Monday, March 10, 2014

Ancient Love: Getting a Musasm – Version1

When I say Musasm, please don’t wear your dirty thoughts hat as you would be thoroughly disappointed. I have a very different piece to present here. We all are interested in Music. What kind of Music? Music of varied types be it western, classical, jazz, latin and so on. Music is very graceful. Something we can relate it to our thoughts, life and experiences. It takes us to a new land filled with soul and peace. But what happens when Music doesn’t have any words. Will it lose its sense? Will it lose its sanity? Will it lose its sanctity? I don’t think so. One such beautiful piece which woke my senses or touched my soul is Ancient love by Sitar stalwart Anoushka Shankar. She comes from a very lustrous background of Music with her dad ‘Ravi Shankar on one side and half sister ‘Norah Jones’ on the other. Her work has always amused me to a large extent. The way she plays Sitar, One can see god or feel his presence in it.

Everything about Ancient love –

The piece starts with a Hindustani classical vocal played by a male counterpart. The nuances were placed beautifully with the soft rendition of Sitar. Then it slowly catches the pace with strong play of the instrument. In olden days, love was very pure and simple in nature. Things like sun, rain, weather, nature, and surroundings played an important role in the relationships. The experience was ethereal. The boy and girl found their pleasure in small things and things rarely got complicated. But religion played a significant part in their relationship. They were strictly opposed to feel love outside their religion. That was considered as a taboo. That was how lives of Janaki and Vinod had turned out. Feeling strongly for each other, they couldn’t sacrifice their love for their family and village but were forcefully caught up with the caste and religion stigma. The social pressure made their lives difficult and the folks separated them. Their love continued to remain alive and young but failed to unite them. The last 2 minutes of Sitar says us the story of Janaki and Vinod’s last visit to each other at the river backwaters. They were in midst of emotional turmoil. They cried, laughed, hugged and kissed. That was the last time they were actually alive. They lived. They did not take the worst case of death. But though they stayed in marriage with the person of same caste, they were dead from inside. They led the mechanical life and failed to feel bliss in world. They desired nothing but each other. The end part gives us the trials and a tribulation faced by them and ends on a sad note. The rhythm and tone is very effective and tempo increases at the end. Anoushka has made the rendition very interesting. I will come up with version 2 of the same instrumental legend work. 

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