Monday, September 05, 2005

Rock On!

In India, we are told authorities are now suspicious of rock music.

In America, where too rock was once seen as the shadow of satan, the times they are a-changin'.

See here, an uber-conservative New York Times columnist reprising Mick Jagger's hip-shaking to describe our own low dishonest decade of confidence-shaking:

Rats on the West Side, bedbugs uptown/What a mess! This town's in tatters/I've been shattered

Rock is the language of the hopeful young contending with their frequently hopeless world. No wonder it found voice first in America -- then rippled like a tsunami surge through our bone dry unreforming cultures.

Our high priests in commanding heights may not get this, but our people do. You know why Indians loved the roguish Bill Clinton so much? He was rock n' roll in flesh, Elvis himself in the White House.

Sometimes one wonders what is the real sound of our own Indian experience? Plagiarized tunes & forced fusion don't cut it, nor do our fossil beats inherited over generations like hand-me-downs.

Not only do we not create much new culture these days, we're now seemingly not even allowed second-hand emotions from other people's song. If we were the creating kind, our hopeful young might have contended with this hopeless situation kinda' like Dylan:

Come mothers and fathers
Throughout the land
And don't criticize
What you can't understand
Your sons and your daughters
Are beyond your command
Your old road is
Rapidly agin'.
Please get out of the new one
If you can't lend your hand
For the times they are a-changin'.

2 comments:

Gameboys said...

Plagiarized tunes & forced fusion don't cut it, nor do our fossil beats inherited over generations like hand-me-downs.

- Beautifully put! For such a tolerant culture, I think there is a lot of prejudice about western music, especially of the popular kind in India. There is this notion that somehow contemporary bollywood/film music is more representative of 'our culture' when so much of it is inspired by pop/rock and is plain crap.
- Nanda Kishore

Primary Red said...

Thanks!!

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