Please don’t stop the music

Please don’t stop the music

I don’t think everyone in Bombay will care about discotheques. They were not a popular destination for most residents and were only open to those who could afford them, which automatically eliminated a few million people from being able to step into one. He too was looked upon with suspicion because what happened in such a dimly lit hall made many concerned about the moral degradation of the youth of Bombay. I think of them though whenever I move past buildings that once housed them.

We didn’t really need much money to enter a discotheque in the old days, as there was almost always a discotheque that catered to people with lighter pockets. Juhu had room for lonely college students who couldn’t buy more than a beer, but headed to Three Flights Up, Go Banana, or Cavern because it was nicer to spend an afternoon there than a dusty lecture hall. Those in Bandra had rock around the clock, while those with a higher allowance could stroll through Fire ‘n’ Ice or the mythology of the 1900s. Even those who hated dancing and loved banging heads found a home in Razz Rhino.

It is hard to describe why those places were so popular among people of a certain age, when even the ghosts of Bombay’s discos are difficult to track down. Did we collectively decide to stop dancing together after graduating and settling into boring careers? Were the owners of those places tired of trying to make their enterprises commercially viable? Did the people running the city decide that Bombay didn’t need any more places associated with wine, music and dance?

To be fair, it’s not like the need to dance in public continues to grow in most cities around the world. It’s as if the human desire to celebrate together in an act of abandonment has all been broken down into little cells by all of us, to meet in groups of five, and to stay home to binge-watch shows on Netflix. . There may be economic or social reasons for this, but I can’t feel that something is lost for them as I have never experienced the joy of dancing in a crowd. It’s not just nostalgia.

Music no longer plays an important role in our cities. Our idea of ​​music is now entirely fueled by the Hindi film industry to feed us, which is why our celebrations on the big screen are marked by weddings, or tragedies, or songs born with abominations. Is. Number. These songs involuntarily become ingrained in our daily lives and reappear on the street when some of us choose to play them during the festivities. That is why even our deities do not get the benefit of quiet meditation, and are constantly subjected to a barrage of hits that have taken the place of once deeper spiritual phenomena.

The arrival of a pandemic means it’s safe to assume we’ll never dance together again, as we once did in those long-forgotten abandonment pockets. It’s sad that we no longer consider music an essential part of our daily lives. The kind of music we have now is the kind that is forced to be played to us illegally through massive loudspeakers installed in street corners and building societies. It is not pleasant and has a corrosive quality which serves as a perfect accompaniment to nightmares of commuting or working in Bombay. It’s the soundtrack to a city that’s rapidly falling apart and being replaced by something decidedly ugly.

Where does one go for that kind of nutrition nowadays? Our restaurants play the same music that mobile phone operators do while someone waits to be served by their customer service executives. Where is the classical music that echoes in the streets of Dadar, or the quiet corners of our suburbs that throng with smiles on people’s faces? It seems that international acts don’t mind visiting our cities anymore, as they have wowed us as spectators.

This isn’t a rose-colored call for the return of discotheques. It’s a sigh; A lament that once sounded like a city of music whose streets are overwhelmed with noise. Maybe this is the reason why we can hum on the go, but now no one will hear us.

When she doesn’t boast about all things Mumbai, Lindsay Pereira can almost be cute. He @lindsaypereira . tweeted on

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The views expressed in this column are those of the individual and do not represent the views of the paper



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