Feb 25, 2009

Daddy’s WindSong Wednesdays’ experience – Noise Market blog post

Noise market had a marquee gig at il terrazzo, del italia. It was an important step forward for us, we thought as it was one of the first times that we got to play in front of an intelligent, musically literate audience. Amongst the friends that I blog about Dr. R. and Dr. J came.  The gora from the Gora for a dinner/movie combo also turned up with his date. Love you guys and thanks for the support! To read the entire gig review, please click here.

Feb 23, 2009

Radio One interview/performance

Another post from the Noise Market blog. This one also gives you a chance for you to listen to Noise Market. Check us out here!

Feb 7, 2009

Procrastination

When Vinokur came to visit me in India, we already had blue-prints for plans to live with each other for the rest of our lives in Mumbai. Despite his obvious health problems, which we hoped would get better, we decided to invest in a few things - a new desk for his computer, a new monitor, a printer etc.

Sadly, things didn’t pan out the way they should have and I found myself with such accessories after he left for NYC. Out of these, I could immediately use the monitor (we had bought a fantastic, big LCD one) and the desk for my personal use. Somehow, the printer was still kept in the box. It’s still in the box. I dare not take it out.

The reason for my hesitation is multifold. First of all, I am hopeful that sooner than later my living conditions will improve to a standard when I won’t need to worry about dust accumulating everywhere. Lame excuse, I know. But even more intimidating is the prospect of it not working properly and I needing to invest some money to make the necessary changes for it to work.

I know it would be wonderful to have a working printer on my computer. I could make printouts of lyrics and other things as and when I want to. But how can I knowingly add another variable to my life which is already struggling to balance itself on the loosest of tightropes?

Similarly, another problem lay packed in a box - my brand new, big, bass amplifier. The reason for its hibernation is weirder. It was originally intended to be our practice-place amplifier when we had the dream of having a decent jamming pad arranged by our record label. That, obviously, didn’t work out. Instead we are practicing at E-boi’s apartment these days.

That, my friends, is something close to the present day Afghanistan. It’s a fucking mess. It’s a disaster waiting to happen. There are electrical shortcircuits, leaks from the overhead tank, flooding of the apartment due to faucets left open, and the possibility of pan-spit/food/beverage soakage at any given time. I can’t possibly keep my new amp there and hope to have a good night’s sleep.

But what’s keeping me from using it at my apartment? I don’t want to let it get dusty and dirty. I want to be able to be in a position where I could guarantee that I can take care of it properly. And, until then, such things will be kept in their boxes. At least I feel more comfortable that way.

Feb 6, 2009

The postponement of the job

I was supposed to start my new ‘desk-job’ on the 2nd of this month. I got a call from the firm where I’m going to be working in the last week of January informing me that they are not recruiting freshers until mid-February as they want to get a few others as a ‘batch’. More efficient training, you see. My immediate reaction was normal.

A conversation with my sister this evening added some suspicion to this new development. She was wondering if they would finally end up saying that they are not hiring any more personnel citing the recession as the reason. After the conversation, even I started wondering if there was something more than just an inefficient training situation.

But it has given me the ‘breathing space’ that I required. Now that the third active band has also surfaced, I was struggling to find time to incorporate another set of songs to my set-lists of songs to play. Besides, I needed more time to run around for certificates. Thinking positively about unexpected developments in life is a good way to deal with the ordeal. I guess!

Feb 5, 2009

Mobile Internet craze

My ISP has been shitty lately. I haven’t had ‘real’ Internet for over a week now. This post, when I’m typing it, is pre-dated and is being posted over ‘real’ Internet of course. Otherwise, the paucity of the updates to the blog can be attributed to the ISP situation.

The faithful readers of my blog might remember some of the tales about mice infestation in my building. This is one more anecdote. Eat this! I’m not getting Internet because mice have chewed away parts of the internet data cable on top of my building. The technicians from my ISP weren’t aware of the magnitude of the problem until yesterday. Now, they are trying to find the extent of the damage so that they can plan on relaying the cables. Incredible, isn’t it? I’m talking in 2009 from Mumbai!

During such outages, because I have GPRS and also because I’m a bit of an Internet addict, I manage to carry out most of my tasks on my PDA. Because I’m the internet PR person for the bands that I play with, and because the other band members are kinda lazy, I end up needing to do it a lot. Obviously, I can’t say to someone that I didn’t read their e-mail for ‘n’ number of days because I didn’t have internet. That, in this age of advanced of communications, is unacceptable.

Ironically, it’s more fun to do the social networking thing (and by that term I refer to FaceBook and only FaceBook) on the phone. The designers of FaceBook know perfectly well that is the case and they seem to be developing even more features for mobile phone users. At the same time, Orkut  (despite it’s wonderful affiliations with Google, it doesn’t even load properly on mobile phone browsers like Opera mini) is dying. Apart from social networking and e-mail, when you also have the wonderful option of using Wikipedia and Google Maps on your phone, it’s very tempting to overuse/abuse it!

The only problem though, is the price that  I have to pay for my Vodafone bill!

Feb 4, 2009

The Daddy's WindSong Wednesday's experience

I wrote about the entire experience on the Noise Market blog and you can read it by clicking here. Having said that, I must admit that I couldn't have been myself because I was writing on behalf of the entire band. So here's the juicy bit.

This was, by far, the first experience of being a rock-star in a Page 3 gig. People from the music industry, film industry, VJs, ex-VJs, actors, former Miss Indias etc and we played in front of them. Even better, they loved it! The only regret - I wished I was having someone to be with as a date. There were a few hot, hot men in there too! But then, I was out on a professional assignment and I couldn't really grab anyones balls!

If you are wondering about the title which happens to be the name of the event we played for, think no further. This is the ultimate proof of the power of mature-er men over all cross-sections of the society. This post, and practically the entire blog, has been dedicated to this Daddy, who happens to be red hot, for his amazing balls... for coming out with the concept of the event. Okay, okay! Not just that! But still!

Don't take everything literally folks!

Feb 3, 2009

Gora for a dinner-movie combo

Earlier in the morning, I had found myself getting up late in the morning and thereby screwing up the day, and I decided that today I was going to end up doing something other than just stay at home. Since Mr. Bach had left, I haven't gotten around to meeting someone for a date etc mainly because of my own nerdy nature. Amongst the few people that I was 'supposed to meet', I decided to spend the evening with a someone who I find very funny and interesting. Funny, he happens to be a Gora too - and an American at that.

We decided to meet up for dinner and a movie at the magnificent Oberoi mall at Goregaon. We met at Crossword where he was shopping for the real version of Bhandarkar's frivolously popular work. The moment I saw him, I realized how Michael Stipe's looks have been plagarized by this body-face-double! Ergo, I'm going to refer to him as Stipe. So, Stipe and I went to the food court and over the most cliched of american fast food, ended up knowing about each other - I got to know more about him incidentally, because I sort was able to shut my mouth longer than what was expected - okay, the Sub did occupy my mouthspace long enough.

Funny to note that he had predicted the impending recession a year or so before it happened and had wanted to move away from some place which is as 'demanding' as the US to some place which has the vibrancy and character and spirituality as India, errr... Mumbai. He's now working here indulging in part time gigs in the movie industry and enjoying himself thorougly. The bizarre thing that we ended up doing was to sprawl up on a red-leather-upholstered couch kinda thing intended for kids orginally like lovers - staring into each others eyes while pretending to have an intimate conversation. That caught the decidedly homophobic and homo-unaware public by surpise which, I thought, was funny and wicked.

We wound the day up watching Bedtime Stories which was very entertaining to me - having gotten tired of watching lame slap-stick comedy on sitcoms meant for television lately. Adam Sandler and co did manage to charm us. On the way out of the mall, we were swarmed by a dozen or so rick drivers who were sure that we would end up paying more for the ride back home because of the gora-dom lurking in the shadows. But that obviously didn't happen. We took our own ricks back home and just paid what we were supposed to.

The curious thing of this entire exercise, as validated by the man himself, is that Gora-dom, or even better, Goritude, takes you places. He was greeted with polite responses from ushers, friskers, waiters and whom not - just because he's gora. He also gets this thing everywhere he goes and everything he does. For example, all the unsuspecting (yet hot [for him]) young Marathi bois in the city would love to sleep with him - just because he's a gora.

I don't want to take any credit away from Stipe. In fact, I want to give him some extra. Here's a guy who's talented, funny, intelligent and good looking. But he also is street-smart. He has learned enough hindi to get around. It makes me happy to know that there are goras out there who blend into India, who can work their in-built charm here without totally selling out and acting like jack asses. And it makes me happy that I have gained a friend during this exercise. Oh, and I think I managed to shake off tendency I have been having to make out/make love with a person on the first date.

(PS: Stipe has blogged about the same encounter. But due to his privacy issues, I can't link it up. I thank him for those wonderful adjectives that he used for me!)

Feb 2, 2009

The shoe-lace incident

I don’t know how I forgot to mention it in the post about the play. But I’m glad that I did. I can elaborate now. And I think it needs elaboration. It happened during the interval of the play. I was out at the cafeteria with my a group of my friends sipping coffee. My left shoe’s laces were undone.

I don’t remember exactly how they were undone but the point is that they were. I was perfectly aware of the state of my laces and didn’t want to tie them up before I had my coffee and snacks because I wasn’t sure of finding a place where I could wash my hands. I think that is a sufficient explanation for not tying the laces.

A distinguished looking, middle aged woman in an elegant saree walked up to us and said with an attitude of arrogance and superiority.

‘Excuse me BOY, perhaps you have failed to notice that your shoelaces are undone. I suggest that perhaps you should learn to tie them which will help you avoid falling on your face.’

Enraged by her attitude and tone, without missing a beat, I replied with a smirk

‘Ma’am, I’m a fully-grown adult man and during my 29 years of age I have learnt enough to avoid such mishaps. I appreciate you pointing it out, but really, I CAN take care of myself. Thank you.’

She didn’t like it one bit and left to join her group of friends. My friends were offended by my tone and sarcasm. They thought that she was being ‘kind’ and ‘nice’ and I was being ‘rude’ and ‘offensive’. Give me a fucken break! What do you think? Had you been in her place, would you come up to me and say what she said in the way she did? I think I was perfectly right in returning the sarcasm to her without giving her age or gender a consideration.

On second thought, I think my friends weren’t used to the kind of sarcasm that I’m familiar with. I watch a lot of ‘Will & Grace’ where sarcasm bounces off the pachydermic characters like a tennis ball off a racket. Am I too much into sitcoms?

Feb 1, 2009

A gig with the new band

Today, at a college in the city, was my first gig with the new band ‘Flood’. I don’t know what happened but everything seemed to go wrong. From the moment we took the stage, to the moment we were almost ‘booed’ out by the crowd, it was a disaster. The only two people who were having fun in the entire arena seemed to be myself and our drummer. That was primarily because we were good at laughing at ourselves.

Technical issues like bad sound were one of the reasons, but we have to blame ourselves for the performance. We, as a band, aren’t good enough. Each of us might have had a lot of experience playing live music but we sucked tonight. I wasn’t surprised the result of it all considering how the rehearsals had gone. The only consolation to me was that I didn’t feel bad about playing with a pathetic sounding band. That’s a professional step forward.

The audience included my bass guitar student and the members of his band who had opened for us. When I asked them about their opinion, they were very polite in saying that it was ‘okay’ and stuff. The truth came out clear after our curtailed performance when the band which had won the ‘band competition’ came back and played a few tight numbers. The crowd was back – well, what was left of it after our performance - and were dancing!

For those who are musicians or aspiring musicians – here’s the bottom line. Never go to a gig without rehearsing. Even if you rehearse to perfection, things can go wrong in a gig. But if you don’t rehearse at all, there is a 100% chance that they WILL go wrong.