Aakash amay bhorlo – আকাশ আমায় ভরলো আলোয়

This was a long pending musical day out for two friends. We took our cameras and left home early in the morning for unknown destination. The idea was to capture some outdoor shots. You have already seen an outcome of this trip with my harmonica in “Chhaya ghonaichhe bone bone” last week. This is the second one.

While travelling, Avra was singing, and I was filming him from various angles in a hand held camera. The interesting fact in this, is recording of the voice track. This sound track was recorded after the visuals were shot. We had to follow the ‘lip movements’ and the ‘tempo’ of the informal singing while re-recording of the sound.

See, the way I am engrossed with the song and its editing, I have started talking about it. Wait, let me introduce Avra first.

Avra Ghosh. I know him for fifteen years now. I remember the day he came to my home for the first time. I did not know him before, and the vice versa. Though we had common interests, we used to attend same musical concerts, even we had performed on the same stage before… but all unknowingly. We re-discovered these facts after we became friends.

If you watch this video, you will come to know that Avra has a wonderful voice to sing. Avra used to compose and sing Bengali songs. Amitava Mitra, a powerful poet, another friend of us, who used to write lyrics for him. Sometimes Avra himself used to write lyrics for his songs. Avra plays Keyboards as well.

At the same time [but the place was different], besides playing the Harmonica, I used to write lo-o-o-ng ballads, put them on tunes and write notations of the same. I can’t sing, so writing the notation was the only way to me to express myself [sounds bizarre, but it was like that]. The lyrics and tunes used to be weird I must say. But nevertheless those were my naive yet serious attempts.

Avra heard from Swarnendu [who was a common friend in between us.], that there is a guy called Sumanta, who plays the Harmonica, write and compose songs. So he felt an urge to meet me. And after a ‘one and a half hour’ effort to find out my place, he arrived one evening. This is my friend.

The very next day I went to his place, and heard some compositions created by him. And we decided to work together.

Now, fifteen years have gone by. Don’t know how many songs we have jointly created so far. We have never counted them. But if we do, the number will reach five-six hundred at ease. We lost many of our creations as well. Because, once a song is created we prefer to forget the same [we have got no parallel in this!], and start thinking for the one which is yet to be written/composed. It is sheer the joy of creation and the joy of musical sharing, what we work for. We shared the stage for a number of times to perform new Bengali songs created by us.

Now, fifteen long years have gone by. A lot of things have changed and still changing… Kabir Suman sung: The streets of my Calcutta, faces old and new… here the changing time, there the silent few…

So… this was a long pending musical day out for two old friends. I just realised, that both of us, the two song maker friends, have celebrated their long pending day out with no composition of themselves… Rabindranath came in-between. But we didn’t even call him!

The tune of ‘Chhaya ghonaichhe bone bone’ came out from my harmonica and ‘Aakash amay bhorlo aloy’ from Avra’s voice. I am wondering how strangely the dialectics of ‘Chhaya’ [shadow] and ‘Alo’ [light] came unknowingly and spoke each other…

Was it about fifteen long years, or Rabindranath himself is a dialectical thought to these two old song maker friends?

Don’t know. But this was the tale of me, Avra, Rabindranath and our day out.

Sumanta Basu
July 24, 2011
Dum Dum Cantonment

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