghazals, punk, country, blues, jazz... I heard it all, glutting my aural. It kept me company, it gave me a purpose. I belonged to music entirely for the five years. Led Zepplin, RATM, Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, the flower power era, Howlin' Wolf, B.B. King, British punk. I was taken with a backward current of time and enjoyed surfing the endless oceans.

And then when I moved out of college, I never worried about things changing. I patted the hard disk that had my hard earned collection, smiled inwardly and gaily walked to face the unknown. But sadly, I was mistaken. And how horribly was I mistaken! The chemistry between music and me that I had so taken for granted was gone. Not that I did not love her. I did. But there was something amiss. I could not bear its company for long. Even its infrequent hours were getting tiresome. I tried to force myself into being faithful. But I just could not!

It was then that it struck me. The problem was not between music and I. It was without. I had naively assumed that we were a couple. But looking back, I could see that it was never so! We always needed others to keep us happily together. Twisted, but true. The joys of music were always enjoyed by me when I could share her with someone. Make someone notice the nuances that I had chanced into discovering or appreciating his way of looking at her. And the more peers there were, the merrier I was. And so I started sharing. People started sharing in return. I looked for more and more people to share and my love for music regained its former proportion. And then bypassed those limits.

Music is a refuge that can be relied upon. It is always there, independent of the amount of attention you shower on it. Independent of the way that you left it last. It waits. Faithfully. For you to come back to it. To resume the affair exactly where you unceremoniously ended it. Never questioning. Never doubting. It is enough that you returned.


  1. For the record, I HATE Jhankar Beats :-/ :) I loved reading the post though, and the little references here and there that I was trying to identify :)

  2. Oh but you bought them voraciously! [:D]

  3. I am freaking out! WHO TOOK AWAY MY "Like" OPTION?!