What is a Raag or Raga? It is melody. It is a piece of music played using one or more instruments. But what makes a raag different from any other piece of music. It is the emotion associated with a particular raag. The feeling, the feeling that it renders is unique.
So this incident occurred yesterday, while I was driving to school in the morning. I usually listen to the desi radio, Hum Tum city. The lady RJ immediately recognized my voice when I called on the show to request a song. So we started talking for a few moments, and I just went with the flow, so it was decided that she would put on a song from the movie Swades, called “Yun hi chala chal raahi”. Then she suddenly asked me what song I originally wanted her to play, when I called on the show. I said I wanted to hear the melodious voice of Lata Mangeshkar singing “Lukka Chuppi” from the movie Rang De Basanti, as I was thinking of my Mother when I called on the show.
The video is available on Youtube. A little background of the song: a mother has lost her beloved son, who was a air-force pilot, to an unfortunate accident. Her son’s belongings are returned to her by two armed forces personnel at her residence. Seeing them in uniform reminds her of her son and she could not control her emotions. This song is an emotional dialogue between a Mother and her Son, who is now in his own world and does not want to come back, but the mother wants him to come back to her.
So the RJ, hung up after that and played my dedication to all mothers. And this was the point her voice started trembling due to her emotions. She started describing how she was very fond of her mother and loved her a lot. And how she would want her mother to be a part of her own life forever, knowing very well that that is an inevitable truth every one has to face some day. One could easily hear her voice breaking on the air as she could not control her emotions. This was a surprising ‘Morning Raag’. There was an air of emotion (pun?) about it, to which all the listeners could associate.
She somehow managed to pull herself back and continued on with the show.
After my song was played, another caller called in. The RJ could not even speak two lines with this guy. The only thing she asked him was “Which song do you want to hear Sir?” and the reply was “Main kabhi batlata nahi” from the movie “Taare zameen par”. Then the call hung up and the song was played. I could easily make out that the last caller was also very emotional at this point of time.
Half the song in, I had to stop as I had already reached my destination: the economy parking lot of my university. I gathered my stuff, still struggling to hold back the tear in the corner of my eye.
Thank God for the cloudy day. I braced myself for the mile-long walk ahead to my office.