In a recent social experiment conducted by Culture Machine's channel Being Indian, Bollywood playback singer and musician Sonu Nigam took to the streets of Mumbai disguised as a homeless old man. Perhaps inspired by the 2012 performance of violinist Joshua Bell outside a Washington, DC subway stop, the purpose of the experiment was to encourage people to take time to live in the present. According to Being Indian:
In this dog-eat-dog world where we’re constantly thinking about the future, we don’t realize that we might be losing out on beautiful moments in the present. Pause, look around, breathe and live in the current moment, don’t just exist.
Sitting at the corner of the busy Juhu intersection, Sonu Nigam played an old harmonium that his parents bought him when he was born. He sang traditional music as well as the title track to Kal Ho Na Ho, one of his most recognizable hits picturized on Shah Rukh Khan. Beside him was a sign in Hindi that read "Where are you searching for happiness? It’s right here." Just as with Joshua Bell, his music was much appreciated while his fame was unknown.
The following video presents Sonu Nigam's experience as "The Roadside Ustaad", the video song "Kal Ho Na Ho", and a video of violinist Joshua Bell at the Farragut North metro station.
In the lead-up to the release of the 2016 biographical drama Sarbjit, the Sonu Nigam song "Dard" ("Pain") was shared on youtube.com with video clips from the film. The playback singer was recovering from knee surgery when he recorded the track; however, he felt strongly about singing the song as he had come out in support of Sarabjit Singh in 2005. The music master channeled his physical pain into the melody to reflect the emotional pain of the Singh family.
From the time spent with friends and family, to the moment when we connect with our soulmate; from the heartbreak of losing a loved one to the joy of rediscovering the beauty of the world around us - Sonu Nigam offers musical interpretations that capture the emotion of the moment.
The following five solo soul-stirring songs highlight Sonu Nigam's ability to interpret thoughts, moods and memories through his heartfelt renditions.
Description: While in Australia to manage his father's business, Akash Malhotra (Aamir Khan) develops a close friendship with Shalini (Preity Zinta). Having met him at a disco in Mumbai several months earlier, she recognizes him as the prankster and flirt that he is. But she knows that deep down Aakash has the capacity to fall in love with someone. Shalini's fiance Rohit (Ayub Khan) is very unhappy about this friendship and he sets the date for their marriage in India. Shalini invites Aakash for one last dinner with Rohit, her brother Mahesh (Rajat Kapoor) and her. After a somewhat contentious dinner, Akash leaves but not before Shalini tells him she knows he is in love with her.
Description: When a ghost spies Lachchi (Rani Mukerji) on her way to her husband's home, he immediately falls in love with her. When her husband Kishenlal (Shah Rukh Khan) leaves Lachchi for 5 years in order to tend to his father's business in a far away town, the ghost takes on the form her husband and goes to the family home. While the family is a bit concerned that Kishenlal is not where he needs to be, he convinces his father that there is good reason for him to not to take the journey. His family accepts his return and as he steps into the house, he takes time to take in and appreciate this new place - and new life.
Description: When out-of-work actor Suhaan Kapoor (Salman Khan) receives note of a $70,000 divorce settlement from his ex-wife Piya (Preity Zinta), he looks for a solution to this financial burden. Former classmate and now NASA astronaut Agastya Rao (Akshay Kumar) lands at their doorstep searching for Piya, whom he had a crush on in college. Suhaan works to set Agastya up with Piya but then discovers that Piya has a child from their marriage. He begins to re-evaluate his relationship with Piya, especially since he was the one who walked out on her. Just when Suhaan gets a major acting job, Agastya gets engaged to Piya. Suhaan's life is shattered. He realizes that the selfish decisions he has made in the past have destroyed his present and future happiness. Despite the heartache that he feels about losing his family, he tries to let Piya live a happy life with Agastya.
Description: After the murder of his school teacher father at the hands of Kancha (Sanjay Dutt), young Vijay Chauhan and his mother Suhasini Chauhan (Zarina Wahab) leave their village. Destitute, they find shelter in the city of Mumbai where Vijay's mother delivers a baby girl named Shiksha. When Vijay joins the gang of Rauf Lala (Rishi Kapoor), a local girl-trafficker and Kancha's enemy, his mother kicks him out of the house. Years later, the adult Vijay (Hrithik Roshan) is Rauf Lala's right hand man but has grown bitter waiting for his opportunity to avenge his father's murder. The one bright light in his life is Kaali Gawde (Priyanka Chopra), who is a friend, confidante and love interest. Knowing of Vijay's desire to unite with his estranged sister, Kaali brings Shiksha to meet him and they spend the day together.
Description: In 1920, Jaidev Verma (Aftab Shivdasani) is a famous poet who lives the life of a loner after the death of his soulmate whom he only met through correspondence. When he rescues an unconscious woman along the banks of a river, he feels he has met her somewhere before. But she has no memory of her past. Strange events begin to unfold around this new addition to Verma's household and as they travel to a distant hospital to find answers, they discover their romantic connection is too powerful to ignore.
The following playlist features each of these video songs as well as the "Dard" from Sarbjit.
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