Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Rabindrasangeet

When we want to have a quiet and cosy evening together, sit back and basically just feel relaxed and refreshed, K and I instinctively reach out to the Rabindrasangeet available online. Quite a few are available on YouTube, mostly sourced from old and recent Bengali films and telefilms or private albums by professional singers but sadly enough, too few to pick and choose from. Once I spent some time searching for a few of my favourite Tagore compositions online and was appalled at the limited number of websites that showed up on Google. That made me ponder. I would have thought that I'd be spoilt for choice as it usually happens when I'm googling anything else on that omnipotent search engine. I have to waste a whole lot of time just making random hits and hoping I'll find something that approximates my target. Rabindrasangeet alas seems to be a rarity of sorts online. And yet, folks back home tell me that there's been a boom in the e-media of late.

Anyway, all this means that we lament our not having foresight enough to carry some Rabindrasangeet CDs with us to the USA. Both of us are to blame, since music forms a very notable part of our everyday lives. Our tastes are markedly different when it comes to English music, where I'm notoriously fickle, moving from Tchaikovsky to Enrique to Dido to Philip Yon to the Beatles in one clean sweep, leaving K breathless in his effort to keep up with my tastes. He is more into multi-genre rock and Pink Floyd. However, we manage to embrace considerable similarity when it comes to Bengali and Hindi music, where we are both heavily into anything Kishore or A.R.Rahman, Sonu Nigam or Debabrata Biswas, Lata or Asha, Shreya Ghoshal or Sraboni Sen. And Rabindrasangeet is like our refuge. When we want comfort and cheer, trust us to curl up on our cushions with Rabindrasangeet and coffee (er well, tea for K).

It's startling, the effect Rabindrasangeet has on us. The long drawn out enunciation most professional singers sport is soothing, almost as slurred at points as it would take a teetotaller after a couple of pegs to come up with or even me, when the mercury drops sharply to minus 10 and below. We laugh at the drawling and affected accents when we are in the mood for jest and banter, but when you're far from home like us and sometimes, just nothing seems to work except perhaps tears (easy for me, tough for K) or deep sleep (escape from reality itself), Rabindrasangeet provides unimaginable relief. Just musing on the words, brooding on their meaning can lift you effortlessly to a plane of pure pleasure, when each nerve thrills to the melody and the spirit yearns to become one with the flesh.

I personally think my greatest influence in writing poetry has been Rabindranath. The blending of love and worship, pain and pleasure, word and meaning, wisdom and worth...why else would I learn to write each word as if I felt it walk my heart each step, arriving at a climax as one would stand ecstatic at the door of heaven, straining to reach for a few drops of peace from what little 'punyo' (godliness) I have gained from striving to please others on each day, in each poem.

3 comments:

Casuarina said...

Quoting Ayan's email on this post :

"amar mukti aloy aloy.....

funny that I am an atheist!"


My reply : What is God for one may be poetry for someone, music for another, work for yet another, writing programs for and yet another...what's in a name ? : atheist or believer, we all seek some form of self-perfection, fashioning our own puny selves to strive to live upto it each day, one at a time.

little boxes said...

i saw your link on indiblogger,but could never reach your blog till today...
this is such a beautiful post!
havent you ever felt that no matter what mood you are in,there has to be a tagore song to go with it?
and dont you also feel as if he wrote it just for you...
lovely blog,btw :)

ananya said...

amader jiboner pratiti muhurter janya rabi thakur tar gan r kabita rekhe gachen......ami aka hole,thakur amar sange thaken......


je raate mor duar guli vanglo jhare.....

LinkWithin

Blog Widget by LinkWithin