Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Some of my favourite Hindi love songs...

I havent seen the movie Aandhi but the song Tere bina zindagi se koi shikva to nahin, sung by Kishore Kumar, is absolutely beautiful to listen to - the melody, Kishore's voice, the moving lyrics (with no rubbish English words or banal rhymes thrown in, I might add)... how could anybody who loves, or has ever loved, not be moved by the opening stanza which translates to "I have no grievance against a life without you; but without you, life isn't even a life" (Tere bina zindagi se koi shikva to nahin; tere bina zindagi bhi lekin zindagi to nahin )? Such beautiful lyrics by Gulzar, such beautiful music by R D Burman.

Another Kishore song is Phoolon ke rang se from the movie Prem Pujari (which movie also I haven't seen) and music by S D Burman - the even more illustrious father of the illustrious son from the previous song! Lyrics by Neeraj, and again, no crap wording at all, just beautiful, beautiful sentiments... "Whether it's a short trip or a long one, whether I'm on a lonely road or at a fair, when I think of you, I become lonely even in a crowd" (Chhota safar ho, lamba safar ho, sooni dagar ho ya mela; yaad tu aaye, mann ho jaaye bheed mein bhi akela). Okay, my translations leave a lot to be desired in terms of poetry, but believe me, in the original Hindi the lyrics are so very much more evocative and beautiful!

Mukesh, although a little too nasal for some people, has some truly beautiful songs to his credit. One of them, which I tend to think is underrated as a love song, is from the movie Andaz (yet again, one I haven't seen), with music by Naushad and lyrics by Majrooh Sultanpuri. Tu kahe agar has beautiful lyrics - "I am a song and you are the musical notes, continue supporting me, I am the tune and you are the melody" (Main saaz hoon tu sargam hai, deti jaa sahare mujhko, main raag hoon to beena hai). It's not a sad song, for a change, given that it's Mukesh singing, but it's a beautifuly Italicmelodious one.

One really old movie from the 1950s that I have seen over and over is Baiju Bawra. The first time I saw it was when I was 8 or 9 years old... it must have made a huge impression on me despite the major difference in our ages - mine and the movie's - because for years after, I could still remember key scenes from it. I didnt get to see it again till I was well into my 20s, and it was just as engrossing as I remembered it. Yes, Bharat Bhushan's OTT acting in places made me giggle, but on the whole I loved the movie, especially for the music.


I would say that practically every song from Baiju Bawra is a gem - but how could they not be, with music by Naushad and lyrics by Shakeel Badayuni, and sung mostly by Mohd Rafi? Listening to Rafi sing "O Duniya ke rakhwale" always sends shivers down my back and brings tears to my eyes... the purity of his voice, the sheer emotion he conveys, is just amazing. And the lyrics - "(Like) the crazed sun searching for the moon, dawn searching for dusk, I too search for the love who could not be mine" (Chand ko dhoonde pagal sooraj, shaam ko dhoond savera, main bhi dhoondhoon uss preetam ko, ho na sakaa jo mera) - the combination of Rafi-Naushad in this song could melt the proverbial stone... and in the movie, it made a stone idol cry. I totally get the idol. It couldn't have stayed unaffected.

4 comments:

Teesu (very very Indian, very very good) said...

Wa(h), Wa(h), you could not have put it better. So many beautiful old Hindi songs...sighhhh. And I don't even know Hindi THAT well. But the wealth of meanings and the depth of the melodies get me every time. *Sniff sniff*. Easy to cry listening to old Hindi songs regardless of happy or sad...But that's OK -- crying is n't always bad...right?

Kamini said...

You swept me along on such a wave of nostalgia! Now I've GOT to find and listen to these after you've written about them so evocatively - I'm sure they will be available on YouTube.

Anu said...

Exquisite choices, Shyam; every one of these brings tears to my eyes, even with my limited Hindi.

The current Indian music scene couldn't hold a cande to such gems even if it tried its best.

Ahhhh; l'amour......

MS Mahawar said...

nice choice of songs!
i m also love the songs of kishore da....