Seasonal Trends: HOLI; Bhagwati Prasad
The present music industry can be compared to the common chameleon that changes its countenance according to its environment. On sensing danger, it adapts to the needs of the time. While the people linked with the film industry worry about the losses and conveniently blame it on piracy, there is no such strain experienced by the music industry as it has found other channels and thrusts that promise them profits. It is difficult to determine the exact date of the commencement of such alternatives, but the present market scenario is quite comprehensible. Release of cassettes after studying and realizing the tastes of the customers has resulted in the creation of seasonal trends. Under this, music cassettes based on an important day, month or seasons are released in large numbers.
The important days that usually render as themes to these cassettes are Holi, Navratri, Kavariya, and Chhat puja. One can find such tapes all year round. These tapes are also being made available in other languages. Cassettes in Bhojpuri, Rajasthani, Brajbhasha, Garhwali, Kumaoni, Nepali, Punjabi, etc, have been released. The migration of people speaking different languages to Delhi has been the direct cause for the involvement of the music companies in such releases. They intend to identify with the taste of these people and mint profits for themselves.
The increasing demand of these people has resulted in the sprouting of small companies. These small companies have started launching video and audio CDs for such music. The price tag of these CDs demands as much as the price tag of any pirated CD would.
Things would be clear if we look at the present market scenario.
The festival of Holi was celebrated a few days back. During the festival, the market was flooded with cassettes that were specially made for this festival. Many small and big companies were involved in releasing these tapes in various other languages. Cassettes in Hindi are made in the voice of Kishore, Muhammad Rafi, etc. Apart from this, songs on famous new tunes have become popular. However, this time the pop songs, remixes and new Hindi movie songs gained more popularity.
This Holi, the shops were stacked with cassettes in the Bhojpuri language. The shop keepers inform that, "demand for Bhojpuri tapes is high even during the 'non-seasonal' days, during Holi this demand booms up. These tapes (in Bhojpuri language) have a large number of listeners. We order cassettes according to this demand, so that we can benefit out of this seasonal trend."
Rajiv Khanna, distributor of T-Series, says, "the bigger the market the larger the profit. Today singers in all languages are willing to sing for us. They hope to get a break in their careers because T-series is a famous company. T- Series is not only famous in Delhi; it also has a market in various other states. No other music company has a broader vision than us." Considering T-Series' popularity in the market, it is difficult to doubt the ambitious statement. With the sprouting of the small companies in the 'Holi market', the profit that the seasonal trends have to offer to the music companies is evident.
On close scrutiny of the reasons for the upcoming of such cassettes, certain facts are revealed. Let us first talk of the cover of these cassettes, which should be attractive to look at. Usually, it bears the picture of the singer or a photograph of a Hindi film actress. Sometimes obscene pictures are also used to attract 'listeners'. (Eg. Women dressed in skimpy clothes with obvious expressions). To make the cover attractive, advanced computer technology is used to fix the picture of a model with the picture of the singer in such a way that it appears as if they are standing together. Such methods are now being extensively used and have become part of the marketing of these cassettes.
Now let us talk of the title of these cassettes. The title should be one that explains the contents of the package. At the same time it is important that the titles be eye-catching and interesting. For example, cassettes for Holi bear titles like, choli mein rang dalo, ae bhabhi ki sister, holi mein jija aa jaihe, khade khadi lagal, rang dalab china machine se,chatkaar holi, bhojpuri pitchkari, holi mein jawani satrang ho gayi, holi mein dhakkan khol,aao na beeche dali,botha bhail salwar. These titles explain their contents instantly. Titles inevitably become part of the marketing of these tapes.
Lyrics play an important role in popularizing the music. Lyrics are composed with sexual undertones and double meanings. Certain prevalent abusive words are also used as lyrics. Songs with lyrics like, 'rangwa choli khol ke lagai, chumma mange devra, bivi hamari barfi Sali rasgulla', can be found in Bhojpuri Holi cassettes. Majority of the songs are written on 'choli' (bosom). Other topics that become central themes for such songs are devar- bhabhi, jija- Sali,(relations with sister and brother in law), and the separation of two lovers etc.
Let us talk of the singers that are popular among the people. People prefer the following singers:
Singer (male) Singer (female)
Guddu rangila Sharda sinha Manoj tiwari Tripta shalya Madan rai Gita rani Bharat sharma vyas Menu arora Sunil chela bihari Deepali Radheshayam rasiya Sonali Brijesh Bijli rani Vijay lal yadav Anita raj Sarva nand thakur Bela sulekha Shravan saj Poornima
Companies that launch Holi cassettes in Bhojpuri and other languages in the market are, T-Series, Ganga, Rathore, Rajput, Yuki, Tips, Sisodiya and Chanda. Cassettes from these companies flood the shops in the market. Such seasonal trends prove profitable for the shop-keepers. Shopkeepers inform that they buy and sell a lot of cassettes during this time. The unsold stock is taken back by the companies. This way there is no left over stock that needs to be stored by these shop-keepers. This is very profitable for them.
We can safely conclude that these seasonal trends profit the music industry, when the industry is incurring losses. 'Listeners' get what they want and the companies are content with the profits they make from it. Seasonal trends created by the music industry have surely proved its worth. T-Series owes its growth and popularity to similar trends.