I have always sung whenever I have wanted clarity or just some time off. This comes so naturally to me that come to think of it, this is something I have taken for granted. When I actually thought about this after a reporter recently asked me, I became aware of few things which I had to share.
I don’t know if this happens to others, but I walk around with this music inside my head. It is not a loop but different songs depending on circumstances, my mood and people around me, just like people see colours when they close their eyes. During my daily routine work it is usually some old Hindi song; like Dev Anand’s – Main zindagi ka saath nibhatha chala gaya. When I am really high and happy it is a full fledged symphony orchestra; like Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto No.2, or R.D. Burman’s – Duniya ne humko diya kya and Yeh kya hua. When I am down it is Ilaiyaraja’s Mouna ragam or Punnagai Mannan melancholic sound track or a lone violin tune like the one from Godfather. I realise its more to do with the tune rather than the lyrics. I wish I could plug the music in my head on to others so that they may experience the same joy I do unplugged, but I guess I am one of a kind, maybe that sets me apart.
In my mind I also automatically allocate songs or ragas for different people I come across. An angry man with blazing eyes is usually Bilahari ragam, happiness is always Kalyani or Shankarabharanam, rain is Durbari Kaanada or Sahana. Again I don’t know why only a particular song or raga occurs for certain people. They are that song! It becomes their identity! Borne out of these songs and ragas are characterisation for my novels. The mood in the songs shape the path and the life the novel takes and a variety of songs I listen to shape what I write at any given point. It comes naturally to me that I have never given it its due or much thought for that matter. I have wondered if it works in a similar manner for others or it is the case only for the musically inclined. Maybe it’s uncharacteristic but it’s the way it is. When I listen to more kinds of music more ideas flow, when I change the mood of the music, my kind of writing also changes.
So I literally sell my stories through a song!