Posts Tagged ‘Gulzar’

A new Vishal Bhardwaj film is always cause for celebration. Even his weakest films have so much to savour, and in an industry so plagued by intellectual and creative bankruptcy, Bhardwaj is the rare filmmaker who could perhaps truly claim auteur status- he produces, directs, writes, composes- and does all of it with a style so distinctive and quixotic- there’s no mistaking his stamp. We’ve got to admit, we’re fanboys, and unashamedly so.

The much awaited trailer for Mr Bhardwaj’s new film ‘Haider’ has arrived along with a trio of posters. Haider is based on Hamlet and is the final film of his Shakespearean Trilogy (preceded by Maqbool and Omkara) and stars Shahid Kapoor, Tabu, Shraddha Kapoor and Kay Kay Menon among others (including Irrfan Khan in a special appearance).

Notably, Haider has been co-written with Kashmiri author and journalist Basharat Peer and also marks the filmmaker’s first collaboration with cinematographer Pankaj Kumar, who is best known for shooting Anand Gandhi’s Ship Of Theseus. Click here to read an interesting article about Peer’s collaboration with Bhardwaj.

Take a look at the trailer and posters and let us know what you think:

 

 

One of the best things about your favoutite film is that you are never tired of reading about them. And if it’s a landmark film, then with every passing year as its cult grows bigger, stories surrounding those films became urban legends. Satya is one such film. And though we have heard so many stories about its making, one is always interested to read more. So as its editor Apurva Asrani  started writing about its making on his blog, we thought it would be nice to share the post here too. Over to him.

Satya

My name is Apurva Asrani. I am a film editor. My job profile includes receiving shooting rushes and putting together a cohesive film. I attempt to choose the most honest moments in the material to string together a tableau of scenes. I try to work at proper punctuation. i.e moving around silences, action, music and dialogue to flow rhythmically. I try to clean up the rough edges in performances, sometimes cheating moments to bring on the desired effect. ‘There is no one above the film’ is a motto that I have tried to follow in a career spanning 17 years, 13 films, 5 tele-films & 3 theater productions, often confronting ego’s that were infinitely bigger than the film.

When factors bigger than the film were in control, i.e stars, marketing gimmicks and/or producers with no real love for cinema, the films found no audience. Some were appreciated in part, but not in whole. But several times, the power of the story was above all involved, and the crew worked selflessly, leveled under the radiance of good intention. For me, Satya , Snip!, Chhal, Jalpari-The Desert Mermaid & the yet to release Shahid are all examples of good teamwork.

I spent my 20’s thrilled like a kid in a celluloid store. I have had intimate creative relationships with incredible film personalities like Ramgopal Varma, Hansal Mehta, Anupam Kher, Basu Bhattacharya Bhupen Hazarika & Nagesh Kukunoor. My joy knew no bounds when I spent days with legends like Mehmood & Shammi Kapoor while putting together a show for TV. I have even worked with some incredible people who I could never relate to, like Vashu Bhagnani. This blog is my attempt at documenting memories from some of those relationships.

Ramgopal Varma & Satya

In 1997, when I was a teenage promo producer, a mad-man named Ramu asked me to edit a film called Satya. Mani Rathnam’s Iruvar was about to release and I had heard that it had been cut digitally, i.e on Avid. I had already befriended the digital editing system through my TV & promo work and found that I had an ally in Ramu in going digital. Ramu was high from the failure of Daud and the man mesmerized me. Instead of getting crushed by rejection of his biggest budget film to date he was reveling in its failure. He knew that he was garnering a cult following, and was being admired for making the offbeat comedy the way he wanted to. He carried the creative air of a man who had produced & directed the biggest musical hit of those days, Rangeela, and soon his revelry was to became rebellion against the popular grain.

Ramu, me & Avid Media Composer spent one year in a 6 by 8 foot cabin while editing Satya. I met a man who gambled with life and had a mischievous disposition while doing it. ‘Ramu’ truly wanted to tell Satya’s story. He was living vicariously through the character. The South Indian producer penetrating the Bombay market was a striking parallel with Telegu cinema’s Chakravarti penetrating Manoj Bajpai & Saurabh Shukla’s underworld in the film. In the film, Chakravarti ordered the sudden killing of ‘Bollywood star’ commissioner Paresh Rawal, and Ramu had made his point. The fact that the film found cult status only cemented the man’s journey thus far.

 Ram-Gopal-Varma

The Team

Ramu had put together an incredible team for Satya. There was the unlikely writing duo of Saurabh Shukla & Anurag Kashyap, both chipping into the film with more than just their writing roles. There was the American director of photography Gerard Hooper, who closely collaborated with his Indian counterpart Mazhar Kamran to bring us grit like never before. There was the Industry veteran Krishna who has over a 100 film titles to this credit, but only one as Art Director–for Satya. There was Vishal Bharadwaj, at the start of his juiciest creative phase.

I remember riding with Ramu in his red Maruti Esteem and we were listening to the songs of the Chandrachur Singh starrer, Betaabi. The film was a wash-out but Vishal’s powerful music fueled this car to the Versova sea side office, where Ramu was putting together a team for his underworld film. ‘You like this, Apurva?’ Ramu had asked me, a gawky 19 year old, still numb from the opportunity that had been presented to him. Having been a fan of Vishal since Maachis, I vehemently supported his decision to go with him. I was beginning to feel the onset of a magical phase in my life.

Anurag Kashyap was the irreverent mischievous kid on the set, often getting into sulks with Ramu about Saurabh’s involvement. I remember this huge stand-off about whose name should appear on top, when I had cut the first promo of Satya. Ramu used good humor and leveraged the awe each team member had for him, to manage the ‘children’ on set. I was younger than Anurag, but I was the more serious kind. Diligently trying to prove myself on-set and in the editing room. I knew nothing about film editing, but I would trip-out on the wild material in the darkened room, sometimes not going home for hours and days on end. I seemed to enjoy telling stories & after writing, I found only editing to be an uncorrupted creative space. Besides, the rushes for Satya were honest and ‘ballsy’, unlike the cinema of the day. You couldn’t help but become consumed by the material.

Editing Satya

‘Stay out of the room’, I’d shout, sending my assistant Pradnya to stand as a barricade to the studio door, so that Ramu’s curious eyes couldn’t see what I was cutting. I had a desire to shock and I knew early on that directors must wait till the cut is complete, before they can see it. The Ramu of 1997 was a humble man. Like a child, he would plead to watch it, try and peer through a small window in the door, but he would wait outside till he was allowed in. Most often, the results would please him to no end, and there would a deluge of film personalities who would be invited to see the brewing magic.

Two meetings that I will never forget are with Gulzar, also the lyricist of the film & with Shekhar Kapoor, high on the success of Bandit Queen. When Gulzar walked in, a nervous Ramu forgot to introduce me to him (Ramu always introduced me to his guests), I was also very nervous to turn around and look at the legendary kurta-pyjama clad auteur. Then I distinctly remember there was a soft touch on my shoulder, I turned to see Gulzar who smiled at me and said hello. I was floored. Shekhar Kapoor was all chatty and excited. He couldn’t stop raving about his editor Jill Bilcock who had just cut his film Elizabeth and I was already feeling jealous.

Ramu allowed me break up, re-align, mold and reshape the film the way I wanted to. I believe that’s how he dealt with the writers, actors and camera crew as well. Allowing everyone he trusted to interpret his vision. I never really understood then, how rare it was to find great teamwork. I think Ramu also soon forgot.

Satya was never intended to open the way it did. The opening scene was written with Satya’s character’s arrival in Mumbai. I remember thinking that the opening was flat. What was needed was a fiery and sinister set-up, the correct atmosphere for the silent Satya’s arrival. I wrote an opening voice over about the city of Mumbai and cut it to a montage of city shots. I got actor Aditya Srivastav to correct my Hindi and dub a VO on the avid. I used climatic shots of the long-haired gangster Sabir Masani shooting angrily at a newspaper right at the start of the film, and inter-cut shots from Vidya’s (Urmila Matondkar) fathers funeral pyre (from later in the film).

The sequence got its desired reaction. Ramu jumped up from his seat and clapped in awe. I knew in that moment, that there was no other industry I’d rather work in.

(To Be Continued)

( You can follow Apurva Asrani on Twitter here and his blog is here)

We continue our “Rewind 2012” series with a music post this time. To read our previous post in the series, click here (Coming of age for desi indies – Miss Lovely and Ship Of Theseus), here (So what happened to Agent Vinod? Part 2. Now read the script), here (What kind of bird are YOU?) and here (A for Allah duhayee hai, B for Bakchodi, C for Chutiyapa).

And if you are regular reader of the blog, you probably know that if it’s music, it’s over to Rohit. The only rule we followed here is “NO BOLLYWOOD” because there is nothing left to explore there as we have heard everything possible that Bollywood had to offer in terms of music. So over to Rohit and see if you have heard these gems. If not, do check out all the audio/video links and let us know what gem you discovered this year.

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So its another ‘top this’ ‘2012 that’ post. Yes, you are right. This year though, we have tried to move out of our shell and yet stay there. Confused? So were we, so we decided to look around for music that hasn’t been tweeted much, shared much and made much noise on the otherwise ‘forever active’ social networks/forums.

1. Faran Ensemble, the band – is a 3 player group who got together and are exploring music via some of the best teachers around the world. With a distinct Arabic sound, the group plays mostly instrumental music. We are putting a link to one of their music presentations titled ‘Dune’ (click on the link, go to youtube page and click “show more” under “About” section)

Faran, is a dry desert wadi, which fills with water and life only in rainy winters; and in the hot season, otherwise silent. It crosses Israel on its way from Sinai, ignoring all borders. More on the group on the link. Explore and you shall not be disappointed. For their FB page, click here.

2. Safar, the band – Their single ‘Khoye hain’ came out earlier this year. Granted, the video was a little too cute but the song is light and easy on ears. We would ideally like to listen more from them. Their webpage has been surprisingly static since months (this in spite of the fact that they have got over 90,000 youtube hits since April 2012 which is a big deal!). Click on the play button and check out the song/video. You can visit their home page here. Go check!

3. Thumri Funk, the album – Pandit Ajay Pohankar and Abhijit Pohankar might not have given us the ‘pia bavri’ again but with this album, they gave a contemporary touch to Thumris. A delightfully innovative album to bring thumris to the masses. The album sadly wasn’t publicised much (but can be bought for a mere INR 63 from Flipkart, you can play the sample audio tracks also), features good tracks all around, our special picks remain – Ab ke sawan ghar aaja (that’s a mix of 2 thumris in one), Ras ke bhare torey nain, Yaad pia ki aaye and Balamwa tum kya jaano.

4. Tera Bayaan Ghalib, the album – Taking the trademarked and owned style of recitation along with some intelligent use of ghazals/songs, Gulzar saab presented this gem to us. Those familiar with his book (Mirza Ghalib by Gulzar) and the T.V. Serial would quickly identify with the text of this presentation (in which Gulzar saab recites some letters posing as Ghalib) and for the others, it’s a fantastic peep into the life and times of Ghalib and India. The album is put here only because of the fact that this genre has been revived by Gulzar sahab this year and we are hoping some more albums like these are on their way to our iPods/Music players.

5. Chakwal Group, Pakistan – Gifted to us by Coke Studio Pakistan (Season 5) and hailing from Chakwal, Pakistan, this is typically a 16 member group that stands and sings to a single dhol almost every time. Powerful poetry and excellent rendition is their trademark. Be it collaborating with the wonderful Meesha shafi or Bohemia, he group stood it’s ground effortlessly. A treat to hear 16 men singing and emoting so well without missing out a single beat. (Hear the Kandyaari Dhol Geet and you will know what we mean) Thank God for music, really! Can’t wait to hear more from them in the coming years.

6. Mauje Naina, the song – performed by Bianca Gomes, Shadab and Altamash and was featured in the BIG BANG season 2 Episode 1 of the cokestudio India version that was orchestrated by Clinton Cerejo. The song deserves a mention because it marries the mood so dangerously! A song about a man who is pulled by the dark yet tempting persona of the ‘other lady’. For us, this was the song of the year for Coke Studio India (Yes, including Amit trivedi’s excellent episode, but then no points to Amit Trivedi because his second name is excellence anyway!). What mood! A song that scares you, literally.

7. Neray Aah, the song – Performed by the wonderful Rachel Viccaji & Farhad Humayun, this song (Via CokeStudio Pakistan, Season 5) is a case study on how to ‘reinvent’ a filmy song to the fusion/new age setting. The original song is here  that was launched in 1998 and this version by Rachel and Farhad is embed here  – Do we remember any filmy songs being ‘adapted’ by Coke Studio India so well? We give up. Oh wait! We remember the near disgusting ‘Jugni ji’ that Cocktail ‘borrowed’ from Coke Studio (Without Meesha Shafi) and how bad it fell on our ears. Case. Study. This. Discovery? HELL YEAH!

8. Somrass, the album – Remember Pankaj Awasthi? Remember khuda ka wasta? Remember ‘Tera hee karam’? Blessed with a powerful voice, Pankaj doesn’t stop at that. Experimenting with jazz, electronica, Sant Kabir, poetry recitation, old Hindu mantras and so much more, he gives us arguably the BEST Indi-pop album of the year. Surprisingly, Times Music decided to leave the music album on Flipkart and may be a music shop or two. Do check it out!

9. Thagni, the album – Launched by SaReGaMa, Shreyas and Abhas gave a beautiful twist to age old poems/bhajans by Sant Kabir and Kamali. The album takes a fresh look at bhajans like ‘Udd jayega hans akela’, ‘jheeni re’ and ‘Moko kahan dhundhey re bandey’ among others. Superlative strings and percussions coupled with soothing singing style of the duo, this album, we feel needs to be heard and publicised. Not surprisingly, the album hasn’t been publicised much. Flipkart Link.

10. Reidi Gul, the song – showcased first by Ufone (Pakistan) in their reality show, Yasir & Jawad Khan were eventually asked to make a music video of this beautiful pashto poem by Abdul Ghani Khan saab. The tune is typically pashto but the affectionate style of singing and a clever tune of the song stays with you for a long time. We discovered it earlier this year, hence this features in the list. Here is the entire episode (11 minutes, including the song)  We hope Yasir and Jawad come back with many more gems!

BiggerLOGO

Light play, clever shooting angels, or whatever people might be waiting for, when Vishal Bhardwaj announces a film, there is a breed of people that waits for the music of his film because even if it is ‘7 Khoon maaf’-ish, the music album comes packed with a lot of ‘Gulzar Goodies’. Save for the mess that the music release of the film created, we really can’t complain much because as someone wise once remarked ‘If it’s worth the wait, then shut up!’

1. Matru Ki Bijlee Ka Mandola – Sukhwinder…O Sukhwinder! You have done so much on the same lines already, yet you make it sound all so easy and peppy! Excellently arranged and marvellously penned, the song gives a lesson or two to some ill-fated idiots who think in order to sound catchy (and in order to use the name of the film in a song) they have to have an ‘item’ to endorse it. The splendid African weaving in between (with a continuous guitar note in the background) gives the song a certain amount of class that is always missing when it comes to halkat sheilas who are talking about munnis all the time. The bass effect that ‘stops and starts’ gives just the adequate thump to the song. 2 Thumbs up!

2. Khamakha – Beautiful ‘evening’ guitars, accompanied by a coral like backup group (with African lyrics?), excellent bass and, and, and Vishal Bhardwaj! Sung like a madly in love ‘aashiq’, this is easily one of the best arranged songs by Vishal ever. The simple yet never so beautifully expressed habits of those in love (sleeping by the window, for example) are a forte of Gulzarsaab. What amazes simple listeners like us is his ability to convey love every time in the simplest manner without EVER repeating words. Anyway, the end of the song, the last 1 minute and 14 seconds of the song, tell us why there is an ever-growing army of hopeless romantics who wait for a Vishal Bhardwaj music album. The song is pregnant with a range of varied emotions that haven’t been explored before. The note on which the song starts and the note on which ends will tell you exactly what we are talking about. 3 Thumbs up!

3. Oye Boy Charlie – ‘Singerwala Shankar Mahadevan’ starts the song and the song shoots higher thanks to Rekha Bhardwaj and Mohit Chauhan. There is a bit of saxophone and then there is a bit of nasal Shankar Mahadevan (that is just too good!) and then there is a good amount of ‘motorwala mouth organ’ in between along with good guitar. ‘Vishal purists’ might not like the song much because there is an element of cacophony in between, where you feel VB is trying too hard to arrest your attention by throwing in too many elements altogether. There are way too many elements that I missed in the first hearing. It is a fun song with an element of ‘Jhoom Barabar Jhoom’ and ‘Kajra re’ and ‘Satrangi re’ and some comedy and this and that!

4. Lootnewaley – Sukhwinder and Master Saleem start the song. If you play the song with the ‘Awara’ expectation from Master Saleem, you will be a tad disappointed. Sukhwinder emotes better than Saleem to convey the anger. The track is serious. The words are direct and effective. Clearly, a revolution is being hinted. At times chaotic (which may be intentional), the song won’t set music charts on fire. You might argue that any other set of singers could have done the same job as Sukhwinder or Master Saleem have done. The fantastic possibility that these two names promised is clearly missing. How we wish they were exploited better!

5. Sha ra ra – Prem Dehati starts the song again with the typical mela like music arrangement. The brass bands sing along with the singer to elevate the effect of the song. A very short track that begins and ends leaving the brass bands in your mind.

6. Badal Uthiya – The track starts beautifully with Prem Dehati echoing at a distance and then the music setting takes a completely contemporary turn with generous dose of sitar in between. Rekha Bhardwaj does a splendid job (What’s new?) with this track and even though the Prem Dehati version of the song is my favorite, this track can’t be sidelined at all. Rekha Bhardwaj in her typical ‘soul drugged with romance’ voice makes it very hummable.

7. Char dina ki – A Haryanvi kickass item that just elevates the level of the album and how! Excessive usage of brass bands and some real catchy lyrics ensure that it has a very roadside feel. The beginning of this track has shades of ‘chicha leather‘ from Gangs of Wasseypur. Pankaj Kapur, Prem Dehati and Imran Khan go behind the microphone for this and clearly Mr. Kapoor is having fun like only he can. Excellent track! (Mind it – ‘Char dina ki chamak chandni’ will linger in your head…shart laga lo tau!)

8. Chor Police – A fun recitation by Pankaj Kapur with heavy dose of political wrongdoings that the elected government has been committing. Ends with a splash! Back up vocals, brass band and excellent tempo ‘waali’ claps is what make this track up…good one!

9. Nomvula – African track it may be, but this composition has fun written all over it. If you aren’t one of the ‘I don’t understand the words so I won’t automatically like the song’, then you will like it. A very ‘by the beach with beers’ feel. Really what’s music got to do with language?

10. Badal uthiya (Reprise) – There are few good souls that are trying their best to give the masses a taste of the sheer variety that Hindustani classical offers. This song is an addition to that effort. Prem Dehati accompanied with excellent sitar and a contemporary music arrangement hold your soul hostage. The words, the pronunciation of the same, the stillness, the sadness, everything has traces of God particle in it. If you didn’t know, God particle is generally defined as a song/composition that has mastery of Gulzar saab and Vishal Bhardwaj in it.

11. Lootnewaaley (Reprise) – A strong vocal demonstration against the shrewd landlords, Sukhwinder leads the backup singers in what sounds like a ‘lagaan-like’ track, feel wise. Word rich and music light. The track is clearly banking a lot on the visuals. It isn’t musically as structured as the other version. Clearly a circumstantial song.

Including the recitations and other titbits is the new ‘in’ thing for Hindi film O.S.T these days. Strictly ‘song-wise’ speaking, Khamakha, Badal Uthiya (both versions but Prem Dehati version), title song and Oye Boy Charlie are the ones that will remain with us and that’s a lot of them! We missed the mandatory ‘Have Vishal, so Suresh Wadkar will sing’ song.

An album that benefits (like all of us!) with the presence of Gulzar saab and showcases the obvious abilities of Vishal Bhardwaj, the composer. Also, those having silly doubts on Gulzar saab (Ref: JTHJ) have gone missing and how! ख़ामाखा का doubt, वो भी अल्लाह पे? हट पगले!

Post by @Rohwit (who is currently देहाती.)

One of my favourite albums of all time is Gulzar-Pancham. I bought the cassettes first and then the CDs. The 2-CD pack is compilation of songs written by Gulzar and composed by R D Burman. But what makes the album special is the introduction to every song by Gulzar. We all know that he can weave magic with words. But the way he narrates it, the way he pours out every bit of nostalgia in his narration, it creates an intoxicating mood. Years later he did another similar album – Amrita Pritam recited by Gulzar. The magic was still the same. And now, there’s a new album – Tera Bayaan Ghalib. Here’s Rohit‘s recco post on the same.

Anything, be it a new song or a poem recitation or a book release or a film by Gulzar sahab guarantees that it will have an aroma of freshness and nostalgia in it. This music album quietly made it’s way into the mind space and thanks to Pavan and Sa Re Ga Ma’s online store I could get a hold of the original tracks.

First up, please know that this is not a ‘tribute to Jagjit Singh’ sort of an album by Gulzar sahab. It goes a step further. Gulzar sahab has convinced Jagjit Singh to sit and recite/sing some lines for all of us and what tribute do we want anyway? Jagjit Singh is still there. Very much there. Gulzar sahab has read/recited Ghalib’s letters enacting as Ghalib and it is NOT a commentary on him. It’s a fact that we can’t get enough of Gulzar sahab‘s voice and when you hear him modulating his voice and enacting Ghalib, you will feel the words with him.

Since the album is aimed at giving a peek to all us in the life and times of ‘Ghalib’, Gulzar sahab has plucked many a gems from his TV Serial on Ghalib in the voice of Ghazaljit Singh.

The album starts with a track that was featured in the TV serial (but wasn’t available in music cassettes or CDs). After this, Gulzar sahab recites some couplets from Mirza Ghalib. The mithaas in his voice will remind you of the times when you were dipping your senses into your favorite food and talking about your favorite person. The album then turns to GhazalJit Singh’s rendition of ‘Har ek baat pey’. The difference (nitpickers like me will notice) is a faint note on the keyboard in the background which is unlike the versions already available with us all. This version ends where GhazalJit Singh ends the recitation in the original.

It won’t be fair to give out the flow of what Gulzar sahab discusses in the album because it will spoil the mood of anyone who listens it. So I won’t go into much detail. All I will say that there is a difference between telling and narrating. Gulzar sahab narrates. Beautifully. Many a times you won’t be able to realize that the ghazal has started and the narration has stopped. It’s all in the same fabric. Like for example, there is a part where Gulzar sahab is talking about the ‘patang baazi’ of Ghalib and the melodious flute makes an entry and GhazalJit Singh recites a line of ‘woh firaq aur wo visaal kahan’.  Listen how dearly and affectionately Gulzar sahab goes about telling us why Ghalib chose Ghalib and not ‘Asad’ as his pen name. GhazalJit Singh comes again to recite the beautiful couplet ‘Dost gham’ (which wasn’t available earlier in Music cassettes or CDs of the serial).

Using Ghalib’s lines to create the atmosphere of the old times is a great idea and GhazalJit Singh’s voice comes as a compliment. You can’t help but feel that it’s completely unnatural to live in a world where GhazalJit Singh is no more. The album is full of those unreleased nazms/couplets in the voice of GhazalJeet Singh.

The narrative spans across life and times of Ghalib including the 1857 and how Ghalib shut himself out during that period. And how Delhi was never the same, more or less like Ghalib. There is a lot of pain, especially when Gulzar sahab touches the ‘7 deaths’ in Ghalib family…of all his kids.

Towards the end of the album when Gulzar sahab speaks about old age, the depth of his narration will move you, and on top of it Jagjit Singh’s (unreleased) nazm might move you to tears. You will get goosebumps when you will come across the famous Ghalib composition ‘sab kahan kuch’ because Gulzar sahab accompanies Jagjit (Ghazaljit Singh) in the same. This is Gold. Probably purest form of Gold.

This is not a music album. It’s a melodious session with Gulzar sahab and GhazalJit Singh full of conversations, nazms and ghazals. Anyone with a mild inclination towards Gulzar sahab/Ghalib or GhazalJit Singh will find this album a treasure. A treasure which you will hold on to forever.

You are likely to come across a lot of familiar ghazals in this album but the difference is – this time you live the ghazal rather than just listening to it.

Buy it.

Album : Tera Bayaan Ghalib

Label : Saregama (2-CD pack)

Price : Rs 300 ( Available at Flipkart for Rs 255)

(Rohit blogs at http://almostareview.wordpress.com/)

Gulzar Pays tribute to legendary singer, Jagjit Singh, with a nazm that is included in the new album, Tera Bayaan Ghalib. The album features letters of Mirza Ghalib recited/enacted by Gulzar and Ghalib nazms in the voice of Jagjit Singh.

एक बौछार था वो शख्स
बिना बरसे
किसी अब्र की सहमी सी नमी से
जो भिगो देता था

एक बौछार ही था वो
जो कभी धूप की अफ़शां भर के दूर तक
सुनते हुए चेहरों पे छिड़क देता था…
नीम तारीक से हॉल में आँखें चमक उठती थीं

सिर हिलाता था कभी झूम के टहनी की तरह
लगता था झोंका हवा का है
कोई छेड़ गया है..

गुनगुनाता था तो खुलते हुए बादल की तरह
मुस्कुराहट में कई तर्बों की झनकार छुपी थी

गली क़ासिम से चली एक ग़ज़ल की झनाकर था वो
एक अवाज़ की बौछार था वो

And here’s a look at the booklet that comes with the album.

Tip – Pavan Jha

The year is about to end and since the world is busy making the top ten lists, we thought why should we be left behind. We are scooping all the best lists from across the world here.  Or just scroll down and see under the tab “what we are reading”. We are starting our 2011 Rewind series with a post on the songs/albums of the year.

There are hit songs, there are chartbusters, flop songs, cult hits and then there are the songs which we played in non-stop loop. Sometimes for few hours, days, weeks or even months.  And it’s not easy to dissect why a specific song got you hooked so much. Read on to see if you agree, disagree and if you played the same songs in non-stop loop this year. In no particular order.

1. Bekaran (7 Khoon Maaf)Ek baar toh yun hoga, thoda sa sukoon hoga. Na dil me kasak hogi, na sar pe junoon hoga...It started with these four lines.  And i was hooked.  And it ended with anothem gem of a word ‘Lillah’, which slowly became a part of our dictionary. At a time when twitter asks you to be smarter and put everything in just 140 characters, you can say so much in just one word -“Lilaah“. With Vishal Bharadwaj’s voice and Gulzar’s words, it was love, longing and goose flesh all over.

Extra Playlist – Tere Liye in Suresh Wadekar’s voice and the haunting Yeshu in Rekha Bharadwaj’s voice. Well, play the entire album in non-stop loop.

2. Kun Faaya Kun/ Dichotomy Of Fame (Rockstar) – The name is A R Rahman. I am not sure where and how to start. Will say the same thing which i keep on saying – if i ever convert to Islam, blame it on Rahman. If Piya haji ali (Fiza), Khwaja mere khawaja (Jodha Akbar) and Maula maula (Delhi 6) weren’t enough, he added one more to the list – Kun Faaya Kun and this one i played in non-stop loop for days. Though Kun faaya was the starting point, the album had another beautifully arranged instrumental piece –  dichtomy of fame. A blend of shehnai and guitar created a haunting mood.

Extra Playlist – Play the entire album.

3. Yun Hi (Tanu Weds Manu) – I discovered the film and the album quite late. Realised  that this is the best musical debut of the year – Krsna (music director) and Raj Shekhar (Lyrics). The laidback charm in Mohit Chauhan’s voice almost works everytime but there is a danger of getting repetitive. Krsna and Raj Shekhar made sure that they didn’t fall in the trap.

…Kitne dafe hairaan hua, main ye sochke,
Uthti hai ibadat ki khushbuyein kyun mere ishq se,
Jaise hi mere honth ye choo lete hai tere naam ko,
Lagey ke sajda kiya, kehke tujhe shabad ke bol do,
Ye khudai chodke,
Fir aaja tu zamin pe,
Aur jaa na kahin,
tu saath reha ja mere,
Kitne dafe dil ne kaha,
Dil ki suni kitne dafe…

Extra Playlist – Rangrez, Piya, Manu Bhaiya, Jugni and Saddi Galli. Aha, another album where you can play all the songs .

4. Hawa Hawai (Shaitan) – Like this music review of Shaitan, almost all other reviews missed this Hawa Hawai remix. Because strangely, the song wasn’t available for download. So all those who downloaded the music and reviewed it, had no clue about it. The twang in Suman Shridhar’s vocals and Mikey McCleary’s arrangement added a new zing to the song.

Though after the film’s release, it was a completely different story. Everyone was just googling Khoya Khoya Chand sequence and if you have seen the film, the reason is quite obvious.

5. Saigal Blues (Delhi Belly)  – Though Mikey’s work got noticed, another superb effort by Ram Sampath went completely unnoticed. Chetan Shashital, the man who can do wonders with his voice, went behind the mike to create the Saigal Blues.

…is dard ki na hai dawai…..majnu hai ya tu hai kasai..

Extra Playlist – Switty switty, Ja ja ja chudail

6. Senorita (Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara)  – This album is Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy’s only saving grace in recent times. The song captures the casual, boisterous and celebratory mood of the Spain and Tomatino fest so well. And the use of  untrained voices of Farhan, Hrithik and Abhay made it look natural and completely  impromtu. Add to that, those perfect pauses.

Extra playlist – Khwaboon ke parindey

7. Saibo (Shor In The City) – This came as a complete surprise. The song and the film. Shreya Ghoshal’s melliflous voice and Tochi Raina’s husky vocals leaves a powerful impact. Music – Sachin-Jigar. Lyrics – Sameer/ Priya Panchal.

Extra Playlist – Karma is a bitch,

8. Main Ek Bhanwara (Sahib Biwi Aur Gangster) – Music by Amit Sial and sung by Shail Hada,  this one is an under-rated gem. A melodious track, the song instantly takes you back to the time when dhoom-dhaam noise wasn’t considered music.

9. Hona Tha Pyaar (Bol) – Purists still don’t believe that Atif Aslam can sing. But you can’t dismiss his voice so easily. There is something charming about the way he sings, though besura most of the times. This song is again one of the least played songs of the year. Heard it on FM radio first and then found out that the song is from the Pakisani film Bol.

10. Uh-ho Uh-Ho (Mujhse Fraaandship Karoge) – This album marked the bollywood debut of musician Raghu Dixit. As if the film’s title isn’t weird enough, this track is called uh-ho uh-ho. I never expected anything good from Y Films but this peppy number sung by Ash King and Shilpa Rao hooked me instantly.

11. Ban Gaya Kutta (Pyaar Ka Punchnama) – I have never laughed so much during a song. Had to play the song few times to get the lyrics and they smartly play with some of the words. Music and lyrics by Luv Ranjan and its sung by Mika.

What am i missing? What’s your non-stop loop playlist? Do let us know in the comments.