JournalismPakistan.com June 28, 2013
Did you as a youngster ever worry about where to sit and listen to your gramophone? Never. The most action you got was staring at the record going round and round with the motif of that dog peering into the amplifier and trying to read the name of the song as it spun.
Now, the owner of one of these systems will tell you where to sit to get the best result. Come here on this chair, you get the best acoustics, so up you get and move to the appointed place and then he will say, great isn’t it?
And you will say, sure, real great.
You can differentiate each beat, each instrument, he’ll enthuse.
You agree dubiously.
Are you getting the flute?
I think I am.
What’s this, a music exam?
At this point he’ll get up again and start fiddling with sliding knobs and then ask, is that better?
You’ll say, yes just to stop him. It does not.
Try sitting in the left sofa, you’ll get a clearer treble.
You’ll get a sock on the lip if you don’t stop that damn fiddling.
We used to literally break records. They would fall and splinter and you were miserable about. But it was natural to fade away. And sometimes they warped and then you took them to school and in craft class you painted them in livid colors and presented them to Mum and Dad and they were forced to put these ghastly efforts in art in the drawing room so as not to hurt your feelings, but at least it was fun.
Nowadays the music just comes from neverland. No CDs also, just little pods loaded to the gills.
So give me the old times any day. At least we listened to what we played. Today, these owners of ultra-sophisticated systems listen to extraneous sounds.
Do you hear a hiss in the left speaker. Sshhhh, there is a grrgrr gr coming from the third channel of my superwoofer 4-way surround speaker.
No, it’s not, my friend, it’s just me growling in my throat.
(The writer is a Senior Editorial Advisor of Khaleej Times and the paper’s former Editor. He has also been the Editor of Gulf News, Gulf Today, Emirates Today and Bahrain Tribune)
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