More Folk

Quite a few posts about re-packaging tradition. So what is this theme, and why?

Today, we see that many of our traditions are fast fading away, whether through lack of support or audience, or due to the fact that the younger generation are not too interested in these. This is, in large part, because much of our cultural heritage is seen by children as staid, un-glamorous, or boring. However, today, many people are re-packaging our tradition to bring this to the younger generation in a way that is attractive, glamorous, and enjoyable. Many of the traditional songs are being re-packaged in this way, and through these posts, I am trying to present some of these changes which are happening, which are bringing much of our tradition back into the forefront of the cultural landscape, both in India and Pakistan, and among the diaspora.

Continuing on this topic, and of repackaging cultural heritage, especially folk music, here are some more.

To begin with, heres the wonderful song about the great Saint Lal Shahbaz Qalandar, the Saint of Sehwan, this one sung by the inimitable Runa Laila, a few decades ago. Anyone growing up in 70s or 80s India, Pakistan, or Bangladesh would not have missed this, and this song would now be an integral part of childhood memories.

And heres the song performed by Junoon. While theres a gap of about two decades between these two, theres also a gap of two generations between the two renderings of the song. And this gap makes a huge difference between the way the song is heard, and the audience it appeals to.

These two renditions straddle two very different musical worlds and two different generations, bringing this great composition in honour of the great Saint to a newer audience.

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