To memorise and be possessed by Satyajit Ray’s music.
I dream of memorising the marvellous music and songs from Satyajit Ray’s films. I dream of being possessed by it. No other filmmaker in the world has made films so musical, with such singing music. Even speech (dialogues) in Ray’s films have music, even silence.
Consider the swing scene from the film Teen Kanya. The joy on her face is the joy I find in Ray’s music.
I mention this scene because the film’s theme/title song plays during the scene. No words can say how lovely this song is.
Stop reading this post and listen to it 4 times on repeat: Teen Kanya theme song (YouTube)
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I want to have Ray’s music kanthasth (कंठस्थ) — a beautiful Hindi word with two meanings:
- something stuck in the throat
- learned by heart; memorised
I want to memorise his music and songs so well that they get stuck in my throat for life, so that I can sing them all the time and without mistakes. Like the atmosphere that his music creates in my heart is how I will memorise them — in my heart, at my throat.
… the pleasure of finding out that the music sounds as you had imagined it would, more that compensates for the hard work that goes into it. The final pleasure, of course, is in finding out that it not only sounds right but is also right for the scene for which it was meant.
— Satyajit Ray
There’s a wonderful documentary film called Music of Satyajit Ray by Utpalendu Chakrabarty that you should see to see the genius, Satyajit Ray, at work and for his thoughts on his music, along with beautiful stories around it.
From the documentary:
There’s no getting away from the fact that no other film director in India has demonstrated the same command of film music as Ray. Ray’s music is imaginative, not melodramatic. Balanced, not exuberant. Functional, not decorative. It is music that grows from the film itself. It seems that Indian cinema is not prepared yet to adopt the language of Ray’s music.
Sadly, this is still the case: that Indian cinema is not prepared yet to adopt the language of Ray’s music. And it’s actually much worse. There’s no Indian cinema. The music sucks. And art is long dead. Our degradation and decline is nowhere as evident as in the art of this cursed century of tech, comfort, and absolute mediocrity and its acceptance.