Wednesday, 1 May 2013

What makes Bollywood Songs so popular ?

Bollywood songs are neither traditional classical music nor the best folk or Western form. They are not even a pure genre of music with any real tradition or accumulated perfection. Yet, they make one of the most popular musical forms of our time. Here is an explanation to this apparent paradox regarding the popularity of Bollywood music.
The popularity of Bollywood songs as an identifiable genre of music is unmatched in India and spread across the world. The classical music, the Western songs as well as the folk music are the three major varieties of music popular in India. Even though all these genres of music boast rich traditions, a lot of variety and many great and legendary artistes, some of whom have also contributed to Bollywood music, yet none of them comes anywhere close to the popularity drawn by Bollywood music.

Wednesday, 24 April 2013

The Song that Ushered in the Era of Classical Music in Bollywood


Classical Music is what gave Bollywood music its sustainability, popularity and greatness. It reached its zenith in the fifties, and continued till the early eighties even as composers experimented with various styles, fusions and orchestration and thereby innovated and developed new genres on its rich base. Interestingly, the song that can be credited as having this Era of Classical Music was sung by one, who never formally received a training in classical music ….

Origin of Songs & Music in Bollywood
Sound came to Bollywood in 1931 with Alam Ara. What followed soon after was a flood of songs and music. While Alam Ara had only seven songs, Shirheen Farhad, which was released a little later, had 42 of them. The cake, however, needs to go to Indra Sabha, which has 69 songs. The age of the musical arrived in Bollywood along with sound, and has stayed put ever since.

Sunday, 21 April 2013

Music is the Most Characteristic Feature of Hundred Years of Bollywood

As Bollywood completes hundred years of its existence this year, it is time to look back and see what brought the greatest character to this century long journey of evolution and success. Without a single doubt, it is the music of Bollywood that stands out as its single most important characterizing feature…

Foreigners often wonder why Indian movies have so many songs. For many, not used to the perennial musicals of Bollywood, music may appear to be an unnecessary obstacle to the flow of the story. To them, it is unfathomable, as to how, on the verge of the climax of a plot, out of the blue, the characters suddenly begin to sing their hearts out. Thank god, the Indian audiences knew better, for otherwise, the humanity would have been deprived of one of its biggest treasures. A treasure, so precious that it can be used to defined the word “invaluable”…. that is Bollywood music.

Friday, 19 April 2013

With Zero Marginal Cost, Broadcasted Music becomes a Public Good !

Music is a very important commodity in our lives, particularly for those who love and live by music. Few however, have attempted to understand the economics of music. While people do bother about the corporate profitability of the companies that sponsor musical copyrights, not many are interests in analyzing the role of music as a public good, with its zero marginal cost on being broadcasted…
That music of Bollywood is a treasure can never be in doubt. What is of greater importance is the fact that when such music is broadcasted across the world on short wave and medium wave radio channels, it almost takes the form of a public good !

Economists describe certain goods as "public goods". These are goods with two characteristic features. First, they are not rivaled, meaning thereby that consumption of the public good by one person does not restrict the consumption of the same unit of public good by another. Second, they are not excludable, meaning thereby that no one can be excluded from enjoying them.

Saturday, 23 March 2013

Role of Bollywood Music in Evolution of Indian Society

Music has a great advantage. It can attract attention of the music lover, an in the process, get them involved in any ideas that it may be propagating. This is particularly true of Bollywood music, which is a fusion of poetry, music and video film. The music is what brings it audience, while the lyrics and the film provide it with substance that elevates it to a form of art that can be compared with literature and movies in terms of a reservoir of social documentation. 

Sunday, 4 November 2012

From the Vedas to the Computers: A Journey through the Milllennia

It would not be wrong to say that Bollywood Music is the most important resource of contemporary music in India. Without undermining the importance of other genres, one can accept that its mass appeal goes much beyond any other genre of music or any of its regional counterparts. During the seven decades of its history, it has seen a lot of experimentation, taking a leaf every now and then from the classical traditions, folk traditions, Western styles and Sufi genres of music and amalgamating them all without much concern about their purity. It evolved into a fusion of different styles that remains one of the most popular musical resources in this world.

Wednesday, 3 October 2012

Transcending the boundaries of religion and politics

The human history of twentieth century is heavily marred and stained by divisions, violence and sufferings that had often something to do with either religion or politics. A century that witnessed two unprecedented World Wars and remained at the brink of a third one for many decades in a row, .... a century that witnessed some of the worst genocides in the history of mankind, putting humanity to shame ..... in such a century, Bollywood music is one of the few bright spots that emerged unscathed by these horrors.

Bollywood was emerging into a mainstream of popular entertainment of the masses when Indian was partitioned. With millions affected, displaced, looted or killed across both sides of the new border, the Bollywood remained reasonably unaffected  .....  a feet for which it has never been given adequate credit.