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Archive for the ‘N Things’ Category

Here’s my 6th set of recommendations:

Battle of Evermore: Led Zeppelin

The song is reminiscent of the Tolkien brand of portrayal. The song, interestingly, also mentions Sauron, the greatest enemy of the middle-earth people. Also worth a mention is the line ‘Bring it back’ which may be interpreted as a call to recall your past.

Lemon Tree: Fool’s Garden

This is an English song by the German band. The opening lines – “I’m sitting here in the boring room,It’s just another rainy Sunday afternoon” reminds those innumerable Sundays when you had absolutely nothing to do. The lyrics is simple and hence easy to be remembered by bathroom-singers.

Wind of Change: Scorpions

The song celebrates change – beginning of the fall of USSR, and end of Cold War era. The opening lines mention Moskva (a river in Moscow) and Gorky Park – a pointer to the effect Moscow tour had on the band.

Take it Easy: Eagles

It was the band’s first and immensely popular song. The popularity can be gauged by the fact that there is a park in Arizona by the name – Standin’ on the Corner (a phrase in the song) . The park has an interesting history. You may read it here.

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Song Recommendation: 5

Song Recommendations are back, after a hiatus. And here’re the songs you must listen to:

  • You know you’re right – Nirvana
    • It is the last released song of the band. The death of Kurt Cobain put the ownership of the song in jeopardy, sparking a tussle between his widow and his bandmates. The song was finally realsed 8 years after its recording.
  • Lay down Sally – Eric Clapton
    • Eric asks the girl not to ‘leave so soon’, rather ‘rest in’ his arms. A sweet song that reminds you of late 60s music in Hindi cinema as well (remember those Shammi Kapoor, Joy Mukherjee, Shashi Kappor songs ?). Oh BTW, the song’s title is grammatically incorrect.
  • Lay Lady Lay – Bob Dylan
    • Its interesting how so many great songs aren’t recognised at the first instant. When Dylan submitted this song to a studio, it failed to make the cut with the director. Dylan released it as a single and it went on to become a great hit. If you listen the song carefully you would find a marked difference in Dylan’s voice, which he owed to his quitting smoking.
  • Glory Days – Bruce Springsteen
    • An achiever looks back at his ‘glory days’ in the song.
  • Crazy little thing called LOVE – Queen
    • The beauty of the song is – it was composed withinh 10 minutes. Also, you wouldn’t find too many songs that mention any name of its creators. This song does. Try to find out who is that.

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Song Recommendation: 4

Here’re this week’s recommendation:

  1. Tear You Apart : She Wants Revenge
    • The movie – The Number 23 – has this song in the background when Jim Carrey and a girl have sadist style sex. The lyric is violent and portrays the feelings of a guy for a girl he has a crush on but couldn’t get her. Most violent line is “I want to fucking tear you apart”. Juned recommended this song once.
  2. Take it Easy: Eagles
    • It was Eagles’ first single, released in 1972. A wonderful song, asking you not to get stressed.
  3. The Girl of my Best Friend; Elvis Presley
    • After his Army discharge, Elvis came with his album ‘Elvis is Back’, featuring this song. This is song about a guy who falls in love with his best friend’s girl. He cant take his eyes off her, and hence he dilemma. Again, thanks Juned  for the recommendation.
  4. Afterglow: INXS feat Sona
    • A song by Australian band INXS, it is a tribute to the late ex-lead singer of the band. This song has two versions – English and Indian. In the Indian version, there is some part in Hindi as well by Sona. Lyrics and music will touch that cord of your heart. You can find the video here. Thanks Sudeshna, for this link.
  5. Born to Run: Bruce Springsteen
    • It was Bruce’s third album and a smash hit. It is impossibly romantic hyperrealistic, where the mundane easily becomes fantastic. It touches the ideas of escape and abandon equally.

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Bong Connection

This isn’t any review about the movie of the same name or a review of ‘Interpreter of Maladies’. Neither is it my paean about how many intellectual names have Bong Connection. This is about my answers to the questions I encounter on a day-to-day on virtue of being perceived a BONG. Here we go:

  • Hey Kalyan, where did you school in Kolkata?
    • ISL, Jharia. And it isn’t in Kolkata but in Dhanbad, the coal depot of Jharkhand. This happens time and again, even after reminding these folks umpteenth time that I am born and brought up at Dhanbad and not Kolkata.
  • Oh you’re an IITian. So, how was life at Kharagpur?
    • Kindly refer to the start of the conversation. I didn’t graduate from IIT Kgp, but from IIT Roorkee. The very fact that I’m a Banerjee doesn’t make it imperative on my part to go to Kgp, dude(tte).
  • Don’t you miss fish?
    • I do, but not in the miserably way that you think. I haven’t had fish for straight 5 years, 4 in IIT Roorkee and 1 in Noida. Thank you, I’m doing just fine without fish.
  • Why don’t you smoke?
    • Is it mandatory by the Indian Constitution for every person whose mother tongue is Bengali should smoke? Is non-smoking by such an individual punishable by the court of law? The weird and funny part is, even my mom asks the same question.
  • Oh, you must sing/play tabla pretty well, right?
    • Wrong. My only tryst with tabla/triple had been way back in middle school when every guy was given 5 minutes of nirvana to try his hand at the coveted instrument by our Music Teacher Sujan Sir (Are you reading this, sir?).
  • How come you speak Hindi so very well?
    • Refer to the first question, dude(tte). A majority of my friends were and are Hindi speaking. In fact, I have very few people among my close pals who speak Bengali.
  • Left Party sucks. How come intellectuals like you support them?
    • Excuse me, when did I proclaim my support for the Red Party? Many of my surname-sakes are Red, but thats in Bengal. And I live at Bangalore.
  • It must suck, not being able to play Football?
    • My school football team selector thought the same thing. So, I got an wild card entry into class 7 football team. I haven’t played the game even at pada (Bengali for neighborhood) level and so was naturally reluctant to play. Selector assumed it to be mere modesty (After all, how can a Bengali not play football?) I was given a chance and the rest is history.

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Song recommendation: 3

  • Pink Cadillac – Bruce Springsteen
    • Composed in 1983, it was Springsteen’s second song on Cadillacs. The lyrics, when applied to ‘something other’ than cars, have some very different connotation. In 2001, AOL disallowed its users to use its lyrics since they were ‘too suggestive’. Judge it for yourself.

  • All the Young Dudes – Mott the Hoople
    • British Band, Mott the Hoople, was struggling until this song of theirs released. This made them overnight stars. Later, even Ozzy Osburne sung it in his album.

  • Thank You – Dido
    • If you have read “The Hitchhiker’s guide to galaxy”, you would be able to draw some parallels with this song. If you havent, dont worry. It doesnt take PhD in Modern English Literature to enjoy the song.

  • Baba o’reilly – The Who
    • A song about waste in general, but not being wasted. Originally written for an opera, this song became a part of an album when the opera itself was scrapped.

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5Songs of the Week : 2


In case you liked my last week’s recommendations, here’s my next installment:

  • Imagine – John Lennon
    • Released in 1971, it is regarded as one of the greatest songs of all times. The song tries to ‘imagine’ an Utopian country, i.e. where everything is perfect. Two years later, on April Fool’s Day, Lennon created a conceptual country: NUTOPIA. The song has achieved cult status now with it being referenced whenever there is talk of peace, or boundary-less nation.

  • Hey Jude – Beatles
    • When John Lennon divorced his wife Powell, their son Julian became vulnerable. Paul McCartney visited the mother son duo one evening and while driving back home, he wrote this song to console Julian. Julian Lennon, in 1996, brought the notes of the song at a whopping 25k pounds in an auction.

  • Let It Be – Beatles
    • Paul McCartney’s mother died of cancer. Once he had a dream about her,and later wrote the song. There are four version of the song (Single, Album, Anthology and Naked), each a superhit.

  • GoodBye Yellow Brick Road – Elton John
    • Released in 1973, it is touted as Elton’s masterpiece. It tells the story of a Young man who is too excited about the land of Hope. But the city exploits him and he takes “Yellow brick road” back home. Elton somehow relates himself to this Young Man’s story.

  • Candle in the Wind – Elton John
    • It was Elton’s tribute to Marilyn Monroe, whose original name was Norma Jean. Later, Elton sung it for the famous AIDS victim Ryan White, who was expelled from school because he had AIDS. White’s family waged a year long legal battle with the school system, and faced persecution at the hands of many members of the community. During the course of the struggle, White became a national celebrity and a spokesman for AIDS research. Elton again rededicated the remake version of this song to Princess Diana when she died. This remake was released as a single CD version. As of 2007, it is the world’s best-selling CD single in history.

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5 Songs for this Week

I’ve started listening one new song each working day in office. In the process, I have come across songs of variety of genres. You might have heard the songs that I am going to tell you about, but after reading this mail listen to it in a new context. You would love it. Here are my recommendation for the next week:

  • American Pie – Don McLean
    • An air-crash in USA in 1959 claimed 3 popular American Rock n Roll stars’ lives. John McLean called this ‘The Day the Music Died’ and dedicated this song to the trio. The song documents the changes in America starting that day to the day President Kennedy was assassinated. You can read more about the crash here. Oh yes, please don’t listen to the Madonna version. It kinda sucks.

  • Paint it Black – The Rolling Stones
    • Though released in 1966, this song has become very popular these days. It is now associated with Vietnam War and it also features in few video games. It’s French version also figured in 2006 flick Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby.

  • Piano Man – Billy Joel
    • Released in 1973, it was Joel’s first hit. After his first album flopped miserably, Billy Joel moved to LA. The song mentions his life as a singer at a hotel in LA.

  • Come Together – Beatles
    • Released in 1969, it was written by John Lennon. It relates to a campaign for one American Presidential election. It had its share of controversies. It became the center of a major Copyright Infringement Suit. Also, it mentioned ‘Coca Cola’ once, due to which it was banned at BBC. The song also has an Aerosmith Version.

  • Free Bird – Lyrnryd Skynryd
    • Released in 1973, this song has an interesting origin. Apparently, Allen Collins’ girlfriend asked him “If I leave here tomorrow would you still remember me?” . Allen used this as a line for his future song. “Free Bird” has become a popular cultural cliche, as Wikipedia describes it here.

Hope you like the recommendations.

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