I usually drive alone and my route is constant. It takes me 90 to 100 minutes from my workplace in Gurgaon back home to Noida. Add another 45 to 60 minutes when it rains (wincing as I write this as it brings back aches and agony). The only companion that I have during my journey is my Music (and of course the co-vehicles in front, back and sides).
Now I have two Musics in my car – the radio and the playlist on the drive. Its been a battle royale since last year when I created a drive with over 200 songs. It has led to confusion and chaos in what used to be a simple life. Heck another technology bane! .
From a dozen channels that have different genres playing ranging from Western, Indian, remix n more, sprinkled with doses of news, some chirpy bursts from the RJs, a now and then contest, a did you know that kind stuff, the traffic updates and attempts at humour through those “jokes” n “pranks”, the radio is usually always on albeit channels might change during the commercial breaks.
The radio kind of holds a surprise, more like a gift coming your way when the song that comes along suits your mood and you want to really really want to hear one of those. I know some folks from office who leave only after a certain hour so that they catch the old Hindi film songs being played on specific channels during their way back home. Some channels have started playing snippets of songs that will air in the immediate part of the transmission and one gets tempted to stick to the current channel. I feel it’s a dirty trick. It takes away the element of surprise. Now one knows whats coming. Its like being told your future and then life is not the same!
Which is exactly same as a playlist that I have on the drive in the car. I know where each song is in the list and more importantly I know what all songs are there on the drive. Even though I have a collection of songs for each mood. The romantic peppy numbers, the soulful melodies with less background music, the evergreens, the ghazals, sufi bursts, the old country songs, the dance numbers, the remixes, the eye jerkers too for those self-pity moments (sigh).
Enough Said. The point that I am trying to make is if I want to hear a song I know which dials to press on the console. Easy. Quick. And matches the mood. But what happens after I hear one song. It like a loop. Suddenly you are twitching to move the dials to a song you think you want to hear, hear a bit and then move on again with the recognition that I have heard this one so many times. Yes, of course, the biggest advantage is that there are no commercial breaks and in addition there exists the advantage that having a decent collection does impress folks when they sit in your vehicle. You get to play the Car Jockey and are bound to get a compliment as “hey nice collection” , “Can you make me one too” (smiling), “Its been ages since I heard one ..wow” . Some music to the ears after all the hard work done to select, download and copy the songs in order.
But all said and done I still remain a Radio fan. The radio will play in my car. After all its been a regular customer in all my vehicles. So do I never cheat 😉 Well strictly speaking.. at times the temptation is too strong. You know the next songs on your fav channel, other channels have commercial breaks or news and then the hands do twitch. The dials do get fiddled with.
“But this flirtation doesn’t last long. Soon when a DTC bus pulls up against my car and they have this beautiful old Kishore Kumar number “Sarakte Jaye Hai Rukh Se” playing, my hands itch to change back to the radio channel to see if I can catch that song as well.
Such is the power of radio ahem…correction the power of music that it does pull some strings every now and then… the heart strings that is :). The battle royale can continue but in the end it will always be the good music that will win. Ta da ..da …da dee.. !!”