Sliding into my uncle's room and opening up his jammed drawers of cigarette packets, I grabbed his cassette collections. This moment was my entry ticket to the world of English songs.
When my dad comments, you will never know the value of old Hindi songs, I tell him the late 90s are mine.
Till today, when nostalgia hits, it has always been my old playlist that gets played. It makes my day delightful and ends well with a good sleep. But when you look at me to know more about my music interest. You will end up bored because I listen to songs rarely. Once in two weeks or once in a month when the wave knocks on my door. I am still learning about the new songs that are on the market. So when someone asks me for song suggestions, I tell them, "I am not the right person. "
Growing up with my cousins, I heard terrific songs by Backstreet Boys, Britney Spears, Nirvana, etc. It is with them that I have listened to so many collections. A few words, and I would dance to the whole song as if the world revolves around me. Oh my god, how we used to scream, sing, and dance to the drums of "They don't really care about us" by Michael Jackson and "Barbie" by Aqua. I was not at an age to understand its deep meaning or know the lyrics entirely. But celebrating the music by swaying and dancing to its beats. Pure happiness is what I call that phase.
Gracely growing into the beauty of life, every song made sense, as if the lyrics expressed what I couldn't say, uplifting my feelings and emotions.
And when I felt stranded, it was "Words" by Boyzone, which put me on track with an everlasting smile. The simplicity in those lines and the depths are indescribable.
With a smile, entering into the rebel phase, the whole day would drain out by fighting with my mom about topics that didn't make sense to me then, but maybe now I would have agreed.
And "Innocence" by Avril Lavigne carried out the brilliance of it. This song showed me the confidence to fall in love with every moment and preserve its beauty.
The beauty of love I found though I knew somewhere in my heart that this would not work. Yet, "Show me the meaning of being lonely" by Backstreet Boys was in infinite mode. I sang with all my heart, soothing myself to acknowledge the truth, the loneliness.
And "Stand by Me" by Shayne Ward paved the way to find strength in pain, to hold on, and have faith.
An urge to run away from all existence. "Runaway" by The Corrs puts me down to the ground to fall in love and find love.
With the world out there to be explored, "Beautiful Soul" by Jesse Mccartney offered me fun, joy,
Taio Cruz's "Dynamite," days of partying,
Guy Sebabastin's "Like it like that, and " Iyaz "Replay".
I still wonder how I landed on these songs, as they bring me good feelings and make me feel lightweight. All these were easygoing, entirely set to gather a glass of wine for the day.
But as the saying goes, " Not everything in life is black and white."
A drive with my cousin, and I got introduced to Simple Plan. "Welcome to my life," "I'm just a kid," and "Perfect" took my breath away when I listened for the first time. I would sing these songs having an imaginary friend on the other side to hear me out. Unburdened my heart because everything just hit the right chord. Hmmm... the phases of life
It is by accident that I come across new songs, and if it feels good, I go and do a search on youtube. One such event was "Shallow" by Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper. Beautifully igniting a conversation within, "Are you happy in this modern world."
Nothing great to talk about my compact list, and it doesn't upset me because I am happy with the space and pace as I move. Being alone in my cozy room and dancing to the songs brings me immense happiness and tears; This place is where I am naked.
Priorities keep changing in life. "A little love" by Bryan Adams was suddenly on my hit list. The sudden overpowering love on hearing the news of a new member on the way felt unreal and selfish. So my go-to became "A little love." and "A thousand years" by Christina Perri. Somewhere it gave me comfort and hope, taking me away from the undesirable noises.
Yet life kept moving, and time, running out. Finally, I landed on "7 Years" by Lukas Graham. Narrating the whole life reminded me to travel back and bring emotions that traveled along. Be it good memories or a guilt trip, it always ends with the hope that all is well.
Sometimes it's the instrument, and sometimes the song itself, and most of the time, the lyrics hit me hard. I was falling in love with the verses. But, then, traveling deep down the throat, I choke to realize maybe it's the soul's cry.
And "Aaj jaane ki zid na karo" (transl.-do not insist upon leaving today) by - Shunker Tucker ft. Rohini Ravada's version is my all-time favorite(Originally a Pakistani ghazal by Farida Khannum). This song keeps humming in my head, mind, and body.
And before I start to sing with an imaginary mic, I deliver a dedication speech "I would love to dedicate this song to my dad..."