Saturday, February 28, 2009

Nobody pays? Play for charity!

After a spate of inactivity since the accursed Oktoberfest show, Flam! managed to score not one but TWO shows. Three actually but two have gone through, the third is tonight and what not so yeah. This is about them.

Radio1FM91 Azaad Foundation/UNICEF Children's Broadcasting Day

Since I know all of y'all have read and memorized the RJing post, I'd like to draw your collective attentions to the events happening in it. Specifically the stuff happening at the benign-sounding "4-ish" time spot. When I was reviewing my voice over stuff with Dennis the Sound Menace, a certain Anita(I don't know her last name, I know I suck) walked in. Anita I happened to recognise from the ADP Nando's show I yelled about here. She was introduced(to them not me, I was just eavesdropping, heehee) as somebody from FM91 and she would like a picture with ADP and I happened to be the person in the immediate vicinity who happened to take that picture.

So I started talking to her. It began rather aimlessly with me just trying to be friendly and ending up sounding weird since I told her that I recognised her from the ADP show and then I just stood there. Hehe she even said something like "Yeah that was". I was mentally kicking myself at this point and wondering why I started this. I made a lame joke about random useless information to escape the situation. Then she asked me where I was from. Here my brain went all patriotic and was urging me to say PAKISTAN. Somehow I knew that's not what she meant. She elaborated khudi se and asked if I was in a band or what and I said yeah I was but I was at the Nando's gig as a friend of ADP.

That's not a lie okay!! I know them, they recognize me BOOM we're friends!! Stop judging me.

Then she asked how much we charge and I said nothing because well, we don't. Not yet anyway. She got all interested suddenly, took my number and all even and told me about this little event coming up at this Azaad Foundation thing in relation with UNICEF and this and that. Stuff I promptly forgot. All I remembered was her telling me she'll be in touch.

She msged the next day and asked if we were free on the 25th and 26th. 25th we were 26th we weren't. Okay cool. Then it turned out that it was only on the 26th. Crap. Emergency measures were taken, Saad and Anes planned to bunk an IBA class, I planned to run away from home again, Owais we didn't tell as usual. We arranged for a soundsystem. Planned our songs. Everything was ready. Except we didn't know where we were supposed to go. Anita had told me vaguely but as always I'd forgotten that too. I looked up the Azaad Foundation people on the net and somehow got the number of the place we were to go to. The person on the phone there gave me an address too. Which I didn't understand. I am so inept.

The day of that day chalo, yeah so on that day it turns out that the sound person who was to be there at 10, had reached the vicinity by 10 but couldn't find the place. We gave him the number of the school itself and they didn't reach him for half an hour. We were supposed to be there by 11. We got lost too and got there by 1130. Why isn't there a Google Maps thingy for Karachi!? Sigh. Anyway, we found the place after we got to one of those blasted chowrangis and then sent someone to point us int he right direction. We got there only to find out that the sound people had also only just arrived. It would easily be another half hour till they got set up and all. Saad started to get tense, seeing as how he had to be at Anees Hussain by 1230 and it was already 1150.

I chatted randomly with Anita. She told me this was being done for the UNICEF International Children's Broadcasting Day transmissions and the Azaad Foundation helpd school underprivelaged children and all. Twas a nice idea and a nicer gesture. Heh, our first pseudo charity gig.

It eventually did start and the children were all very eager. I felt pretty bad for them. They were all regular kids and but for the want of money they had to live lives in tattered clothes and unclean environs. I wonder when, if ever, we'll get around to living in a country with universal healthcare and education. Sad really.

The kids weren't really familiar with our music at all. They knew Indian stuff, we didn't. We did end up playing Pehli Nazar by Aatif. Saad the performer was enjoying himself. The children sang along to the chorus as loud as they could. Somehow that merged into Dil Dil Pakistan. They sang along to that too. Turned out to be quite fun.

After that was a mad dash to drop Saad to Anees Hussain, one hour late for a whole new batch no less. Anes to IBA and Owais back home. That wasn't fun at all. Too much driving for one day entirely. We even missed our interview with FM91! Gosh darn it!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

the RJ journey begins!

I know all of you have been paying attention hence I won't go into the details of how I want to be an RJ so that I may have some relation to the media and the arts in my life which I expect will be very boring. I'll just bring you up to speed on the very latest developments then get on with the qissa at hand.

City FM89:

This is where I want to go. Properly want, that too. I started properly listening to 89 on the way back from study sessions with the bilal-man a couple of months ago. I understood the tone of the station and the humour and generally got what the people on air were talking about. I even developed strong favourites such as Munizeh who does Rush Hour, Monday to Thursday from 5pm-7pm. Or OmarBilalAkhtar(yes the target of my stalking is an RJ too) who does Manic Monday which comes on Mondays(shockingly) from 9-10pm. Or Wes Malik on GenerationX from 9-10pm on Tuesdays or Amir Naseer on Retro89 from 9-10pm on Fridays. As you can see the 9-10pm slot is what I'm familiar with. I developed much respect for Munizeh who was really good at just being an RJ even though her show has no super-fixed direction, or OBA who is genuinely funny or AmirNaseer who's knowledge of retro music impressed me to no end. This gave a proper direction to my RJing dreams that had existed for a year now and my FM89 aspirations which were around koi 5-6 months se. Sadly FM89, as it turned out, wasn't really checking entries to their online RJ-hunt and I didn't know OBA till then.

Then I finally did meet him and he told me what to do as chronicled towards the end of this post and the waiting began.

Radio1 FM91:

Towards the end of this same post, I mention how I talked to Yasir about FM91, where he is an RJ. Though that meeting didn't come through, coincidentally FM91 launched an official RJ Hunt promotion. I found out about it through a few friends, all of whom had heard it and told me since they knew I would be interested. Now 91 is an okay channel too, but it has much more urdu than 89, which nearly doesn't. Nothing wrong with that but the problem is my humour and knowledge and well everything I would do as an RJ does not translate into urdu shows and urdu listeners. Hence I wasn't as interested in 91. Though I did listen to it's shows quite regularly and on a scale of 1 to 10 of my personal choice where 89 would be 9, 91 I'd put at around 7.5.

So I called them up and signed up for the thing. They said they'd get back to me in a bit.

And they did.

The FM91 adventure

I was told to show up on Friday at 3pm by some Iqbal person. I planned to get there on time, not early so that I wouldn't look over-eager.

230: I was in the area. Crap. Must waste time.

250: Got back after wasting some time getting credit and random driving around. Called Iqbal(he'd given me his number). It was busy. Damn. Went all NSA on his ass and called the number he'd called me from. Yes it was different. Was picked up by Beenish Khan, an RJ, who was in the middle of a show. Why'd she pick up the phone then! I worry I might've ruined her show. She said she'd send somebody when I told her I was here for a 3pm interview and was outside.

310: Still waiting. It's so hot outside and it's February. Thought for a bit about global warming.

315: Some dude comes to me, asks me if I'm Ali, smirks when he sees im sitting on the sidewalk and tells me to go on in. I go in and am told to sit in the waiting area. The couches are covered in plastic, this is the first time I've seen that outside of a movie. Also, they are yellow. Yes that yellow.

320: Iqbal comes up. His lips are red. Lipstick red. No I dont usually notice dudes' lips. But his were...bright. The color of blood that has nearly congealed. A dark shade of red. My eyes began to play tricks on me. He didn't seem gay, his clothes, gait and mannerisms were normal. I began to see shades of foundation around his eye/forehead area. I thought he must be acting for some tv thingy and told myself to stop stereotyping. He tells me he'll be with me in a bit after he sorts out some technical repair thingys that are ongoing. Ali Murtuza makes fun of me and notes that the khuari clock has been going on for 20minutes.

330: Iqbal returns. The interview begins. Which is basically a discussion. Yes my urdu is clear, yes I am aware 91 is 60% english and 40% urdu so as to gain a wider audience compared to 89. No I have no prior experience. Yes I am in this for the work and not the money(like I thought there'd be a lot of that). The dude's okay.

345: I'm sent into a room where a guy with dirty, curly, long hair, a raggedy stubbly beard, a black tshirt and lots of bracelets and chains is introduced as Dennis, the sound dude. He looked a joint away from being the stereotypical stoner dude. Nice. I'm given a paper with minglish promos for TV1 shows and told to take my time, read them over and do them whenever I'm ready.

4-ish: Dennis is alright. This shit is tough. Pauses, emphases, gaps, enunciation. Damn. I do around 10 takes of this stupid 3 line thing. Not to mention the many repetitions of words, phrases and stuff in there.

415: I'm asked to pretend I'm on a show and do something they call "links". Turns out its just the parts where the RJ talks. Intro, middle and end. Two songs after each. I'd only prepared for a monologue that'd fit into the middle. Took a long while and thought up an intro and conclusion too. Beenish Khan came in in the meanwhile and argued with Dennis the Sound menace about something he had to do for a show of hers or something.

430: I do a couple takes of the show thing. Come out to check my work, Iqbal comes in. His lipstick is missing. I tell me to quit being stupid. He tells me I should slow down, redo it. I do.

440: I'm done. Iqbal is Maybelline again. I don't get it. Maybe it's an allergy.. or red light shining in from somewhere? No..why am I even thinking about this?! He tells me he'll get to me asap once he's heard the stuff and others have too. I realize 91 does not have a rock show. 89 and 96 do. Aha! Opportunity! I tell him I'm waiting on 89, what should I do in case they call me? He says I should wait a couple of days for him. I tell him I'll go to the audition and they'll take a few days too to decide so it shouldn't be a problem if he gets to me(before them, I don't add. Heck 91 is cool but if 89 agrees to my timings I leave everything behind). I leave.

So there it is. OBA said he'd find out what my 89 deal was in a bit and I'll pester him in a very passive manner till I am not told. Hope something works out. Though I've realised that if 89 doesn't come through, I'm cool with 91.

C'mon Kage now it's time to blow doors down
I hear you Jables now it's time to blow doors down
Light up the stage cause its time for a showdown
We'll bend you over then we'll take you to Brown Tow
Now we've got to blow this fucker down
He's gonna rape me if we do not blow doors down
C'mon Kage cause it's time to blow doors down
Oh we'll piledrive ya, it's time for the smackdown
Hey anti-christ-er, Beelzeboss,
we know your weakness our rocket-sauce
we rock the casbah, and blow your mind
we will defeat you, for all mankind

you hold the scepter,
we hold the key
you are the devil,
we are the D

PS: If anyone from 91 reads this, please dont judge me. I just realized that this could screw with my aspirations and shit. Yeah, and shit. Like what if they kill me?!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

just so all you shit-for-brains ignorant fools know;


Whatever happened to the values of humanity
Whatever happened to the fairness in equality
Instead of spreading love we're spreading animosity
Lack of understanding, leading lives away from unity
That's the reason why sometimes I'm feeling under

Where is the love ¿

stuff that has made and still makes me high

1-a particular bent note in Charlie by the Chili Peppers
2-the solo at the end of Comfortably Numb
3-listening to the Pick of Destiny with my eyes closed
4-getting over the threshold when I run and feel that I can go on forever and run to the horizon
5-watching people move to the music I make at a gig
6-making B laugh
7-the outro of one of my band's songs
9-my car, sharae-faisal during the Jumma prayer time and 120kmph
10-loud music and air musicianship(take air guitar and apply to every instrument) all over my house when everybody's gone
11-Your Hand in Mine by Explosions in the Sky
12-that time of night when everyone is asleep, in and outside of your house
13-watching The Dark Knight in the theater and hearing the main theme play through 20 speakers and my heart
14-the first time I saw bullet time all those years ago in Nasr Cinema in dubai in The Matrix
15-Fear of the Dark

Beautiful dawn - I'm just chasing time again.
Thought I would die a lonely man, in endless night.
But now I'm high; running wild among all the stars above.
Sometimes it's hard to believe you remember me.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

the other blojz in the world

Why is everyone so depressed? I mean, it's like everyone else has a bloj just to be mopey. I don't get it. It's not like my life is all peaches and cream, or in my case guitars and Porsches., but if I have a bloj and im going to write about something I'd eternally prefer happyness over sorrow, gloom, depression and well, general emo-ness. Everyone just has SO many problems its just SO impossible to write about anything else. Such self-importance is something I can not bring myself to feel.

I'm so darn glad He let me try it again,
'Cause my last time on earth I lived a whole world of sin.
I'm so glad that I know more than I knew then.
Gonna keep on tryin' till I reach the highest ground.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

The day after Friday the 13th of February 2009.

I feel like a bull, if they could see colours. I can't get the red out of my eyes.

I went to Park Towers, which is a mall in karachi. THERE WAS FRICKIN RED EVERYWHERE!!! And what the hell! Why do people wear red on Vday? WHY?? Are you a heart or something?? Even dudes! I saw three, no four guys with RED button down shirts! Why oh why.

Plus Valentine's day is so ugh. All super super sweet and sugary and lovey dovey and merchandised. It was all there was on the radio, on tv, on the street, on those God forsaken forward messages, EVERYWHERE. I listen to the radio a lot and I heard Truly, Madly, Deeply four times today! And that's just me! It must have been played some 73 times!*

While I am all for spreading love and good cheer, I think we should be a bit more coherent and think about people who need to be loved. I'm not talking about your family, friends and significant others. I mean other random people. Like the poor, like orphans, like whoever isn't shown in the media on the 14th of February because nobody wants to show stuff that takes the masses' minds of sheep-mentality consumerism.

It's days like this that the majority of people are revealed to be hollow and incapable of cognitive thought. We choose to forget so that we may indulge in stuff that might somehow be memorable. Whatever the criteria for that is.


We will probably probably be entering this battle of bands deal that is going to take place on the 27th. What we were initially trying for was this gig with another new-ish band where we'd keep it small and keep it real but the event management company, also a rookie deal, decided to go all out, scrapped the original plan and went for this big-ass deathmatch scenario. I hope we win. Or at least go further than round one lol. I've been in one other battle of bands and in that we didn't progress, surprisingly tight though we were. Anyway, hope for the best, expect the worst.

Oh, ACCA exam result comes on on Monday the 16th. Sigh. I don't think this week will be pretty. Again, hope for the best and expect the worst.

Never in the wrong time or wrong place
Desecration is the smile on my face
The love I made is the shape of my space
My face my face

*dont ask me how I came up with that number. I do not know.

PS: if you read this bloj sortve regularly how about you 'follow' it? it could save your life you know..........

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

the Jim, bharamzzZz and hookers

I am out of shape. Not noticeably. Okay not very noticeably but yeah, look and shall see. Why you would I do not know. It is immaterial anyway. You are probably weird and will be one of the happier deaths to occur when Skynet takes over the world.

So anyway, I thought I should start running. Or jogging or whatever. I wasn't in the mood to go to a jim. I grabbed the ever-willing Aines McJaleelus and started a roughly 3km run, jog, walk and stagger, all in the same session at different points in time, routine. Everyday which then began every other day, from 7am to 8am.

I have since quit. The reason is not that I have achieved my goals, nor he his. I just got bored and dont have the necessary strength of will. To wakte up at 630am every day would mean I must sleep by a maximum of 12 midnight while I was used to staying up till 6am. So I quit. Aines will probably hate me for this.

Why didn't I join a jim? I dunno. Maybe because I didn't like the ones in the area, didn't have buddies to go with to the ones I did like in the area and also because I don't have the dough for the ones that are so amazing I could go alone. But there was a jim I used to go to a couple of years ago. This post is actually about that jim and it's instructor/administrator.

The jim in question was named Power Gym. It was across the road. I had two compadres with me, Abeer the Afridi(he is a pathan, his family used to live in Punjab and he supports the PPP which is a Sindhi political party at heart) and the Kenaan(he is not as interesting, which I think he is happy about).

We went quite regularly for a good 4 months. The instructor was a bigass Balochi dude named Fayyaz. This guy was BIG. Wait lemme see I think I have a picture of him..

Yeah so that's him. Lots of shadows in that picture but as you can see(and imagine) he was muscly, very.

So yeah he was our instructor and urged us all on intermittently. Regular jim dude duties. What was noteworthy was the stuff he did besides that. Which is the following:

Work 'n Curse:

When Fayyaz would work out he'd take off his shirt, revealing his musclyness and put on this tattered vest thingy, highlighting his musclyness further. I think he wanted to impress us. Which was quite unnecessary since the myriad of pictures in his office-cum-glass box area were sufficient to that end. Anyway, he'd start his routine with a few million stretches that covered in my opinion every possible muscle in his body. I mean, it just went on and on for a good 30mins. After that he started the real deal which ended up looking more like a vocal excercise than a ...well..other areas excercise. While doing the reps of whatever he'd scream at the top of his voice for all and sundry to witness the enthusiasm and effort the great Fayyaz was putting in. Stuff like "FUCK YOU!!", "MOTHERFUCKER!!!", "AARGH BASTARD!!", "FUCKER!!". This gave further credence to the idea that everyone learns the swearwords of a language first then the rest. It was also sufficiently jarring to us all that inevitably we ended up stopping everything and looking at him which I guess was the idea.


Now Fayyaz was a big, imposing dude. Yet he suffered from the usual big-body, small...err.. sense-of-manlihood complex that I have been told most such people suffer from. He would tell us these anecdotes exemplifying his amazingness as a god among men as often as he could.

One such incident involved him going to a Balochi wedding in Karachi. Upon his arrival he was lead to a table where there were a number of handguns and was asked to choose and fire at will. In the air ofcourse. The great Fayyaz, as you should know, obviously scoffs at such minisicule shows of power. He told the cretins that he was from the old country and in his village they had much bigger guns than these impotent excuses for firearms! Hah, I say! Hah!

And then he left. Which is what amazingly cool people like him do.

Play crappy music:


Ask if we knew any hookers:

Firstly, I don't. Really. I swear. Sadl..I mean thankfully. Shareef to the core and all. Moving on! At times when Fayyaz would talk to us about the world as-we-did-not-know-it, he'd invariably end up at sex. I do not know why. Also he'd invariably end up hinting he was looking for, needed, required some form of sexual release by which im guessing he meant hookers. The conversation would go something like this:

Fayyaz: Haan yaar bas boht mehnat karni parti hai itni body k liye, din raat lage rehna parta hai blahblahblah

Me/us: Hmm waqayi Fayyaz bhai, lagraha hai....(go back to working out)

Fayyaz: Aaj kal lekin koi time lagane ko tayyaar nahin hota. Larke aaj kal k boht kharab hogaye hain. Larkiyon k peechhe bhagtey phirte hain gundey gundey kaam k chakkar mein.

Me/us: ....

Fayyaz: Ye bhi koi umar hai khud batao aap? Aap khud likhe parhe ho*, aapko bhi pata hoga ye ghalat hai. Tum logon ko tu nuqsaan hai, ye tu mujh jese logon ko chahiye hota hai. Hamare liye tu zuroori hai. Itni body honay k liye lazmi hota hai k kahin garmi nikaalein.

Me/us: ji ji bilkul...acha Fayyaz bhai chalte hain hum!

*most random people explaining stuff to me say this, I do not know whether I should take it as a compliment or not

I ended up leaving that jim, not for the above mentioned reasons, I was generally busy with exams and then too lazy to go back. Further exploits in local jims I find prohibitive though and that is because of the above mentioned stuff.

given a chance
i wanna be somebody
if for one dance
i wanna be somebody
open the door
it's gonna make you love me
facing the door
i wanna be somebody

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Why there's a version 2.0

Yes I know what everybody's been talking about. WHY is there a new bloj out? What when the last one was so perfectly amazing. I know I know. This is why.

I killed the last one.

By mistake.

See I originally made a blogger account with a hotmail email address. Then blogger tells me that I need to use a google account but oh I shouldn't worry theyve made a google address with my hotmail address. Whaa?

So anyway, what began to happen was that this started messing around with my orkut activisim. I'm not sure that's the right word. Anyway, when I signed into blogger or into orkut, the other wouldn't work because it needed the other address. I got sick of the signing in and out over and over.

So I killed it.

Yes yes by mistake.

I thought the solution would be simple. Shift the blog to the google address. There's this way of exporting blogs which is how a friend moved hers to wordpress. I'd do that and I'd be home free. So I exported the blog to my PC, then onto the new account I'd made with the google address. But I wanted the same name which I couldn't use because the past version still existed. So I check and double checked and then deleted the original. Turns out I still couldn't use the originals name.

Hence it was dead.

By mistake! Because what I should've done was coauthor the blog with the new address and just not sign in with the old one. Alas this did not strike me before. Hence we are here.

A door left open
A woman walking by
A drop in the water
A look in the eye
A phone on the table
A man on your side
Oh, someone that you think that you can trust
Is just
Another way to die