Tuesday, June 28, 2016

The Business of StartUps

The dictionary of business has got a new word - 'startup'. Wherever you look you come across Startups in all sectors of business and industry. And a person who often figures in conversations about startups is an entrepreneur, engineer and inventor who's 45 today...

His name is featured in most of the top lists - whether Forbes or Time 
Global Game Changers
Most Powerful People
Most Influential Persons
Richest in Tech
... and so on



Elon Musk

Elon Musk is best known for the companies that he has founded and he heads. And I have a song for three of these. 

The fastest, safest platform for online payments was co-founded by Elon Musk. And the song that I think best suits this company is from Dire Straits... Money For Nothing

Space Exploration Technologies Corporation, better known as SpaceX, manufactures and launches advanced rockets and spacecraft. Fly Me To The Moon

His most popular venture these days is Tesla - the automotive and energy storage company that designs, manufactures, and sells electric cars, electric vehicle powertrain components, and battery products. And the song for this company is Always Look On The Bright Side Of Life.

I must admit, not all the songs were my idea... the latter two songs featured above were his choice of songs when he did a guest DJ appearance at LA radio station KCRW.



Monday, June 27, 2016

'Teesri Manzil' Se.... 'A Love Story' Tak

My Facebook pages and also most of the groups that I am part of (including some that I manage) have been extremely busy today, 27th June is the feast of 'Our Lady of Perpetual Succour' - that's the name of Mother Mary that my parish as well as my school have been named after. And this year the feast saw an extra special celebration that was linked to a Jubilee Year.

Last evening, members of the parish put up a special entertainment programme including song and dance and drama across various languages and styles. And of course Bollywood had a fair representation there as well... 

As I opened Google Search this morning, I noticed a special Google Doodle dedicated to Bollywood and a man who contributed to its popularity from the 60s to the 90s - Remembering the legendary music composer from the world of Hindi Cinema on his 77th birth anniversary

Rahul Dev Burman (Pancham Da)

Rahul Dev Burman - affectionately called Pancham Da, ruled the airwaves with his compositions ranging from still popular Dance Hits (most of them have become remixes that still play at most discos even today) to soulful ballads and just easy listening tracks. Over his career, he composed music for 331 Hindi movies and also voiced a few of the songs he composed. 

The Sixties - Rocking, Romantic and Funny

It all started on the 'Third Floor' - 'Teesri Manzil' - a mystery thriller that had a whole lot of music and dancing - including gems like O Mere Sona ReO Hassena Zulfonwali and Aaja Aaja Mein Hoon Pyar Tera.

From wooing the women on the dance floor to trying to win the pretty girl next door - this is definitely the funniest Hindi song (or is it Hindi) I'd heard in all time - Ek Chatur Naar.

Most of the movies in the 60s were about seeking romance looking for the Queen of Dreams - Mere Sapnon Ki Rani.

The Loud Seventies

As RD moved to the seventies he had a distinct sound that is still characteristic of his music. His most popular works in the 70s in my opinion are 

Mehbooba Mehbooba from Sholay

Piya Tu Ab To Aaja from Caravan

Dum Maro Dum from Hare Rama Hare Krishna

The Sober Eighties

The wild seventies gave way to story-line based eighties - and indeed a big change in the genre of film music. My favorite Pancham Da music track of the 80s is from the movie that focussed on a little boy - an probably had all of us in tears - Masoom. The song that we all definitely remember is the play song - Lakdi Ki Kathi.

The Romantic Nineties

R D Burman passed away in 1994 at the age of 54. His last work won him acclaim very much like his first. The movie 1942 A Love Story - Ek Ladki Ko Dekha.

The Remixes

Most of his songs of the 70s have become famous in the 90s and 2000s as remixes, but the fitting tribute to him - is this song back from his first movie - Teesri Manzil - sung by his wife - the ever versatile Asha Bhosle - O Meri Sona

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Celebrate MUSIC....The Elixir Of Life

But how did music come along? Let's hear about The Evolution of Music from Pentatonix.

I was born with music inside me. 
Music was one of my parts. 
Like my ribs, my kidneys, my liver, my heart. 
Like my blood. 
It was a force already within me when I arrived on the scene. 
It was a necessity for me - like food or water. 
- Ray Charles

Like Ray Charles, I too have been born with music inside me. I may not be famous, but music has this way of inspiring me. And I must say 'Thank You For The Music'

And I just can't keep it to myself... I just have to share it...

Over the past two years, I've been sharing this wonderful gift of music by leading the singing in Church every weekday morning. Having changed my work timings, I had to skip this music in my life. I'm back to my old timings now and back to praising God for the talents He has given me by sharing it with others - not just by singing but also by teaching. I'd Like to Teach The World To Sing.

I've taught my children to sing... and then even worked with choirs... I've also taught young music enthusiasts to play music on the keyboard and the guitar... 

And nowadays, thanks to the social media, I get to share a lot more music with anyone who's interested with daily posts on my Facebook and Twitter pages including Musical News, Trivia, Birthdays and more... If you're not yet a fan or follower, go ahead and connect now. 

On World Music Day today, I wish you all not just today... but everyday filled with music. Here's something to celebrate the difference that Music makes...

Friday, June 17, 2016

I Write The Songs....

I Write the Songs ... to make the whole world sing.

Indeed he does...

I had a day off today, and was spending a quite moment, wondering who were the people or things responsible for the music that we heard...

While we listened to the radio and Dad thought us most of the songs that we sang, we'd usually hear many many songs at the family parties and get-togethers. We had a few cassettes at home that found their way there as gifts from travelling relatives mostly in the Gulf...

As we grew up and joined college, I was lucky to also get associated with the Radio as a presenter. I'd spend hours in their music library and find some vinyl records (LPs and EPs) that I'd never heard before but just enjoyed. 

During our college years, a big source of our versatile selection of music happened to be music exchanged by my brother with a friend in Engg. College, Wilbur by name. He would regularly bring home a cassette or two and if we liked it we'd make a copy of it. Among that lot of music, was a compilation called 4 Big Stars that featured singers with 4 to 5 of their songs. That's where I first came across the legendary Barry Manilow and his brand of songs so pleasant to listen to...

I Can't Smile Without You is among his best of songs along with Mandy and a long list of others.  But his best selling song of all time has been a story song picturised in a nightclub located on possibly one of the famous beaches in Rio. The song also got converted into a short film with Barry Manilow in the star cast. You would have got the name by now....
Copacabana (At The Copa).

Barry Manilow is 73 today and is currently on tour in the UK. He'll be performing tonight in Liverpool, the home of Fab Four... Be there...

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

I've Got The Power... The Power Of BLOOD

तुम मुझे खून दो, मैं तुम्हें आज़ादी दूँगा।

These famous words were quoted by Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose as a recruitment slogan for the Azad Hind Sena. The line translates in English to "Give me your blood, and I will give you freedom."

But there is hope... and it is in your hands... or rather in your body.

Today is World Blood Donor Day -  a day we are reminded that "Blood connects us all" and that the red liquid that flows through our body has the power to save the life of others - family members, friends or absolute strangers - thanks to blood donation. 

The Google Doodle today remembers Dr. Karl Landsteiner - the immunologist and pathologist, who in 1901 classified human blood into different groups and created the ABO blood group system that we still use today. His discovery, which won him the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1930, made blood transfusion a life-saving medical practice. 

My search for songs with the word 'blood' in the title threw up options like MJ's 'Blood on the Dance Floor' and 'Bleeding Love' by Leona Lewis, which are completely inappropriate to the theme. 

But then a spiritual song that I've known since I was a child flashed in my mind...

There is Power, power, wonderworking power in His Blood....

There is power in your blood too... the power to give and save life...


Friday, June 10, 2016

Where Did You Get That Hat?

Got up this morning to remember the birthday of one of my nieces. And as the day moved along was reminded of many many more birthday of friends I knew. If you've been following my FB page - Sunil Pinto Entertains, you'll get an update on some of the Musical Birthdays of the day. 

But this one far more special... because he is the #RoyalConsort, and he's 95 today... 

Happy Birthday 


I was trying to come up with musical content to post out here, but then came across some of his quotes (gaffes) including some conversations with well known singers that are just too funny... thought I should share them with you. 

"Where did you get that hat?"

Those were the words of Prince Philip to his wife, Queen Elizabeth II, soon after her coronation.

"What do you gargle with... pebbles?"

The Duke of Edinburgh said this to Tom Jones after a Royal Variety Performance in 1969. Wonder whether they spoke after this performance at the Queens Diamond Jubilee Concert in 2012.

"Oh, it's you that owns that ghastly car... we often see it when driving to Windsor Castle."

Those were the words to Elton John when he told the Prince that he has sold his Gold Aston Martin... The embarrassed singer is Still Standing.

Check out more of the Prince quotes (Prince Philips best gaffes) at The Telegraph.

Thursday, June 9, 2016

They're Playing His Songs...

A few days ago, Going Places had a list of songs about cities... But there is this one song about the 'City of Love' that stands the test of all time... I Love Paris.

Everybody loves Paris, and every jazz singer and musician love the composer and lyricist who has written the song and many many others. Cole Porter - who was born today in 1891 (125 years ago) was a truly amazing songwriter having composed more than 1200 songs for the stage and screen. Most active from the 20s to the 50s, his songs have been sung by singers of all generations. Frank Sinatra above sang many of his songs... and Ella Fitzgerald sang his entire songbook in the 50s. Staying with the Francais, C'est Magnifique.

The 70s and 80s saw Cole Porter transcend across music genres - including Country and Spanish Pop...

Country Singer Crystal Gayle's version of It's Alright With Me was adapted to a jingle for Eastern Airlines.

Spanish singer (and footballer) Julio Iglesias had a popular version of Begin The Beguine.

In 2004, coinciding with 40 years of his death, saw the release of a biopic entitled De-Lovely, based on Cole Porter's life and career. The film starring Kevin Kline and Ashley Judd has a wide collection of Cole Porter's music - including the title song It's De-Lovely performed by Robbie Williams.

Let's Do It, Let's Fall In Love - an interesting list of people, birds, insects and animals that fall in love - was sung on the soundtrack by 'Ironic' Alanis Morissette.

Cole Porter will never go old... the list of people who've covered his songs include the flamboyant Lady Gaga who pairs up with the ageless Tony Bennett for Anything Goes.

Anything Jazz would be incomplete without a mention of the modern King of Swing Michael Buble, here with I've Got You Under My Skin.

I'm sure you've heard most of these songs... but not known the connection. Do tell me how you like my blog... and feel free to add your suggestions.  

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

My Bonnie Lies Over The Ocean...

I heard this song when I was very little... way before I knew what the 'ocean' was... The song was slow and sounded a bit sad... waiting for someone from far away...

Many years later at the Khandala Family Camp run by the Jesuit priest - Fr. Robin Selwyn - we learnt some interesting actions to the song as well... 

I'm sure nearly all of you know the song and the actions as well that go with it.

This morning when I looked at the Times of India, the masthead announced that today is World Oceans Day.

Covering more than 70 percent of Earth’s surface, oceans, more than anything, define our small blue planet. World Oceans Day celebrates the complex and vibrant ecosystems, life-sustaining services, calming effects and unimaginable diversity of the Oceans Of Fantasy. 

The oceans (and the seas) teem with marine life and scientists believe there are over 9 million species yet to be discovered in the deep blue depths... as we learn from this song from The Little Mermaid

And this tremendous wealth of life Under The Sea is threatened by unauthorised fishing and whaling, plastic pollution and more...

The invitation to keep the oceans healthy is for all of us, not just those who live by the oceans. And for a start, here's what we can do.... reduce the use of plastic bags and bottles, and go about enjoying the Oceans - a gift of God to us...

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Going Places...

Took a little trip over the weekend just outside Mumbai city limits. With summer holidays on over the past couple of months, my Facebook and Twitter 'newsfeed' have been full of holiday pictures from across the globe. And when I looked up the #MusicalBirthday list for today, I found a common thread linking most of them - all the birthday musicians and singers were 'going places'

We'll start this tour with the youngest of the singers on this post, just 23 - George Ezra - in the medieval and neoclassical capital city of Hungary - Budapest.

Looks like George Ezra, the English singer-songwriter loves to travel, considering he also has a song entitled 'Barcelona'. Many visitors to Spain also do France and Italy. 

One American singer, actor, comedian and film producer of the 60s loved his Italian roots. Dean Martin - a member of the Rat Pack had a host of songs about Italy, but the one I love the most is about 'love' - 'That's Amore

Dean Martin would've been 99 today, having been born in 1917. And what a wonderful life. Back in America - the state of Minnesota - are observing 'Prince Day' today remembering the recently deceased Prince. If you're in Minnesota, you'd probably see many people dressed in purple (if you do see purple all around, click a pic and post it in the comments here). The only city song Prince is famous for cannot be mentioned here, but we can sure listen to 'America'.

Our final 'Birthday Singer' for today is 76. And he likes the 'Green Green Grass of Home' - a song I mentioned on one of the first posts on the blog (Green Songs From The Past) for its personal meaning to me. Over to the vibrant Tom Jones.

Will sign off with a riddle contributed by one of my sons...

What did the envelope say to the stamp? 

Stick with me... we will go places!!!


Sunday, June 5, 2016

Go Wild For Life (on World Environment Day)

Last year on World Environment Day, I recalled 'Green Songs From the Past'. Well, this year the theme of World Environment Day (June 5) is "Go Wild For Life - Zero tolerance for the illegal wildlife trade."

Been seeing many pics online of friends doing 'Wildlife Safaris' in Africa. My best ever zoo experience was the visit to the Bronx Zoo in Manhattan, where we took a trip on the 'Wild Asia Monorail', and saw animals from around the world, made comfortable in their habitats. I also put together an amateur video featuring all the animals with this song at the background from the interesting animal movie 'Dr. Dolittle'. 

While we may not be able to 'Talk To The Animals' we certainly will be able to see them in 'Hakuna Matata'.

Animals are 'Born Free' and that's the way it is supposed to be... There was this song I heard as a child, and later found out it was the title song from a 1966 movie about a couple who raised an orphaned lion cub to adulthood, before they returned her back to the wild. 

What's your favorite wildlife movie or song? Share it with us...

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

LOVE SONGS... and Musical Birthdays

Happy Birthday to you
Happy Birthday to you
Happy Birthday Mr. President
Happy Birthday to you

We all sing "Happy Birthday to you". But when the person sung for is "Mr. President", we would only remember Marilyn Monroe... among the most popular American actress of all time, model and singer... who was born on this day in 1926... 90 years ago...

There's been a time in all of our lives, where our favorite music has been LOVE SONGS. I remember back in the '80s where people would record their favorite collection of Love Songs on an audio cassette (some of you may never have seen one) and gift it to the boy or a girl they've loved. And they would play it on and on again... till the tape would wear out. 

In the 2000s, they probably burned a selection on CD... (I don't know what it would be today)... I've received many Wedding and Anniversary giveaways including the couple's favorite songs... and most of them would be love songs.

Was going through the list of #MusicalBirthdays today... and came across a common thread that connected many of the singer who celebrate their birthday today... 'a song of love'...

Pat Boone was a successful singer of the 1950s and 60s with 'Love Letters in the Sand'... also an actor and the television personality having his own show. I know my dad sang many of the songs he did. 

But I know the 80s... Another actor-singer with a birthday today is from Down Under. Australian Jason Donovan got initial fame in #Neighbours - the Australian soap that still continues... (I remember watching a few seasons on TV). He played the role of Scott alongside Kylie (Charlene). While they were understood to be dating, their characters got married on screen. Here's their most popular duet - "Especially For You

Going back to the American country, with a duo this time - Ronnie Dunn (one-half of Brooks and Dunn) was born on 1st June 1953. And they have an answer to Marilyn Monroe. 

We all enjoy the Love Ballads. What's yours? Go ahead... List your top three love songs...

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