There is pleasure in listening to outdated songs. There is an analogous pleasure in chancing upon Gulzar’s phrases. Reason for each is similar: comforting familiarity. Gulzar is who you discover and who finds you. He is that author whose phrases you underline, moved by his mild empathy and faultless depiction. In his still-active six-decade lengthy profession as a lyricist, he has written on each conceivable emotion, however no person fairly represents lovers like he does.
He writes like he has seen them in shut quarters, like he has been certainly one of them and by no means recovered.
It is just becoming that a day devoted to like ought to function an excuse to revisit a few of his songs. Here are his 9 most enduring love tune, in no explicit order.
Dil To Bacha Hai Ji (Ishqiya, 2010)
In Ishqiya, weapons are an extension of a person’s hand. They are all over the place — on the streets, in a home, cocked to a girl’s head. The sound of a flying bullet is so widespread it might be mistaken for a heartbeat. The coronary heart, nevertheless, is locked away from brutality. In essence, Dil To Bacha Hai Ji, a young tune in a movie about two con males on the run to save lots of their lives, is about falling in love. But largely, it’s about their reawakening to the existence of the center amidst the encompassing blood. In a narrative the place kids are born burdened with expertise, the tune captures the load of innocence.
Gulzar and Vishal Bhardwaj (producer and music director) collaborations are at all times particular. But right here they obtain one thing uncommon: in a tune about love, they make the emotion appear like indulgence, a illness nearly. The signs are embarrassingly evident: Chehre ki rangat udhne lagi hai. The wrongdoer, after all, is the center. Sung by Rahat Fateh Ali Khan, the tune unfolds like a helpless confession of getting given in after relentless wrestling. But it actually opens up when after fixed admission of the center being harmless, the diseased offers voice to what’s inflicting the dis-ease, utilizing the language of the land for the untameable organ: Dil sa koi kameena nahi. Gulzar right here makes even slang sing.
Pehli Baar Mohabbat (Kaminey, 2009)
First love hits arduous. One sinks with out hesitance however realises that collapse as fall solely on reflection. Then every thing appears new and everybody else inconsequential. There is a lot marvel and shock; a lot conviction of accepting the current as the one foreseeable future. Gulzar commits to wording this expertise by shifting his gaze from the lover to the love. He rigorously dissects the headiness of the weightless thud, detailing the urgency of affection earlier than it’s corrupted by the recklessness of want:
But depth of his emotional acumen exhibits when in a love tune he makes use of jhoothe— a remarkably unremarkable phrase so seeped in mundanity that its closest English translation is the prosaic ‘leftover’ utilized in context of discarded meals—to point togetherness. By preferring it to a extra dignified synonym of sharing, he locates audacity for mild transgressions as the rationale behind endurance of past love.
Bekaraan (7 Khoon Maaf, 2011)
What is love with out desperation; what are lovers if not determined? Bekaraan, the Urdu phrase encapsulating restlessness, routinely options in Hindi love songs to indicate their helplessness when aside. As if absence can put lives on maintain.
Gulzar turns this oft-used phrase on its head by inserting it in a tune which encloses the perils of assembly. Bekaraan right here is the lyrical equal of being troubled by mad pounding of the center when transfixed by lover’s gaze, of holding the breath for thus lengthy that it makes one unable to breathe. The lyricist suggests with utmost reverence that if absence causes unrest, presence can also wreck. Bekaraan here’s a mild imploration to look away in order that one can dwell once more. A lover wants time to get better.
Chupke Se (Saathiya, 2002)
It is just becoming that an city drama centered on marital discord and set in space-starved Bombay constitutes some of the evocative songs about longing in current instances. Chupke Se is an occasion of Gulzar taking free rein and crafting a want with the element of a narrative. The central want is to satisfy and, when collectively, to not let go. The want right here is to cover from the world through the use of the quilt of night time.
Saathiya, Gulzar’s second collaboration with AR Rahman after Dil Se (their first mission was shelved) is a captivating album, filled with memorable songs together with a uncommon Adnan Sami quantity. But Chupke Se is greater than indulgence of fanciful impulses, enfolding as an alternative the oldest folly of lovers: to make each little factor about themselves, to seek out excuses to speak about one another satisfied by the distinctiveness of their story.
Mera Kuch Saman (Ijazat, 1987)
The premise is of a spouse, nicely conscious of her husband’s previous, wanting to start out afresh. Seeking to make the home her personal, she sends stays of the previous relationship to the lady involved. This time the lady responds asking for different issues she wish to have again. She sends it within the type of a letter, understanding it will likely be learn aloud.
There are many causes for the tune’s persisting recognition. The lyrics, written in free verse, don’t rhyme. It proved naysayers unsuitable who believed solely Lata Mangeshkar might pull off the next vary. But I assume it continues hanging a chord for quelling the burning insecurity of lovers: apprehension of being forgotten when every thing is over. Gulzar posits this as an impossibility for, how do you come back 116 moonlit nights spent collectively and—by extension—how do you overlook remembrance caught as reminiscences?
Dil Hi Toh Hain (The Sky Is Pink, 2020)
In The Sky Is Pink, director Shonali Bose bypasses the inevitable breakdown of a wedding put up demise of a kid by crafting it foremost as a love story. One can learn it as want achievement; a cinematic rectification by the director whose personal relationship fell prey to an analogous exigency. But she causes it in her personal manner by giving the couple and a backstory.
Much is achieved by the help of Gulzar’s phrases. Dil Hi Toh Hain, a unusually affecting tune withholding the predicament and pleasure of being in love, options the couple earlier than they grew to become mother and father. It captures the small trepidation of being alone for the primary time, paperwork the quiet bravery of the center to courageous all of it. The chorus Dil Hi Toh Hain transitions from a helpless plea to a quiet reassurance. Containing a lifetime of data, the phrases leap approximating the buoyancy of the center and its hidden mischief. The coronary heart is what it’s.
Chup Chup Ke (Bunty Aur Babli, 2005)
When a younger boy and a lady, each skilled tricksters, fall in love, their tune anticipates a intelligent wordplay on stealing hearts. But Gulzar, this time teaming up with the trio Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy hardly ever offers priority to the thoughts.
Bunty Aur Babli is an outstanding album, paying homage to the simple likeability of the music administrators’ earlier songs. But Chup Chup Ke–a splendidly whimsical tune– is all phrases. The lyricist conjures not possible photos sustaining poetic liberties with the conviction of lovers: the sky has taken a flight and the bottom they stroll on is taking strides. These fantastical apparitions appear projection of an inebriated thoughts. Instead they’re visions of sober souls drunk in love. For, he appears to ask, what might be a stronger intoxication?
Tere Bina Zindagi Se Koi (Aandhi, 1975)
People of my technology encountered Aandhi in several methods. For these invested in Gulzar, it is likely one of the movies he directed. For Bengalis, the movie featured their star Suchitra Sen. For me, who’s each, the information was inherited from my father, a religious Kishor Kumar fan. I bear in mind him singing songs from the movie and although I used to be too younger to understand all of them belonged to the identical album, the working grief in them by no means made me query in any other case.
For somebody whose music style is outlined by a singular emotion —solely unhappy songs-—Tere Bina Zindagi Se Koi is the saddest tune I’ve heard. It accommodates no shred of restlessness or bitterness. In truth, it’s a lengthy sigh let loose by two individuals who meet to not dwell collectively however after having lived their life with out one another. This is them admitting separation as the one remorse in life, solely to admit life assumed lesser which means with out their presence.
Dil Se (Dil Se, 1998)
Dil Se is an explosive album; a befitting proof of AR Rahman and Gulzar’s collective inventive energies. It additionally marked one of many earliest situations of Rahman lending his voice to a tune. For most half it performs out like a howl anticipating the doomed destiny of the lovers caught in a storm. Carrying not one of the tenderness of Ae Ajnabi, it additionally withholds a world of fury towards a world conspiring towards love.
By crafting a tune across the sigh of a coronary heart, Gulzar appears to be suggesting the futility of all of it.