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Monday, January 19, 2009

Programme with Sahana in Bay Area - With Meera

This blog is being dusted.

To say that my short visit to SFO was colorfully enriched with wonderful memories would be an understatement. The family that was single-handedly responsible for that was Meera's. Almost every other weekend was spent with Ayush, Meera and Manohar. A typical weekend would start with wine in the evening kick-starting Mano's technical and comical brilliance about sundry stuff. Be it the famed reference to a mallu buying "Dungin Donuts" from a Chinese at the counter or the resolution of relative velocity in circular motion - Mano had me, Vijay and Narayanan in splits or in musing for most of the time. And as we occasionally warmly welcomed Mr. Johnnie Walker into our brigade in the night, the natural smile of Meera would slowly give way to a deliberately self-imposed one (aah..the pressure of having to act as a good host !). Of course the Thai food was ordered to help us with the solids not to forget Ramya Narayanan's inventive "Oats Dhosai". Meera and Co also surprised me with a hugely surprising and meticulously planned Birthday Bash for me which included Narayanan Venkitu, Vamshi, Narayanan, Balagopal and their families. They brought with them a whole range of food including Vaththak kuzambu. The winner on that day was Mano's Potato Curry though !

And all these wonderful hospitality coupled with regular visits to Komala Vilas transformed into pounds of flab before I boarded for Melbourne.

Gluttons at Komala Vilas

Whenever such little pleasures of life were not available, music came in as Meera, Narayanan and I discussed some songs. Meera and I sat for the songs azagaay poosum manjaL and kaNNimai thaanE aadume with Ayush sometimes providing some background music. Not many times does one get the opportunity of performing with his audio-blogging friends. I am probably the luckiest in that regard since I have performed with many of them. Anup, Barani, Sam and Karthik Gomadam performed with me in Raleigh in 2006. And the latest that happened was in Bay Area with Meera and Narayanan with Sahana.

Sahana's leader Arun was a pleasure to work with although he never distinguished between types of communication. He would scrap me on Orkut and presume he mailed me. Or would talk to Meera on phone and mistake for paging her. It was fun working with Ashwin, Srinath and Krishna - the instrumentalists. I ended up singing a couple of songs with my trademark slips.

One of them was Uyirin Uyire - a Kay Kay song - a genre I should probably not have attempted. I struggled at the start of the song due to a dry throat and unable to hear my voice back from monitors but warmed up in the middle. This video has more nostalgic value and less musical value.

With the sound system not really helping much to hear the low notes, Raja Raja Chozan was also approximately delivered. I had to cut off at places like "kaadhal theeve..maNmeedhu sorgam" to ensure that I was not braying the wrong notes.

The winners on that day were Raja M's "engeyum eppodhum", Vamshi's "Sangeetha Megam" and Meera's "Rangeela Theme". Bharathi did a great job on "aattama" and "vaan mEgam". You can catch them here.

Thanks to Kaumudee for coming and cheering us up !