2003   DECEMBER 29   #363

Sonik Omi - Ree Baba Ree Baba

Like most of my "Bollywood Soundtrack" lps this came from Brick Lane flea market which is in east London and the center of the Indian and Bangla Deshi community. Since the 80's the area has seen a lot of redevelopment and now it is a mixture of the young, hip and trendy, loft spaces, warehouse parties, artists studios, etc. as well as an aging immigrant community. I haven't been there for five years so it could have changed a lot more by now. At the time of buying this record for a few pence the market was at it's height and a wonderful treasure trove of old vinyl, 8 tracks, reel to reels and all manner of ancient recording mediums - a graveyard of the rare, obscure and eclectic waiting to be plundered by the Burke and Hares of the weird and the bizarre!

The cover of this album is very 60's but the date says 1978. Made in Dum Dum, India by EMI. Manufactured and distributed by the Gramaphone Company of India Ltd. Its the soundtrack of a film called TEEN EEKAY produced by the unlikely named J& J ART INTERNATIONAL. This track by SONIK OMI stands out like a sore thumb as the others are very much your typical Bollywood fodder and sung by stalwarts such as Asha Bhosle and Usher Mangeshkar and written by Sonik Omi and a posse of people. This track by OMI is written by someone called Joginder. It's that mixture of a thousand violins wailing away and OMI's amazing growling vocal that really set this track apart from the rest of the songs here. What on earth could he be singing about with such animal relish and abandon? One thing is for sure - once heard, never forgotten!

- Michael Leigh

TT-2:52 / 3.3MB / 160kbps 44.1khz

(Images courtesy of Michael Leigh)