August 28, 2009


My friend and supervisor just won an award which is given to the best employee in our company, once a year. As part of award he gets a trip to California. He should have been nominated and won years ago, but that's neither here nor there because he just won and there IS justice in this world. I couldn't be happier for him.

In case you couldn't tell from my posts on Foosball, I'm a sucker for the game. A colleague and I had decided a week back that we would take part in the Foosball Championships. What better way to celebrate our love for the game than making sporting fools of ourselves in front of each other and a bunch of other co-workers? Good times, to be sure.

We made our way to the table where we met our competition. The game room was all crowded and we quickly grabbed our bars and readied ourselves. My co-worker was decidedly the best striker between the both of us. Although she continues to deny that she has any skills. The liar. Unfortunately yours truly was too nervous to even hit more than a shot. The highlight of the game was at the end of the game when we realized we had lost and I almost scared my competition with a punch to the face - I never fail to put on a show. The fact that he was tall and slim and twinkishly handsome was probably why I didn’t hurt him. Fortunately I wasn’t drunk to do anything that bordered on illegal or harassing.

Oh, and before I forget, one of my colleagues came to work today swimming in perfume… he must have a pool of it. Either that or Hugo Boss died in his house last night. Now, I like a good smelling man just as much as the next girl but phu-leeeeeez - there's a need for some moderation and carefulness. It smells like the perfume counter at Shopper’s Stop here.

I had the opportunity to do a little music surfing lately. What did I come up with? Here's the discovery:

Artist: Louise Hart
Track: Take Me Out
Album: Velvet

It’s rare that I find an album which impresses me right off the bat. Even rarer is the track, I'll listen to multiple times immediately after acquiring. But this is one of 'em. Louise Hart combines alt-country, roots, folk and rock elements into a subdued yet powerful album. And the strengths lie not only in her music but her lyrics. Her songs are thoughtful, well-written and revolve around things with which we can all identify. If nothing else, this track is proof that not everyone feels the need to be a pop star or a nu-metal screamer. Hart puts songwriting and instrumentation front and center and the results are truly impressive.

At long last we come to the conclusion of the All-Female artist month. If you’re looking to read/listen more entries like this you can check out any of the previous individual posts. This concludes the set. Enjoy the music. As I’ve said before these are tracks by really unpopular female vocalists. They’re not off any blockbuster album and they’re not available in big music stores. That being said they’re definitely on the top of the pile in terms of audio quality. I’ve done all I could to bring you only that which is worthy of your precious time. You are welcome. Have a fabulous weekend and see ya on Monday.

August 24, 2009


Dear single bed,

Don't be upset that I left so hastily at first light. You were still doing a fine job. It’s just that I've got stuff to do, work and the like. I know, I know, it’s no justification for exiting the way I did. But we've got a great thing going. You're snuggly and warm. Perhaps tonight I'll come by a little bit early. Swear you aren’t mad?

Dear Alarm,

Two words - bite me! Don’t you go controlling me with your earsplitting, bothersome moaning. I tell you to seal it but a few minutes later you start in with the harassing again. If I get really mad, I'd leave you out in some chilly, isolated sports ground on a dark night and beat your ass. You've been notified. You're on my list.

Dear Head,

Firstly, what is the deal with the odd dreams? Scenes of my high school friends are bad enough without people throwing rotten fruit at the basketball hoops. Perhaps more warped is the fact that, in the dream, I recollect wearing L.L Cool J’s clothes. What's up with that, brain? Oh, and yes, I know – the English teacher got it going on. Enough already!

Before I started a review here, I decided to make a few inquiries. It became apparent that people are divided about this band. One group finds this excellent stuff...its rich, mellow, melodious and its just plain enjoyable while the other camp thinks it doesn’t follow the kind of music I usually listen to and hence, kinda blows. While it would be humorous to write about an album or song that sucks, I can't say that about Télépopmusik’s 2005 release, ‘Don’t look back’ featuring Angela McCluskey. It’s simply a fantastic song which is attuned to trip hop, downtempo, French electronic music.

Télépopmusik (a band, not a person, although there are people; They're collectively called a band, capiche?) is considered Electronic- Pop. I'm sure the fact that I don't like Electro isn't lost on you. But I'm starting to learn that this genre of music isn't necessarily a dreadful thing. There's plunk and I'm not a big plunk fan (not that there's anything wrong with that) but here it works. This is honest music. It’s not gaudy and loud. It’s just a simple, uncomplicated track. The lyrics and the beats are intensely clever, yet not too clever for their own good. The track ‘Don’t look back’ opens in a very offbeat way. It literally stopped me in my tracks when I first heard it and it still does (I mean, really, I just got through listening to it).

You're all smart people...and if you're anything like me you're a little tired of having the same old crap shoved down your throats by record companies. This is different, smart and refreshing. Join me in cleansing your musical pores. This is where we start.

August 21, 2009

I work in the IT industry, an industry with some real nerds. Really unmatched nerd-dom. I know this because I attended an all-hands event with about 2000 of my fellow workers from different branches sometime back, and looking around the conference room, I was able to group everyone into three categories (politically incorrect to draw such sweeping statements, I know...).

1. The Nerds. Members of this group are untainted and complete nerds. In all probability I think they’d even agree. They wear hight-waist pants, got thick glasses, and no social skills whatsoever. They use their own mugs, take pictures of their own PowerPoint presentations with their camera phones and wear socks with sandals. If made to attend an office party and asked to say a few words with much coercion, they'll speak excitedly and only in technical jargon leaving everyone else dazed.

2. The Top Gun. These individuals assume they've got the funkiest jobs in the cosmos, a cosmos of which they are the captains. And when you're in their space, you're playing in their realm. So don't f*&%^ it up. They buy expensive toys, wear only branded stuff (from the US preferably) and constantly hold out their pricey phones. Their conversation skills surpass the Geeks, but their attitude makes you wish they'd just put a lid on it.

3. The Normals...Mostly. Here's where I think I fall (shut up...stop laughing!). See, I dress nice but I don't have anything extra fancy. I can talk endlessly about what I do but I know when to shut up. And I can talk about other things too. I don't own a pair of high-waist pants nor would I think about wearing socks with sandals and I am reserved about whatever crazy-ass skills I happen to have.

Sure, there are some that don't fall as tidily into any of these groups, like the one guy who speaks non-stop to just about anyone, even when they’re obviously ignoring him. Or the girl who burps so loudly. I mean, if you've got to do it anywhere, I guess that's the place but how does one just burp for a minute or two solid? Oh, and the person who resembles that freakishly tall actor - Gérard Depardieu.
except this person turned out not to be a man but a strangely masculine looking woman...with lots of mascara.
I'm sure every profession has its weirdos, its nerds and its stud muffins...but this one seems to have more than most.

Lately I’ve been listening to a load of female artists that I had never heard of before this month and it keeps me sitting down for the better part of the day; parked behind a computer screen. This music is a lifesaver after lunch and it’s been quite a treat to get to listen to loads of new music (none of which I actively have to pursue).
This album, ‘Blink the Brightest’ was released in 2005 by Tracy Bonham. It starts off moody, and later on packs in a lot of guitar fuzz and distorted wall of sound, and honestly feels real good by the end. Moody, solid throughout, and drenched in a melancholic haze of guitars and lo-fi distortion. It’s almost as if you’re standing at the back of the bar after a long night of drinking and music and this is the last act on stage for the night.

‘Naked’ is the ninth track off of the album and I’m leaning towards admitting it’s my favorite song by the artist. Brilliant. The music is catchy without being overdone and the lyrics, seriously, the lyrics are really where the brilliance of this track sets it. Especially the bridge. It’s so good I’m not afraid to tweet random snippets of this song on a regular basis. It’s so good I’m still listening to it on one song repeat right now. It’s so good you’ll listen to the track and then immediately get yourself her album.

Here’s to a helluva weekend.

August 17, 2009

Hey everyone! I was trapped in a windowless office all day despite the fact that it seems to have been a gorgeous day! All I could do was think on means of escaping. After a long, drama-ful day, Monday is finally over. I finally got the time to sort through the pictures that I took on Wednesday night at dinner with some friends from Hong Kong and found a few that didn't suck as bad as the rest (see how I'm working for you?). I liked how the ones below came out.

The dinner started promptly at 8:00? My three friends, Angela, Hazel and Florence pounded out a great menu that was nothing short of fantastic and delicious.
I have to admit, I don’t really like authentic Chinese food and I really wasn’t prepared to be wowed by it but – well - I was wowed by it. The food prepared by these girls was truly fantastic. And the meat! Get outta town! Incredible!

So, the other day I was checking my blog email account and I'd received a comment from an address I didn't recognize. Now, if you comment at all, you know that I at least try to keep up with them. I opened this particular one and I was pretty surprised to find a really nice comment on my post about ‘White Town’. The more I looked, the more I realized that someone fantastic had unleashed a can of awesome in my comments section. I was double-overjoyed - a) White Town aka Jyoti Prakash Mishra had read my post and left a comment, b) he was so friggin NICE!! And c) Jyoti Prakash Mishra read my blog!!!

Notes to Self: Just having recovered from a bad case of the dreadful flu I’ve realized that accidentally doubling medication is really a bad idea. If you think you might have taken them once, don't go back to the medicine cabinet all not-so-bothered and take more. It doesn't make you feel good. At all!
And when you're awake at 3:00 in the morning and possibly overdosing due to excessive mediation, it’s very easy to get lost in your own home. Take breadcrumbs to bed for the next outing.

You all know by now that I love music and that I own an incredible number of albums and I'm adding more everyday. If you guessed that the occasional album gets lost in the shuffle and goes without being listened to for a substantial amount of time, you'd be correct. I have to admit to you that I've been sitting on a real find but didn't know it until last night (and confirmed just a little while ago). My music recommendation for this week is Lucie Silvas. The album in focus is ‘Breathe In’. I am taken with the contemporary sound she creates. There are two words that immediately jumped into my head the first time I listened to the album by her. The first word is giddy. Giddy because that’s how this music makes me feel. And it’s heartfelt - genuine, adult contemporary pop. Overall she’s a solid artist with interesting music.

The album is great and I’ve been listening to it on and off for at least a month now and I still think it’s good. Overall Lucie Silvas has captured modern pop music and made it something clever and captivating, avoiding the ubiquitous banalities that drag down so many other bands. Enjoy this track titled 'Don't Look Back' that I’ve put up here and rest assured the remainder of the album is just as addictive. Do yourself a favor and check it out. Great week y'all!

August 11, 2009

When I go out for dinner and entertainment, it usually involves fast food of some sort and music, something along the lines of Jimi Hendrix, The Doors, Rolling Stones etc. So it was completely out of character for me to go to the Naga Charity Dinner on Saturday night. I went with family and friends knowing absolutely nothing about the event.
The event costed 500 bucks. For this, you're fed a buffet dinner and serenaded by a surprisingly adept choice of music.

Once we had been shown to our tables. My new friend from Hong Kong, Angela and I set out to explore the food and the smells. Warm, spiced lime tea was poured in one glass and strongly fermented rice beer in another. Rice, five pork dishes- roasted and rich gravy, one chicken dish, accompanied by a fermented soybean curry called ‘Akhuni’, chili chutney (made from the hottest chilies in the country) and chicken soup were served. The salad course had quite a presentation; it just didn’t find its way onto my plate. There was plenty of food to go around for each table, with seconds for the asking. Dessert was light yoghurt, mounded with all kinds of fruits. Prepared by the Nagas, the meal was quite excellent.
It's not at all surprising that in a show about women (The L Word) so much attention has been paid to women in music, especially those who fall into the category of ‘not all the rage’. The idea of featuring only female artists for a whole month came to me somewhat suddenly, perhaps as a response to the amazing artists I found with a little bit of digging around to fill the empty space left below each post. And while artists such as these will probably continue to endure their expected share of obligatory negative backlash, I’m hoping that my readers, you guys, will nevertheless appreciate these artists, as I have, as an overwhelming success, and perhaps more importantly, as a signal that there is so much more of their music to come. In the music world today, we have more than our fair share of representatives of the girls with vocals, attitude and the rhythm. The present phenomenon may be very unique because of the ratio of recent arrivals. And as more female artists come, so do their ideas, pulses and musical experiences which shape the creation of songs and the sound of a movement. And I’m hoping to find these singers a larger audience.
The songs posted this month will be songs that can stand alone acoustically, without a rhythm section -- if the song is the focus and not the music -- that's a big part of it. Also I think the lyrics should be able to survive on a piece of paper. If they speak to you, tell a story, they can lend insight and make you think then they can be considered poetry, really. And this is music that really just has to travel.

Kirsten Price is a Brit-born, Brooklyn-based singer and her album is definitely worth checking out. I guess I was being selfish. It hasn’t made it on any of my recent updates and I’ve avoided playing it around friends. It’s such a great piece of music that I wanted to keep it all to myself. That seems contradictory, I know, but who doesn’t have those few things they want to keep private, a secret only they know? But as I was listening to her the other day, I realized she’s just too good to keep to myself anymore. I’ve listened to the song ‘Magic Tree’ a thousand times, and I don’t think any amount of playing it can lessen the power of the track. This song sparks a return to classic American soul with modern pop that fans will appreciate. The beats on the track is toned perfectly to fit the mood, sounding clear and succinct. It’s so well executed that even the most conservative listener can’t help but love it. I very highly recommend adding the album to your collection tomorrow. You can hear it here below….. Happy listening.

August 06, 2009

Bluesy Thursdays

Now it’s time for another episode of ‘Conversations With God’

Dear God,

Remember our last conversation? It was Sunday night, when I was terrified of closing my eyes and waking up on Monday. I prayed to you to give me the power to deal with the toads that I work with and in exchange I was never going to drink alcohol ever again.
Well, we both dropped the ball on that one.


Apparently there’s was this little music gathering in some corner of B’lore, which happens occasionally. Apparently at said gathering of music fans there was this big band that played a killer set and set off the revelers.
For those of you who are still unaware, Soulmate played a show last night at B Flat, Indiranagar. By my account - it was an epic show {but what Soulmate show isn’t?}. Apparently the band ‘Soulmate’ has played a few sets in B’lore over the years. And also, apparently, someone thought it would be a good idea to go and take a look at their act last night and write then about them. And yes, introducing you to great music is the ploy to get you coming back over and over and over again. Eat it.
If you’re looking to listen to their music you can check out each individual post at these links.

Set Me Free

Stay Away

Soulmate might be the best band to ever play the blues. Period. Granted Tipriti ‘Tips’ Kharbangar (the vocalist) might not be the most skilled guitarist, but when she takes the stage, everyone just shuts up. Everyone.

I’ve had the amazing luck to catch the band play an amazing live set and they left me wowed. The tracks were masterful and I recall being blown away by the songs I hadn’t had the pleasure of hearing. Another important note is that Soulmate is performing again this month on the 20th at the Opus. Call for tickets now, or risk missing what is sure to be a sell-out performance! This is going to be a great show, kids. Anybody who doesn't go is just a loser, plain and simple. Also, if you’ve have planned to make it to this event make sure you book a table well in advance cos a Solmate show is always packed. I was definitely looking forward to hearing their somewhat legendary live sound. For all the hype I was not even close to disappointed. The channeling of Tipriti ‘Tips’ Kharbangar continued on and off throughout their show and oh my is it brilliant live. She simply exudes a type of rock star cool that permeates the depths of the cool B’lore moon. Simply put, they killed it hard for the full two hours. They just sound great live. And for anyone still interested below is the entire touring list for Soulmate in this current year.

7 Aug 2009, 20:00
PUDUCHERRY, Puducherry

9 Aug 2009, 20:00
Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh

20 Aug 2009, 20:00
OPUS,Bangalore,PUBROCK FEST 2009
Bangalore, Karnataka

31 Aug 2009, 18:00
Leh, Jammu & Kashmir

4 Sep 2009, 21:30
The Haze Blues and Jazz Bar
New Delhi, Delhi

5 Sep 2009, 21:30
The Haze Blues and Jazz Bar
New Delhi, Delhi

20 Sep 2009, 20:00
PUNE, Maharashtra

25 Sep 2009, 20:00

26 Sep 2009, 20:00
SHILLONG, Meghalaya

2 Oct 2009, 21:30
The Haze Blues and Jazz Bar
New Delhi, Delhi

3 Oct 2009, 21:30
The Haze Blues and Jazz Bar
New Delhi, Delhi

6 Nov 2009, 21:30
The Haze Blues and Jazz Bar
New Delhi, Delhi

7 Nov 2009, 21:30
The Haze Blues and Jazz Bar
New Delhi, Delhi

1 Dec 2009, 15:00
World Aids Day Venue TBA
Shillong, Meghalaya

4 Dec 2009, 21:30
The Haze Blues and Jazz Bar
New Delhi, Delhi

5 Dec 2009, 21:30
The Haze Blues and Jazz Bar
New Delhi, Delhi

I have never had that much fun at a live concert before. It was non-stop energy from the opening beat to the closing of their sweat drenched show. The entire show was laced with infectious, no holds barred, beyond-awesome singing and there wasn’t a moment during which front woman Tips stood still or took a breather. If you’ve not had the chance - I recommend you see their show for a life altering change. Honestly, after watching that set I’ve come to realize that I will never need to do drugs, ever.
The concert is over, but there is still the 20th. What a brilliant show.

Soulmate with ‘Smile at me’.

August 03, 2009

This Just In - 'Soulmate' is in B'lore

The weekend is over already? How on earth did that happen? Oh, I know. I was crazy busy! Although I tell people how much alone time I’d usually like to have to enjoy my peace and quiet, things actually haven't been that way over the weekend. It's been a busy schedule, albeit an enjoyable one. So just what have I been up to? I was busy doing glamorous star turns around town and being the delightfully charming and socially in-demand person you know me to be. Well, almost. For starters, I met up with some friends at a local pub, drank lots of beer, and spoke about tons of things that I can’t really recall. But, fret not, all you really need to know is:

That my jaw was sore from laughing.
My belly full from eating meat.
My liver saturated from drinking.

And these are the four biggest things I've learned since Saturday morning:

1. It's a small world. Really, really small.
2. You, too, can find something funny to talk about with someone you have nothing in common with, with just five easy mugs of beer.
3. Gay power is powerful.
4. And nothing but some of that sugary goodness can get your engines revved up again.

On Sunday evening I saw the musical ‘Breaking up is hard to do’- based on the music of Neil Sedaka. When I first saw the same actors at a show last year, I liked it but didn't love it. This time around I still had issues with it, but the night was enhanced by the fantastic performance by Mark Swaroop and Meghana Dhawan, who weren’t part of the old cast. Despite all of its flaws, this show remains one of my all-time favorites (how can you not love that score?) and Neville De Nazareth’s performance alone is worth the price of admission. I had the pleasure of going for the show with six gay men. As I expected, it was extremely fun. I won't go on about it, except to say that I enjoyed it more than I thought I would. It's hard not to appreciate a show that has some awesome voices in it- Jerusha Verghese, Mark, Neville and Jude Lazaro.
So that brings us up to tonight, which is my day of rest (God isn't the only one who deserves one, you know). And then after this post is done I can, knock on wood, veg out on my bed once again. I’m about ready to pass out just thinking about it. Hoping that the night goes slowly and work doesn't come as quickly as I fear it will!

Some people are lucky enough to have two families - the one they are born into, and the one they create from the friends they collect over time. There are always highs and lows but each has the potential to last forever. I'm lucky enough to have both, and I love them all, even if they take turns being dysfunctional. Belated Friendship Day to all my lovely readers and close friends.

An announcement...

Soulmate, a band I’ve recently come to obsess about, is once again gearing up for what is going to be an amazing performance of some truly gorgeous blues. If you're interested in attending, please make it to B Flat, Indiranagar. It’s only on Wednesday, but I wanted to give you a heads-up:

August 05, 2009 8:00 p.m.
B Flat, 100 feet road, HAL 2nd Stage, Indiranagar, Bangalore
Entry is about 200 bucks… and that will probably get you a drink or something. I'm very much looking forward to seeing them in concert and would love to see you all there.

I was looking through my list of single songs the other day and I came across this one by Kinnie Starr title ‘Sun Again’.

There is a certain quality about this song that is inescapable. Something inside of me craves more music like this. Music that is light, interesting, and ultimately builds upon itself with harmonies, layered beats, and clever lyrical twists. Years ago I came up with a classification of people that could best be described as incorrigible romantics. They weren’t hopeless, they weren’t carried away, they believed in a moment of absolute emotion even though the odds were stacked against them ever finding it. And now I have found the iconic artist to sing their emotions to the world. Simply gorgeous music. I love this song but it’s really what’s left unsaid in this song that makes you think. It’s subdued and sets the perfect mood for a looking out your window into the rain.