Every Song has a Memory attached to it

Every song has a memory attached to it. When you hear an old song, it might remind you of a journey, a person or an event which had got attached to the song at the time you first heard it. One thread pricks the other in the brain, and the neurons work in their own way at times which result in ramblings. Yesterday morning, when the news channels started sharing the news of Manna De's demise, the neurons started aligning themselves in their own way. On the way to office, the car FM was playing some of the oldies in tribute of Manna De. They played "কফি হাউস এর সেই আড্ডা" (YouTube: Coffee Houser sei adda), possibly one of the most popular numbers of Manna De amongst Bengalis. It took me back to the last day of my engineering college, when all of us met at the hostel and sang this song together with our hoarse voices before venturing out for our other life. I have never been to Kolkata Coffee House, supposedly the citadel of Bong intellectuals. I don't connect to the lyrics either as they are a bit dated. I don't connect to the names mentioned in the song also - they sound quite alien. But the song still touches me due to that chorus of the last day at my engineering college, in the Summer of 2001.

Suman Chattopadhyay's "তোমাকে চাই" (YouTube: Tomake Chai) was released in 1992 and as wiki says, it redefined Bengali songs. When I heard it for the first time, I was 14 years old. It brought in the much needed boldness in bengali songs - it was a deviation from the way bengali songs were sung and also it changed the way bengalis expressed their love. Whenever the song plays again today in YouTube, it reminds me of my first crush who never knew possibly (what a miss ;) ). It reminds me of a Sanyo cassette player (just Googled now - Sanyo has stopped selling any kind of devices in India since last year) which was the only source of music at that time. It also reminds me of a concert by Suman at Nazrul Mancha, near the Lakes in South Kolkata in 1995, where me and my friend somehow managed to get hold of a pass to get into at the last moment.

During our childhood days, most of the music cassettes in our household used to be of Rabindra Sangeet collections. Being a bengali bhadralok family, it was customary not to play Hindi film music as they were supposed to be anti-cultural. A Mani Ratnam-AR Rahman movie (Roja) broke that monotony though. Rabindra Sangeets had its own share of monotonicity, stiffness along with the standard musical instruments. However out of those numerous Rabindra Sangeet collections, the one that still haunts me today is Kanika Bandyopadhyay’s "তবু মনে রেখ" (YouTube: Tobu mone rekho). It brings back memories of my father and so many other things. The song starts playing within me at the slightest pretext. I guess its not only the lyrics, but also the singer's rendition that helps realign the memory blocks in our brain circuitry in a certain way. 

Most likely music started blending with videos from mid 90s in India, when music videos started getting popular. And that was the time when songs stopped getting tagged with memories but with the videos.

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