>> Saturday, June 1, 2013
Why this exclusivity? Well Altaf raja’s music is an acquired taste, its not meant for people with weaker heart and are into low IQ music, because it needs refined taste to understand the musical genius of Altaf Raja.
Though we can discuss almost every great song by the maestro, but it will be unfair because its Tum Toh Thehre Pardesi or T3P (a term coined by our very own Abhay Chauhan) is something that’s still afresh in collective consciousness. After all T3P is the Seed of Great Music:
Music begins from T3P and it ends there - the song is like a complete circle - an entwined yin and yang of music, an ocean of inspiration for generations of musicians. Can you believe they just took a drop from the ocean that T3P is and created one of the most successful songs of our time?
Mulahija Farmaaiye -
Sounds familiar, now try this -
This is the beauty of Altaf Bhai's music, he envisages a world without boundaries and its so universal, that you put any visuals over his song and the visuals would fit the song to a T, take for an example this video from Gulzar's overrated album Sunset Point, which suits Tum Toh Thehre Pardesi more than the original obscure song - Aasmani Rang it was supposedly shot for. Check Out (Stats say its recall value is 1:299 as compared to T3P) -
Aasmani Rang hère -
(Personal confession: Thanks to this fan made T3P video and its accuracy to Altaf Bhai's poignant voice, for a long time I used to think it was Altaf Bhai, who gave break to Chitrangada Singh and Sanjay Suri, the realization came in late and it was heartbreaking, imaan se).
The Repeat Value - The song definitely has its repeat value, its so Repeat-able that every single line is repeated several times in the song itself.
Also, ALA John Lenon's Imagine T3P is a deeply political song and BJP realised its potential when they bought the rights and used it against a certain Pardesi National Leader during the Lok Sabha elections in 90s.
You can't really ignore the social aspect of the song as well. It oozes with the proud feeling of Being Swadeshi and IMHO this was the first time entire India, (which is otherwise blinded with Phoren ka maal and imported items) teemed with the proud feeling of being an Indian, a Swadesi and looked at Pardesi with a contempt. I think this disdain towards Pardesi is second only to the Swadesi Movement of the 1905.
Not only social and political context, but Altaf Bhai and his awesome music touches every aspect and emotion ever conceived by the humanity. Have a look at his homage to the Gregorian Calendar with power-packed lyrics like -
Jab Tumse Itefaakan meri Nazar Mili Thi
ab Yaad Aa Raha Hain shayad Woh Janwary Thi
Tum Yu Mili Dubara phir Maahe Farwary Mein
Jaise Ke Hamsafar Ho tum Raahein Zindagi Mein
Kitna Hasi Zamana, aaya Tha March Lekar
Raahein Wafa Pe Thi Tum waadon Ki Torch Lekar
and the song goes on till Altaf Bhai tries to make his lover understand the concept of Time Lapse, singing -
Lekin Yeh Kya Batau Ab Haal Dusra Hain
arey Woh Saal Dusra Tha Yeh Saal Dusra Hain
But having a keen interest in UFOs and Alien Abduction I strongly believe it can also be an ode to the Missing Time theory as well. At times I feel this song is so deep and has such Robert Langdon-isque mysterious subtexts to it, that I am sure some hack paperback scribe would see the hidden potential here and write a novel - The Raja Code.
And mind you, we are just talking about one Altaf Raja song here, the album itself is full of gems like - Dono Hi Mohabbat Ke Jazbaat Mein Jalte Hain, in which Altaf Bhai tries to create an awareness about the deadly effects of somnambulism with lines like - Chhat Par Na Sula Dena, Hum Neend Mein Chalte Hain (Don't make me sleep on the terrace, I sleepwalk). But Altaf Bhai never stoop down to market himself as a social messiah unlike a certain Perfectionist Filmmaker who made a film that tried to create an awareness about Dyslexia.
I can go on and on and discuss his music and how it changed lives, but word-count naam ki bhi koi cheez hoti hai, so I think I should stop here.