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Thursday, September 12, 2013


The Anglo-Indian Community in KGF had quite an active social life in the early days of KGF. They loved having parties and get togethers. Card games, Bridge and Whist Sessions were a regular past time in their homes when 3 or 4 families got together. Card Sessions and Whist Drives were also regularly arranged in the Clubs and Associations. They were all passionately fond of music and dancing.
Almost every person was musically inclined, and they played a variety of instruments. The English Grand Piano was the prized possession in many homes besides a number of musical instruments such as guitars, banjos, drums etc. Many of them were proud owners of a 2 band Radio and a gramophone or Radiogram. Records of old favorites such as ‘O Sol Mio’, ‘Fools rush in where Angels fear to tread’, etc, were very popular in those days.
They had a number of Rhymes and Ditties that they sang at parties and get-togethers. Any occasion warranted a party with much sing-song and dance. Parties at home were jolly, riotous affairs with everybody lustily singing old-time favorites such as ‘Roll Out the Barrel’, ‘When Irish Eyes are Smiling’, ‘She’ll be coming down the Mountain’, ‘Kookaburra sits on the old gum tree’, ‘Row, Row, Row your boat’, etc, accompanied by someone on the piano or Guitar or banjo. There would be much clapping of hands, stamping of feet and beating of pots and pans to keep time. The singing got lustier as the party wore on with the amount of booze being consumed. Their spirits rose higher as ‘the spirits’ went in!!!
Country Music was also a hot Anglo-Indian favorite besides Rock and Roll and Jazz. Most Anglo-Indian children grew up listening to these country songs on the radio or the lucky few who owned records and LPs played them on their gramophones or Radiograms. Popular Country songs in those days were ‘You’re the reason our kids are so ugly’, ‘All my Exs’ live in Texas’, ‘Cotton fields’, ‘She got the ring and I got the finger’, ‘Who’s gonna take the garbage out when I’m gone’, ‘At the Gas station of love, I got the self-service pump’ etc, etc.
Some of the Anglo-Indian boys looked and dressed like the popular film stars of that time such as Clark Gable and later like Elvis and Cliff Richards, sporting the same hair styles and side locks, while the girls resembled the likes of Marilyn Monroe, Doris Day and other Holly wood actresses with their distinctive features and fair skins. Jam Sessions, Pound parties, Go-Go Dances, Socials and Cultural Evenings were regularly organized, and there
was no dearth of entertainment for the Community in KGF in the 1940s to 60s. Sadly the KGF of today is very different to those wonderful times.

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