As we enjoy the rains this monsoon, it’s time to enhance it with some of Bollywood’s melodies.
Subhash K Jha selects his favourite rain songs. Do list your favourites in the message board below!
Bheegi Bheegi Raaton Mein, Ajnabee
The combination of Rajesh Khanna and R D Burman is always special. Throw Lata Mangeshkar and Kishore Kumar into this rain-soaked romantic number, and you will be compelled to ask along with the singer: Kaisa lagta hai?
Rimjhim Ke Geet Saawan Gaaye, Anjaana
Lata Mangeshkar and Mohd Rafi get together for the mother of monsoonal melodies!
Soaked in seductiveness, the singers make the monsoon a witness to their passion.
It’s another matter that Rajendra Kumar and Babita looked as passionate as two blocks of chopped wood waiting to be transported to a paper factory.
Saawan Ke Jhoole Pade, Jurmana
R D Burman’s composition and Lata Mangeshkar;’s singing make this one of the most evocative monsoonal melodies ever.
There are three separate versions of this sublime solo, sung with variations by Lataji.
Phir Se Aiyo Badra Bidesi, Namkeen
Asha Bhosle weaves her magic around Gulzar’s poetry.The tender rendition moistens your eyes and blurs your vision, as though the clouds just burst open in your eyes.
Shabana Azmi was shown virtually waltzing across the clouds in this song.
Rimjhim Ke Taraane Leke Aayi Barsaat, Kala Bazar
Dev Anand and Waheeda Rehman roam the green vastness to the sound of Mohammad Rafi and Geeta Dutt’s coltish cadences. Just one anomaly: While Dev lip-synced, Waheeda kept quiet.
Geeta Dutt refused to lend her voice to Waheeda Rehman. Why? Only Guru Dutt knows.
Rimjhim Gire Saawan Sulag-Sulag Jaaye Mann, Manzil
Basu Chatterjee was a fine storyteller, but he has no music sense to speak of.
Who in his right mind would thrust Lata Mangeshkar-Salil Chowdhary’s classic melodies Rajngandha Phool Tumhare and Na Jaane Kyun Hota Hai Yun Zindagi Ke Saath as part of the background score?
The rain song in Basuda‘s Manzil suffered better.
One version of the number by Kishore Kumar was lip-synced by Amitabh Bachchan at a wedding. But the female version by Lataji went into the background as Mr B and Moushumi Chatterjee soaked in Bombay’s monsoon.
Jhir Jhir Barse Sawani Ankhiyan, Aashirwad
Lataji excelled in Gulzar’s gorgeous lyrics about a woman waiting in the rain for her beloved to come home.
Composer Vasant Desai has composed another famous rain song called Bole Re Papihara in the same director Hrishikesh Mukherjee’s Guddi, based on the same raga. But Jhir Jhir is far superior.
Oh Ghata Saawari Thodi Thodi Bawari, Abhinetri
One of Lata’s most accomplished songs ever, the number catches every shiver as the singer soaks in the pleasures of the first monsoon.
Hema Malini looks divine in the number. The visual quality of the rains has never been done more vividly etched in any other film song.
Pani Re Pani Tera Rang Kaisa, Shor
Rains generally signal romance in film songs. Not this one.
Penned by Varma Mallick, this song takes a philosophical view of the rains: Waise toh har rang mein tera jalwa rang dikhaye jab tu phire ummeedon par tera rang smajh na aaye.
Allah Megh De Paani De, Guide
While most rain songs are about the pleasure of the rains, this one evokes the rain gods to come down on earth. A powerful evocation of Nature’s nourishing powers composed and sung by that nomadic bard of the music world, Sachin Dev Burman.
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