Archive for the ‘World of Music’ Category
Thanks to my priest-musician friend Joaquim Loiola Pereira, I got a copy of of Saudades do Nandinho just this evening. Have been tuned into it for the last hundred minutes or so… and did it bring back memories!
The Sixties were a strange time in Goa. My folks had returned home (from Brazil) just then. But they soon realised that “their home” they had returned to, was a confusing and fast-changing place. Jobs were scarce. Electricity was still to reach the villages, including ours! Bizarre things (since these were then, still, largely uncomprehensible) were happening on the political front. It was in those times that Nandinho grew up.
He passed away, untimely and in his early fifties in July 2007. In between, he was one of the powerful voices (and strummers… and more) of a generation. A generation born in Portuguese Goa, who saw ‘their’ language being eroded before their eyes, and then rebuilt in a museumised way when tourism grew here and needed an experience of The Exotic after the 1980s.
A year later after his death, a collection of his MP3s were put together. I didn’t know Nandinho Lobato de Faria in real-life. But one had heard his name a great deal.
A search in cyberspace yields hardly any hits. This one, an obituary mention, is from Joel de Souza’s Newsclips of 2007 July:
Matildes (also the sister of the late student-activist Cyril Pacheco, another friend, who died untimely due to malaria), put together this set of MP3s. It has some 36 numbers, 19 solos and the rest with the bands he performed with) was keen to pay some kind of tribute to him. I think it’s a very nice idea. If only if it could be heard by more people who listened to Nandinho in real life. Cyberspace could help!
To put it together, she apparently collated the music from a range of places. So, some recordings show it. It’s a kind of rough-cut (but very nostalgic) recording of Nandinho’s music. You can hear instructions being shouted across to the band sometimes, which, I think, lends to the authenticity.
The solo numbers include: Todo Acabou, Jambalahiah (instrumental), Delailah, Rosa Rosita, Disco Voador, La Bamba, Last Thing On My Mind, Maezinha, Manha de Carnival, Portuguese Medley, Minha Terra, Kangassera, Nao Precisa Brigar, Quem Disse Quem Nao, San Joao, Saudades, Black Is Black and two other numbers.
With the bands, Nandinho is part of the performances for Anoche, Autumn Leaves, Blue Spanish Eyes (a song that unfailingly reminds me of my late mum’s singing with her school-mate Marjorie Aguiar accompanying on the piano, on All India Radio), Cavalo, Carribbean Medley, Hava-na-gila, Just Say I Love Her, Love Story, Manha de Carnaval, Maria Isabel, Cavalo, Mustaffa, Quando Quando Quando, Mando, That’s a Song I’d Like to Sing, Maria Isabel and Hava na gila.
It took me back to the 1960s… confusing times in Goa, specially for its Catholic population, caught in a change it was only too ill-equipped to cope with. Lovely bitter-sweet memories, as Nandinho sings those songs (which continued for some more decades, and probably in a smaller way, now too, in the Latin Quarter of Panjim, where Nandinho’s home was close to where the Herald publishes from in recent years).
Goa Guitar Guild is a network run by Rui Lobo and friends. Rui recently passed on a copy of the recordings from their GGG International Musik Fest. Held earlier in 2008 (March), it was described as “an Indo-German confluence” and included the performances of the Goa State Symphony Orchestra. The latter was conducted by Prof. Ulf Klausenitzer and showcased soloist from Goa, the young and talented Sanya Myla Cotta.
You’ll find some recordings of the event on my youtube page, http://www.youtube.com/user/fredericknoronha
Another cd contains recordings of the David Menezes National Violin Competition 2008, also held at Goa around the same time.
For some music by the IIT-engineer-turned-guitarist Rui Lobo, take a look here:
My comp’s desktop is a mess currently. So many tools open, trying to do so many jobs… at the same time… but there’s a reason for it…. There’s the Xsane scanning software opened. Two browsers (Firefox and Flock aka The Social Browser. The latter is something that makes blogging a very easy task). There’s Sound Juicer, the music-playing software of my GNU/Linux Ubuntu distro. And the usual other things… Evolution for email, a Nautilus file-browser, another Wikipedia page, a dozen or so bookmarked to read via Whizz RSS the intersting Inter-Press Service stories coming in from the region I still unrepentingly prefer to refer to as the Third World.
Information-clutter, here we come!
That’s at one level. At another level, it’s very exciting to hear the unexpected sounds emerging from Colin ‘Bassman’ D’Cruz‘s The Brown Indian Band: Fusion Lounge. Got tempted trying it out, then got immediately inspired to scan the image, and blog it instantly… without delaying for another day. On a relaxed Sunday afternoon, it’s some mellifluous sounds emerging from the speakers of my GNU/Linux-driven comp. The sitar mixes with the guitar, almost flawlessly. There’s the tabla too. And much more that misses my untrained ear. East meets West, as interpreted through the eyes of a hard-core Goan (even if Colin and his many groups haven’t got the deserved respect from the home-state of their origins).
Colin is a great guy, a nice musician (maybe these ajectives should be reversed…) The number of bands he permuted and combined in his career took him to the (now Coke-owned) Limca Book of Indian records –he’s been part of five to six dozen bands when one last read.
Now, it’s a fusion venture. (It was a pleasure to encounter his last experiment, decked in Latino flavours and called (Obligato), quite some years back, when I was writing for the Herald). This time around, with names like Bhupali Blues, Bhairavi Bounce, Chandra Funk and Todi Trip… Colin gives us his new serving. This guy never gives up. More than that, he knows how to keep striving to make his work visible. Including online. As an independent — musician, journalist, or whatever… — that isn’t always easy. Thanks Colin for keeping me informed about your ventures, for sending me updates… and apologies for the looooong delay in taking note of it! Here’s wishing you well.
Blogged with Flock
Colin D’Cruz is a musician one ran into by accident. It stemmed out of a review of a Limca Book of Indian Records, and an error while mentioning his background. Colin got in touch, and that led to some more stories. Including one about this interesting Latino-Goan band called Obligato, of which I just managed to find a cached story.
[File photo alongside shows Colin, second from right, along with Julius (extreme right, on keyboards), and visiting British Salsa dancers appreciating music of Obligato.]
Recently, Colin shared with me his views on the Goan music scene. As a man who has travelled and played far and wide (including trying to make Goa his home-to-return-to), he should know.
Colin believes that the Goan musician really needs a better deal. (S)he has been
getting a raw deal from event organisers for years now. I experienced this mself when I was part of the live music scene there. Event organisers in Goa will go out of their way to bring in an outstation band, paying them ten times what their Goan conterparts are paid just to boast about a band from Mumbai or Shillong or Timbaktoo or where ever. One may argue that current Goan bands do not measure up to the outstation bands and how would they? Where is the incentive for a local band to put up a good act when they are paid Rs. 2000 while the outstation band is paid Rs. 20,000 to perform at the same event? It’s high time organisers in Goa learnt to boast about talent from Goa….
Colin uses harsh words, but not strong enough, to talk about the “pathetic situation right now for musicians in Goa”.
He adds: On my part I am setting up a state of the art recording studio in Sangolda and I will record upcoming talent in Goa for free, producing their demos or even albums in deserving cases.”
Colin has a point here. Let’s hope he can attain his dreams and vision. And if it indeed turns out to a useful venture, it would need support. Are you there?