Eureka! | Quinn Satterlund
Whenever I’m bored (or whenever I don’t want to do my homework), I try to “fall” through an internet rabbit hole. Usually, my journey starts in one of two places: Wikipedia or Youtube. On this particular voyage across the information highway, however, I used Spotify. Now, you may ask, “How does one even go through a rabbit hole on Spotify, a music streaming app?”, and I may respond, “I don’t know. Stop asking me questions.” It really is me just clicking through random playlists, seeing related artists, and playing songs with names I find interesting.
Using this unbeatable strategy of haphazard clicking, you can see how easy it is to become tangled up in the deep, dark “music lore” of the interwebs. Now, normally, I’ll find one (maybe two, if I’m lucky) songs from a new artist that I add to their corresponding genre playlist, and call it a day. Today, however, I struck gold.
Originally starting out with Freddie Gibbs, then Teddy Pendergrass, on to a couple of random playlists (Spotify and user-generated), before stumbling across an artist named Asha Puthli. Now, before today I had never heard of Asha Puthli, much less listened to her. However, something about her album cover and song title caught my eye. The album cover features a lush blanket of rose, 70s green, and light blue colors – literally, as the artwork for the album depicts Asha Puthli’s face twisted in a non-figurative blanket of these colors. Upon listening to the song, my interest was piqued, and I decided to listen to a couple more songs by Miss Puthli. Upon clicking her music page, I was immediately captivated by the unique titles, such as “The Devil Is Loose”, “Chipko Chipko”, “Space Talk”, and “I Am Song - sing me.” While listening to these amazing songs, I was intrigued even more by who this mysterious woman was. So, I spent some time researching her.
According to Wikipedia, Puthli was born in Bombay, India on February 4th, 1945, and graduated from university in 1968. Afterward, she made her way gradually towards New York, traveling through Europe as a Flight Attendant, before finally arriving in the Big Apple in 1970. Over the next few years, she established a career in music, dance, and film. However, I want to talk about her 1976 album, The Devil is Loose. If you like funk, ballads, disco, R&B, or 70s Folk, I highly, HIGHLY, recommend you listen to this album. With the exception of two songs (The intro track “Flying Fish” and “Hello Everyone”), the rest of the album is very good. Each song feels different from the rest, with obvious inspirations from artists like David Bowie, and The Doors, as well as callbacks to her past love of freeform Jazz. Although the album did not “chart”, at its release, many contemporary and some past publications gave the album critical acclaim. On Puthli herself, the New York Times called her a “fusion Pioneer”, with a “piping soprano”. Over her career, which spans multiple decades and genres, she starred in 4 films, released 11 albums, modeled at Studio 54, and was friends with Andy Warhol. If that’s not a successful path through life, I don’t know what is.
So, go listen to Asha Puthli, and find your own internet rabbit holes.