The Power of Music
As a culture, we need to turn our gaze back to the source of creativity and not the hollow images fed to us by a rabidly toxic celebrity culture. We have to encourage artists and creators to collaborate and create timeless melodies and lyrics that inspire us for generations to come. Every generation has its own unique voice and perspective. We must create the space for those diverse voices to be heard. Music streaming can make that happen provided they are willing to fight the reductive bully that is the Bollywood music mafia.
A large onus of this lies with the audience who cannot be accepting of nursery rhymes or remixes as standard fare. Audiences need to question and reject artistes who lip sync too on the live stage.
Every artiste has an ally in technology, the internet and the social media to put out their own music, and build an audience base. One cannot just wait with bated breath for Bollywood to shine a light on you. India is vast and capable enough to spawn and have a music superstar in each mohalla. We have to stop looking towards Bollywood for all validation of talent.
New and upcoming artists deserves our attention and even in my short tenure as a judge on a national TV reality show where I met and decided to not only back and help connect a Dharavi rap group, ”M Town Breakers”, to a talent agency, and help them release an anthem with Ram Sampath and Virat Kohli, but did so with several other contestants whom I believed deserved attention.
We cannot wash our hands off playing a role in nurturing future talent and giving back to where we have gotten so much from.
Most importantly we have to remember that the music of India is truly a treasure house of great depth and width. We have so many genres of music that deserve attention, and not just film music. The film music scene is actually the stinky swamp in the garden of music which includes bhajans, ghazals, classical, folk, pop, sufi, qawwali, desi hip-hop and so many other genres.
Why is it that the audience and the entire eco-system including radio and media treat non-film music like it is inferior music? There seems to be caste system in play and that is sad. Good music and artistes should be encouraged and celebrated, no matter where it is source is.
As a society and culture we stand to benefit aesthetically and even grow the size of the music industry turnover by manyfolds if we looked beyond Bollywood.
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