Posted in Month End

Month End – May accomplishments

Every accomplishment starts with a decision to try

– unknown

In amongst the daily grind we must not forget about our own personal accomplishments. So as I speedily arrive to the end of this month, what have I been up to?

Debut Novel – My Final Edits Done!

On Friday 15th May I finally completed the last edit on my book which got underway in July 2015. In essence, a story about two brothers who drove a family from London to India. A family they had never met before! I feel I have taken the book as far as I can, so now time to give it to the professionals to rip apart, join back up and see where it takes me. I’d like to thank everyone who been involved in reading, re-reading, advising, the journey became a little easier.
During the writing of this book we sadly lost one of the brothers a few years back, and while my writing dipped my motivation spurred on! A lot of this I owe to them both. Continue reading “Month End – May accomplishments”

Posted in Film

More “Item Songs” in Bollywood mean India is getting raunchy then ever!

“An item number or an item song in Indian cinema, is a musical performance that has little to do with the film in which it appears, but is presented to showcase beautiful dancing women in very revealing clothes, to lend support to the marketability of the film” Wikipedia definition

For those reading this post, who have little or no knowledge of Indian Cinema (now referred to as Bollywood), you will be pleased to know that by the end you will have learnt something new, the growing trend of “Item Songs”.  This is not a history lesson in Indian Cinema, but merely my observation and the bravery (or stupidity) of directors to gradually push the boundaries

As a young lad, I recall sitting with my parents watching Bollywood movies (nothing wrong with that) and left wondering why a certain women would do a song sequence and then never appear in the rest of the film.  I recall that at that time, it was Helen who was the most popular women to appear in these so-called Item numbers.  Now Helen never looked like your typical Indian filmi chick, why, because firstly she was not full-blooded Indian and secondly she had apparent brown hair that was very continental looking.   The images below may support my observation.

I have to admit that watching Helen back then was just what a growing boy like me appreciated, something to catch the eye, get the chemicals flowing (steady on potato).  However, Helen was very elegant and graceful in her performance, she kept her dignity.  Also, she suited performing the “item number” sequence, it was just so her.  To those new, here’s a glimpse, to those experienced like me, here’s a quick trip down memory lane:





Recently the flood gates have opened in terms of “item songs” and what’s more interesting is how raunchy they have become and how they are being performed by reputable actresses within the industry. 

Back in 1993 when I was in India, I recall there was a widespread ban on the song Choli Ke Peeche Kya Hai from the film Khalnayak.  The ban was the result of female college students up and down the country complaining about their male counterparts singing the song to them in a very provocative manner.  I saw the movie when I came back and had to admit it was so gracefully pulled off by the fantastic Madhuri Dixit.  It was however, the start of things to come.

When I went to India just this February, the most popular song on the dance floor was “Chikni Chameli”, from the movie Agneepath.  Now I hadn’t seen the video to this song but instantly fell in love with the song [singing it now].  When I saw the video, I was amazed, some of the dance moves and close up shots were a little naughty, see for yourself.

In today’s climate, I would say that the past consistency of Helen has now been replaced by the very popular Malaika Arora.

You can look past a nation which openly illustrates a passion pushing the boundaries in a legitimate way, for it’s all there above the surface and the inhabitants are very open about it all.  However, there is something very sinister about a nation who does not tolerate the freedom to express one’s body and emotions in public, but fuelling those burning passions through their film industry.

So here’s to all those street traders, rickshaw drivers, 3-wheeler drivers, foot-path rouges, gunda-Don’s who line up the front seats of the cinema hall, whistle and dream to their hearts content at the Indian beauty strutting her stuff across the screen while being watched with hungry eyes.

 Here are some picks from 2011 and 2012, you will see a common theme.

Posted in Music

The Song that YouTube honoured – “Why This Kolaveri Di”

Over the weekend I heard the mention of a song, something called Kolaveri….I checked it out yesterday and since this morning, I have been hooked.  Apparently it’s been such a sensation online that YouTube honoured it a gold medal, seeing that it was only released in November last year.

So without further ado, here it is.  Read below some extracts on it I gathered from the corners of the web


Why This Kolaveri Di has been described as “genre bending” by critics, built around an ancient South Indian folk rhythm. Its instrumentation consists of nadaswaram, shehnai, saxophone, urumee and thavil drums, acoustic guitar and keyboards mixed with electronic synths and scratches. The vocals utilize the singing style of Tamil folk culture. Lyrically, the song revolves around the film’s main protagonist being dumped by his girlfriend; the song is sung by the character in a drunken state, with many of the lines nonsensical. Wikipedia

On why the Kolaveri Di is called the ‘soup song’, Anirudh says “Soup is a Tamil word used for guys who go through failure in love. Words like these are used by young guys in real life but in a song, we were introducing them. And these words have worked well for Kolaveri Di”

Posted in Music

Music Week, Day 5 – Mausam (Climate)

Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3 | Day 4

This is my final installment of Music Week, I hope you have enjoyed it so far.  I actually heard this track first time this week and the first thing that popped into my head was what a great way to start 2012.  Enjoy!

Sung by Reena Bhardwaj.

 Translation by some king person

Ek rang mein jeena, jeevan ko…
(Living your life in one colour)

Aayy jaane tamanna, theek nahin…
(My dear, is not a good thing)

Gham aur Khushi do rastay hai…
(Sadness and Happiness are two paths)

Ek rahe pe chalna, theek nahin…
(To walk on one path, is not a good thing)

Badal jaaye Mausam…
(The Seasons change)

Khushi aaye, Jaaye Gham…
(Happiness comes and sadness leaves)

Posted in Music

Music Week, Day 4 – Ek Jaan (One Soul)

Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3

I heard this track at the BBC Electric Proms 2009, sung by Reena Bhardwaj

In every direction, let this be the philosophy. One heart, one colour, one soul. There are no boundaries here. The earth is open, open is the sky.