There is a sadness in me today that can’t completely explain.
I was woken up this morning with the sad news of Ayub Bachchu’s death. And the whole day I’ve seen facebook flooded with statuses and tributes to him, by people who have known him and were close to him, and more importantly by people who didn’t know him at all, but who were touched by his melodies and lyrics.
I didn’t know the man that well, but he was definitely a part of my childhood. I still remember when I was 6 or 7, my father brought home this thing called a double album, and I remember listening to ‘Ghum Bhanga Shohore’ which is still my favorite LRB song of all time. And during all the times that I met him up close, he was always encouraging to all of us younger musicians. I am probably guilty of not understanding how this man affected a whole generation, because to me, he was simply Bachchu Uncle — one of my dad’s, Maqsoodul Haque’s colleagues — and I thought he was just one of us, a musician trying to make his way through the world. Being in the music industry and interacting with everyone up close, you get to know about everyone’s positives and negatives, and he definitely had his flaws, like we all do, because we are human beings.
But as I look at all the tributes pouring in from all over the country, I realize how he had affected all of us on deeper levels. Infact all of the bands from that era affected our culture and thoughts to a level that our generation can only aspire to. The difference between that generation and our generation is that they tried to integrate this whole concept of western music into our culture, by singing and composing melodies that were true to our psyche. We, on the other hand, are trying to get away from that as much as possible. As much as we try, I believe in my heart that we will never be able to move people to such depths. It was a different time; we the ’90s kids saw that change in our culture and how these icons affected those changes. That is something that people who havent lived through it will never understand.
I’m right now in my thirties, and most of my musical idols, local or international, are in the twilight of their careers. I went out today to hang out with my friends, and all around there was this sense of sadness. That somehow today signals the end of our youths. All I can pray for is that the day that I’m gone, I hope to receive the kind of love that AB received from us today. I can only hope that I would have affected people’s minds and hearts as much he did with his music, because at the end of the day, as musicians, our music is the only thing that we have to offer to the world. Not more, not less.