A walk down musical memory lane


I still clearly remember my maternal cousin giving me an audio tape – Off The Wall by Michael Jackson and this was my first very own audio tape. And man, did the song “Wanna Be Starting Something” literally start off my musical journey or what.

That began my unending fascination with the King of Pop, Michael Jackson and it therefore followed that his “Bad” was one song for all occasions for a long time to come. When I used to come back from school, on Saturday afternoons and entire Sundays, during summer and winter vacations, this song was almost on an endless loop for very many days, months even.

And then Classic Rock happened. My eldest paternal cousin, the one I used to look up to and consider a role model in many things, including taste in music gifted me an Audio CD – Cross Roads by Bon Jovi and the first song in that CD, “Living on a prayer” took my music appreciation to an entirely new level. The way the song started, the keyboard riffs gradually building to a crescendo with the drums literally exploding out of nowhere leading to the lead guitar riffs was truly an out of the world experience for me. You have to hear it to believe it.

This started a lovely musical journey for me with Bon Jovi, U2, Def Leppard, becoming mainstream bands for me and regular features on my music player and Walkman. When I was in high school and college, you would be hard pressed to find me silent. All the while I used to be hearing to and humming one or the other song at will.

Given that my dad was well travelled, he introduced me to the soulful tunes of Kenny G and his saxophone and this song The Moment holds a special place in my heart as it almost always managed to bring a tear to my eye and extraordinary peace to my  mind whenever I had any ‘teenage troubles’ bothering me.

And then in 1994, when Greek composer Yanni performed live at the Acropolis in Greece, my fascination for western instrumental music took entirely new proportions. The next few months were spent in listening to and appreciating the finer nuances of composers creating contemporary western music and using philharmonic orchestras to present them to audiences. Santorini was a classic example of one such piece which haunted me to no end in those days.

And then when I grew older and mostly started listening to MP3 songs on my system, Linkin Park burst on to the scene with their immortal track In The End. This marked a new phase of fascination with the contemporary rock genre for me with groups like Linkin Park, Creed, Limp Bizkit, Hoobastank ruling the roost.

In recent times, after I started my career, life kind of caught up with me and it took me almost 8 odd years to get back to listening to music regularly. And guess what old favorites Linkin Park with their latest album Minutes to Midnight and more specifically the track Waiting For The End played a huge role in music reappearing in my life in a big way.

While most of the above journey contains only the non Indian music that I have enjoyed over the years, the influence that Ilaiyaraja, AR Rahman, Harris Jeyaraj and Yuvan Shankar Raja have had over me has been tremendous. In B-School, when I rediscovered my South Indian Tam Brahm roots, songs from Tamil movies played a huge part in me recognizing and appreciating the huge ocean of talent in these music directors. AR Rahman in particular continues to wow me consistently with almost all his songs, barring a few.

Thus, it would be not be an overstatement if I stated the music has and will continue to play a huge role in my life, more so given that my little two yr old daughter seems to enjoy her Tamil movie music quite a bit 😀


This post is written for WordPress Daily Prompts : 365 Writing Prompts where the idea is to publish at least one post a day based on the prompts provided.

Today’s prompt was “What role does music play in your life?” I took the liberty to use this prompt to chronicle some of the wonderful artists and composers that I have enjoyed over the years.


The image used in this post has been sourced from Google Image search.

8 thoughts on “A walk down musical memory lane

  1. Now, that’s what I call a truly musical post. My browser is still reeling from all that “loading” but totally worth it. Thanks for sharing a snippet of your musical life with us Jai. It was thoroughly enjoyable 🙂

  2. Guess what! My musical journey begins and ends with Bon Jovi, and his jawline. 😀 On a serious note – glad you included Kenny G in the list. A different post and one that I ‘played’ this holiday morn. ‘Bad’ took me back to school, ‘In the End’ reminded me DU college fests and Kenny G got me back to my saxophonist husband. I journeyed with you. 🙂
    Loved it!

    • @Sakshi, believe it or not, I had this entire phase where I was listening a lot to Kenny G, Richard Marx and George Michael, the ‘romantic phase’ of my musical journey 🙂 And A plays the saxophone, that is quite something else 🙂 Remind me to ask him to play me something the next time I visit you

  3. Music, I feel can bring alive even the dead ones. There would be hardly anyone, who wouldn’t feel the various emotions attached to it. I see that MJ rocks your list too. Your collection is just awesome. 🙂

    • @Rekha, thank you so much, this post was just a small attempt to chronicle some of the music that I have really enjoyed over the years, glad you enjoyed the journey 🙂

  4. That was a great collection of songs and artists. Some of which match with my favourite artists too. Michael Jackson is undeniably the king of Pop. Yanni another great performer. Music is a must for me too. My day starts listening to any form of music. That gives me the motivation to go on. Loved this post on music.

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