Sunday, February 18, 2007

A Rendezvouz With Shreya Ghoshal

There are singers who are born for music but in this singers case, music was born for her. This was how this young singer was introduced by the announcer to us and fittingly so, she deserved a standing ovation which she got. Yes! I am talking about the supremely talented Shreya Ghoshal. She had flown down to Chennai for a musical night on the 17th of February 2007 and gave the crowd much more than they expected. Before the concert, Shreya had the image of a romantic singer who could not set a stage on fire(pre concieved notions of people who know nothing about music) but at the end of the day, she had the crowd dancing at her feet literally.

If Barso Re drenched the crowd with melody, Dola Re swept them off their feet. Salaam-E-Ishq was her tribute to the crowd and Parde Mein Rehne Do had them wanting for more. She left silencing most of her critics who had always harped that she can never sing item or pacy numbers. She handled them with elan, and romantic numbers which were her forte had all of us mesmerized. Waada Raha promised that this was just a trailer and there is more to come. She kept up the promise by delivering the knockout punches with Munbe Vaa and Agar Tum Mil Jaao( my all time favourite) which she had sung like a woman possessed calling out her lover. The dholak which was played at the end of the song to make it a fast number was excellently executed and Shreya had us swirling around her in no time. Chalo Tumko Lekar Chalen took us to the skies and Jaadu Hai Nasha Hai was intoxicating enough. That doesnt mean that the rest of the songs were not good enough...I am not good enough to talk about them :). Pal Pal Pal and Piyu Bole were really cute we enjoyed listening to them. She took us to a fantasy world with Leja Leja where everything was perfect. Overall, it was really a night to remember.

There arent enough words to praise Shreya's voice in any language. So I will safely stay away from describing her voice for the time being. We all know that she is a wonderful singer and has already scaled great heights at such a young age. But on that day, I noticed a side of her which I never knew. She is not only an excellent singer, but also a very nice person. I had the good fortune of meeting her after the show and we spoke for maybe about five minutes. The way she handled the people who were fawning on her(well.....I was guilty on this count too) was simply amazing. I started the conversation by saying that she was mindblowing but I expected her to sing Yeh Kya Hua and Ek Pal Ke Liye. She said those were her favourites too and promised that she will sing them next time. We spoke for some more time and I requested her to take a pic with me. I didnt expect that she would readily agree for that. We did take a pic together but much to my dismay, it didnt turn out well. I was feeling sad and went to her saying this didnt come out well. To my astonishment, she was really sweet enough to pose for another one. I was literally bowled over by this gesture. Not many people do that, especially if they reach where she is today.

That night, she made me feel really nice. Like all good things had to come to an end we shook hands and parted ways. This was a side of her I never knew.I left the place completly overwhelmed by her smiling demeanor as this was something I didnt expect at all. It will be really great to see her again whenever she performs here.

I also noticed a childish streak in her when she took stage for her first solo concert in Chennai. Her love for kids was clearly evident when she called out to them to dance with her for Barso Re Megha and all the kids had a gala time. Well, I am someone who has spent half of my life with them and it was really a treat for my eyes watching all the kids dancing on stage. Even the way she reacted when the audience wanted more before singing Parde Mein Rehne Do does make me smile everytime when I see it or even think about it. This particular quality is very rare these days and I was really happy to see this in her. I can only wish that she doesnt change at all and continues to be like this. For people like her, sky is not the limit. It is just the beginning. I pray to God that she achieves greater heights in her career and also has a happy life ahead.

Before closing the topic, I have made a list of 15 of her songs(one from each movie) which are really good, but were not given much publicity. If you people find time, please do listen to them.And Shreya, if you are reading this(I should consider myself extremly lucky if you are), please please please sing them too :-). There are lots more to mention but I guess this is good for a start.You people listen to them and I will add more to the list. Ya, Tere Bin from Bhagam Bhaag(a light hearted song) and Bhor Bhaye from Bandish Projekt( now if anyone has not heard this one...go and hear it NOW!!!! Dont waste time reading this!!!)

01. Tango Charlie - Dheere Dheere(A romantic duet with Sonu Nigam - a must hear)
02. Ankahee - Ek Pal Ke Liye (Easily my favourite and a beautiful solo)
03. Nazar - Mohobbat Zindagi Hai(Minimum music but her voice will reverberate in your ears for a long time)
04. U Bomsi And I - Tu Kahan Kho Gaya( A sad song in which she gives her best)
05. Wajah - Sapna Koi( Another sad song which she carries on her shoulders)
06. Dhoop - Yeh Dhoop Ek Safar(A Cute song which will give you hope in life)
07. Aryan - Jaaneman(A romantic song which will make you feel good)
08. Saaya - Aye Meri Zindagi(This song will haunt you)
09. Sitam - Pyar Tumko Hi Kiya Hai(This song makes me slightly nostalgic- sounds like an old kishore lata duet but well done)
10. Kasak - Saansein Madhdham Hai(Her voice modulations are terrific and her voice was really alluring)
11. Main Meri Patni Aur Woh - Doob Jaana Re(Sab gaane mein doob jaayenge :) DONT MISS THIS)
12. Woh Lamhe - So Jaaun Main(Touching)
13. Krishna Cottage - Suna Suna(This song is unforgettable)
14. Fun - Jal Raha Hai Badan(She has put life in this song..only a few singers can do it)
15. Khakee - Yunhi Hum Tumse Pyar(Simple - no comments - this song is way above that)

Thursday, February 15, 2007

My Most Cherished V-Day comes the much hyped valentines day again. One thing I continuously fail to understand is what is the need to celebrate a day for love? What about the remaining 364 days?? Now having read this, you must be wondering why did I name this "My Best Valentine Day"??? Read on and you will know.

Unlike my other stories, this did not happen long long ago...just last year. The day started with me bunking office and going to watch the movie Rang De Basanti with a lovely lady (now dont get any were not available for the rest of the days and the fact that feb 14th was v-day had totally slipped out of my mind). This was the first time I was going to watch a movie in a theater alone with a girl and that feeling was pleasantly strange.....I went with her to watch the movie and thankfully, the movie was excellent...we had a good time watching it and I escorted her back home like a perfect gentleman(well...this is the only place I can call myself one :D).

I returned home only to realise that I had forgotten to have my lunch and was feeling really hungry. My bad luck...that day my roomies had finished all the snacks that were left at home. I had to satisfy myself with the top ramen curry packets which I successfully dug out of nowhere.

Before switching on the gas, I noticed that the window of the apartment directly opposite to my kitchen's window was wide open. all guys, I wished a beautiful girl would look out and smile at me..but having said this, I would like to point out that I am different from the rest. I dont believe in just dreaming...I wanted to live my dream.

I started singing the song "Mere Saamnewaali Khidki Mein Ek Chand Ka Tukda Rehta Hai" from the movie "Padosan" and believe me guys...I always hate my voice...but on this occassion, even Kishore Kumar would have conceded that I was better than him that day(ok ok...I know this is too much but I have to live my dream na ;) )....I was so engrossed in the song that I started emoting it literally (danced around with the noodles packet in my hand imagining it to be a girl) no bothering about my harried neighbours or my stomach's grumbling).............

Once I was done, I heard someone clapping. I peeped out of the kitchen window only to find an old lady in my saamnewaali khidki applauding my performance. The sweet lady gestured that I sing really well and I acknowledged by blowing out some kisses for her. She laughed and invited me ove for a coffee......I got back into the gentleman mode (Ya I am like a switch...sometimes naughty and sometimes too good to be true....the naughty side dominating me), hurriedly made myself presentable and got a box of chocolates for my DATE before leaving.

I reached her place in five minutes and I could find out her flat from the smell of fresh coffee reaching my nose. She ushered me in, accepted the chocolates and ya .....gave me the the best I've had till now. I asked her about her family and she said she was here for a vacation and will return to the US where her son is posted now.

I could make out from her voice that she is very lonely and wanted some company for the day. Well... the nice side of me surfaced and I decided to make the day memorable for her. I did entertain her for a long time and even cooked dinner(smart lady na ;) ) for her...

Like all good things come to an end, this day had to end. When I was leaving, my DATE said "Thanks a lot! In this one day, you gave this old lady so much happiness".....I felt very nice and wishing her well, I left.

Even today, when I look out of my kitchen window into my saamnewaali khidki, I still relive that day...I dont know where she is today(must have gone back to the US) ...............but she's a chand ka tukda at heart...dil se!!!!

Guys, do spend some time with elderly people who are will get so many blessings that your life will be really smooth and satisfying...believe me!!!!