I’m in between novels, hence more frequent posting. I’ve also been spending more time on Youtube researching various musical threads – so much so, that at this point I can probably do a favorite video of the day (I post videos daily on facebook). So what to do? Well, I suppose share them with you all, right?
Back when I was putting together the Music From Everywhere CD, I knew I wanted to include a song from Lata Mangeshker. She is after all, the voice of Bollywood and my first introduction to this music style. Dilbar Dil Se Pyare was the song I chose. The rhythm made me think of camel caravan stretching across the desert. The composers did a good job in conveying the atmosphere of the song because just recently I discovered the song really is about a caravan. And not just any caravan, a Gypsy caravan.
Lata Mangeshkar – Dilbar Dil Se Pyare – Caravan, 1971
While the music is strictly late 60s Bollywood, the dancing seems to be based on traditional Gypsy/nomad dancing from Rajasthan. I particularly like the use of the wheel in the choreography.
Oh Kesario Hazari Gul Ro Phool
The real Banjara-Gypsy dancing is beautifully performed in the much referenced (on this blog, anyways) Romani movie, Latcho Drom.
According to a translation on Youtube, the young Banjara boy is singing about a girl he loved who was so beautiful she was dangerous. “Beware the evil eye” was included in this translation.
It is believed Romani/Gypsy people left northern India about one thousand years ago in successive waves of immigration into Central Asia and Europe performing music and dance during their travels and sometimes were made slaves to perform as royal court musicians.
Another aside, of all the music of the Romani diaspora, it is Flamenco with the twelve beat compas and the rhythm of “Gypsy” Indians that is most closely related. In Flamenco there is a type of song called martinetes, derived from the hammering of metal smiths similar to what is shown at the beginning of the clip.