Blogswara, and taking stock of 2011

First of all, I’m happy to announce that Blogswara has released it’s 7th online album called Trunk Call on January 1st, 2012. I’m so glad to see that the support and enthusiasm for independent music has still not died down and Blogswara still generates interest after all these six years and six albums. Do listen to the four new tracks in Hindi, Malayalam English and Arabic. Do share it if you like the songs.

The year 2011

2011 was not a great year at all. My music posts and ordinary blog posts have seen a slow-down in 2011. I have posted only 5 songs in the last year. Though the year began with an original composition, that too a new year song, it slowed down. I can only hope that 2012 would get better. My father passing away was one major personal incident happened in the last year. Finances sucked throughout the year and expenses went sky-high, but none of them were avoidable.

On the positive front, I realized that Blogswara can still generate interest from many quarters. When I announced Trunk Call, the new Blogswara album with a theme, we had received 19 song announcements (though only 4 of it could make it to the final versions). Now I am sure that the spirit of independent music and Blogswara will continue to grow. Also I learned to drive a car in the last year. My ‘vintage’ second hand Maruti 800 has helped me experience the pleasure of driving, though I hate driving in the city on a weekday.

One of the good things that happened last year was that I started writing features for Sound Box magazine, a unique music industry magazine that has bagged a silver (in the Best  New Publications category for 2010) at ABCI awards in it’s very first year. I have always enjoyed writing and one of those childhood dreams was to be a writer. And I’m happy and proud that I am now writing on my favorite topic, music, in country’s premiere music trade magazine. My first feature in the magazine was about music blogging, titled Net Gain published in March 2011, an area that I had been actively promoting online and offline ever since I enjoyed the perks of music blogging right from 2005.

I also had an opportunity to host a radio show last year. Hosting the one-hour show “Hridayapoorvam” in All India Radio, Thrissur station was an exciting experience. I recorded in the same studio where I had recorded the first song I wrote and composed (and that was long back) and the memories poured in. Also had a good experience with a short film I made on a mobile phone. 🙂

What I learned in 2011…

…was more of what I learned in 2010 – about how to treat people with what they deserve. I was hesitant though I told myself that I would be nice only to those who are nice to me. This year, I believe I have learned more about dealing with people who take advantage of my weakness (of being nice) and give them back in the same coin. People among family and friends. And on the family front, Ryan is lighting up our days. It’s so wonderful to see him grow.

So that sums up an year and I am hoping for the best in 2012. Here are some blog posts I enjoyed writing and think that you would enjoy reading too.

Music posts

Happy New Year and a song!
Pavizham Pol
Nilaa Nilaa Mizhiye
Baliyaay Thirumunpil
Mazha Njaan Arinjirunnilla

Blog posts

Liu Xiaobo – A saint or a hypocrite?
To all the girls I loved before…
Save the space, please
Bringing back original instruments to music
The Drop-out Syndrome
A note to M Jayachandran, the music director
Hazare, the Hero
Anna Hazare and the Great Indian Middle-class
Redefining entertainment digitally
I don’t bleed blue; I never will
Enabling mobile technology for music
Thrissur Pooram 2011
Life, on a journey
The useless ‘royal, divine wealth’
Kerala’s YouTube Stars!
About friends and friendship
A young man’s tale
Group Activity
Da Vincing Code
The state of music retailers
Jagathy vs. Ranjini – What’s missing in the debate
Jan Lok Pal – the interim FAQ
The Steve Jobs effect
Yesudas – fifty years on
Santhosh Pandit vs. Malayalam Media/Cinema
My dear Appu