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This is It | by Dilip Muralidaran
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This is It

I remember one fine afternoon when it was half yearly holidays during my 1st Grade in School. The old black and white Solidaire TV at home was playing some random english song on DD. I think the guy singing resembled close to Eric Clapton, i don't remember well. But some bearded guy singing in a flat voice through his nose.


My grandfather and i were sitting and watching this and i exclaimed..


"Thaaththa, en thaaththa english paattu ellam raagam'e illama asingama paadara?" and my grandfather exclaimed..


(Tamil to English Translation: Grandpa, why do english people sing songs that have no melody in such an ugly fashion?)


"ammaam, avaa ellam appadi thaan. namma karnataga sangeetham madhiri ellam avaa paattu irukkadhu. appadi thaan asaingama paaduva..."


(Tamil to English Translation: Grandpa responds - Yes, english people are so.. Unlike our classical music which is melodious, their music is ugly and that's how they sing it")


The conversation ended there or rather i don't remember the rest of it. I left home and happily went to my cousin praveens place for vacation and that evening we were generally lying in bed and talking and the same conversation came up and my cousin said something along the lines of "Don't have such a narrow minded view of things..." sort of or may be he called me plain dumb on my face, which for fact i was very much.


What he did next, i have a High Definition photographic memory of. He pulled out a cassette from his dad's cassette drawer. Periappa used to have atleast 400 casettes. They filled two cupboards and drawers. It was a green colour casette with Yellow text written on it and it read "Michael Jackson - Bad".


Load it into the high end BPL Stereo double deck playback + recording system, the best of its kind money can buy and periappa was the first one to have it in my family and yes he still has it and it works flawlessly. The Synth Lead went "taan taan taan taan..." and it completely threw me off. Never in my wildest imagination did i expect something along these lines from an "asingamaana english pattu paadara vellakkaran's" (Tamil to English Translation: Ugly english music singing white man"). Over the next few days i think we listened to that casette over and over again and i was totally spell bound.


The "hee hee" and "aaaw" on "The way you make me feel" and the lines "I've been a victim of a selfish kind of love, its time that i realize.. there are some with no homes, not a nickel to loan..." from "Man in the Mirror" sends shivers down your spine thinking of it now. The bridge and mixing on the last stanza of "Smooth Criminal" left you wondering if aliens from outer space did the re-recording and mixing for that track. What differently i saw with MJ was that everybody sings the song, he emotes. That is a gift. Not many artists emote, like MJ does.


Today is the 25th of June, 2010. Its precisely a year now, i fail to come to terms with the fact that he is dead and evil bastards like Karunanidhi are still alive. Life is unfair, life is definitely "The Bitch" you can ever see. I feel robbed, still. I'm reminded of the scene from Passion of the Christ where Jesus is hit with a whip that has sharp blades with hooks and it digs into his skin and rips and peels of flesh from his back and Jesus quivers in horrendous pain, that is how i feel today, very very RAW.


A few days back i was browsing this photostream and Noor Sandhu had posted an image that had profound words.


"The loneliness of the mind is more torturous than the loneliness of the heart. You see, it cannot be fooled by pleasurable company."


The Loneliness of my mind fails to be fooled by pleasurable company, despite the fact that im constantly in the company of the most pleasurable people in this current phase of my life and doing the most pleasurable things.


When Michael Jackson is on Stage and grabs the mic and sings, everyone in the audience, right from the person in the 1st row to the last guy a mile away feels he/she is having a one on one personal conversation with Michael Jackson. I heard that somewhere on an interview tape when someone said that about MJ. I feel its so true because the last song that was released of his seem's more like a personal conversation of mine that i didn't have with anyone.


WTF camera, WTF lens, who cares?


All Rights Reserved. Owner and Usage Rights belongs to Dilip Muralidaran. Any use of this work in hard or soft copy or transfer must be done with the expressed consent of Dilip Muralidaran in written. Failing to do so will result in violation as per Section 63 of the Indian Copyrights Act, 1957 & Forgery, Fraud, Misrepresentation and Misinformation as per the Indian Penal Code Section 420 leading to severe legal consequences.

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Taken on June 21, 2010