Reading Gulzar – Beeti Na Bitaai Raina

Gulzar (Click on the image for source.)

Gulzar (Click on the image for source.)

This has been a long time coming.

I think the blog hasn’t been updated for a while now (a month to be precise), but that hasn’t really been for a lack of trying. A couple of pieces that I have been working on are taking an impossibly high amount of time to get done with. As such, not quite able to head anywhere with my own words, I have decided to return to the relief and comfort of those of Gulzar.

There are a few songs where the singing of the words surpasses their poetry, if you know what I mean. Usually, the latter is so good that if you were to sing it (and I am assuming here that you’re as bad a bathroom singer as any), you’d still find joy. You’d find joy in merely reading the poetry. But the rare songs I refer to are those where the poetry’s meaning and emotion is enhanced by the manner in which they have been sung. They will be beautiful if you read them, or make your best un-donkeybray effort at singing, but they won’t be as beautiful as the original, shot-on-film, sung-by-the-gods song itself.

This film, Gulzar’s ‘Parichay’ has both these kinds of songs: there is the former of the rich poetry, and this, the latter.

When you listen to the song, or rather, watch it, you’ll see how Lata Mangeshkar and Jaya Bachchan begin the song more like a narration, like singing a song you knew the words to but thry don’t really mean anything personal to you. For a song that is inherently sad in its words, watch the latter smile and enjoy the singing. Then, watch how Bhupinder’s voice and Sanjeev’s introduction to the scene adds the feels to it, like moments beginning to form out of the mist of memories. You know this is more than just a collection of words for him. This leads beautifully to the second verse, by which they’re both emoting, yearning for the filling of a common void.

It is subtle. It is, in fact, aspiration.

Incidentally (and sadly, for it highlights the dearth we’ve had of actors of his ilk in Hindi cinema), Sanjeev Kumar who plays Jaya Bachchan’s father in this song was cast opposite her in ‘Anamika’. Incidentally, again, R. D. gave the music to that film too!

Film: Parichay

Music: R. D. Burman

Singer: Lata Mangeshkar and Bhupinder Singh

Lyrics: 🙂

Here goes…

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Reading Gulzar – Ranjha Ranjha

Gulzar (Click on the image for source.)

Gulzar (Click on the image for source.)

An adaptation of a work of Bulle Shah, the immortal saint, this song speaks of the mystic element of love – where the identity of one is lost in the other. The lover not only joins and mingles into his love, he is destroyed and annihilated by it.

And is grateful for it.

Film: Raavan

Music: A. R. Rahman

Singer: Rekha Bhardwaj and Javed Ali

Lyrics: 🙂

Here goes…

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Reading Gulzar – Pehli Baar Mohabbat Ki Hai

Gulzar (Click on the image for source.)

Gulzar (Click on the image for source.)

There is something about first love. The magical lose of sense, the pure, unadulterated flights of fancy, the audacity of hope, the rebellion from order…

How often do we manage to reach these again?

Since we can’t, we can always listen to this…

Film: Kaminey

Music: Vishal Bhardwaj

Singer: Mohit Chauhan

Lyrics: 🙂

Here goes…

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Reading Gulzar – Dil To Bachcha Hai Ji

Gulzar (Click on the image for source.)

Gulzar (Click on the image for source.)

Today, six songs of love!

Love, the universal solvent of all our cinema, the reality around which all our fantasies are woven. Something that we sing and cry about all the time, and get to see so less. And understand even lesser. And because we understand it oh-so-little, we find that little voice in all our heads to push blame on. But what would that voice know? After all, it is a child.

Trust the Master to find an expression for all our follies of love, all our indiscretions and misdemeanours, all our audacious, self-destructive hope, and essentialise it in one sentence! For the first time, perhaps, there’s a reason why we do what we do.

Film: Ishqiya

Music: Vishal Bhardwaj

Singer: Rahat Fateh Ali Khan

Lyrics: 🙂

Here goes…

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Reading Gulzar – Bol Na Halke Halke

Gulzar (Click on the image for source.)

Gulzar (Click on the image for source.)

There is little exploration of fantastical love these days, and lesser still is it expressed. We don’t dream these days in obscure motifs and unreachable ideals, our quest is much easier, much accessible.

In such a time, there comes a song like this – romantic, soulful, and seeking to break the bonds of Time. Going back to a time when the Moon was both the companion and antagonist, hope as well as torment, laughter as well as pain of lovers, it gives us escape from the morbid bounds of commonality.

Film: Jhoom Barabar Jhoom

Music: Shankar, Ehsan, and Loy

Singer: Rahat Fateh Ali Khan

Lyrics: 🙂

Here goes…

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Reading Gulzar – Musafir Hoon Yaaron

Gulzar (Click on the image for source.)

Gulzar (Click on the image for source.)

And there it is, we’re almost done with 2013!

Tomorrow, we shall renew our pledges to destiny. Tomorrow we shall try to rise again, with newer hopes. Tomorrow we shall resolve anew to fight for all that we desire. Tomorrow we shall plunge again into the waters of uncertainty, and swim tirelessly toward our place in the sun.

But all that will be tomorrow.

Today, tonight, let us celebrate ourselves. Let us bask in the glory of that what we have achieved. Let us celebrate the warrior in all of us who refuses to lay by the side, and continues walking no matter what. Who doesn’t get bothered by the ups and down, who keeps to the road and journeys on forward!

All you wise, wonderful people – love yourself!

And have a happy new year!

Film: Parichay

Music: R. D. Burman

Singer: Kishore Kumar

Lyrics: 🙂

Here goes…

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