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Maa Tujhe Salaam

March 20, 2009 at 11:17 pm

This is by far the best dance performance for the song I have seen till date. Great formations and near flawless coordination. Considering that these are kids who are doing this, its even more awesome. I just wish I can get my hands on a more professional video version of this. For now, this will do!

Rahman’s music is available to those who are willing

February 26, 2009 at 6:28 am

I am yet to come up with a way of writing this. Rahman won the Oscar – not one but two. And he did it in his characteristic matter-of-fact style. His acceptance speeches have already attained legendary status. He was christened a ‘Living Legend’ by one of the news channels. Another channel was discussing with one of the great Bollywood personalities who was saying some stuff about Rahman that we have already heard a million times. And that’s precisely the problem with Rahman – you cannot say anything about him that has not been said before. And he never gives you even a hint of a chance to say something about him!

I chose love…

February 23, 2009 at 2:39 am

…and I am here. God Bless!

Those were Rahman’s words on winning his second Oscar (for Best Original Song – “Jai Ho” alongwith Gulzar) of the day. This is his full acceptance speech [Link]:

I just want to thank again the whole crew of Slumdog Millionaire, especially Danny Boyle for giving such a great opportunity. And the whole, all the people from Mumbai. The essence of the film which is about optimism and the power of hope in the lives, and all my life I had a choice of hate and love. I chose love and I’m here. God bless.

When he one the first one too he was quite at ease with the whole situation. This is what he said when he won his first one [Link]:

Before coming, I was excited and terrified. The last time I felt like that was during my marriage. There’s a dialogue from a Hindi film called “Mere paas ma hai,” which means “I have nothing but I have a mother,” so mother’s here, her blessings are there with me. I am grateful for her to have come all the way. And I want to thank the Academy for being so kind, all the jury members. I want to thank Sam Schwartz, I/D PR, all the crew of Slumdog, Mr. Gulzar, Raqueeb Alam, Blaaze, my musicians in Chennai and Mumbai. And I want to tell something in Tamil, which says, which I normally say after every award which is… “God is great.” Thank you.

If you didn’t know he won two Oscars today, then you have been living on the Moon or something! What a day! Thanks to all those who passed on their congratulatory wishes on the win! Really value each and every of those calls, sms’es and mails! Thanks guys! Thanks!

Science meets spirituality

February 19, 2009 at 11:57 pm

To get to what is beyond our comprehension is not impossible. The technology is available. It’s our perception that needs to go beyond. “What is Real?”, as Morpheus asks in Matrix. See this video to get a clearer understanding of what spiritual leaders have been saying all through the existence of civilization:

Oh my God!

January 22, 2009 at 8:05 am

ARR's Oscar nominations
Check this out.
Law of averages had to catch up with India! We desperately needed this tonic of happiness. And who else to provide it to us than Allah Rakha Rahman. Let me just taste this moment. It’s so wonderful. I am in no mood to make a technical evaluation of whether he will win or not but look at the “Original Song” category he has two out of the three nominations! Its too much for me to take now. Let me first close my mouth!

PS: This is my 300th post. Somehow I waited and waited and waited till I posted this and didn’t know what I was waiting for. Now we know, right?!

The Globe sees A R Rahman

January 12, 2009 at 12:39 am

See this:

ARR Wins Golden Globe
Source: http://www.goldenglobes.org/nominations/index.html

And this:

It was just a matter of time. If you followed the American press you would have predicted this easily. But for me, I was still doubtful because I thought ‘Water‘ was good enough for an Oscar nomination atleast. Anyway, here we are today. While the press is glossing over the first Indian to be presenting an award at the Golden Globe awards ceremony, here we have a fellow Indian citizen winning one. You know who means business!

And I hope the comparisons of ARR with the other Indian music directors stop now atleast. I am in this mood to take these infinite potshots today! Let me let that instinct be for now…

Screenshot of AR Rahman with the Golden Globe
Photo courtesy: Arijit, fellow ARR fan.

This is my moment. This is every Indian’s moment. Let’s celebrate!

a-Satyam: Do we really know?

January 8, 2009 at 3:07 am

I am sure by now you are innundated with mails and news reports about how and what Ramalinga Raju did to Satyam. Of course he built it up from 0 to 50,000 employees but he also has put all of their careers into serious uncertainty. Do you appreciate this man for having built an organization so far or just plainly accuse him of fraud for his confession as the standard reaction has been? As far as I am concerned, I am still reeling under shock.

Belated wishes

January 7, 2009 at 2:22 am

To all:
For a Happy New Year!

To Rahman:
On his birthday! Hoping that this is the year that people actually recognize his talent!

He separated the men from the boys

November 3, 2008 at 3:30 am

Since the day I understood cricket and began following the sport, this man was always an integral part of it. Today when they say he has retired I find it strange. How can there be cricket without this man I wonder? Despite fully knowing that he was just one of those to have played the game and that he had to stop somewhere. And maybe as some say it was the ‘right’ time. I still wonder what that means. If a broken jaw could get Lara and a 3 finger palm could get three Australian wickets imagine what he could still do with every part of his body in condition. But according to the man himself, it was his body that gave up on him.

The man was defined by his spirit and not by his body. Whenever anyone from Azharuddin to MS Dhoni wanted a breakthrough there would be only one man they would resort to. He never gave up. Not once. And do you know that he is retiring from the game as India’s ‘highest’ wicket-taker and the third in the all-time highest wicket-takers list? Even if you knew about it chances are extremely high that you don’t understand the magnitude of that achievement. Here’s why: When Richard Hadlee retired, the record stayed on till Kapil sighed, coughed, huffed-puffed and crawled past it. Then came a man called Shane Warne, whose claim to fame was ‘the ball of the century’ and his ability to generate wrist spin apart from a host of other associated not-so-reputation-enhancing stories. Then it was Muttaiah Muralitharan who can spin the ball even on a marble floor but who was in the limelight more for his action than anything else. The problem with Kumble was he was always described as ‘not-such-a-great-spinner-of-the-ball’ and yet managed everything that these guys did without a sound. And since he was more of a not-this and not-that nobody ever saw what he actually was. He went about his business with amazing clinical precision. I quote these lines from a Cricinfo article: Kumble was comfortable with angles and understood that the difference between a good delivery and a bad one is only a matter of inches

And he always concentrated on the finer details. For him, nothing was a result of luck – everything was a result of dedicated hard work and astute planning. The only thing, perhaps, that did not go by plan was the timing of the captain’s hat. Not that he secretly planned but just that India would have done well to have Kumble leading the side longer than he has currently, to dethrone Aussies from being the Test World champions’. Right now the onus has fallen on his heir apparent who is probably more confident than certain about doing it. That Kumble chose a competent predecessor to hand over is yet another hallmark of a true leader.

This tribute will be incomplete without talking about this special aspect of the man. He is underrated, unassuming, humble, modest and to the point as a person. Put a cricket ball in his hands and you would see that he was fiercely competitive, fighting to his teeth, expecting his players to give him 100% every moment on the field as he would and never ever did he get involved in anything ugly on the field. In fact he would be one of those players who accorded dignity to the game in times when shouting expletives at the opposition is considered ‘playing it the hard way’. And show me one person who played it ‘harder’ than Kumble did!

There is some special connection I have with this man apart from him being a foundation to my intellectual edifice of cricket. He makes me feel proud of belonging to the state of Karnataka. He said to Dravid “Covers nalli yaaru beda, mid-off ge hogu” and I heard that over the stump microphone and got those goosebumps! A proud son of the soil. He separated the men from the boys.

PS: I would love to see him back in cricket as a commentator.

Don’s average is 99.94

August 26, 2008 at 4:17 am

I am sure you are saying, “Come on Adi. Tell us something new”. Okay then, this is the news: Don Bradman’s average could actually be 100 if we are to believe a particular gentleman by name Charles Davis [a former scientist, is now a sport statistician. He is the author of Best Of The Best, a detailed examination of Bradman's career]. This is how the story goes as quoted by him here.

Some years ago I embarked on a project to examine old Test match scorebooks closely, to uncover previously hidden statistics, such as balls faced. Over the years, it came as a great surprise to find that apparent errors and anomalies arise quite regularly.

In the scorebook of the epic eight-day fifth Test of 1928-29 against England in Melbourne, won by Australia by five wickets, there is a “problem” boundary in the final stages, when Bradman was batting with Jack Ryder. (I found this when rescoring the Test, ball by ball, to re-create the exact sequence of events.)

While he goes on waxing eloquent about the errors in those paper-based scoring matches during those days, there comes a point when he does not really want to challenge History and get down to the depth of the matter despite having done the donkey’s work. Maybe it is not practical, but he won’t know if he doesn’t try after having come this close.

Most of Bradman’s scorebooks have not been checked at this level of detail. It is painstaking work. However, the chances of finding other anomalies, based on experience with many other scores, seem high.

Then he says,

Unfortunately, most of these anomalies are inconclusive. If something in a scorebook does not compute, this does not mean that the accepted score must be wrong.

Finally comes the cat on the wall statement,

It is worth remembering, of course, that errors could easily cut both ways: Bradman could lose runs as easily as gain runs this way. Ultimately, that iconic average of 99.94 will probably stand. Wisden is against the retrospective alteration of scores (“that way madness lies”) and I tend to agree. I do think, however, that problems with scores from the pre-computer age may create uncertainties of a few parts in a thousand.

But what is not doubted, ever, is that the average is 99.94. And that is final.