Indian Music Collector in Trinidad: Outar Ramroop (Paltoo), 1935-2018
At the age of 15, Outar Ramroop (Paltoo), 1935-2018, fell in love with Indian Music. He was born in Brechin Castle, Couva (BC), in Trinidad and Tobago.
His parents worked in the sugar industry. His father was an over-looker (supervisor) and, as such, was afforded one of the units in the barracks that was used to house workers of former Caroni 1975 Limited. At that time the company’s name was TATE and LYLE, until 1975.
Paltoo was the fourth among five boys. He and his younger brother always had a passion for Indian music. They lived in close proximity to the Sunset Cinema in California and Carib Cinema in Couva (now Unique Furniture Store). They did odd jobs, and most of the money earned was used to purchase cinema tickets to see Indian movies.
At 16 years old, Outar started to work in the sugar industry where he met a time keeper by the name of Mr. Ramkissoon who owned a microphone and a gramophone. Outar negotiated a business deal with the gentleman to exchange two of his family’s cattle for his mike and gramophone. Having successfully completed the transaction, he was now faced with the predicament to procure records like 78, 45 and 33RPM. He would use a part of his small income to purchase records. Over time, he acquired dozens of records which his children still hold as their prized possession.
On weekends, he and his brother would take their mike down to the river bank and they would pass through the cane field which was called Pandaria Trace. This area is now occupied by the Point Lisas Industrial Estate.
Many young boys would accompany Paltoo and his brother down to the river to listen to Indian music. This was an enjoyable form of entertainment, since at that time, there was no public electricity supply in these rural communities. It must be emphasized that the gramophone did not require electricity to work. There was a handle that was used to operate the turntable to spin the records, and the young boys would happily take turns in spinning the handle just to listen to the sweet Indian melodies.
At 21 years of age, he got his taxi badge and purchased his first vehicle which was a Vauxhall. They would now put the mike on the vehicle and drive around the nearby villages playing the sweet melodies. They were eventually contracted by the person who owned both cinemas (Mr. Jattansingh, also known as Baboo).
The village had now grown accustomed to Paltoo and his brother traversing the villages, playing those lovely songs and, as such, they were invited to play music for weddings since were few orchestras at that time. Those weddings were held at nights.
The name Outar Ramroop (affectionately called Paltoo) was recognized throughout the length and breath of Trinidad, North America and England since, being one of the few taxi drivers, his taxi was hired to take people to and from the Piarco International Airport. As a result of his love for Dilip Kumar Movies he was passionately called “Dilip”.
The titles of the records in the family’s private collection are listed below.
ANARKALI; BOOT POLISH; CHANDINI RAAT; DAAG (DILIP); DO BHAI; DEEDAR (DILIP); DULARI; DEVDAS (DILIP); DILAGI; HAKIMTAI; MELA (DILIP); MADHUMATI (DILIP); NAGIN; NISHAAN; NASTIK; PATITH; RAAT AUR DIN; RANIRUPMATI; SHAHEED (DILIP; SINDOOR; SHREE 420; URAN KATOLA (DILIP); YAHOODI (DILIP)RECORDS AND MOVIES FROM 1940-1950 AMAR (DILIP); ANN (DILIP); ANMOL GHADI; ANOKHI ADA; ANDAZ (DILIP); AMAR DEE; AAH; BABUL(DILIP); BIAJU BAWRA ; BARSAA ; MOVIES DILIP ACTED FROM 1960 -1990; AADMI; BAIRAAG; GOPI; KARMA; MARSHAL; RAM AUR SHYAAM; KRANTI;
BOOT POLISH; CHANDINI RAAT; DAAG (DILIP); DO BHAI; DEEDAR (DILIP); DULARI; DEVDAS (DILIP); DILAGI; HAKIMTAI; MELA (DILIP); MADHUMATI (DILIP); NAGIN; NISHAAN; NASTIK; PATITHA; RAAT AUR DIN; RANIRUPMAT; SHAHEED (DILIP); SINDOOR; SHREE 420; URAN KATOLA (DILIP); YAHOODI (DILIP); AMAR (DILIP); ANN (DILIP); ANMOL GHADI; ANOKHI AD; ANDAZ (DILIP); AMAR DEEP ; AAH ; BABUL(DILIP) ; BIAJU BAWRA ; BARSAAT ; RECORDS AND MOVIES FROM 1940 – 1950; AADMI; BAIRAAG; GOPI; KARMA; MARSHA; RAM AUR SHYAAM; KRANTI Shaheed Ali WhatsApp in Trinidad 868 486 6921 firstname.lastname@example.org
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