Sunday, August 27

CARVA to please Mr.Yeega Thandham Yaanai

CARVA offers Music to Lord Ganesha Posted by Picasa

Its Ganesh Chathurthi and the world is in celebrations with kozhakattais, bholi and other savouries on excuse of the occasion. With just a week to go for their grand violin program, CARVA is back again this year to enchant its audience. So I thought of giving a recap of the violin program performed today in honour of the birthday baby :).

The CARVA Troupe Posted by Picasa

With just eleven violins and the senior students playing all by themselves it was a very neat rendition to all present. Without a preset queue of song to play it was impromptu choice made by them which is a rare opportunity for them. The program did not go without glitches (but for one), but the spirit of taking the embarassment with a smile and making up for it was what counted in the end, esp considering it was an unrehersed event.

Engrossed to deliver Posted by Picasa

It was best part of Vinayaka Chathurthi for me, more so of the enthuse with which the whole event took place. This was followed by dinner, which I had skipped owing to other things in queue :(.

Just 6 days to go for the Grand event with the full strength of CARVA performing at Mahodhaya Hall (Stree Seva Mandir, 36, 4th Avenue, Ashok Nagar from 6:01pm) on Saturday September the 2nd. From little angels brought onto stage by elders to wield their small violin (which is awesome cute to watch) to the seniors playing krithis and one of my favourite thillana it would definitely be a treat to watch and listen in person. Of course the final ensemble with little over 100 violins is once again geared to overwhelm the audience. This is one event into which over a month's practice having gone into; you'r sure to witness them all perform at their best.

To get a feel of the grandeur and size of the event, check out pictures of CARVA 2005 festival. Best of all, the event is free for all to attend. As for music enthusiasts, I am sure this ain't an event you can miss. So spread the word and be present for an enchanting evening with these young artists.

Musically Yours

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Thursday, August 24

Javelin Hurlers - India's Pride

Oooh btw, before I begin; if you are a good javelin thrower or for that matter skilled at throwing anything you can lay hands on with accuracy, then you should consider a career towards becomming an MP.

Its nothing short of shame for the nation. It was not as bad as this, but definitely a disgraceful representation of the government. Do you think a democracy where people have the right to bully another person to death, sitting in the parliament unacquited is a worthy one? A just one? What e.g. does it set for its people.

I do agree that democracy entails opposition. But as much as India being one of the largest democracy, it can also brag of one of the most disgraceful and ill mannered representation of a country. Not to say every person in the parliament is so, but with no proper enactment of a rule of conduct but for the speaker walking out of the house when he is out of control, it is an absolute disgrace. In fact people have noted that the parliament seems to be a place where politicians fight over their petty differences, personal issues and political vendetta than debate over issues of the state which concerns its people.

Again the reservation policy. The funny part is that the government announces that these policies are brought in to enable the under-privileged (who can't afford education) to access higher education and such. The truth be told, these reservations rarely reach those in true need. Wide survey and from my personal experience in my circle, I'v know the people of the sections of society who actually avail these reservations are much much well to do than most FC's and quite honestly don't require reservation. In fact they are able to content with most other and just by virtue of being an MBC and such get favoured in a better school.

If the objective of the government is to provide reservations for those who are unable to afford, why is it based on cast and not the socio-economic status of the candidate? The government has not been able to supplicate their claims as to how it would help the deemed under-privileged.

After all this is done, the goverment takes great pride in the people who have come up despite such let down. Tallented people who get stifled by such laws grow and government takes pride in that *sigh*. Worse yet the government thinks that by sitting for a talk with the protestors is below their dignity, that it undermines the power of the government. Sad state of affairs.

All I can say is - Reserve for the incapable & forget the able, and so will they. India has been growing because of its talent. Loose the talent and I guess anyone can make of what will turn out to be the Indian Superpower that so many predict she'd be. India has grown to this day owing to its capitalistic policies and not communistic ideals.

Guess none of this will ever makes sense to the politician or government. They'v got more pressing issues to handle than the country. Demeaning the opposition, their next election *phew*, buzy bees.

If I'am not mistaken Jawaharlal Nehru used to sleep 6 hours or less a day. So much for a man who shaped the nation. Wondering if there is any scope for such worthiness it todays politics :-?.

The most worse part is, I am a sitting duck #-o.

Tuesday, August 22

M$ Rocks

I have no idea as to what I did ... but all of a sudden Visual Studio got screwy ... title bar seems fine but the tab's with the file name have gone topsy-turvy ;)) ... glad it was temporary ... coz I cudn't close without finishing my session.

Sunday, August 20

Fluid to set you on Fire

This album rendered by Navin's been in my gmail account for too long without attention. Just got to play along with my cousin's new iPod Nano n the quality just left me with no choice but to listen to these crisp and smooth pieces. Wonder if those earphones are made with steel diaphrams :-/. Keep the volume quite low and listen to these tho -
  1. Fluid - The purcussion and the flute was a bit too harsh to listen at first. Unconventionality quite evident. Keep the volume down and your will race towards the end with a rush ;). Will definitely wake you up *he he*.
  2. Bombay Theme - An attempted evocation of grandiose in second minute. If you'v listened to the original by ARR you'r bound to experience your heart slowing down. Otherwise I didn't see much here. The original theme segment was well rendered, not sure if therz much difference from that of ARR's :-?. And then "uyire uyire" (tu hi ree tu hi ree) comming in towards the end.
  3. mOhana - the leading notes reminds me of an old track from childhood :-?? ... for once I remember it :D ... yippie \:D/ ... if you'v heard the title music of the 1st indian 3D movie "Chotta ChEthan" (in hindi) or "My Dear Kutti Satan" (in tamil) ... a slight detour ... I got so scared of watching the movie with 3D goggles with my mum n dad that I cried and saw the movie without em ;)). If at all I am mistaken it must be from one of those programs I used to watch on T.V. A segment of the song (5:48-6:00) also reminds me of a TFM song, grrrr which I just can't seem to remember even close.
  4. Chennai Rain - A very peppy track to start with, the rain droplets arraigning the background. Somehow the folksy elements seemed unoriginal and made the track quite bland. The later end of the track where the flute dominates was very catchy tho :).
  5. Nenjinile (Uyire) - This was the 1st track I got of the album which made me hunt for the rest. Nothing exceptional or original, but is just such an appeaser to the heart :). Close you eyes and listen, and you bound to don a smile inadvertantly ;). With mild accompaniments the fluid transitions were just perfect to my taste.
  6. First Light - Sounded more like the background score for scene at dawn in an indian epic or a gurukulam school, with the hapr like sounds adding a heavenly touch. And then an unexpected swerve :-?, as if someone had woke up. Though little segments seemed unique, it quickly dwindled into a familiar scene.
  7. Symphony - Cheated me into a well known piece by bethoven / mozart (dun remember the name right away), esp the dwindling gaps between notes. It just didn't seem either western enough (as it starts) or indian enough (as it moves from the transition) as a whole. I honestly felt confused.
  8. You & I - It gets a bit loud with the typical rock / metal type guitaring comming in quickly. I was expecting, and was in mood for a more relaxing one. The chorus by the kids reminded me of having sung - "Heal the world, make it a better place" on our school annual day (of course in chorous). This felt nothing close to that, though of the same motif. I didn't see much of a replayability factor to this track.
  9. Essence - I am not a big fan of hindustani or the durbari stuff. I didn't take me long to feel like it was happening in some kings durbar. Okie I admit, this genre just puts me to sleep. NO, its not coz I am writing this little past 1:30am. Just not a piece for my ears.
If your an instrumental buff, then take a sneak peak. I ain't a big fan of flute as much I am to violin. The album as a whole wasn't all too impressive. But definitely nice to hear along with work :). For most part I felt, it lacked originality. As for the rendition, the music will speak for itself.

Thursday, August 17

Stages of Liquid

Most of us would have known about the stages of life ... but this one is interesting :)

Courtesy - a fwd mail

Sunday, August 13

Road Trip: ECR

A short notice weekend hangout it was. Twelve guyz in all, six bikes, over 120KM on the ECR (East Coast Road). Scenic and invigorating it was, not an uncommon expression given the fact that it was the 1st time I made such a trip. I had been longing to do so but it ain't all that fun without good company :).

ECR Drive (View from the shades of the pine trees, .:gODo:. in the middle and SamY at the right end with balrAm) Posted by Picasa

The Riding Experience

The ECR is know for its notorious traffic and frequent (fatal) accidents and what a better time to pick than a sunday evening, when hoards of families and newly married choose to cruise along. Lately evenings in chennai has been glee and romantic given the weather and the fine drizzles. So was our ride day, the above picture being the sunny side of the trip. With occasional showers threatening, the vagaries of the cloud cover was like an artist/painters imagination.

The evening traffic was not conducive (given the traffic conditions) for a personal best so I kept my cool then :D. With four bikes in a row it was fun driving in parallel occasionally overtaking one another in turns and of course doing - The Snake. Basically bikes tailing one another n wiggling from the ends of the lane, of course when the road was all ours to take. The guy up front is at left end whilst the tail guy at the right, the view when you do so it fantastic ;).

The return trip was when some driving happened. We decided to leave before the sunrise so we were on our gears by 5:15am. ECR being quite empty, the swift ride in the morning chill as sun rises by your rise was really warm. Thought the chill started to get on me in a while once the engines rev'd up it felt warm (the cold wind I mean). And as a bonus to all this I got balrAm and myself to do our personal best at full throttle with the pillion rider (which did add to stability). We could have probably done more without a pillion rider. My best drive since my clavicle's resurrection :D.

The Beach

We'd been to this place called SilverSprings resort, 3km before mAmallapuram (known commonly as mahabalipuram). My buddy iCEeYZ says it was waaay better before the tsunami incident, much of it washed out now. Nevertheless it was quite okie for an all guyz hangout. The beach was quite clean compared to what you get within city for obvious reasons. And some unsightly bikini babes too ;)).

So by dark we had all the fun in the water - throwing people inside after giving bumps, throwing mud at the back of people (which got lables as samy adicha saani he he). Thanks to my less than perfect clavicle I was spared. Clean, wet and dire hungry we gorged on the snacks we had, dinned and sat by the shores for a chat. Couple of guy got turned on by nature and started with their music composition stuff.

Gosh was it a beautiful evening :-o, event though it wasn't a full moon night. Watching the waves get rough as mid night passed was such fun. The interplay of clouds also brought in some picturesque scenes. Patches of the ocean glittering with a white spot light over them, amidst the dark ocean around, waah. Occasionally our silence brought our attention to the hollow sounds of the waves, the reverb was scintillating in the stillness of the night.

Not to mention the rainbow we saw in the evening as we entered. And in the night, for some our artistic taste kicked in as I pointed out at the ring around the moon, which forms from the same principle of light scattering from a prism as a rainbow. Though with the moon you see it as a ring. One of us even managed to capture the devilish red tint of it.

So it was at one when all of us were finally blown out and decided to get into our tents for a little sleep.

The Big Q?

The gang was just electric. Me being the silent kind'a guy took a while to get the flow. For the process of ridiculing each other over non-existent follies takes a bit of time to recollect. But then, there was no stopping us. We made such a raucous at the restraunt during dinner that the owner requested us to make less noise. Thankfully much of their business was over by then.

And then close to mid-night the big question sprang up. It was .:gODo:. who made this statement - "Guyz did you notice that in our gang of n#, none of our have a girl friend. Am wondering if there is some fundamental problem with us? What say?". So then the investigating began as to what was the reason for each person to be so single. There was such a variety from - never found a girl I like, never found a girl worth my time, the love relationship is crappy and meaningless, I can't live upto expectations, I just never thought about that, I have family responsibilities. The fact being all of these were excuses.

So then after we got all the reasons, we began reasoning out and came to a consensus. The true reason why we are such is nothing troubling, for its for good reason. None of us believed in any kind of a relationship for convenience (as in friend/gf/marriage for benifit) which is what 90% of the populous gets into - if the guyz got the money to supply all the girl wants he sell and if the girls willing to go by what the guy wants she sells.

Be it career, personal life, relationship, for that matter anything in life its about which compromise you choose to make that leaves you comfortable. Some are comfortable with anything as long as they are luxurious whilst others being lax on comforts but want things the way they like. Than quick growth, quick money, quickly earned relationship mostly doesn't makes sense in the long run. If you choose not to take risk afraid of getting burned then you loose the chance of getting the best you could have, and agreeing by a pact to settle in for something less with a feigned smile.

I need to catch my remaining ~2 hours of sleep |-).

Friday, August 11

Sillunnu Oru Kadhal :-"

After a long dormancy from our enchanter ARR, this album comes out with lots of expectations from his die-hard fans. Is this yet another commercial work or has he really made it signature ARR piece of work.

Here are my views on the songs in order of my liking -
  1. New York Nagaram - lovely chords on the guitar to begin with and all along, simple yet subtle to lure you into a mild trance (esp @ a raining dawn / dusk). It really gives you the feeling of concrete jungle when you listen to it. This song sounds way toooooo familiar to me but I just don't seem to figure it grrrrrrrr :-??. Every time I listen from 0:50 to 1:15 a nostalgic feeling sets in, or is it just the suavity of the interplay of wind instruments there. Smooth is short of expression to explain the feeling. The cadence in the singing in the line "Naa Inge Neeyum Ange" (and the likes again) were the most impressive and striking part of the singing. The female chorous also seemed just perfect, hush and reaching the heart. Perfect time to listen to it - "gloomy weather, with the rain drop battering the roof of the window shades outside you room" ... perfect O:).
  2. Munbe Va Anbe Va - Does Godesses saraswathi dance in her toung :-/. IMHO she's got the most beautiful voice today. At first this song did not appeal to me since the lyrics weren't profound. But I listened to it just coz of the rhythm / beats that goes in the backdrop. Not too often do we see scores with such brilliant variance in drumming. The change brought out withing every cycle kept me glued to it just to figure the exponential (inverted bell) raise and quick exponential fall. I'll be doin that until I can replicate it tapping my dest to it :D. In the meanwhile I am already smitten by her singing, so much that ever the sound of her catching breath sounds so befitting. The "Rango-Rangooli" in the chorus background is just as sweet (proly kids singing :-?) as shreya goshal's. The chorus reminded me of "Nejinile Nejinile" song for some odd reason. If this song fails to impress you on 1st listening, DON'T GIVE UP. Trust me, you wouldn't be disappointed :).
  3. Jillendru Oru Kadhal - absolute jolly track, and again reminiscience of familiarity. Only after revisiting Arvind commentry did I realize it indeed following the same motif as "Vennila Vennila" from the movie Iruvar by ARR himself (recycling is he?). The unorthodox singing mixed with some rock and roll age western gave it quite a flavour. Lyrics is also quite playful complementing the aura given by the music. Some places sounded more like stolen from "Tom & Jerry" ;)) he he. Maybe the jazziness. A kitten meowing added mischief to the whole stage.
  4. Kummi Adi - along the likes of "Kamma Karaiyile" from Godfather but nowhere close. Fast folky number (as Arvind pointed to). These songs never get borring until the next one in the genre comes in. Esp if you are on a outing and wanna dance the hell out in any god damn way you please meaninglessly :)). But no one (I'm talking absolutes now) in the industry can bring out the smell of our country folks the way Ilayaraja can. Not sure if others can do a successful folksy song without this thiruvizha theme.
  5. Maricham - This song gave me the feel of the ever classic hit Chandralekha from Thiruda Thiruda, a techno feast it is. Fast beats (just as in "My heart goes Boom Boom" by Enigma), crushing/breaking glass, open space drum, vortex sounds makes your body move to the music (in fits) before you realize it. Until the "Gautham, Gautham ... Gautham ... ... Gautham" strikes in #-o. And then it even has some verses alike the biblical chants typical of enigma and as if Enya were singing in the background (a wee bit of LORT sound track's feel kicks in). Felt more like a potpourri for me.
  6. Majja Majja - Supposedly sensuous #-o, oooh please. Remember those old crappy tamil movies where out'a the blue the hero n heroin land up in forest with some tribals get drunk and dance their booty out (and sometimes end up doing more), that the sick feel this song gives. I esp hated the backdrop, rustic drumming with the masculine "hoooo" sound in chorus. Its so much more lousy when they pronounce it maaza X-(, sound so unlike tamil. Was this supposed to contend with "Thazhuvudu Nazhuvudu" from Ah Aah - Anbe Aaruyire? :)) not a chance. Not this time ARR, you lost to none but thyself :D.
  7. Machakaari - This songs turned out kind of disappointing of the lot. Though the mood seem to be different therz some semblance to "Rangola Rangola" from Ghajini. The music grossly overshadowing the lyrics. The voice modulation when she sings "vizhundheeen kaadela" (2:45 to 2:50) was interestingly nice to hear amidst the raucous. Just way too many things out there for it to be enjoyable.
The 1st two songs in the list were really exceptional, enought for ARR fans to know hes live and kicking as ever. But definitely not the best he can produce. Wonder when he'd come out with a project with the songs signature ARR style. Maybe its gonna take a non-commercial project (to work at it @ his own pace) to do so.

Until then enchant thyself with whatz at hand.


Sunday, August 6

Sleeping Beauty

After too many people pointed at it I finally realized that I'v got some really wierdo sleeping habbits. Was wondering what else is out there, but let me start with mine :). Lets go chronological with this.

In my childhood I always needed someone to hug me until I go into sleep :D, yes you heard me right. My uncle (as we call here mama), mum or dad were responsible to put me into sleep. Wouldn't let em sleep until then ;).

As I grew up I got habbituated to my papa patting on my back in a rhythm until I go I-). Poor him, I still remember so many nights when out'a tiredness he'd stop patting and doze off and I'd nudge him in his sleep to continue #-o.

I grew up a lil more to become very active in my sleep. Yes I used twist, turn, roll, throw away my blanket and pull over my dads :)) and even kick the person next to me. In a little while I realized I was a pest n moved out'a bed. Apart from regular sleeping hours, I slept a lot more doing something else - studies :D. I "used" to study a lot in bed, and ending up sleeping not knowing until when I was studying. The best part was me facing downward with my book on the floor, he he. That way no one knows if you are studyin or sleepin.

Only then I realized the bliss of sleeping in the open and on the floor, once I gave up sleeping in bed (still am uncomfortable sleeping in bed, esp during summer n sultry days). Chill open space and floor lures me to sleep so much. Never quite realized why my grandpa slept there until then. Once I learnt I never moved elsewhere. Right in front of a balcony and two windows on the side on the 2nd floor was ethereal. Except for the bustling traffic sound which I got used to quickly its an indescribable feeling. Even with the power cuts I could sleep in peace so long as I could get rid of few mosquitoes :D. The winds from the balcony sometime even ripped me off the blanket unless I anchor to it well. Early mornings are the best 8->. With the backyard door open, the wind flows uninterrupted and it feels so great resting under the warmth of a blanket. Trust me, its so hard to wake up like in a cold morning.

Oh yesss, my need for a hug :). With just me the the floor, I had to build a dam with pillows all around me. Ha ha, I needed atleast 3/4 pillows to sleep cozy ;)). Maybe this is why I am claustrophobic, having got used to the comfort of openness.

I am an effortless sleeper. I am gifted with the ability to get into a slumber anytime & anywhere.
Ever since college, if I might add. I used to sleep in 76B's and 76C's which in most cases are amongst the rattling bus's around. Once or twice the bus was vibrating @ my body's resonance frequency that I got itchy all over X-( grrr. I even had the ability to sleep whilst sitting in the footboard :D, well anchored of course.

And then college, where I got wierdest. People used to call be 'beethAl' (as in 'Vikram & Bethal' he he). Our bedding was at the corner of the room, so I developed this habbit of putting my legs as high as possible along the join of the walls with a pillow to rest my shoulder on ;). Yes I used to study that way and mostly end up sleeping #-o. One of my dear friend even made me an exhibit then, lucky none of us had digi-cams back then *phew*.

A year in bangalore tamed me :(, but am still a roller / crawler when I sleep n guess I lost the habbit of kicking :). I still need a pillow to hug though :D, even at the cost of not having one for my head. No more questions on this one okie? Still am one feet away from where I originally slept #-o. Not sideways, guess I'v been loosing my head rest so I keep moving to grab it in sleep. Good that I have an unfurnished room, with the chillest of tiles that leaves my room the most prefered place to be (at the cost of my privacy at awkward moments).

Do you have wierd sleeping habbits?

Wednesday, August 2

Only you ...

Life is strange. Guess that's what keeps our clock ticking. There is this person in our lives who earns up to become the closest ever to you as you grow up.

Someone to whome you can be the naked truth, be just what you are.
Someone who accepts you for what you are.
Someone upon whome you can lean on.
Someone who truly lends their ears and time when you most want them.
Someone with whome you feel @ home.
Someone who made you a better person.
Someone who cares about you more than self.
Someone who takes a share in your emotions.
Someone who despite the relation turns out to be the bestest of friend's you've ever had.
Someone who makes you happy at their smile and cry when glum.
Someone with whome you share your life with (not as in a partner :p).

Especially when you'v never had such a trusty person for a confidant it seems like life has taken a turn to wonderland. With so much support you feel like you can conquer the world. Like being given a purpose to life.

But then again tides change. Nothing is permanent.

The moment it receedes, feels like everything is over. Life seemingly comes to a grinding halt. Like you have no more strength left in you. Like you can't breathe anymore, think anymore, feel life anymore. With that person no longer around life ain't the same anymore. Guess in time the loss of a person fades away and you get into grips with reality. Though everything rosy has now turned into gray.

If loss of a person is heartbreaking, its even worse when you get to know all of it was a lie. Everything you believed, you cherished, what you believed were the best of memories for life - they are not gone, they are not dead, but they never were but for your perception. Self repugnance hits you and you feel like puking at the very thought of thyself. Remember the scene in The Matrix where Neo pukes when he gets to know the truth? For a long time I felt it was ridiculous, didn't quite comprehend what the feeling was about. Now I know how it feels like.

Life is definitely stranger than fiction. Guess that's given to the fickleness of the human mind. Misconstrued beliefs? Or is it just me?

As John Nash would say - "They're my past, Martin. Everybody is haunted by their past". Maybe I should choose not to acknowledge as much.