Wednesday, July 03, 2002

Another seventeen days to go..
Then there'll be my apartment, my TV and my road.
A little scared of the emptiness that seeps into a vacuum.Of inventing work and intent. Of reassurance and letting go.Of the de-addiction and the temptation.

Times like these, there's words and music.
So today, I'm gonna trace the history of my some of mah music and books.
Lanes they were picked out of, people they were borrowed from and moments they became a part of...In random order...

The Pavid Pavilion
Sheldon's trashiest book ever, picked it out of an old trunk in the storeroom, under all the vessels that smell of Madras and my grandparents. Part of Dad's bachelor days I guess.I must have been in Class 7. Used to read it under cover of the largest Math workbook I could find. Sex education at its best.

The Thorn Birds
King of kitsch!!! I love the book. Picked off the footpath, strong recommendations by a street vendor (Dad was an old faithful at his corner) at the Fort bylanes (I love the place, I could spend days just walking those paths).In his words, 'Yaad rakhoge madam, waapis aakar aur le jaoge'.

Dil Se
Awesome awesome music, and we’re not talking ‘chaiya chaiya’ here.
This was Third year hostel on a second-generation National Panasonic.
Rains in Pune, leaves all over the courtyard and gentle showers on the window grills with a lone red carnation sparkling in dew. Rahman crooning. And chai and bhajis. Sometimes, it doesn’t get better than this.

The Book of Laughter and Forgetting
Kundera at his best. This was my the first Kundera, bought on a whim cause I liked the title. Since then, I always pick out a book a month, solely on the title. My Kundera collection now is almost complete.

Midnight’s Children
Again, My first Rushdie. Was given a dog-eared copy by an Irishman, whose legs dangled off the pillion of my scooterette. Read it right through an Economics paper. Fell in love with the play of words, never knew till then that words can do this dance and get away with it.

Lord of the Flies
This was IIT Madras (Marina, OAT and Gajendra circle), summer vacations. Trying to while time while the rest of the family slept (life runs a different routine, brunch at 10:30, lunch at 1 and tiffin again at 4). Burrowing into my brother’s dusty book-shelf.
If you asked me, I can’t repeat verbatim any word of the book. But I still remember being hit. Out like a shot.

The Best of Simon and Garfunkel
This was a hand-me-down from my unc. The shiny dirty green jacket and the dark black cassette. Second year hostel. Three years later, a friend took me through ‘The Rock’, word by painful word.And now, it’s just there, for forever, one of those permanent fixtures in my collection.

What an album!!!!!!!!
This is Muzaffar Ali and some voices.
This is First year Post-Graduation, Maneesha and daaru. This is always the first on a long list of favourite ‘sear through the soul’ music. Along with ‘Tera Hijr Mera Naseeb Hai’ (Kabban Mirza, Razia Sultan) and ‘Mujhe Ishq Ho Gaya (Shiv-Hari, Parampara) .
This is Urdu at its sweetest.

Vijay Raghava Rao and John McLaughlin. My first introduction to fusion.This is atmosphere music. Makes me want to do a set, a play, a night to its tune.
This is the front room, cane lamp glowing , burrowing into the newspaper on rare visits home. Surprisingly, nobody I’ve ever lent this album has liked it much.

Need to get back to billings, maybe one last…

Another title thingie. Picked off a lone shelf at this place called ‘Bookpoint’, Ballard Estate. Waiting for Dad to get off his meeting.The title and the jacket design.
This book, I go back to, once every month. Pick a random page and let it in. Cruise down the river and hear my head speak.

To be continued next Wednesday:)