The Humma Song vs Humma Humma of 90s

Posted: December 20, 2016 by moifightclub in music
Tags: , , ,

humma

Humma Humma, Bombay (1994) – Constrained spaces, two lovers unsure of what they have got into and where they have landed. A Muslim girl who has come to a strange place with a Hindu boy. She does not see the familiar green fields in this big city that does not allow one inch of privacy. Here they cannot hug and perhaps steal a kiss without a bunch of eyes looking at them.

Cut to – night. Hormonally charged souls moving around and somehow the constrained space becomes a propeller rather than a deterrent. And then they hear a celebration where a viking and a beautiful lass indulge in a musical foreplay and mind you, the girl is not singing. Her moves are not fake; they don’t need her to wear shorts.  She can make you pant just by exchanging a look with you. The man has to woo her, so the man tries. There is not a hint of ‘hotness’ in the voice of Remo Fernandes. What you hear is pure energy that isn’t auto-tuned or sanitized to sound just perfect in the earphones. This song is for big bad music systems, where the sound will hit your heart in a way you will feel you are getting a heart attack and you thank God when the song ends, because you will rewind and wait for the ‘dhichak dhichak dhik dhik aah‘ that launches you into space and you feel like you haven’t felt before, perhaps like when you felt someone you love for the first time, breathing out on your neck.

The Humma Song, Ok Jaanu (2016) – Cut to an India where a young couple cruising around on a bike, where the guy is not applying brakes ‘strategically’ so that he could feel his pillion’s body against him. The pillion is already ‘one’ with the rider. They do the snake-moves driving instead. Why? ‘We float-on-the-road-babeh’ that’s why! Meeting and finding a place for meeting isn’t a cause of worry.

We aren’t in a dim lit room, our rooms have mood lighting. The song isn’t humma humma, it is The Humma Song. The sense of occasion and anticipation is moaning from the title of the song. It is 2017, the man needs to be wooed too, so the woman sings as well. She has to. It is not a bad thing, Shashaa Tirupati is brilliant. The song starts too self-aware; there is an excellently written rap portion which perhaps captures the mood of the original song to the T. The only time the shehnai sounds like lovers climaxing is when the rap ends and leads you right to it. There is greater bass; this one is for the headphones of smart-phones. This one is for the silent clubs in London. No-one has run away from their village, no one is dying to ‘do it’, they want to do it right. Of course they love each other; their filter-rich Instagram will have you believe that. They might not have the sexual energy of Manisha-Arvind which was more driven because the couple reached a place of certainty from an uncertain past, but what Shraddha-Aditya have is a surety about how their love will be expressed in that place where they don’t have to ‘steal’ a kiss or a hug.

It is easy to chug the new one away saying the earlier one was a classic and frankly if that would have been a way of life, we would have never heard Indian classical music’s gift to us that is called a Thumri. We re-create, we laugh at purists, for they don’t know the delicious taste of fusion. Is all this wrong? No, it is just the spirit of times where we now exist. If we oldies are unable to search chemistry in them, may be we should stop looking at the The Humma Song and look at Humma Humma again, because while the latter had liberation written all over it and the former has self-aware celebration tattooed on its neck. Both are fine. Let us leave it at that.

The Humma Song is targeted at the generation that has grown up listening to and watching Humma Humma on Boogie Woogie and other dance shows. This was all much before they were hit by the highs of wifi, 1080p videos. Post-wifi the world spiraled down to booze parties with songs and gentle gyration to the tunes of Humma Humma and other such songs. The way you hear Jubin hum The Humma Song is a perfect example of that. Booze parties or not, we need just the right amount of thrust to float and while we are at it, a new video with fresh colors and high resolution won’t harm either. The old one, till the last I checked looks pixelated on all YouTube channels it is available.

Finally (and this is where my music reviewing is coming in the way), let us look at the composer of the song. He had a promising future at the time when the song came out. He had to prove himself with every beat that made way from his studio to the music stores that the promise bestowed on him was right. He is comfortable now. What did you expect? Same energy? Na! This is a self-assured way of showcasing to ‘YOLO’ folks – “Look, I can be hip too!”

Personally, I would take raw, unfiltered energy any day, to carefully constructed noise. Passion is best expressed uninhibited, where you break a glass or two while you are at it, forget the mess it will create. Let me rewind (not ‘repeat’) Humma Humma, but I won’t judge you if you like The Humma Song, in fact I would try and hum the song like Jubin, as I sit and reminisce about how The Humma Song would look like with the visuals of Humma humma, isn’t that lovely?

Rohwit

(P.S. – I still haven’t seen the video, I would like to see it when the film comes out to find out if it fits the narrative like those baggie pants of 1990s or does it look super chic like ‘tights’ we see today. Both are fine, been there did that)

Comments
  1. Ravi K says:

    The real comparison shouldn’t be between the two versions of Humma Humma, but rather between this new version of Humma Humma, and the same song situation in the Tamil original “OK Kanmani.” The original Tamil version beats the “OK Jaanu” version hands down. One, it’s an original number, and two, the mostly acapella orchestration is novel and more intimate than the Humma Humma remake.

  2. Ravi K says:

    Forgot to include the link to the original

  3. nitinsmailid says:



    my comment is not about the humma, humma, but rather a more recent comparision, just see these two videos and my point is made.
    About the wrong that is happening with our commercial hindi movies today. (Mental manadhil is the song from Ok Kadhal Kanmani of which Ok Jaanu is a Hindi version or rather a “Bollywood” version). The characters of Hindi commercial movies today are so uber cool that is getting harder to relate to them by the day. Ok there are boys and girls who may be this cool on the street, taking a coco cola out from a van and then sprinkling it on the van, but not most of us, most of us just be around see people, see things, and do other dull and boring things(if it is so) like the characters in mental manadhil are doing.
    Now theres a shot on the stairs in both these videos, but in mental manadhil, they just sit on the stairs and go away, but humaare hero heroine – how can be they so real, close to life, they are hyper cool people, they find a mike on the stairs and a rock band at the back, and something something…..Wont say more just see the videos and it makes the point.

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