08 July 2009


Well most of you hadn’t seen the movie I wrote about last time and not surprisingly I had hardly any comments to that one. To be frank I did go a little overboard with the whole thing; I started taking myself too seriously and assumed myself to be the philosopher types. But the girlfriend did an “Aloha Mora” on me and it opened a whole new door (By the way she thinks it’s the door to the bathroom which I am supposed to clean every weekend).

After a few drinks at a house party couple of months back when i started imagining myself to be Kishore Kumar reincarnated (and it wasn’t the first time) and started singing, a friend of mine asked me to sing something new. Just then I realised I had absolutely nothing new to sing and all I had been singing all along was at the latest ten years old. What really happened in the last ten years? Why do I not remember any songs to sing? One of the reasons might be that I wasn’t a teenager for most part of it and had to carry the baggage that comes with adult life; work. Well I haven’t really worked for more that two years in my current job and some odd jobs for a couple of years before that but there was that pressure to get one some day and that too a good one. So I have spent most of my time slogging like a donkey (I know you fell off your chair laughing; but let’s assume it for argument sake); and had absolutely no time to remember lyrics or my choices have changed. Well if my choices have changed; then I can assure you that I didn’t do it myself.

Gone are the movies and the script situations which could make it possible for any composer to churn out umpteen songs for a movie. You get like say eight if it’s a musical and few of them are like theme music. Moreover; so called pop singers are getting into playback singing with the increasing demand of unconventional music. For composers to make the same amount of revenue with 8 songs compared to what they used to make with 16; there is this pressure to offer something new and also matching international standards as the customer has internet and the reach is longer than the “Kanoon”. With the range of singers come the different accents (a lot of em’ Anglo sized) and top it all come those fuckin lyrics in English in the background. You my baby but u driving me crazy crazy boy, you my baby but you driving driving driving driving. With the funny accent that I’ve got, (imagine Kishore Kumar singing a song in English) I can’t imagine myself singing those.

I had all that in mind when I went back to the motherland for three weeks. It was so fuckin hot; I spent a lot of time watching soaps on TV. I was expecting a lot of western influence or change in those as well. Well; to my surprise the plots in those soaps have gone backwards. Seven out of ten soaps were all set in the rural and semi urban India. That wasn’t the case 10-12 years ago; all of em’ had very urban settings and reflected quite modern sensibilities. I was stunned and just couldn’t stop thinking about it for days. What the fuck happened when I wasn’t watching?

After days of pondering and pulling my already thin crop of hair; I came to the conclusion that the audience has changed for this as well. Back when I used to spend time with my mum watching Tara, Campus, Saans and Banegi Apni Baat to name a few; the audience that those were reaching out to; were all urban middle class. These were the people who could afford paying 300 rupees a month for cable television. The majority of the mass watched Doordarshan and watched movies in a single screen theatre over the weekend. Over the years with all that money flowing into the Indian economy, rise in the level of literacy and a lot of the industries being deregulated; the urban community are an extremely busy group of people. They are going abroad, working long hours at organizations that’ve got gyms within campus to virtually make them live at work; they hardly have the time to go watch soaps on TV. So where do they go?

I am sure this was the question all the multiplex owners were creating an answer for. Nice quality movie watching experience. And when the target customers for movies in India are more global, have money and are more educated; automatically the scripts, the plots and the music are changing. But on the other hand the rural areas can now afford paying 500 odd rupees to have cable television and want to watch something they can relate to. Consequently tele-soaps are about caste problems, child marriage and basic rural issues more or less.

Well; I am 26, not old by any respect but right now if I was in India either you make way for the next generation and accept the emergence of a generation gap or Aloha Mora; India is changing.


  1. Nice post.. i never realised it but its true..Indian media is playing a big part in enlightening the generally ignored rural masses.. whether its playing it right or wrong is something we have to wait and watch.

  2. while it worries me that you watch soaps at all... it must be noted that some fusion with the english language has been successful in the past years. some not so much, case in point .. "if you come today....". Well it is a success on youtube I suppose.

  3. well the fusion with the english language is extremely successfull right now with most popular chartbusters from india have that