Wednesday, July 04, 2012

The MJ Show #145 - Guest Series - Sachin Kalbag's favourites! (Part 1)

Tonight, I've got someone really special as a guest on the show.
He has been in journalism for almost 2 decades now. He has had an extensive exposure to newspapers, magazines, news websites and radio broadcasting. He has been associated with some of India's top-notch media brands, including; Digit (India's largest selling technology magazine); Daily News and Analysis (Mumbai's second largest English language daily); Hindustan Times (India's second largest newspaper) and Mail Today newspaper which is part of The India Today Group (India's largest magazine group).

Currently he is the executive editor of  Mid-Day (India's largest selling tabloid)...and it's my privilege that I also get to call him my friend. It's my great pleasure to give you Sachin Kalbag's favourite songs tonight!

I knew when I asked him to send me his top 10 songs I was in for some great songs...but I was super kicked to see that he decided to go way beyond just the minimum required 10 songs and sent me a list of a lot more of his favourites. The songs are really cool and the range of genres just shows me that Sachin believes in something that I completely believe in: "There's no such thing as a bad genre of music. There are great songs in every just have to look and you'll find them." :) 

Tonight...thanks to Sachin I have some great songs for you! In fact, there are so many songs (and I write this after going through the first 10 and my responses to them)...that I've decided to break up his show into two parts. Tonight's episode is part 1 and in my next episode I'll give you part 2!
Here we go!
Sachin Kalbag (SK): 1. Goo Goo Dolls - Iris
A friend in Delhi was going through a really terrible heartbreak, when I asked her what her favourite song was, just to cheer her up. She replied, it was Iris by Goo Goo Dolls. I had not heard the song until then, but I came home and YouTubed it. I realised why my friend liked it so much.
MJ: Quite easily their best song. I have to agree with you. I hadn't really heard The Goo Goo Dolls before this song either...but this song was absolutely stunning. It was was originally written for the soundtrack of the 1998 Nicholas Cage-Meg Ryan film "City of Angels" and I remember that even back then when I saw the song it felt like such a great track for the movie. 

SK: 2. Beck - Loser
In the annals of alternative rock, this song has no equal. It was released sometime in the mid-1990s, but I heard it only in 2001. Why? First, because alternative rock is (was?) not big in India so access to CDs and exposure on radio was a problem. Second, I was lazy enough to not explore. My list of alternative rockers started and ended at The Cranberries. My fault, of course.
MJ: I agree with you. As far as I remember...alternative music for me was pretty much Oasis, Pearl Jam and a little bit of Nirvana. I didn't really get into the alternative scene in a big way. In fact, I was just listening to Radiohead today and I realized that I've missed out quite a few really good bands.
Here's Loser by Beck...and I'll play you a song I heard just a few hours ago after this.

Radiohead - Karma Police
MJ: What an incredible song this is. I can't believe I've not really gotten into this before. It's been stuck in my head since I heard it in the car in the afternoon. I've got to listen to "Ok Computer", the third album by Radiohead asap! :) Maybe we'll have a Radiohead special soon too right here!

SK: 3. Green Day - Boulevard of Broken Dreams
The first time I heard this song was during a road trip across the national parks in the American South West in 2006. Our guide, Casey Jones, was a huge fan of Green Day that he kept playing this song. But hey, nobody ever got tired listening to Green Day, right?

SK 4. Green Day - Wake me Up When September Ends

MJ: I remember what a massive hit "Boulevard" was. I've been to a whole bunch of college to judge singing events and I remember the year these songs came out, there had to be atleast ONE boy who'd do it...really badly :)
Green Day gave the boys what the Cranberries gave the girls of Mumbai! :) (Remember Zombie.)
Ohh interestingly enough "Boulevard Of Broken Dreams" was the name of a hit song that was written in 1933. It was then used in a film called "Moulin Rouge" in 1934. It was a one of the first songs that Tony Bennet recorded and it was a pretty big hit for him. Have a listen!
Tony Bennett - Boulevard Of Broken Dreams

SK: 5. Divine Comedy - Gin Soaked Boy
If ever there were a contest for "Songs With The Weirdest Lyrics That Make The Most Sense", this one would win hands down. I must thank Kobad Mobedjina, the tireless producer at what was then called Radio Mid-Day, for introducing me to this song. It was the year 2000. It never did well on the charts, though, and I always wondered why. Perhaps the lyrics were too deep? ;-)
MJ: Just went through the lyrics. I get what you mean :)
Love I'm Jeff Goldblum in "The Fly". Brilliant!

SK: 6. Wake Up, Sid - Iktara (male version)
When I heard the female version of this song, I was floored. Amit Trivedi was my new favourite composer. Kavita Seth, who had done a classy rendition of this song, was the new Geeta Dutt for me. But then, a few weeks later I heard the male version by Tochi Raina, and I was blown. I bowed to Amit Trivedi's genius a hundred times in my mind's eye.

MJ: Tochi Raina was on my show One Mumbai One Music on Radio One a few months ago...and I he really is one of the most eccentric and interesting people I've ever met. There's a method to his madness and it's fascinating watching him work. Really cool guy...and I agree. This is one of the best songs by him. 
I also had the pleasure of speaking with Kavitaji almost at the very start of my show and I had her sing the song in the very specially for you and everyone else seeing this page...I'm giving you her performance of the song before she headed out of the studio. 

SK: 7. Meat Loaf - Objects in the Rear View Mirror
Most rock fans remember Meat Loaf's Bat Out of Hell II: Back Into Hell for that one chartstomping song, "I'd do anything for love (but I won't do that)". But my two favourite songs from that album were this song and the next in this list. There are two other songs I really love from the album: "Good girls go heaven (bad girls go everywhere)" and "Rock and Roll Dreams Come Through", but these two top the list. Together with Jim Steinman (the producer and the songwriter), Meat Loaf created stuff that hits you hard with its philosophical edge. There are very few rock songs with such deep meaning as these two. Steinman and Meat Loaf fell apart later, but what they created during their epic partnership was pure magic. "When life was just a highway, and the soul was just a car." How can you argue with lyrics like that, huh? Easily one of the greatest rock albums ever.

SK: 8. Meat Loaf - Life is a Lemon and I want My Money Back
See above. Only, better and deeper lyrics

MJ: Brilliant songs. You've just made me realize that I need to go back and listen to "Bat Out Of Hell II" and some of the older Meat Loaf albums. I remember when I was a teenager, his 7th studio album "Welcome To The Neighbourhood" was released in India...and it had this next song. I remember I had the cassette of this album and I spent a LOT of time with this song. Gosh! Revisiting Meat Loaf time is here! 
Meat Loaf - I'd Lie For You (and that's the Truth) (Duet with Patti Russo)

SK: 9. Michael Buble - Spider-Man theme
The Spider-Man theme is perhaps every kid's favourite song. It was the same for me when I was growing up in Mumbai, and Doordarshan had a 15-minute show every Sunday afternoon. That rendition, I think, was by Ramones. So, when I heard the Michael Buble version for one of the Spider-Man movies, I was blown. Who'd have thought that jazz and Spidey could go together?
MJ: Well...just to take you on a trip down memory's the original :) This was for the 1967 animated series and since then the song has been sung by a ton of other bands. Originally, the lyrics were written by Academy Award winner Paul Francis Webster, while the music was composed by Bob Harris. 
MJ: The Ramones version was actually for their 1995 album ¡Adios Amigos!
MJ: Also special mention to the Aerosmith version of the song. Check it out!

MJ: Also special mention to the Aerosmith version of the song. Check it out!SK: 10. Rizwan and Muazzam - Naina de Akhay (Coke Studio version)
Coke Studio Pakistan is perhaps one of the best things to have happened to YouTube. And this interpretation of a Punjabi folk song by two of Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan's many talented family members (they are his nephews) will tell you why. It was also sung earlier by their supremely talented (now late) uncle.

MJ: I so agree on this. Coke Studio Pakistan was and is absolutely mindblowing! I remember that when I had discovered it a few years back I had put up the entire season 1 and 2 here on The MJ Show. 
(In case you want to revisit them check out:
I remember that back then and even now, my favourite song on the show was a song that Javed Bashir, singer of Mekaal Hasan Band had done in season 2. 
What a voice he has! Absolute magic. And then the song itself! Holy shit!
It's got swag! When the beat kicks in after his phenomenal vocal almost feel like headbanging or well just going nuts!! In the words of Russell is not just's mindblasting! 

MJ: Right then! That's a whole lotta music isn't it! And that's just part 1! Loads more songs chosen by Sachin the next episode! Come back to check out the set!

Get in on the action! Let me know what you think about the songs on: or in the comments here :)

Right is now time for me to say good night and take care! :)
This is your Musicman...Mihir Joshi...signing off!

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