Self- Reflection

The ‘Hoax Call’ Diaries – [Episode 9]

Where the hell is this guy? Is he alright?” asked a worried Dg

Why don’t you call Demon and check,” I suggested.

Sam was Demon’s good friend and he might be with him outside college. So, Demon was called. After five full ring calls, Demon picked up the call.
And what he said really made us worry.
Apparently, Rumi had gone back to her ex over a fight with Sam. This had left Sam devastated. He had borrowed Demon’s bike and was missing.
I always knew, she wasn’t the one for him. He deserves better.” Shouted an angry Dg.

Though we all were angry on the girl for cheating our friend, but the sense of emergency was still more than the anger.

What is wrong with the guy? What the hell is he up to?” I asked, really worried.

That night we called all contacts and searched frantically for him but in vain.
His phone was still switched off.
We all were at Demon’s place trying to handle the situation and finding the broken heart soon.It was the next day morning when we were seriously thinking of an FIR, Dg gets a call.
What I figured out of the conversation was something like this.

Where the hell are you?” yelled Dg

And then there were a series of “Hmm”s and “I understand” and even “this is not the end”.
After talking for about 3 minutes, Dg ended the call.
We all were curiously looking at him to say something. But he was quiet.

For God’s sake will you please let us know?” asked Demon.

Dg still took his time, lit up a cigarette and broke the ice.

“Let’s go to Jamsawli”.
“What?” we asked in unison.

Jamsawli was a place in Madhya Pradesh, some 70 kms from Nagpur.
Apparently, Sam out of frustration rode all the way to Jamsawli and forgot to get fuel for the bike. So, on his way back he is stuck somewhere where he managed to charge his phone and call back.Finally, after much difficulty, Sam was located and brought back

And then it was a season of getting stoned.We started smoking up seriously.For 15 days we smoked up, day and night.
Sam got a new excuse.
“I can write well when stoned”, he used to say.

But we knew it was crap. He was just escaping the situation.
Rumi came back and apologized for her behavior. But Sam didn’t forgive. We were happy because we felt that was right.
So another semester ended in month. The rosy romantic days came to an abrupt end for Sam. But the solace in writing a song was missing for him.

He was still going through the “writer’s block”.
We chucked “Keep Smoking” and created a song named “Don’t think I am insane.”
The lyrics were gibberish and were funny. So we created the song in punk rock progression. The song turned out to be good although.
Sam however was slowly lost in his life. He still could not accept the infidelity. He would stay high half the time and was still in search of that “song” which would satisfy him.

The summer vacations were to begin. All of us were ready to go back home. We were sitting at the “tapri’ smoking, when Sam appears all excited from somewhere.
Guys, I am going to ‘Shantiniketan’ this summer. It’s the Tagore festival. Anyone in?” He asked excited.
“Shantiniketan” is a small town near Bolpur in the Birbhum district of West Bengal, approximately 180 kilometres north of Kolkata .It was made by the famous Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore, who created a University with classrooms in open air under trees. Shantiniketan is a place where you find peace and is equally enriching in cultural aspects. It is perhaps the most developed cultural hub in any University in the country. This time of the year, there is however a huge festival; 8th of May marks the birth anniversary of the poet Tagore. It is a different sense of euphoria out there. People gather to celebrate his works.

Sam, I don’t know why decided to go and witness this cultural fair. May be he thought he might get some ideas, or maybe he thought he would find peace. Whatever was the reason, we four decided to join in for a 3 day trip to the abode of peace ‘Shantiniketan”.

baul

 

 

Chapter Seven

The Shantiniketan Phase.

The Band reached Shantiniketan not expecting much. They had a booking in a small lodge near the institute. Though Deep, Dg and Sam enjoyed the vibe, Daddy was a bit bored because he was the only non-bengali in the group. It’s a government holiday on the birth anniversary of Tagore. So families and many such working class people opted for a break utilizing the off and the weekend to the festival. The result however was not that great, especially for Sam.

“It’s too crowded. Damn” said an irritated Sam.

“What did you expect then? You and a bunch of intellectual musicians around?” replied Dg

“No. But what is the point. The rawness of this place especially the peace is affected by these city people. Disgusting” Sam said.

“Oh, which village are you from then?” joked Daddy.

It was an open amphitheater where stalwarts from Bengal as well as Bangladesh performed for Tagore.People sang, danced on his songs, recited his poems and even enacted his plays.

“Man, this guy wrote a hell lot of things. He was a genius’; Deep said realizing the quality and quantity of the poet’s works.

The entire day the four sat going through a different level of music session which had soul and not metal in it.
By the time, it was night, four of them started looking around the place, explore rather. The sound from the open stage echoed the skies. The whole atmosphere was peaceful with a calm breeze blowing from the trees.
It was around ten in the night, when the band decided to go for dinner but there was a problem. Sam was missing.

“Why is it always the same guy?” Daddy was irritated.

After searching for a while, Sam was found.He was sitting with his guitar with a bunch of ‘baul’ folks.

Bauls are a group of saints like ‘Fakirs’ in Bengal. They are marked by their traditional saffron clothing and an “Ektara”, a single stringed musical instrument. They are a religious group of saints primarily Vaisnavs and have a traditional folk genre of music. These songs are generally in the praise of the lord, and has a lot of impact both in lyrics and music. It is said even, Tagore was inspired from their music.

Sam was however sitting with them around a fire. One of them was singing in the praise of ‘Chaitanya Mahaprabhu’, the saint who preached Vaishanvism in Bengal, Bihar, Odisha in the 16th century.
There was a chillum lit. And the chillum was passed in the circle.Sam was smoking up with them.

Dg went and intervened.

“Sam what is wrong with you?” asked Dg.

Sam was however startled as he was disturbed suddenly. The baul stopped singing on the intervention.

“Oh you guys? Can you guys sit with us for some time?” asked Sam.

Then he introduced his band to the bauls.

The bauls though looked nomads were however very happy to welcome them in the bon- fire.

One of them said, “You guys are so young and it is nice to see the passion for music in you”. Then pointing to Sam he continued, “If peace is what you are searching, then my friend, you have to search it inside yourself. No place can be peaceful than your inner self”.

He was Nayandas Baul, the most elderly in the group. Looking at him, you can sense a different sense of spirituality. His eyes looked satisfied and happy when he sang. Although, he appeared to be in his mid 50s, he looked strong. The power of his voice penetrated deep inside the soul. And with the weed acting in the background, the process was even faster.

Daddy didn’t like the idea of sitting and smoking up with some random singing sanyasis. But then it was all about the experience. And he decided to give it a try.
Sam passed the guitar to Daddy to play along Nayandas Baul. The four of them sat with the three bauls experiencing a different level of folk music all night, talking and singing life.
Nayandas even tried singing a Bengali song Sam had composed back in his school with him. They spent the entire night jamming, listening more to the Sanyasis trying to grasp the meaning of their music.

Early morning, the saints had to go. They had to go to a nearby village to gather alms and preach through their music. Nayandas, however had developed affection for the band. He never had the opportunity to meet people who were so passionate about music at such a young age. He was even more amused when he knew how the band was formed.

Before he left, he told Sam, “When things go wrong in life, search for the music in you. If you hear it, the lord is alive in you. If you don’t, it’s time to praise him back. I will pray to god that all of you get what you came searching for. “

A musical night out in open sky had left everyone tired. The band rested the entire day.

Dg had recorded few of the baul songs that night while jamming with them.
Sam was listening to them. They still had another day to spend there in Shantiniketan. But Sam suddenly, decided to call off the trip and go back.

As it was anyways his plan and he decided to return ,everyone was more than happy to go home and enjoy the vacation.
The only thing Sam said in the entire journey back was, “How would a Baul rock sound?”
It seemed, he got what he was searching for.

 

 

This is a semi-fictitious and more of an original account of a musical journey of four different souls who at some point in their lives dreamed to make it Big.
The result was Hoax Call, an alternative rock band which started well but could never end!

The ‘Hoax Call’ Diaries – [ Episode 8]

College had however, suddenly changed. After Rourkella, we became quite popular in our college. People began to notice us. The result was however, a steady increase in the number of chat windows at night. Dg and Sam had started chatting almost day and night. Sam did not have a laptop then, so both Dg and Sam were chatting in the same laptop in two different browsers.

Daddy had begun chatting over phone with Kriti.

In a way, I was left all alone after the jamming sessions.

I did not have much interest in relationships, so I utilised the lonely time in listening to different genres of music.

As, the days passed, Daddy had become a complete romantic guy making Sam sing romantic songs as he spoke to Kriti over phone. Dg started going out with ‘Lustoo’.

Sam, however, wasn’t far behind. After prolong hours of chatting with well scripted dialogues and a very secret formula, Sam managed to go out with a girl form the college.

It wouldn’t be nice if I say he was “dating” her as the girl had a boy friend in her hometown. However, still, they appeared to me more as a couple than friends.

Slowly, as they started getting a different life, the band was suddenly no more a priority. The practise sessions decreased, as nobody had much time out of chats and dates. The decision of making new songs was suddenly erased from our memories.

The result  however, was not pleasing.

As days passed, life seemed to be better than before. Lustoo and Dg were almost part of our gang now. Sam by now had wooed Rumi completely. She dumped her boyfriend for him.

And she had somehow controlled him completely. So, Sam started to stay away from us when she was around.

We met sometimes only during jamming sessions, the frequency of which was minimal.

The semester passed, we completed another year in the college.

The first band contest in the new semester was a complete failure.

We could not qualify the first round itself.

It was that night, when we thought of a meeting.

That night was very depressing. It seemed that we had disgraced ourselves. I was thinking of getting drunk, when a friend of mine called him in his room. When I went there, I saw two more of my batch mates sitting there. My friend said he had called me to try something new. I was in no mood of fun then. I was about to tell him, when he placed the joint in front of me.

I had always heard that weed could change your mood in seconds, but could never try. Seeing a joint in my friend’s hand, I decided to give it a try. As the smoke raced inside me, I could suddenly feel lighter than before. All tensions were thwarted. A feeling of happiness was in every inch of me. I thought of sharing the same happiness with the rest of my band. And so I borrowed two more joints and went to meet my band in Dg’s room.

When I entered, Dg and Sam was in deep discussion. Daddy was abusing them for letting the band down.

“It is just because of you guys, we do not get much time for practise”, shouted an angry Daddy.

“Really? Is it just because of us?” replied Dg, “Do you get time out of your phone calls? Please stop blaming Daddy, even you are equally responsible”.

 

“Forget it Dg, Daddy is just jealous”, said Sam.

Daddy became furious on Sam’s comment. The atmosphere in Dg’s room was starting to heat up. And I had to intervene to stop them.

“Shut up guys!” I said, “The truth is that all of you guys are equally responsible. So, rather than blaming each other of today’s failure, lets plan for the future”.

I generally never spoke anything serious, but weed had brought out the philosopher in me. Seeing me serious for the first time, they decided to agree and settle down. However, it was clear from their face, that they were hell angry on each other.

To lighten them up, I brought out my secret weapon; the weapon of “Happiness”.

“Stop frowning guys, look what I have brought for you guys”, I said revealing the two joints I borrowed.

However, to my surprise, none of them were much excited about it. I had to coax them for nearly an hour to convince them to light up one of them.

 

Cannabitar

It is said, that the primary psychoactive effects of Marijuana is to include a state of relaxation, and to a lesser degree, euphoria from its main psychoactive compound, “tetrahydrocannabinol”. The secondary effect known is to stimulate hunger.

The first joint was enough to lighten up the mood of the gang. Once the first joint was consumed, the next one followed in a line, leaving four of us laughing hysterically at each other and desperately hungry.

We decided to go out for some sweets.

In the shop, an important decision was taken.

“Sam, we will start to compose your already written songs. It high time we make some music now.” Said Daddy.

Everyone agreed in unison to Daddy’s decision. We knew, we needed some more of our original numbers.

The following days the band came alive again.

We decided to do some more covers. We started with “Joker and the thief” by Wolfmother.

Sam brought the songs he had written. But there was a problem. None of us could make a good song out of the lyrics. There was this song called “No smoking”, which Sam changed to “Keep smoking”. However, when all of us were ok with the way the song turned out, Sam was not happy.

“This is not what I wanted the song to be”, He said.

“But it sounds well, we can try it,” Said Daddy.

“No there’s something missing”, Sam said.

And this sudden restlessness of Sam was a major setback for the band. Sam was not happy with anything he wrote suddenly. To the rest of the band, the lyrics were fair enough, but Sam was adamant. We had no clue what he was searching for. But whatever it was, the practise sessions in a way was frequent.

It was the month of April. The sun was at its best radiating as much heat it could to the city. The temperature was as high as 45 degrees. The entire college was busy preparing for their semester exams.

We decided to jam whenever we got bored of the studies.

It was a Friday. As decided, the band met in the music room at about 10 o clock in the night. We knew Sam was going through a phase of creative dissatisfaction. But that night he was missing.

Dg tried calling him but his cell phone was switched off.

We tried to search him in college, but he was missing.

Suddenly, there was a sense of emergency in each one of us.

The ‘Hoax Call’ Diaries – [ Episode 7]

 

After the show, the drive was much needed.

As soon as Daddy pressed the accelerator, we started accusing each other of making mistakes on stage. And it continued all the way. Daddy took us to a famous “chai” shop near the railway station. It was cold because of the recent rains. So we all had our jackets on. Sam was allowed to smoke as the show was over. We did not allow him to smoke for three days. We sat near the car ,drinking the famous tea. Just then Sam started the conversation.

“I think even if we made mistakes, we presented very well. No one could figure out the errors.”

“Exactly. I think the swap thing had worked too’, said Deep as he finally lit up a cigarette after almost finishing half of the matchbox.

“I think we need new songs, said Daddy passing the matchbox.

Making a song was not that easy. It took a lot of time and effort. I felt that although we were ready, but we still needed to do some homework.

“I think Sam should start writing.” I said.

Sam had a good sense of writing.

“I already have five songs written, my friend. And I have been shouting from day one to compose them,” replied an angry Sam.

We decided to start making more songs once we reached college back.

As we geared to move, we suddenly realised that the results will be declared in some time from now.

“Even we hold a chance to win it; or we don’t?” I thought all the way.

But when we reached the venue back, before getting down, Sam said,

“We had come here to perform well, we did. If we lose, we will be remembered. If we win, we will be remembered. We have already won!! “

Sam told something that made complete sense. It was our first band contest and we were happy with our performance. Crowd liked us. What else could be better?

When we reached the venue, the last band was playing.

They were trying the cover of a song from ‘Bullet for my Valentine”

After their performance, the judges came with the result.

Though, I could see tense faces, I myself was completely content.

After creating a huge “Aw” of suspense, the judges named “Hoax Call’ as the best among all the bands.

For sometime, we were startled. The crowd’s cheer proved that they were clearly happy with the decision. It was a great win for us. Something that was very amazing.

The next day we went to the BIG92.5 FM for the talk show. When we reached the office, the receptionist asked us to sit, while she called someone on the intercom.

The office was not much big. But however was very well designed. The walls were red with different posters of the radio station on the walls. There was a table for the receptionist in the centre. There were two couches on either side. We sat on the couch waiting to be called.

After 10 minutes, a man came and took us to the recording studio.

There we met our RJ. She was RJ Kritika.

“Hi I am Kriti”, she said as we introduced ourselves.

Chapter Six.

The band on stage was on-fire. They were really exceptional. The crowd were cheering for them.

Deep knew it would be hard for them to beat such bands, but it was still not sure whether they were playing that night. Dg still didn’t come. Deep felt nervous. He wanted to talk to Daddy about it.

Daddy was, however, still on phone.

“Long- distance seems to kill him” thought Deep as he saw Daddy busy giving a lot of explainations over phone.

Deep thought about the first meeting; the first time they met Kriti.

Deep Speaks

Kriti asked us to sit as she started airing the show.

“Hello Rourkella”, she began, “welcome to BIG 92.5 FM , ‘suno sunao, life banao’. I m RJ Kriti and as promised, today I have got with me on studio the band that rocked the city last night. Yes, we have the HOAX CALL”, she said.

Her voice was really as pretty as she was.

Right from the moment we entered, all of us were struck by her. And we all saw the same drool on each other’s face.

As we adjusted the mic in front of us, all of us had the same thought, “she is hot”.

As she began the talk show, for a moment we started feeling like celebrities. Kriti asked us to sing a song, and Sam sang the Juliet dedicating it to her and Daddy played the guitar saying it was hard to play in front of a pretty lady like her.

Unfortunately, we could not connect bass guitar or drums in the studio and so, we went for an acoustic version of the song. The result was however, sad, because me and dg were left out of the conversations.

Both daddy and Sam were racing to better the flirting.

Deep Ban

 

After the talk show ended, Kriti said,

“You guys look fun. It was great speaking with you guys”,

“It was nice speaking to you too Kriti. By the way, what are you doing   tonight? Why don’t you join us?” asked Daddy.

Kriti thought for a moment about any prior commitments and to our luck, agreed.

That night we went to one of Daddy’s friend’s party.

The guy was staying in a rented apartment.

We were ten-fifteen guys in the party including Kriti.

Krtiti however knew few of the friends from other source. As the night went, Kriti and Daddy seemed to be more engaged with their friends.

Since we three were just not acquainted with the rest of the guys and Daddy was in no mood to include us in his conversation, we concentrated on the pegs.

By the mid of the night, we slept off.

It was perhaps, the next day morning, when I woke up for the toilet, I saw Kriti and Daddy in the balcony. They still had a beer. They were busy talking.

That sight was however, extremely envious.

Next day we went back to college.

Twenty Five

 

The story started long back,

Long is the journey,

Time is flowing fast,

It’s already five and a twenty!

 

So many things to share,

So  many voices in the head.

So many reckless decisions,

All count to five and twenty!

 

The quarter of a life,

The quarter of distress,

The quarter of memories,

It is five and a twenty!

 

The things to do,

The wish list in your pocket,

The things yet to see

All turn to  five and a twenty.

 

The damaged soul,

The broken wings,

The desire to dream,

Fading slowly with five and twenty

 

 

The chains are still strong,

The shackles stronger even.

It’s time to break them free.

It’s five and a twenty!

 

One last chance,

One last time to live.

It is now or never.

It is five and a twenty.

 

The story may be old

Long may be the journey,

Things can still be mended,

It’s just five and a twenty!

The Last Note

 

note

 

 

The paper was blank,
Not even a drop of ink.
Just like this life
He was standing at the brink.

All his thoughts had stopped,
All the sorrows would end;
The decision was to quit
There was nothing left to mend.

The stars were glittering fine,
And the breeze blowing fast,
With the empty paper in his hand,
He dived into his treacherous past.

The days of glory,
The days when the sun shone bright,
He tried to recall all of them,
But alas! he found none to write.

He was chained by his melancholy,
Locked in his mind’s hell.
He had lived a life of solititude
And abandoned his moral cell!

Stunned by the agony,
Desperate to run far away,
He thought of writing one last time;
Wanted to scribble all he had to say.

Standing alone at the brink,
He was ready for the ultimate leap.
He knew the jump was necessary.
The jump would put him to sleep.

Death was not far he knew;
Death would be his final mate!
When life could never be friendly,
It was time to change the fate.

He left behind the blank paper,
With blood and tears he wrote,
Just like his empty life
Empty, was his  LAST NOTE!

The Shadow of the Sun

Image

Like the outcasted man,

Drenched deep till the bone.

Guilt, guilt you are

Forever standing alone.

Guilt, guilt you are,

With that ugly face.

Guilt, guilt you are

Ready to embrace.

Guilt, guilt you never,

You never give a choice.

Guilt, guilt you killed

Killed the inner voice.

Moments of peace,

Pieces of joy,

You  crushed all of them

Embracing the boy.

Guilt, guilt you are

Guilt you are the shame.

Guilt, guilt you are

You are the blame!

Guilt, guilt you are

Hidden within a suicidal man.

Guilt, you are within

The one who never can.

Guilt , Guilt, you are

Like the shadow of sun,

You were never there

But still can never run.

Guilt, you killed a soul,

You let it go free.

Guilt you are not guilty

Guilty for killing three.

The Life was ripped off

Ripped as you slowly came.

Let the souls rest in peace

With the guilt in my name!

The ‘Hoax Call’ Diaries – [ Episode 6]

 

Chapter Five.

“Are you guys next?” asked a 2nd year junior who had come to take back his instruments from the green room.

The question was directed to Deep. But the loud music from the stage made it impossible for him to hear. The guy repeated again.

“Hey dude, are you guys playing next?”

Deep was startled when he realised that they were indeed going to play next. The trance created by the weed was slowly fading away like a quick hangover. He didn’t know how to respond. He just nodded back.

“I wish to hear you guys” the guy said and left.

Deep realised, that the last show was indeed important.

From the first band contest to the last, the journey was not always easy.

Back in the music room, the cigarette was almost over. The auditorium had gone crazy. The whistles and the hooting were too loud to make any conversation audible. Dg looked at Sam. He was still thinking. Dg strained his voice.

“Why are you ruining our last performance?  What is it? It is about Rumi right?” asked Dg.

Rumi or Rumika was Sam’s girlfriend whose fidelity had always come under question in a year long relationship with him. It was not that Sam was bad. He was perhaps the best guy any girl would want. He did everything to keep her happy. But she was far too fickle minded to be with one guy it seemed.

“Rumi? Why would she even come into this conversation”?

“I have seen you all this year. How a happy-go –lucky guy like you stopped being happy and got into this new found love of yours called weed!!” replied an angry Dg.

“Stop this dude, let her go. You deserve better. Don’t just spoil our efforts because of someone like her. You had enough from her; it’s time to move on. She is not for you.”  Added Dg trying to hit Sam’s most delicate part of the heart.

“I have dude. I have moved on. She doesn’t make any difference to me. I have tried all means to make it happen. But it’s time to give it up. “ said a tired Sam.

“Then why are you doing this?” asked an irritated Dg.

“Doing what?” asked Sam.

“Ruining our last bloody show!” shouted Dg.

There was a moment of silence in the dark music room. Only the shouts of the audience were clearly audible. It seemed that the band on stage was really rocking it!!

“What is the use of performing well Dg? Any ways we are not going to win. “Sam pointed out.

“It was never about winning Sam. The first band contest in Rourkella, you remember? We never contested to win. We wanted to put up a good show. So, why not today? It is our last performance!” Dg added.

“Rourkella was never just a competition. It was everything that gave us the hope to be something big. It was where our lives changed” said Sam and flipped the last burning bud of the cigarette in the air.

“Rourkella was a hell lot of experience” Dg thought.

An amateur band turned professional in one night. The victory in the band contest was necessary.

Dg Speaks

The night was gloomy. There was a crowd of darkened clouds hovering over the sky. It appeared as if they were waiting for the right time to attack!

Rourkella was not a rock loving crowd. But still the turnout in the band contest was unimaginable. People of all age groups had come to witness the band contest. May be it was because this was something first of a kind.

Owing to the condition that not much people were into hard core rock music, we decided to go with a mixture of all time favourites and classic rock keeping in mind the criteria of the band contest.

Reaching Rourkella was however, a hell of a journey. None of us had our tickets confirmed and we ended up sleeping near the bathroom for 14 long hours.

We reached Daddy’s place in the early morning. His place was a typical “Marwari” place. His mom flattered us with all sorts of delicacies.

Her target was however Sam. Sam was quite thin then.

She would say,” Son, by the time you go, I’ll make sure you have gained enough weight”.

???????????????????????????????

The competition was 3 days later. We got 3 days to practise and understand the crowd.

Another important revelation was that, the winner of the band contest would be invited for a talk show in BIG 92.5 FM radio station.

We wanted to outdo ourselves in the contest. And to do that we devised a new plan to capture the crowd.

When we went to the stage, the crowd had already been charged up by the previous two bands.

We began with a heavy number. It was a cover of the “Joker and the thief” by Wolfmother.

The crowd took it well. The next song was a difficult one. We tried the cover of “Fade to Black” by Metallica. Though, the crowd might not have heard the song before, the judges seemed to acknowledge our effort with frequent nods and smiles.

The next one was what we definitely knew would be one of the crowd’s favourite number.

Sam started the “Summer of 69” with the same scripted dialogue he used in our first show.

The crowd suddenly got a number to sing along. They went mad.

People, especially the youths were shouting, screaming all around.

It was just then, Sam all of a sudden jumped in the crowd. He ran with his microphone just to a flock of young guys singing the song. People got even more excited. The song left the entire crowd shouting “Once More”.

But then we still had our “trump card” left. It was now the time for doing something new.

Sam took the stage again.

“Thank you guys, for you support. You guys rock. The next song is dedicated to all the beautiful ladies here tonight”, declared Sam.

There was a huge roar of appreciation from the crowd, especially, the female groups.

But we had different plans.

Sam continued, “The next song is an Original Composition by us. We call it Juliet.”

Just then Daddy interrupted as decided before.

“But Sam, I don’t feel like playing this guitar anymore”, said Daddy.

The crowd as well as the judges were suddenly confused. This was something unusual.

“Even I don’t feel like singing anymore. What do you suggest?” asked a tired Sam.

“Let swap”, I said from behind the drums.

The crowd still had no idea what was going on in the stage.

We, however, had everything well rehearsed.

I got up from the drums and took Daddy’s guitar. Daddy went and took my place behind the drums. Sam went and took the bass. And Deep took the mic.

The crowd now realised what had happened. And they burst into applause. This was perhaps the first time a band was swapping their roles on stage.

I had taught Daddy a normal four-by-four beat for the song, which he managed very well. I was also been taught the basic open chords for the song. Deep could sing and Sam had practised on bass.

The performance was good overall. The crowd really enjoyed our show.

But before the results, there were four more bands to perform.

“Lets, go out for a drive”, said Daddy.

We thought, we had a good one hour in hand. So we decided to go out for a drive.

 

to be continued….

(This is a semi-fictitious and more of an original account of a musical journey of four different souls who at some point in their lives dreamt to make it Big.

The result was Hoax Call, an alternative rock band which started well but could never end!)

The ‘Hoax Call’ Diaries – [ Episode 5]

The next one month was hell of a jamming session for us. The music room was not allowed to be open during class hours as it would disturb the ongoing lectures. So the time we had was from evening 5pm to morning 6 am. But then there were certain rules to be followed.

Firstly, there were just two keys for the music room. One key would always be with the cultural secretary of the college. The Cultural Sec. was a final year student who had been elected to the post. Now, the time available for practise has been equally divided in the form of a time table between all the registered bands of the college (including us!) and those who were interested in learning music (music classes). The other key would be circulated among the bands as they followed the time table. But the last band of the day should write their name and contact number for the first band in the next day to get the key.

It was a systematic process. But the problem was, there were few people who kept the key but did not turn up for their scheduled practises or were not reachable when needed. This was really causing a hell of a problem for us as we missed our slots in search of the key.

It was a Thursday night. I had retired to my cosy bed after dinner and was planning to watch a sci-fi movie when Dg called me.

“Deep, get ready. We will practise tonight from 11 pm”, he said.

I was not prepared for this sudden practise at all.

“But we do not have a slot today. We had it yesterday. Then how can we go? “I wanted to know trying to avoid the idea of leaving the bed.

“Well, ‘Ozone’ have cancelled their slot today. So we can use their slot.”, said Dg

“But what about the key?”, I was still desperate.

“Well, there is this secret. Last week when I took the key I made a duplicate out of it. So now on, we do not need to  keep looking for the key.” Dg relpied jubilantly.

I was not at all amused.

“What if someone knows?” I asked.

“Chill! No one will never know”, he said.

That night we practised well and in the coming nights, we sneaked in whenever we found the music room empty using the stolen key.

Days passed faster than night.

Everybody practised hard. No one cared about my fingers.

“Damn… I am playing a bass guitar for God sake! Look at my fingers. They have swelled up.” I shouted.

“Fine, we take a smoke break for Deep’s finger”, declared Sam in the music room.

“You guys will be smoking here?” asked Dg. (He didn’t smoke then.)

“Ya, why not? “ I asked.

“It’s not your room fatso! What if someone catches us? Are you going to answer?” asked Dg.

“Come on Dg. Do you think a professor would leave his bed and come to check us out in the music room at 2 am in the night? Daddy said, “We’ll smoke outside may be.”

We used the smoke-break properly but we were generous enough not to smoke in the music room. We went out the other door of the music room to the small open concrete ground which ended towards the gymnasium.

Well that day we started it and never cared of getting caught.

One month of practise had made us somewhat better than what we were. But apart from the proficiency in our parts, this one month was special for two more reasons.

As we prepared for the band contest, we realised that we needed to take up songs that were difficult and more specifically had some breath taking guitar solos. After much persuasion, Daddy was ready to practise his solo skills. But what was a problem was that we needed a support guitarist to play the chords while Daddy played the solo.

“We already have gelled well. I don’t think we can get another guitarist with the same thought process.” Sam said.

“But, without another guitarist, we cannot think of playing guitar solos in our songs”, I said.

“ Deep, I feel Sam is right. It was already hectic to get four of us together. Getting another head count in the band and that also in such a short notice will be next to impossible”, Dg said.

There was a pause in the small tea shop.

We all knew, we had a problem and the solution was tough.

Daddy took a long drag of the cigarette and said,

“I can offer a solution!”

Daddy always had this uncanny habit of creating suspense where he said a sentence which urged us to persuade him for more.

“How?” asked Sam forcing Daddy to pass on the cigarette.

“We are four guys in our band. Deep is already playing bass, Dg is already playing drums, and I am the lead guitarist. The only person without an instrument is you, Sam. So, why don’t you learn guitar enough to play the chords?” suggested Daddy.

Sam was busy pulling the last puff of the cigarette when Daddy suggested his name. He almost chocked off the last drag.

“What?”

“Wow! That’s a great idea “, shouted Dg.

Sam was really not prepared for this. He was also a lazy bum like me.

“Are you guys crazy? How can I perform with a guitar? And how am I supposed to learn guitar in a month?” asked Sam

“Just the way I learned Bass in a month. Besides you can perform better with a guitar”, I replied.

The decision was taken. Majority ruled. Sam had no choice. For one month he stretched his fingers under the harsh supervision of Daddy and Dg.

So, Sam B was the vocalist as well as the support guitarist in our band as we decided to take on the band contest.

images

The second reason was really sweet. It was the day before we left for Rourkella. That day, after we practised, Dg decided to stay. And that was weird.

“You guys carry on! I have some work left”, he said.

No one cared what work Dg had until Daddy said on our way back,

“What work could Dg had?”

Sam tried but couldn’t resist a smile.

“What is it Sam? You know it right? Why did Dg stay back?” I asked.

But Sam wouldn’t say.

But when both Daddy and I forced him, he spilled the beans.

Apparently, Dg was mad about a girl in the college and had decided to woo her by promising her to teach guitar in the music room.

But once, such a secret thing is known and especially when a drummer decides to teach ‘guitar’ to woo a chick, it becomes the responsibility of ‘good’ friends like us to scrutinise the matter.

So we went back to the music room to see what he was busy doing.

When we reached, we saw Dg through the window. He was busy teaching the girl the basic “A major” chord. He was busy touching her hand and positioning her fingers on the fret board.

That was something that every guy would desperately want to do but in private.

And just then, Daddy said,

“This just can’t happen friends. I am the guitarist and I suggest let’s interrupt”

The fact that all the three of us were dead jealous of Dg at that point was evident from our action.

We stormed in.

On seeing us enter, Dg was astonished and in the process he left her hand. He really didn’t expect us there.

“Hi Dg. Are you teaching her guitar?” asked Daddy.

Dg was about to say something but swallowed it. For some time he didn’t know what to do.

Finally he hold back himself and said, “Oh yes Prashant. I was just trying.”

And that day we were introduced to the girl who soon became a part of our band. She was nicknamed “Lustoo”, the love interest of our drummer.

And that night, Sam really had to give a hell lot of explanations for letting out Dg’s secret.

The next day, we left for our first ever band contest to the state of Odisha.

 

 

to be continued….

 

(This is a semi-fictitious and more of an original account of a musical journey of four different souls who at some point in their lives dreamt to make it Big.

The result was Hoax Call, an alternative rock band which started well but could never end!)

The ‘Hoax Call’ Diaries – [ Episode 4 ]

We went in at about 7:30 pm, just before dinner.

Sam took the stage.

“Ladies and gentlemen, before I start with our first number, I have a condition. You know, I am a very bad singer and I really cannot pull it off unless you sing with me. So people, get ready to enjoy the summer back in 69”, screamed Sam.

The reaction to the above ‘well-scripted’ dialogue was unbelievable. People roared back to it getting a chance to mouth the song they know with the band.

And as the opening reef of the song echoed in the open air, I could sense a rush of adrenaline down by spine. Everybody in the crowd screamed rather than sing. And Sam, all of a sudden went in the crowd with his cordless mic. People jumped and people hooted as together everyone screamed the chorus part. The dance floor in all other departments seemed to be empty. People were rushing in like a wave into the crowd to see who was playing.

Once, we ended the first song, Sam came back and fixed his mic to the stand.

He shouted, “The next one is an O.C (original composition). This song is dedicated to all the beautiful ladies out here. We call it Juliet.”

The crowd, who had already screamed their vocal chords out screamed again, and this time, I somehow managed to hear female voices more than the male ones.

As the song went, to my surprise, I found the crowd clapping on the beats. It was really odd to see a hyper-excited crowd sober so well with the change of the song.

When we ended, there was a roar of applause and trust me, it was so hard that I couldn’t hear what Sam said next.

“You’ll have to repeat it”, I said.

Sam nodded and repeated.

“That was all we had tonight. Thanks a lot for your response. We are the Hoax Call with Dg on drums, Prashant on lead guitar, Deep on bass and me, Sam on vocals. Thank you”, said Sam and signed off.

There was a moment when all the four of us looked at each other’s eyes and we said the same thing in our hearts.

“Well done guys! We rocked! ”

As we were unplugging our instruments, I saw a group from the crowd, especially girls approaching Sam and congratulating him for the show.

“And I thought it was a team effort”, said Deep pointing towards Sam who was busy with all the attention.

“He is the vocalist dude. He would always get more preference”, laughed Dg.

I didn’t comment but I was equally jealous like the rest of the guys. “But that was just a part of the long journey”, I thought.

The brilliant performance of ours needed a celebration and so we went to the hostel terrace to celebrate it in our style.

We, were four of us and a school friend of Sam’s named ‘Demon’. His name was no way ‘Demon‘but must be something that we never knew; thanks to Sam.

He was forever a demon in our school. So we gave him this nickname”, chuckled Sam.

Demon had become a common friend of our band. He was not from our college, but I swear to God that apart from our batch mates, even the guards were certain that he studied here and lived in our hostel.

I was high on my beer. Deep was making pegs for the rest of the gang (I didn’t like whisky then); Dg went to create history by pissing from the terrace on the ground and Demon was capturing that moment; Sam was busy finishing off the last packet of chips.

It was just then, my phone rang.

Chapter Four

His phone rang.

“Your cellphone is ringing!” said Deep.

Daddy was lost in a train of thoughts and took him some time to react to the incoming vibration in his pocket.

He pulled out the cellphone to check who was bothering him at that moment. It was Kriti.

“Damn! Why does she need to call now and spoil my mood!” thought Daddy.

Deep could not help but smile at his irritation.

Pick it up dude”, suggested Deep.

Daddy gave a disgusted look and answered the call.

As Daddy was busy talking to Kriti, Deep looked at his phone. He had the Hoax Call logo as his wallpaper.

“The last performance”, he murmured to himself.

“Four years are way too less”, he thought.

Deep

Deep Speaks.

Daddy spoke for the first time after hanging up the call.

We were all curious about the call after he signalled our attention while talking with someone about something that sounded interesting.

We were all looking at him expecting him to say something.

But he was busy finishing his bottle of beer which was no longer ‘chilled’.

So after about 3 minutes of suspense, Daddy, finally broke the ice.

“We guys have been selected to participate in the battle of bands, in Rourkella !”

“Rourkella?” asked Sam, “When did we apply?”

Even I had the same confusion. When the hell did we apply for some band contest in Rourkella?

“Well, Delhi Public School in Rourkella is organizing this contest and I had asked my friends to see if we could participate. The answer is yes; we can.“ Daddy clarified.

 “When is it?” asked Dg who had been pissing off the terrace few minutes back.

“Next month” said Daddy.

So, you guys should begin practising. What’s the first prize?” asked Demon

“8k it seems”, winked Daddy.

Where do we stay there?” I asked.

“In my place”, Daddy replied.

to be continued….

(This is a semi-fictitious and more of an original account of a musical journey of four different souls who at some point in their lives dreamt to make it Big.

The result was Hoax Call, an alternative rock band which started well but could never end!)

The ‘Hoax Call’ Diaries – [ Episode 3 ]

 

Chapter three.

The music room was always small. But in the dark, it looked like a huge coliseum ready to welcome the wounded gladiators. The amplifiers, the keyboard and the huge drum set looked like treacherous monsters hiding a secret that was never to be told. Dg squeezed in trying to figure out the darkness giving his pupils enough time to see through the dark. A small ray of light entered from the other door. It was open. The street light near the other end of the music room which directed towards the college gym was responsible for the slight illumination. Dg tried to switch on the light when he heard Sam from outside the back door. He was sitting near the gym.

“Don’t switch on the lights please”

Dg did not switch them on. Instead, he followed the trail of light outside the door where Sam sat.

What is the matter with you?” he asked.

He did not respond. Instead he threw a question back.

“How did we get the name btw?”

“What?” Asked an irritated Dg

“How did we get the name ‘Hoax Call’? I was trying to remember. This weed kills your memory cells you know. Do you remember?” Sam asked.

Dg knew it would take time. So he sat beside. “Do you have a smoke”? He asked.

Back in the green room Daddy was restless. This was his last performance in college life. He wanted it to be great. But what suddenly he realised was that the journey so far was not that bad.

As he sat there fixing his processor, he went back in his memory lane. A simple jam what he thought had installed a hell lot dreams, a dream to make it big.

 

 

Daddy Speaks.

“How is the name, ‘Hoax Call’?” I said.

“Not bad.  But why such a name?” Sam asked.

“You don’t always have to have a reason. Why are ‘Scorpions’ called ‘Scorpions’? Is there a reason?” Deep wanted to know.

“There might be a reason. Besides, if you want to know why we want to name ourselves Hoax Call I have a reason!” Dg added.

 

Daddy 1

 

 

Well, I was the one who suggested the name and truly speaking I didn’t have an answer to Sam’s query because the name was just a random name that came up in my mind. Besides, I felt this name was far better than “Rubber Band” which the other three had zeroed.

“Go on Dg”, I wanted to know what he thought.

“Well. If you see our band, it’s nothing but a miracle. One month back we didn’t think we could make it. But tonight’s jam made me realise we can really go far. And that makes us unpredictable; just as unpredictable as a hoax call.” Dg said.

That was not a bad justification.

Truly speaking, I had been with different kind of people in my life so far, but these guys were different. They had the wish to do something out of  music. And the worst part for me was that they thought me to be a pro guitarist and so I had to overdo my abilities.

But whatever it was, the band kicked off really well. The first performance on stage was rather unusual. It was not any cult fest in our college or so. The plan was something that came out of Deep’s mind. A perfect plan for the perfect launch. Till now we had been practising in the music room. The people in the college had no clue of our existence. It was the mid of August.

Metallurgy dept had shortage of fund to organize a DJ night like the rest of the other branches. It was what we called, “Departmental Gathering”.  So, in order to cope up with other branches they needed something to make it “cool”. Deep came up with the idea of a rock show instead of a DJ night. The idea was well accepted by the organizers. And in return for Deep’s favour, they agreed on giving us a 20 minute time slot for our performance.

“This is just what we needed. We will go just before dinner. Crowd will be more then.” Said an excited Dg.

Dg was never wrong in his planning. He was like our Manager.

But the problem was, we were not the only band performing. There were many more. But they were already recognized in the college. We needed to do something different to catch the attention of the audience. The question was, “How and what?”

“We are not a heavy metal band guys. We are not even punk rock. What are we?” asked Sam.

It was true. I am not ashamed now to admit the fact that we were not that good at that time. Not that good to blow people’s mind with a growl or a guitar reef or a double bass drum solo. But we had one thing that the rest of the guys didn’t have.

I had always felt that in a live show, it’s always the performance that comes prior to the musical part of a song. The rest of the bands were very good with their music but lacked a front runner who could sway the audience with a performance. In a live show, when the crowd is busy banging their heads and raising their voices, it really matters how well you can gel with them; how well you connect with them.

Sam, unlike the rest of the vocalist was very energetic on stage. He had this special talent of making the stage alive.

“We are an alternative rock band. But what makes us different from the rest is you Sam.” Said Deep.

“Yes, you have to make the audience sing with us”, said Dg.

I agreed. The first time we perform in front of the crowd, we all wanted it to be the best. So we zeroed in the cover of the most common song by Brian Adams, “summer of 69”. The reason was that we wanted the crowd to sing with us. Apart from that we had an original composition named “Juliet”. It was a romantic Hindi song that Sam wrote about two years back.

The night was beautiful. There was a slight breeze just after a heavy shower. It was an open air concert. The lights were fit in and the monitors where checked.

We went in at about 7:30 pm, just before dinner.

Sam took the stage.

 

to be continued….

(This is a semi-fictitious and more of an original account of a musical journey of four different souls who at some point in their lives dreamt to make it Big.

The result was Hoax Call, an alternative rock band which started well but could never end!)

The ‘Hoax Call’ Diaries – [ Episode I ]

 

Chapter One

 

“Let’s burn it down baby”, he smiled.

Deep looked at him with a doubt?

“Are you sure Sam? We are already two joints down. We need to be on stage in another 15 minutes.”

Sam was desperate. He needed to separate himself from the real world. He wanted to be in a state of trance.

“I can’t resist”, said Sam.

With one blow on the matchbox, he lit up the third joint.

As he inhaled the thick smoke of the weed (ganja), he realised, he was letting off all worldly attractions.

Deep was too scared. So, he let Sam relish the third joint himself. He wasn’t scared of getting caught. He was scared of screwing it on stage. He was the bassist after all. And he very well knew that Dg, the drummer wouldn’t spare him for any mistake on stage.

Dg was very particular with his band. It was he and Sam who had dreamt of making a group to quench the thirst for music they had.

Sam, however, lately was lost; lost in his own life.  Dg knew him well. It was only he who understood Sam completely.

“Stay with Sam, do not let him get high!” warned Dg as he sent Deep to monitor Sam before the show.

But Deep was himself a little more attracted towards the sinful paths of glory.

As he saw Sam, take the last puff, he knew he was in trouble.

As the last rush of weed mixed tobacco entered his blood, Sam sensed his heart beat rising. He could hear his own heart beats as loud as a thunder racing ahead of time, trying to make out a song with a very different beat. His eyes very getting closed. There was a constant smile on his face. (The side-effects of Weed. You just can’t stop laughing.) His cheek bones were paining because of the constant stretch of the muscles as he couldn’t avoid an obvious smile.

Deep saw his eyes turn blood red.

“You can sing right? You won’t screw it?” asked a worried Deep.

“I need to stay alone Deep. I am locking myself on the other side of the music room. Call me when you have 5 minutes to go” said an already-high Sam.

 

band_pic_(4)

 

 

Way back near the dressing room, Prashant (who was better known as “Daddy”) was tuning his guitar, when he saw a worried Dg come.

“What’s the matter Dg?”

Damn. Both Deep and Sam are missing. We have another fifteen minutes to go. I needed to make sure that Sam remembered the sequence of the songs.” Said Dg

“Don’t tell me they are getting high!”

Dg didn’t reply. He just shrugged.

“Damn. If Sam comes high and screws the show, I am going to look for another vocalist for the band. If he has personal problems, he better solve it. I can’t always be a laughing stock on stage. You better tell him!” snapped “Daddy”.

He was angry. And his anger was just. It had been thrice before this that Sam had gone up on the stage dead high and ended up fooling the name of the band.

Daddy had been patient till date thinking he was playing his part well. But soon he realised, that at the end it’s the band and not individuals who ride the show.

Dg knew such a point would come when there could be a disrupt in the band. “When people lose their ways, their priorities change,” he thought.  He wanted to help Sam, but he wasn’t ready to let it out.

Deep came in some time and informed that Sam had locked himself up.

“Ask that Romeo to come here soon Dg or else I’ll start packing my instruments and head back to the hostel.” Daddy gave that disgusted look.

Dg had no other option but go.

“What’s wrong with him? How can he be so damn foolish?” He thought.

As he reached near the music room, he heard the performing band scream on stage,

“Ladies and gentlemen, this is our last song. Hope you enjoy it.”

He knew, he had a maximum of five minutes to get him back on stage.

He took a deep breath and used the key he had stolen back in his second year for easy access to the music room. The door creaked as it opened. It was dark inside.

 

to be continued….

 

(This is a semi-fictitious and more of an original account of a musical journey of four different souls who at some point in their lives dreamt to make it Big.

The result was Hoax Call, an alternative rock band which started well but could never end!)

The Truth.. an introduction

It was the beginning of yet another week. But I had no clue about it.This constant and never-ending term of joblessness seem to have crippled me.While everyone goes out to work, its just like another holiday for me. The constant  pressure to do something regular and the constant  desire to do something different had resulted in a war inside.While the thoughtful brain constantly runs like a “daemon thread” trying to find out a way to do something to please the family….to do something to slam the society’s stupid and unwanted criticisms and filthy questions that are constantly becoming a trouble to healthy existence, the clueless mind on the other hand is still weaving knots of all those unfulfilled desires,constantly checking the wishlist.What more can you expect after that? A series of argument with reasons from both side… a brain pretending to be over mature and a mind trying to break the shackles and let loose.
This is perhaps something that we experience when we live two lives at a time. I never wanted to be someone I am today. This is something that can’t be undone or erased from the past. As a kid, I liked to dream and I dreamt to live.My imagination would have no limits, and by the time I  came back to reality, I realized that not all can be lucky enough to choose a profession of their choice. The desire to convert my thoughts, imagination and dreams into the big screen was not enough to fight against those who decided my career. Engineering was never a choice, it was a compulsion. A force to secure a better future. Perhaps they were right. The future could have been better if I could continue killing my dreams each year. But then suddenly everything seemed so suffocating.The job,the life, the place…. !!Life was just passing away..and I didn’t have time for it. Chocked and disgusted I quit…but then little did I know..that the ghost of my past will still haunt me…
Yet another week will pass and I won’t get a clue about it. And may be the reason is… I still couldn’t gather the guts to listen to my heart.Time has made me weak… a coward …still searching for a secure hold..! I am still scared of the ocean … I am still scared of the crowd….I still have to learn the truth….I still need courage to go out in the middle of the road and boldly shout…
“Let It Go”!!
I still need guts to kill my brain and say…
“Let my heart live…. let it dream again”..