Old folk can still dance

I was thinking about the fact that, as an over 30, I am now officially old. I mean, James Bond is now a 30-something, which makes this the first time in my life that I have been in the same decade as a Bond actor.

However, between popping arthritis medicine and obsessing about the fact that I have to settle down before it’s too late, I remembered something. Old folk can still dance. I don’t just mean gorgeous professional dancers like DesiDancer, I mean ordinary uncles and aunties. I’m not saying that they can grind, freak or krump (although I’ll bet DD can krump like a clown) I mean that they can dance which is to me a far more beautiful thing.

Herewith, exhibit A [via Vinod], Gurdas Maan’s Babe Bhangra Pounde Ne:



If I can dance like that, when I’m that age, I’ll be a happy man.

118 thoughts on “Old folk can still dance

  1. What I HAVE noticed lately is that my parents and aunts/uncles have started looking kind of old to me the past few years, because I can remember them in their prime.

    I was noting that very fact regarding parents aging today. I’d like to subtract 10 years from my mother.

  2. People look old only to those who are much younger. Most of our friends are in their fifties, and we sure don’t look old to each other. But we must look old and decrepit to the young. When people started calling me Mr. and Sir, I knew I was getting up there.

    I must say one thing, though. Maybe it’s the water or the improving health of the population at large, but we fifty-somethings do lead a far more active life than when we were much younger. Maybe it’s the last hurrah, the last flicker before the flame is out. But so far, so good.

  3. 86 & 88.

    Hello Kush: Anybody who likes a movie older than they are is most welcome to drop in for chai, samosa and “filmi gupp” at my house anytime. Jagte Raho (1956), which my wife has prohibited me from watching one more time, was such a classic Raj Kapoor. It was significant to Indian cinema in the same way Citizen Kane was to Hollywood. The bhangra scene, and this was when bhangra used to be a mere folk dance, spoke volumes about the “mahanagar” theme of the movie.

  4. Anybody who likes a movie older than they are is most welcome to drop in for chai, samosa and “filmi gupp” at my house anytime.

    Will do.

    Last night, I was reading about Jagte Raho. It won prizes in international film festivals. That bhangara scene is very much tied to the story, and has stood test of time.

    I wish netflix had collection from real older Indian/ Bollywood movies. I once had expanded TV package, and HBO 5/6 showed some older gems from India, Japan 24/ 7. Maybe, nehaflix.

    Obviously, when I am in India, I check all these movies on TV channels there.

  5. Something bordering on the tragic has happened to old Indian movies in the US. You will be hard pressed to find an old Hindi movie in the desi stores unless it has been released on DVD. The VHS tapes are all gone from the shelves. Since only the major blockbusters were ever converted to DVD, most old movies are simply not available anymore. I am waiting for an Indian Netflix to stock up on all the old content and then sell downloads. It will happen soon. Then there is also the possibility of one of the classic movie channels of India – there are several – exporting to the US just like ZEE, Star and NDTV.

  6. This aging thread deserves its own space.. rather than as a hanger on to the bhangra.. yes.. kind of related but .. I do think the elders among us (and I count meself in that category given the youthful profile of the online crowd) may have some useful inputs.. I am still 5 years from 50. wonder how the 50s are.. Exercise is super important.. and you get a lot more purchase when your younger, for the same amount of effort.. and so is a healthy diet and regular habits (still working on that part.. internet pretty much puts paid to that).. also regular meditation is a big plus.. One thing I do see people overdo the exercise thing and become prone to injuries.. they are super fit in their 20s and 30s but basically quit in their 40s due to injuries.. So becoming aware of this factor and pacing oneself seems important. yeah.. sex is part of the exercise formula and it definitely has other benefits (not counting kids).. it should surprise no one that at least for males there is a big interactive effect of sex and fitness (in a positive way).. I think the gen gap. at least in communication terms has shrunk to effectively close to zero.. I honestly cant see any between me and my daughters (granted only one of them is a teen).. this is hugely different from that between meself and parents.. and I am sure it was even larger with my parents and their parents (long departed). the weird thing is that the net has effectively closed many gaps between self and parents. although clearly they havent had or would approve some of my experiences..

    I am not a fob but neither am I an abd… this site is definitely works because of the abd origins.. what that mysterious extra that abds have picked up here (i guess the being american) still kind of eludes me..

    –end of ramble–

  7. –ramble continues–

    sure.. parents age.. we age.. children age.. (Buddha, 500+ bc). But one remarkable aspect is that at least for some folks their voices (and I mean the vocal chords)remain pretty much the same over decades. my parents sound pretty much the same they did 30 years back. wonder why so? any biological explanations? I also vaguely recall that birds dont age.. do they drop dead young then?

  8. Yeah, Ennis, turning 30 is a wake-up call. Forty and fifty don’t hold the same benchmark value.

    Hmmm… it wasn’t like that at all, for me. I barely noticed it when I turned 30. I think 21 and 25 were of some importance. Man, I felt like something really important happened when I hit 25. Not sure why.

    Otherwise, eagerness for the future and hunger for life is the same now as it was at 21. Big differences – learned the importance of being kind to others and to care a LOT less about how I’m judged by others, a better understanding of what success is (it’s falsely attributed to Emerson).

    What I do use it for – to joke with younger people because the number 30 seems to have magical power when it hits the ears of people 10 years younger or teens. Also for added gravitas while conversing with the ‘rents. They think I’m wiser or something now because some number changed in the tens place, haha.

  9. Amitabh,

    QUALITY SONG about Mirza Sahiban.

    Have you seen Gurdas Mann’s new film Waris Shah* (or the trailers for it — clip from one song here.) ? Personally I really prefer his traditional songs in that style rather than the more “modern” pop-bhangra he’s been doing during the past couple of years.

    Incidentally, he turns out to have quite a slick website too.

    I don’t know if you’ve seen footage of Manmohan Waris & Kamal Heer’s recent concerts in the UK & US (some clips are available on Youtube, short examples here and here) but they’re excellent at the traditional stuff too.

    However, regarding modern UK bhangra, here’s a brilliant example: Dr Zeus & “Kangna”. Very catchy song and cool video.

    *For people on SM who don’t know, Waris Shah was an 18th-century poet who wrote the most famous version of Heer-Ranjha (there are several others), based on the traditional folk tale. Gurdas Mann is starring in the lead role in a film about Waris Shah’s life.

  10. I’m actually working with a theater company right now to translate a script of Heer Ranjha so they can put it on as a full-fledge play.

    It won’t be put on until February or so, but I’ll def. post it under the events tab when I get final dates! 🙂

  11. I’m actually working with a theater company right now to translate a script of Heer Ranjha so they can put it on as a full-fledge play.

    How cool! Definitely post about it .. sounds great.

  12. How do y’all feel about most of these stories set on the Chenab river, which got divided up at Partition? makes me wish things would change a bit.

  13. Here’s another (short) high-energy clip. I’m going to be seeing this guy (Lehmber Hussainpuri) perform live in Queens tonight.


    Jai, I’ve heard about the Waris Shah movie but I haven’t seen it. I think it played very briefly in 1 or 2 theatres around here for like a week or something. I’ll probably try to get it on DVD eventually. That song you linked to (Allah Hoo) is a classic. As for Dr. Zeus, that whole cd which includes ‘Kangna’ is awesome; so much so that some people say he didn’t really produce it, Kam Frantic did. But who knows. Dr. Zeus is part of a new generation of producer DJs who apparently barely know the language and literally can’t understand most of the lyrics of the songs they release. That doesn’t seem to have hurt the final product though.