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a bollywood bash by way of the five senses  by Emily Meyer | 1 2 3
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smell: Use incense to add ambience to the Indian evening. Something with vanilla, sandalwood or cinnamon tones would lend that spicy, exotic feel. Candles will not only look nice, but add warmth and sweetness to the party environment, especially those with ginger or red clover scents.

hear: The most essential element required to evoke that Bollywood ambience is the fabulous music of this genre of film. Here are four picks, all of which are available at amazon.com. Each works well for parties, both as background music and dance music.

  • The Rough Guide to Bollywood by Various Artists of India— This disc features an overview of both ballads and duets as well as danceable club music from 1960 to the present.
  • Bombay the Hard Way: Guns, Cars And Sitars—  This album is worth buying for the cover art alone. The film stills of Indian mobsters, thugs, and other seedy folks are priceless. The songs make for a good background soundtrack, as each one is actually incidental music from movie chase scenes and dramatic moments. A personal favorite track: "Good, the Bad, and the Chutney."
  • The Rough Guide to Bhangra by Various Artists—  Bhangra is the Punjabi dance music that originated in rural villages and has been transformed into modern club music. It is great for dancing, with its dhol drum beats.
  • Typhoon Asha by T.S. Soundz— Modern techno music with the sounds of sitar and tabla, as well as Bhangra-style vocals.


bollywood film picks

Junglee (1961)
A young couple in love fight for the freedom to be together amidst India’s strict caste system.

Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge (1995)
When opposites attract, a responsible middle class girl and a goof-off rich college drop-out fall in love despite their incessant fighting. Then, they must protect their future together by gaining the approval of their families.

Rangeela (1995)
The story of a love triangle between an actress and the two men she loves-- her longtime boyfriend and her leading man.

Also, for recent films that have Indian elements but are not true Bollywood films, check out Monsoon Wedding (2002) and The Guru (2003).



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