New musical instruments, movies, shutki and bhaat, sushi and playing
Hates: Fakeness or facades, shrewd people who exploit
Hours spent sleeping: Good day: 10 14 Bad
day: 8 or less
Lives in: my own apartment in NYC
Believes that: Fate is inevitable
Hopes for: success, good health, respect and more
new musical instruments.
Plays the: drums, keyboard, bass guitar and guitar.
Biggest 'mentionable' sin ever: misleading bad singers to come and
record at my studio, where I overcharge them depending on how bad
is bad . . .
Biggest inspiration: Parents, brothers, better half,
and AR Rahman.
Take us through your life...(in brief please)
A: I was born in Bangladesh - August 6th, 1980 to
a very musically inclined family. My father, M.A. Muqtadir, and mother,
Najmus Sama, were always inspiring my brothers and me to be musically
skilled. Unlike my brothers Rahaat and Nicky, I did not receive any
formal training in music (eastern traditional). Ironically I have
become the one who is a musician by profession.
Aside from all the support I had from my family to be a musician,
I also enjoyed and motivated myself to make my way through the musical
domain. I never liked toys. I used to play with all the audio equipment
around my house such as tape recorders, answering machines and anything
else I could find to assist me in my toy-recording studio. I started
playing the keyboard after my brother Rahaat bought me a small Casio
when I was 10. Then, after a year my Nicky bhaiya got me a really
nice pro keyboard when I was 13. I entered my band Zefyr in 1993.
After playing with Zefyr as a keyboardist for 2 years I became interested
in the drums - because I realized I always had an inclination towards
rhythm. I started practicing and within a few months I became the
drummer of my band. Even until today I consider myself best at drums.
I play bass guitar, and some guitars as well, the skill comes in handy
at recording sessions. I can always count on myself as a back up if
the guitarist calls in a sick day.
Do you think that if you had grown up in Dhaka you would be doing
the same thing and be the same person?
A: It's really hard to say . . . I think I would definitely
be in a band but I am not sure if I would be a producer. And I definitely
wouldn't have such a nice studio. As far as the type of person I would
definitely be different from who I am now. Human beings are half predisposed
to their personality traits by genetics and half by their social interactions
from childhood. I am a product of the society in which I have grown.
I am a product of a weird 'Banglamerican' culture.
So how far did your parents help out in your obvious infatuation towards
A: They have always urged me to excel in music but they also
wanted it to be a hobby or a passion rather than a profession. I think
they wanted me to be a part of the corporate world like my brothers
rather then in the entertainment industry, because of the prestige
of the white-collar world.
Cross border music seems to be working fine for you...so how does
everything fall into place?
A: It's actually the biggest hurdle to try to get the masters
and covers back and forth but I am dealing with it. Thank God for
the Internet and broadband. Shumon bhai (bass baba) definitely is
a great contact to have in Dhaka. He helped with the 'Kranti' release,
as he is known to be extremely helpful towards musicians and bands.
So if music is your full-time career, how on earth do you make the
money to survive?
A: As I mentioned before, there is a dark and secret side
of Fuad that I don't usually reveal to those who associate me with
Zefyr, Kranti and Maya. As a day job I produce music for the Bangladeshi
commercial industry. (I don't use my name in these albums) doing folk
remakes, and other pop-commercial endeavors that are up to par with
the current typical stuff that is out in the market right now. I also
work for Showtime Music, a company that sponsors Bangladeshi singers
to come and tour in the US. So 4/5 months out of a year I am on tour
as a drummer for people like Bappy Laheri, Manna Dey, Sabina Yasmin,
Andrew Kishore, Fatema Tuzzohura, Baby Nazneen, Asif, Kumar Bishwajit,
Tapan Chowdhury, Dolly Shayantoni, SD Rubel, Kaya, Kangalini Sufia,
Shakila Zafar, Ankhi Alamgir, Jewel, Ayub Bachchu, James, Hassan,
Biplob, Polash and Rizia, Mumtaz, Kala Mia, Suvra Dev, Pantho Kanai,
Mehreen, Konok Chapa and Kaniz Shuborna.
'Dedicated to the leaders of our dying nation' please comment…
A: Well the dedication is just sarcasm. The leaders are actually
accountable for the shattered state of our country. Looking inward
from outside the box you can really see how pathetic and order less
things are and how the world perceives us.
So do you think 'undermining' the current state of our nation internationally
will serve for the greater good?
A: Well, I am not claiming to be the saviour, nor do I think
one song may serve to augment the status quo of an entire nation,
but realization is certainly a step towards betterment. I want our
generation to see the problem and to come out of their sheltered "M-TV"
state-of-mind. I am not making a generalization about the entire youth
population but in my personal experiences most of my encounters with
kids from back home have reflected individuals who are oblivious of
how the world views our country.
Did you expect 'Maya' to be as widely accepted as it has been?
A: Not at all! I didn't think it would even reach Dhaka.
Maya was a small community based project and alearning experience
for me. I was really surprised to realize that people actually know
the CD. Also now that I have matured as a musician and producer since
Maya, it is sometimes embarrassing for me. And I always make it a
point to tell people that I was only eighteen when I produced those
In 'Kranti' the 'bloopers' tracks at the end are nice…it gives us
the audience the rare opportunity to 'feel' what goes on in a studio…was
that the whole idea?
A: Absolutely. Albums are always served to us in a nice platter,
that's so formal and perfect. I wanted the listeners to understand
our personalities as well as our music. And it was just really funny.
What would be the first thing you'd do when you come to Bangladesh?
A: Check out all the studios . Meet up with all my favourite
You work with big time commercial musicians/famous Bangladeshi musicians
like Baby Nazneen/Ayub Bachhu...is that you?
A: Well, it's certainly a side of me. I respect all sides
of the spectrum. I love Baby apa's set just as much as I love Shakib
bhai and Jon's (CF and Black).
If not where is the real you? (Zefyr/Maya/Kranti/yet to be discovered?)
A: I think you can find the real me in MAYA 3 and "Evolution".
Why did you choose to remake a song Evanescence in Bangla?
A: Trust me on this! No one hates cheesy Bangla remakes more
than me. But the song "Amra Kromosho" was a milestone in
Kranti's history. It was the first song we did and it helped us decide
which way we want to take the album. So, for sentimental reasons we
included the song. I know a lot of people might frown upon it, but
it seemed like the right choice.
Performing on stage in front of fans and foes vs. sitting around with
friends in the middle of a field with a guitar n tambourine and singing
whatever the hell you want to…which one?
A: On stage!!! I like the rush! I don't like the whole sitting
around on campus with an acoustic scene. My approach to music is less
artistic and more technical and professional.
What do you think of the Bangladeshi music scene? (Underground and
A: The underground scene has shed some light to what was
a lost case. I think these guys like ABC, and even the younger bands
are playing a magnificent part in order to get us out of the slumps
imposed by the FDC and the commercial market.
On the other hand, I also respect people like Bacchu bhai and James
bhai for their experience and their tricks-of-the-trade. I sympathize
with them because they are not able to produce the music of their
preference at all times. They are professionals with families to feed
through their music and are often dictated by their record labels.
They have to cater to the cha-er dokan to survive, just like how I
have to record bangla cinemar gaan in my studio - to pay bills. I
got bills - because as soon as I deviated from the path that my family
chose for me and became a professional musician I entered a state
of war. So I can't receive any commodities from the other side.
What can we expect next from you?
A: Well, with the release of Kranti I think I have gained
the trust of some underground musicians in Dhaka. I am collaborating
with some of the prominent figures on a trip-hop/hip-hop/rock/DnB
album called "Evolution". Also I have just started MAYA
3 and I really have high expectations from the last of the Maya series
albums. Ar jeta neeye ami shob theke beshi excited: it's
my Sylheti rap/hip-hop album. This one is going to be hilarious.
Aside from your family is there anyone else who deserves to be mentioned?
A: My partner in crime Luberz, Richard bhai, my biggest well
wisher Monir bhai, my best friend Shihab, Rajib, Nayo, Paul, and my
tech advisor Shomi bhai.
Rashaam and meenz
of the ashes of an evil alien occupation, mankind's tattered remnants
attempt to form an ineffective resistance against their technocratic
The endless source of inspiration
for their efforts is one man, a four-eyed physicist that stuck it
to the aliens and corporate forces of evil once before, armed with
nothing more than determination, ingenuity, and a crowbar.
Gordon Freeman is back, ladies and
gentlemen, and we are happy to report that all you have heard about
this game so far, all the praise, all the endless proselytizing about
its graphics and gameplay and aural excellence was not hype after
all. It was all understatement.
While the game is not a revolution
of FPS gaming, it is as removed from the rest of its contemporary
siblings as a car-driving urban citizen is removed from a prehistoric
ape. This is gaming evolution at its best, the current peak of first-person
shooters, and it will take the competition a good few tries to make
a similar gigantic leap.
Everything in the game is integrated
to near perfection, and it all works together to provide the player
with a seamless experience that is as unique as it is exceptionally
world of Half Life 2 is extremely realistic, and the fact that everything
is so true to life gives an impression of simplicity in the graphics
that could not be any more misleading. Because everything is exactly
where it should be, and behaves exactly as it should behave, it hardly
ever gets noticed. Then you will stop in the middle of a street, realizing
that the game is modestly providing your eyes with a realistic rendering
of an entire town, complete with reflections on glass, asphalt and
metal, a perfect polygonal skyline dominated by the harsh Combine
citadel and multiple fully skinned and animated high-polygon character
and vehicle models, all without missing a step or making it look like
a video game. That's what I call a religious experience.
When a 20 meter tall alien strider
assaults you, there are no design shortcuts, no sections where you
face it one piece at a time: you will be confronted with a fully detailed
and animated twenty-meters tall alien strider smashing through buildings
and people, in the middle of a devastated but fully rendered and populated
town, with your resistance allies running scared for cover, their
fear perfectly visible in their faces and motions.
Talking about technical effects and
details in this game would be grossly disrespectful.
Everything in the game, and we do
mean every single thing, can be interacted with. No static background
objects here. If you can see it, you can use it for cover, manipulate
it to your advantage, or bang it on your enemy's heads. From pebbles
to water to 2-ton trucks respond as expected, as they obey the laws
of mass, friction, gravity, and buoyancy.
The degree of integration with the
game world is, like the graphics, in a league of its own. Half Life
2 finally delivers us from the gaming canon where the arena was limited
to the player, the enemies, his gun and a whole bunch of obstacles
to use for strategic advantage. Here the world is a living, breathing
thing, and it will react to your actions and your enemy's equally.
Gunfights are taken to a whole new level, as you are now able to creatively
exploit the environment to give you the upper hand in combat, or suffer
the consequences if you ignore it. Hanging containers, to mention
but a small example, are wonderful to crush your enemies with, but
they will just as readily drop on your own head, with similar squishy
well as providing an incredible, truly open-ended experience, the
game offers more gameplay than two or three lesser games put together.
On the trip through the single-player campaign, Mr. Freeman will fight,
explore, drive, fly and platform jump his way in an incredible story
with right narrative and practically zero filler content. There is
no repetition and no backtracking here. Every single second on foot,
buggy, and hovercraft will be unique and fresh.
This is the game that in one form
or another, all PC players will get to experience in the next couple
of years. Get this game, you will really only be doing yourselves
a favour. This is the game that shatters rating scales. By giving
it "only" a 10, we should be knocking five points off almost
every other game that came before it.
Polish that crowbar. There's mysteries
to be solved, massive battles to fight, and some alien bullies to
school. Welcome back, Mr. Freeman.
We are now one step closer to the
Sky Captain and
the World of Tomorrow
week I was saying moviemakers would try anything and this week the
saying remains. From muppets and puppets to CGI animation there's
no stopping for the makers. Where Garfield was an animated character
surrounded by real sets, fellow animals and people, Sky Captain consists
of real people in a completely digital world. But don't lose heart
thinking that the graphics are like a child's painting book like in
Spy Kids 3D.
"Sky Captain" was created on that wonder of wonders: the
The Plot: It's
a retro while at the same time futuristic New York. The make believe
world of a highly stylized 1939 is set for a great sci fi scene. There's
an evil mysterious madman named Totenkopf who is a World War I type
German scientist with plans of world domination. Hi robots are plundering
the generators and oil refineries of the world for reasons revealed
late in the game.
Where there are
evildoers there must be the good guys (and gals). Enter Jude Law who
plays Joe Sutphin, a.k.a. Sky Captain, a heroic late-'30s flyboy with
an airbase and a private force of can-do pilots nestled in the mountains
just north of Manhattan.
of a squadron of giant airborne robots sent by Totenkopf early in
the movie gets Joe flying down Broadway in his Tomahawk. For the time
being he sends the robots scurrying. Down on the ground he unites
with his past and future girlfriend, Polly Perkins (Gwyneth Paltrow).
kidnapped many leading scientists so that they can be forced to help
him take over the world. Also on the side of the good guys are Franky
(Angelina Jolie), a sexy pilot with her own agenda, and Dex Dearborn
(Giovanni Ribisi), Sky Captain's head of research and development.
Things become really personal as Joe's right-hand guy, Dex has also
been kidnapped by the villain, so it's Joe to the rescue, with Polly
along for the scoop.
It's a simple
plot but it's created brilliantly. Sky Captain is made to look and
feel like a classic comic book, with depth and dimension to spare.
The whole movie is lent a dreamlike trance with scenes shot in a glowing
haze. The only thing real in the movie are the actors while everything
else has been digitally painted on the canvas of a computer: the sets,
the gleaming planes and rocket ships, the Art Deco cityscapes, everything.
actors did almost all of their scenes in front of a blue screen, which
was then replaced with images generated on computers. This permitted
a film of enormous scope to be made with a reasonable budget and also
freed the makers to do whatever they wanted to, because one digital
fantasy cost about as much as another.
It took first-time
writer/director Conran 10 years to complete his rollicking machine-animated
vision, starting in his basement on a Mac and it paid off as a great
Also Law and Paltrow
are funny. Lack of humor would have simply killed the movie. The characters
here bicker and banter through robot attacks and dynamite explosions
boasting real chemistry. Of course, they no time for a kiss as they
are too busy running about.
a film that escaped from the imagination directly onto the screen.
The best part is that it does not pretend to be any bit realistic.
week, I'm giving a few links to some flash animations, not only because
they are worth a few laughs but because they ROCK! Also, if you are
interested about downloading MP3 files, check out www.mp3.elizov.com.
It's a neat site and has quite a big collection (and it's somehow
legal). But most important thing is that this site doesn't bug you
while you are searching for songs. (Thanks to Tafhim ul Islam for
of the Flies
"this is A Story of four friends who got KILLED by A FLY, And
I DO MEAN A FLY as IN those little pesky little things that bug you
about when you are eating or watever, they fly you know. SO sit back
and relax and watch some stupidity in action!" It's a flash animation
and it's only 400 kb.
knew desktop icons could be so violent?
Calm and quiet desktop icons that have nothing to do but to point
to your favourite (or "un-favourite") applications and games
suddenly come alive and start whacking each other ruthlessly. Neat
and cool to watch. It's about 600kb.
How do you keep an Idiot busy? Ans: you could a) write PTO on both
sides of a blank sheet of paper and give it to him or b) point him
to this link. (You could replace Idiots with blondes/Bush/ dumb person
of your choice). Joking aside, this little animation (270 kb) accompanies
a true conversation between a woman who "locked herself inside
a car" and an emergency call answerer.
What does a booklover's ideal bedroom look like? It's filled with
books, of course. But these books aren't just stuffed in bookcases
and piled on the floor; they're the building blocks of the furnishings.
Taking a novel approach to building furniture, these MIT artists constructed
every stick of furniture in this bedroom using old, discarded, and
donated books. The surprisingly comfortable bed and its pillow, sheet,
and quilt supply both reading and sleeping material. This room was
made for book lovers, no matter what their taste in reading -- or
building -- material.
This is an addictive game with some similarities with Pool. But the
concept is different and you got only 2 balls to deal with. And instead
of pushing the ball, you got to pull a string attached to the ball.
Next time you find yourself limping at the end of the day and cursing
your shoemaker, take a virtual step into the Bata Shoe Museum to see
how much worse it could have been. The museum's online collections
record the evolution of sandals, slippers, clogs, and boots from around
the world over the past 4500 years.
all for this week. Enjoy! If you need to contact me for anything,
mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org