Saturday, 2 July 2011

Coke Studio in India: Restoring the "East" in "East meets West"

It was expected. After its resounding success in Pakistan, Coke Studio's entry into India was inevitable, and almost, natural. So far the episodes have received commendation from the Indian audiences, particularly those who yearn to hear Indian music as it used to be - unperverted, pure and innocent.

Modern-day Indian society is changing. One cannot help but remark that along with that change, present-day Bollywood is changing, too. Producers are concerned with churning out films for the cineplex-going audience, and there is an inclination towards the American-ised "cool dude" films (Yes, I am not an Imraan Khan fan). Amidst the unforgivable overuse of words such as "dude" and "awesome" in everyday youth language in India, there is certainly an innate desire to, at the very least, maintain some connection with, if not to actively personify, one's roots. That is why shows like Coke Studio work in India. They bring to today's modern, American-ised Indian youth a sense of originality, a sense of connection with their roots (albeit subtle) and, most importantly, a sense of true belonging. 

So, Coke Studio - well done on bringing back some folk music into the lives of India's youth. This rendition by Sunidhi Chauhan, a symbol of today's "new" Indian generation, is just what is needed to restore the balance in "East meets West".

Chitthiye was originally sung by Lata Mangeshkar in 1991 for the Hindi film, Henna. Here Sunidhi Chauhan and the Wadali Brothers recreate the magic of the harmony between new-age music and folk.

1 comment:

  1. A very disappointing performance...the same old Bollywood razzmatazz. Still looking for the originality and rawness of CS Pakistan. Let's see what future episodes have in store.


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