October 27, 2009
11: 37 PM

The Video Cassette Collection

The early 90’s were good old times for me. I was beginning to develop a taste on my own for music, movies and books. It was the time when the cable revolution (the STAR TV revolution) started rocking India as Doordarshan was pushed to the backseat. But one of the channels that spread the craze of music was MTV.
Right from childhood, I have been fascinated of collecting something. Stamps, coins, match box covers from the streets, marbles, audio songs and movies. Apart from the movies, we had a huge collection of video songs in Tamil (50s to 90s), and English, and old Hindi songs too. Those days, nobody knew what exactly CDs were. Cassettes were the order of the day. And my parents, being great fans of the classic Hindi songs as well never failed to grab their favorites from programs in Zee Tv (that was the only Hindi channel on cable). The name of that program was Farmaayish as I remember. Likewise, we had recorded a huge number of video songs from MTV.
During the weekends, I used to spend my time watching those videos again and again until  the sequence of those songs in the cassettes got nailed into my memory. Though I never got the lyrics exactly, I used to sing the way my mind grasped them in that little age. I used my own pronunciations which sound quite funny when I recall them now.

How could  I forget those weekends? Record, watch, rewind, watch, dance, sing, re-record with a better clarity, watch, rewind, dance, sing, rewind, record, watch, dance, rewind, sing, whistle, dance, sing, whistle, sing, whistle… ah! Those were days with real character. Later, there was this CD revolution and then the DVD, and now the Blu ray, and maybe another one in the next few months. Change is in the acceleration indeed. But none of them can beat those good old cheap cassettes. Those wrinkled sides of the tape, annoying recording lines and the grains on the screen, and the way the video appears when it’s fast-forwarded – truly classic! I still have those tapes. The smell of those memories stay fresh inside me. I still smell them! I do! I’d love to share a few of those songs in the next few posts and express my memories attached with that collection. 

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