Sunday, September 4, 2011

Music and the maestros

Yesterday was an evening par excellence and I can’t help raving about it, so please bear with me. We left from Defence Colony (after having a good snack) at about 6 so as to reach Talkatora in time. I had underestimated the crowd which would gather to listen to the two maestros of music – Ghulam Ali and Jagjit Singh and thus freaked out to see long endless rows of traffic. Thankfully, the traffic police persons managed and helped us reach the stadium on time. Once inside the auditorium, it was an overwhelming feeling of grandeur. The concert was to begin at 7 and till 7 30 it hadn’t started, I was getting impatient but then a look around the theatre and I felt a small being who would rather wait than fret.

Soon after, arrived the great ghazal singer Ghulam Ali. He had an instant way with the audience, a line here and there to connect, he sang what he liked and he sang what the audience wanted. He had such an artistic way of singing that I listened with awe. He would slightly tweak the tune, he would give variations to his baritone, and he would even explain the Urdu words so that the meaning of Ghazal is conveyed in a succinct manner. It was as if he had taken the entire audience in another world, a world of Shers, Raagas, Ghazals and Nazams. After a little over an hour, he stopped to pave the way for the undisputed king of Ghazals - Jagjit Singh. But before he stopped, his last rendition – “Chupke chupke raat din” was given a standing ovation and my heart leapt with joy as it is one of my all time favourites.

Jagjit Singh entered amidst a roaring applause. There was pin drop silence thereafter, in the crowd, as we were just too eager to hear him sing. He started casually adjusting the mike and the sounds with one of his great numbers – “Hosh walon ko khabar kya”. It was pure magic and I was enraptured by his silk voice. As he kept singing, I was losing myself in thoughts, in music, in the words which were beautifully crafted in each Ghazal. The more I think the more I feel incapacitated to write about the greatness of his music. It was sheer joy in the auditorium when one after the other, the audience figured out that the Ghazals, being sung were soulful to the core. When he sang the legendary “Kal chaudhvi ki raat thi” the applause just won’t die down. I too clapped with all the energy and my heart smiled with content. I quietly slipped out then as it had gotten late and I had to rush home. The way back, I played the same Ghazals and hummed all the while. After this phenomenal experience, I have decided to send mommy daddy to the next Jagjit Singh concert in Delhi. :)

It would be unfair if I end this post without mentioning the two people who technically were the support for Jagjit Singh, but were doing a fanatbulous job at the Tabla and flute. Also, thanks to this concert I saw on stage my favourite RJ - Nitin and I wohoooooooooooooed for him as loudly as I could!

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