2048: Times Of India Headlines....

SupriyaRanjan DasMunshi(grandson of PriyaRanjan DasMunshi) has announced a 'Dream Big, One day we'll achieve' project for the 2050 World Cup football to be held in Bangladesh(Automatic Qualification for them). India is yet to qualify for a football World Cup.

Shoroth Basu has been elected the new chief minister of West Bengal. No points for guessing which party he belongs to! Kerala and West Bengal are still ruled by the Left Front.

Infosys Technologies Limited, India appointed their 10000000th employee! Moreover, they celebrated their 'touching' of the 75-Billion mark, with distributing 'La Gauche' leather jackets and 'Police' sun-glasses to all.

An unknown old man, claimed to be Subhash Chandra Bose, before he breathed his last. He died in a village near Ayodhya and had several scars on his body, which he had claimed to be of a 'plane crash'!He was believed to be 174 years old.

Though millions of people are still unemployed and illiterate, Rajiv Tushar Prasad, the prime minister of India, publicised the successful testing of Vikramaditya 16, a nuclear missile of the range of 9400 Kms.

The Indian cricket team lost in the finals of The Carlton and United Tri-Nation One-day series, to Australia, in Melbourne. The last time they had one a tri-series outside the sub-continent, was 47 years ago in England(Natwest Challenge). Sourav Chandidas Ganguly,74, the estranged former Indian skipper, requests the people of the country to cheer for their team. (Please listen to Dadu (Grandfather)!)

Dev Anand's (127 years old) new production, Masti in Melbourne, has hit the theaters. It launches a new face named Pratiksha Mehta(former Miss India).

Dhoom 22 has been shortlisted as the official entry to the Oscars. A lot of hopes are clinging on to this movie, Indian Cinema is yet to recieve an Oscar.

The Pakistan Prime Minister Sharfaraz Ahmed, has called for a meeting with the Indian Prime Minister, to settle land disputes around the Cashmere region.

An unexpected Tornado brushed the shores of western Gujarat. The exact numbers of death and injury are still unknown.

P.S: This blog is completely hypothetical and its not meant to hurt anybody's sentiments!! :)


They were inducted to the ‘UK Music Hall of Fame’ this year. One of their single is considered to be the best/greatest/finest rock numbers of all time. They were recently ranked #1 in VH1’s ‘100 greatest Rock Artists’ of all times. A year back, they received the ‘Lifetime Achievement Grammy Awards’. Widely known magazine, ‘Guitar World’ labeled them as ‘World’s greatest band’ in a February 2006 issue.

Rock fanatics world over (please include me) consider ‘Led Zeppelin’ as the pioneer of Rock music and the initiator of Pop/Rock culture phenomenon. Introduced to their music by a childhood friend of mine, I wondered what it is all about, coz it appeared completely different to me, compared to other musicians of their ‘Genre and Gener'(Read Generation)! I was held-neck-forced/threatened/blackmailed to hear their compositions by this friend of mine, after I used to go ga-ga over Metallica and Pink Floyd. It took 8 mins and 3 secs of soulful crooning accompanied with a shift to some high-pitched vocals, heavy guitar riffs and galloping baseline, to make me realize/understand that I had undertaken my first ‘theory’ session of Rock Music or rather I had found the long-awaited ‘Stairway to Heaven’!!

James Patrick ‘Jimmy’ Page, Robert Anthony ‘Percy’ Plant, John Paul Jones and John Bonham embarked on a journey or rather undertook the responsibility of mesmerizing the ‘Human Race’ with their inspiring music. Jimmy Page started his ‘serious’ career as a bass-guitarist for ‘The Yardbirds’ along with noted classy guitarists Jeff Beck and Eric Clapton. ‘The New Yardbirds’ aka Led Zeppelin (originally named Lead Zeppelin) was formed by Page hiring Birmingham scene singer Robert Plant, drummer Jon Bonham, and John Paul Jones (a keyboard/bass guitar specialist). The first four albums Led Zeppelin 1, 2, 3 and 4 (the fourth one actually didn’t have a name, but only 4 symbols) catapulted Led Zeppelin to super-stardom. They became a household name in the early 70’s. They have probably touched every genre starting from blues, reggae and soul, going through funk and jazz and ending with classical, Celtic, Indian and even Arabic and Folk music. During the early 70’s they spread a unique clothing and hairstyle that would become a legacy among Rock admirers. Terms like ‘Rock God’, ‘Hammer God’, and ‘Guitar God’ would become rock jargons in years to follow.

I have a crazy fondness towards their single ‘Stairway to Heaven’. Plant says ‘the lyrics just got struck one fine day, when Page was strumming something and he was scribbling something on the paper. He penned down the ‘immortal’ lines of ‘There’s lady is sure, all that glitters is gold, and she’s buying a stairway to heaven’. (I am getting goose-pimples even while writing this down). Though some people say that the song had ‘satanic’ implications if heard backward, Page and Plant rubbished such grapevine saying twas a simple song with a simple message ‘A woman getting everything she wanted without giving anything back’!

Songs like ‘Heartbreaker’, ‘Rock and Roll’, ‘The song remains the same’, ‘Kashmir’, ‘Going to California’, ‘Four Sticks’, ‘Whole Lotta Love’, ‘Achilles Last Stand’, ‘When the levee breaks’, ‘The rain song’ among others are my favourites too.

The extremely pacy ‘hammer-ons’ and ‘pull-offs’ in the song Heartbreaker, is a treat to all rock worshippers. ‘Whole Lotta love’ covers trademark Page guitar-riff, free-jazz like breaks, an irresistible Plant vocal solo (famously called the ‘orgasm section’) and finally breaks into one of the most famous guitar solos of all times. A famous personality(don’t remember the name) once told “The famous Whole Lotta Love mix, where everything is going bananas, is a combination of Jimmy and myself just flying around on a small console twiddling every knob known to man”. ‘Going to California’ is a stark contrast to their trademark songs. It’s more about soulful lyrics and captivating Plant vocals. The list doesn’t end and I can go on and on!

A heartbreaking and untimely demise of drummer Jon Bonham (due to asphyxiation, it seems he had 60 shots of Vodka the night he died) supposedly lead to the ‘end’ of Led Zeppelin in 1980. Though they reunited for many concerts/relief shows and other stage performances, the same ‘Led Zeppelin’ wasn’t to be seen again.

The band, accordingly to me, hinged on these two stalwarts (not undermining the other 2’s credentials) -> Jimmy Page and Robert Plant. Jimmy Page, a base guitarist to second-lead to lead guitarist is the founder and soul of Led Zep. He has an ‘iconic’ status among Rock devotees. His eclectic(diverse) stylings, studio mastery, musical improvisation, stage presence and overwhelming charisma is unmatched and probably will be unrivaled with years to come. His trademark Gibson Les Paul guitar (a double-fret with which he famously played Stairway to Heaven live), the fuzz guitar (for Whole Lotta Love), slide guitar, pedal steel guitar and a Marshall amplifier are rock memorabilia and a collector’s delight.

Robert Plant, a perfect foil to Jimmy, a quintessential rock front man, an adroit and rare soul-vocalist is the embodiment of ‘stage bravado’! Emulating him or for that matter ‘his voice’ is next to impossible, at least I feel so! He even had a wide range of musical taste and was brilliant in writing ‘mysterious’ lyrics too. It is believed, Plant had to undergo an operation during the late 80’s as he had tore some vocal cords singing high-pitched songs(It took quite some time to heal!).

According to me, a ‘live’ performance of ‘Achilles Last Stand’ in a concert in 1977 should be considered as their best performance ever. The song is a ten+ minute epic with a hurtling base-line, lightning fast drumming, and harmonious guitar riffs, along with Page and Plant’s most revered solos, especially a haunting vocal solo from Plant. (P.S: The entire vocal performance of Plant was on a wheel-chair (after an accident)). It’ll remain in the hearts of those present over there, in years to come.

Led Zeppelin’s ostentatious dressing, onstage bravados, crazy hairstyles and above all ‘Musical Influence’ have permanently placed them in a league of ‘Great Rock Musicians’.




They say he was not fit for it! He had epitomized the sanctity of an introvert soul. He had groped for that definitive simplicity or rather minimalism to make certain that the common populace would effortlessly construe his graspable preaching. He never dwelled in the waters of an esoteric ocean of obfuscating thoughts. Never ostentatious, never a swank! He wasn’t a charlatan, he could never be one!

They say he was not fit for it! He had improvised when the situation demanded him. He had sacrificed innovation and the ‘Erudite intellect’ for the hoi polloi! He had built a crenellation between his inward and outside existence. He never let the two intermingle with each other that would have jeopardized his innocuous survival.

They say he was not fit for it. Did he get it all wrong? Didn’t he show his alacrity towards understanding the human mind completely, an arduous task though? Wasn’t he fervent enough to achieve what he set out to do? Where laid the glitch? Why didn’t anybody come forward and remediate his imperfections? Was it too late? Or was it the one-upmanship of this evil society that precluded their attempts?

Whatever it is, they have proved that he was not fit for it!!!

What should he do now? Now, that everything is over. He has lost a chance!

P.S: An attempt at interpreting the meaning of the above metaphorical thought process can lead to permanent malfunction of the sane mind. The writer shouldn’t be held responsible for the same.


Unbelievable! Believe it!!

Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar had a fault in his footwork when he used to go for his square cut over the fielder at point. How many of you knew about this? Very few, I guess! It was me, yes, me, who changed it all. I met him when he was practicing nets in Mumbai many years ago. He saw me intensely watching him practice. Finally, he came up to me and asked for some inputs. That was it! The next day, I took up the responsibility of changing his footwork, so that it goes front and sideways back as he goes for his squarecut. That was 15 years ago. After that, there was no looking back or rather as they say Its History!

Pete Sampras used to have a two-handed backhand. How many of you knew about this? Very few, I guess! It was me, yes, me, who changed it all. I had gone for a holiday to New York when I met Pistol Pete. He was pretty adamant about not changing his two-handed backhand. I spoke to him over a lunch break. Told him about how this will change his life, how he will grow and become an icon. He listened to me. Two years after that, he won his first Wimbledon and with time, went on to become the greatest champion that ever treaded on the grasses of Wimbledon.

Michael Schumacher was/is a supercilious person. The champion wanted to stay with Benetton and race for them throughout his life. I met him in an exhibition football match at Munich, Germany. (I was also playing in that match). At half-time, I took him aside and explained to him about how it feels to race for Ferrari, how he could change the world, if he decides to drive for the Reds and believe it or not, he signed for Ferrari next season. Needless to say, rest is History!

Thierry Henry, the lanky and charismatic French forward was a left-winger when he used to play for Monaco at the tender age of 17. I had gone to Paris for some charity work. I met him at a restaurant. I happened to speak to him about changing his style and revive his career as a left-forward. Quite unbelievable, but yeah he listened to me. He is now one of the most lethal forwards on this planet and defenders, they simply curse me! :)


Do these names ring a bell?
Jimi Hendrix, Jimmy Page, Joe Santriani, David Gilmour, Slash, Steve Morse, Carlos Santana, Mark Knopfler, Kirk Hamett, Keith Richards, Dave Murray, Kurt Kobain, Eric Clapton and Mike McGready among many others. These men have devoted their life for only one cause, a cause which is beyond the attainment of a ‘normal’ human soul, a cause which changed the lives of many music lovers. In short, they have propelled music lovers like us to reach ‘Nirvana’.

The sound of the guitar is just not like any other sound. The extraordinary abilities of the above mentioned stalwarts have lead to some inconceivable music for which they took the aid of only six strings of an acoustic or an electric guitar.
These dexterous gentlemen (don’t take this word seriously please) have excelled in their modus operandi and simply created musical delight, which will keep ringing in our ‘ears’ for ‘years’ to come.

Jimmy Page’s Stairway to Heaven keeps on enchanting people to this date. It’s the biggest selling Solo ever. Gary Gilmour had probably no clue that ‘Comfortably Numb’ and its 5-minute classical strings to end the song will make him a GOD among psychedelic rock admirers. (Not freaks please!!). When Axle Rose stops crooning November Rain and makes way for Slash to stand on ‘his’ platform, an unforgettable musical mayhem is created(again only 6 strings are involved). I haven’t listened to Jimi Hendrix LIVE (obviously not), but I have heard that people found it difficult to do two things at the same time, listening and breathing, such was the effect he created when he played Voodoo Chile among a mammoth live gathering in USA. Kurt Kobain had own style of playing the six-string. He was left-handed and he enthralled the audience with his deep voice and adept guitar-playing skills. (Consider Smells like a teen spirit or Man who sold the world). I am a big fan of Metallica’s Kirk Hammett. I take the assist of ‘Nothing else matters’, ‘Fade to black’, ‘Turn the Page’ and ‘Unforgiven’ to change my mood or rather elevate me to a position of ‘Divine Serenity’ (Please don’t try to find meaning in this!).

I can’t imagine a world without these guitarists!


My rendezvous with insane fantasies!

My love or rather the passion for the game of football dates back to my early school days. I remember i use to have these fantasies when i was in my 10th standard. It will sound very frivolous now, but in those days they use to be like 'real' stories starting at midnight and ending early before i got up! I don't need to mention who the protogonist was in those tales, its pretty obvious that I was it! :)

One such story:

I get a call from the top boss of Manchester United, Sir Alex Fergusson.(Manchester United's Manager) (I wasn't a crazy Arsenal fan then) "Hey Sounak, i have seen you play football in India, when i had come for a visit there. U are pretty good ya know that, i kinoff feel u'll shine in Old Trafford (Thats Manchester United's massive stadium in England). Why dont ya give it a try? I mean u can pack ya bags an come all the weah to England and i'll guarantee ya 1st team action..what say buddy?" I am still holding the phone, though i am dumbstruck and obviously speechless! I gather my composure and am like.." Are you serious Sir? I mean do you mean what you want to mean? am sorry...i mean to say Sir am i really that good that made u feel that i am good.." Oops..what am i saying..for god's sake am talking to one of the biggest sporting stalwarts in the 90's, its bound to happen, am bound to stammer!!!" I am sorry sir, but is this really for real, i mean is this reality, is this happening?"

Sir Alex " Yo son, but it ain't happening until you plan to land in Manchester in five days time, coz the pre-season training gonna start within a week's time"

Then there is a time-shift in the story! I am 'teleported' to Old Trafford! (The subconscious mind doesn't believe in Visas, i guess! :))

I touch the 'green', say a silent prayer and enter the ground with millions of fans chanting my name, God knows why? Maybe the time-shift has some concealed episodes which i wont know! Under the cacaphony of jubilant manchester united fans, i start my English Footballing career, with goose-bumps all over my body! My touches, ball-control, passing are simply immaculate. Its like, whatever i touch turns gold! My shots at goal are simply brilliant and the ferocity of my free-kicks leaves the opponents panting. I apologize for not remembering who the other team was! Actually, it was all me. Then came the moment i was waiting for, i dribbled past 7 players with all possible skills that the greatest players to ever play the game would be envied off! It was me, one-on-one with the goalkeeper! I even dribbled past the goal-keeper with a famous Johann-Cryuff turn (football lovers would know that) and find the net, with a cool finishing! The crowds go berserk, i don't feel my pulse for a moment, its like a 'dream in the dream come true'. I celebrate with a nonchallant attitude without any arrogance in display. But i couldn't stop myself from giving that 1 leap airbound, that would finally bring my doom!

Yes, i fall down from my bed, holding my back and my mom is like 'One more dream right?' 'Ebar otho, brush koro aar school jayo?' (Get up, brush ur teeth and get ready for school!) . Why do these fantasies end such abruptly?? :( Anyways, i shouldn't complain. i enjoyed every moment of the adulation i got from those people in Manchester! :) :)


An enigmatic figure, right from his Marseille days, he was a person difficult to understand! His footballing acumen and his unmatchable vision will be unrivalled with years to come. He had achieved what people only dreamt of, winning the Spanish league, champions league, a world cup and add to that his 3-time World Footballer of the year crown! His ball-control, ball distribution, bursting runs, twists and turns made him the most envied footballer on this planet! His uncanny knack of doing things the easy way made him a 'Living Legend' on his own right. I have worshipped this person my entire life and learnt the 'concept' of ball-control from this magnanimous stalwart!
But, then why did he chose the occasion of a World Cup Finale to change it all, his image, his worshipper's trust and belief, his team's hope on him! Why, Zinedine why? The reason asked to him is not because he is playing his last football game, nor is it that he is the french leader, even not because its a World Cup final, its because it is 'The' Zinedine 'Zizou' Zidane that did it! A demi-god doing an act of 'evil' so to speak, is untolerable and has left the planet shocked and shattered!
All said and done, we shouldn't take anything away from the Azurris! They deserved every bit of that beautiful cup they kept on kissing the rest of the night! Hats off to all the penalty takers who held their nerves and converted in style. i felt the italian captain was absolutely marvellous. Fabian Cannavaro gave it all, there was a point where i felt he was overdoing things! :)
Neways congratulations to the Italians, rightly named 'THE FIFA WORLD CUP 2006 CHAMPIONS'!!