An Eyeful of Love

May 19, 2010

That eyes are expressive, we know. Filled-with-love eyes, questioning-raised-eyebrows, happy-crinkling-eyes, flirting-eyes, cold-blue-eyes, smiling-eyes, ominously-staring-eyes; the manifestations of eyes’ expressions are many. Nowhere in the annals of global literature have the eyes been used as well as in Hindi film songs. Ever since cinema moved to the “talkie” phase from the “movie” phase, eyes have been employed to describe a myriad emotions. Each music director, lyricist and singer has sometime or the other in his or her career extolled the virtues of the eyes. They have created a sensitivity for the human eye which no eye-doctor has ever done. These eye afficionados have moved away from the physical realm of cornea, retina and the humours in-between (aqueous and vitreous for those not aware) to take the fascination of mankind to an altogether different level. Read on to know more on this.

To start with, reams of songs to describe the beauty of the eyes:

Pretty Eyes:

Aankhon mein kaajal hai” from the late 70’s movie “Doosra Aadmi” has the young- and the then hot couple- dancing around the trees in the park they find themselves into. In matching costumes of white. Rishi K and Neetu S. They look good together and dance well together despite the staccato dance moves of Rishi and the heavy kaajal-laden eyes of Neetu’s. Rishi even swears that her bindiya is a mirror which reflects his love for her. “Teri bindiya darpan hai, darpan mein mera dil hai…

Dev Anand knew a thing or two about describing the pulchritude of his beloved, like he did in this song from the early 60’s film “Jab Pyaar Kisisey Hota hai”. He was romancing Asha Parekh. Says Dev A as he romances Asha P as they conveniently glide down a valley: “Yeh aankehin uff yumma, yeh soorat uff yumma”. What a description of female beauty! Yummaa!! Asha Parekh takes this to philosophical heights when she enlarges her lover’s “uff-yummaish-ness” to the salubrious hilly climate and her rising heartbeats: “Yeh mausam uff yumma, yeh dhadkan uff yumma, kaisey dil ko rokein, koi thamey, uff yumma!” And then she does a Manoj Kumar-esque deflection of her neck complete with her forefingers covering her “uff-yumma” visage as Dev A. tumbles in a style strongly reminiscent of Dev Anand!

I wonder how Rakhee was enraptured with Shatrughan Sinha crooning to her “Doob, doob, jaata hoon” in this song from the 1973 movie, “Blackmail”. She should have dialled 100 and asked for immediate help when this yellow-shirted, black waist-coated, blue-denim jeaned apparition looking like the one and only Shotgun Sinha stared into her eyes singing “sharrrrrrrrbati”. But maybe she need not, as dear Shotgun goes about describing her eyes as “sharbati aankhein”. The sweet syrupy eyes as deep as lakes. I shall agree to this one, Rakhee’s eyes were something! The sherbat thing was used even prior to this in the movie, “ Do Raastey“ where Rajesh Khanna sings to his girlfriend “Yeh reshmi zulfein, yeh sharbatee aankhein”. Sweet eyes which give life to others: “Inhein dekhkar jee rahein hain sabhi”. Not only that, these vital symbols of beauty also make others to quaff, “inhein dekhkar pee rahein hain sabhee” (the elixir of life, I suppose). A close look at the screen close-up at this point in time reveals what causes people to quaff more and more. But I shall leave this out from this post. Check-out youtube if you are keen!

To conclude this section, the rocking “Kajraarey, kajraarey” from “Bunty aur Babli”. That song which has been played by the DJs ever since to bring back to life any tired party. The song comes on and then, instantaneously, it is “all legs-on-deck”- sorry- all legs on dance floor. Surely it says something about the Indian male’s attraction to kohl-lined dark eyes!

Your eyes o’ pretty one:

Dev Anand strikes again in this old Kishore favourite: “Oh nigahein mastana”, as he sings to Nutan in “Paying Guest”. He beseeches her attention: “Koi dekhey nasheeli aankh mal-mal key, dil kaisey na ho deewana”. If the burning candle beckons, what can the insect do? (“shama karey hai isharey jal-jal key, toh kya karey parwana”).

In another song it is the beholder’s nazar which takes in the beauty of the beloved. “Terey chehrey sey nazar nahin hatati, nazaarey ham kya dekhein”. I think this beholder has a point. He has to take his eyes of the beholden one to behold what is being proferred by the Yash Chopra-ish environs from Switzerland, Kashmir, Chilean Andes, wherever; from the, you guessed it right, this Yash Chopra movie, “Kabhi Kabhie”. By the way, the young couple, Rishi and Neetu Singh tumble all around the verdant slopes but they keep staring at each other in the eyes. The other parts of the body are free to do whatever else they deem fit!

Vulnerable Eyes:

If eyes are pretty by themselves, they also indicate vulnerability. And fear. Like this song from 1964 movie “Kohra” starring the beauteous Waheeda and the non-hero Biswajeet. She of the lovely eyes and lovelier tresses and he in the corporate white-shirt, tie and dark trousers and with a voice of Hemant Kumar. Which indeed is Hemant Kumar’s! The hero wants to quaff the intoxication off the goblet like eyes of his beloved as he wants to live… “Zara peeney do, zaraa jeeney do..” Those eyes which make him forget the “tomorrow”… “kal ki kisko phiqar”… as he wipes away her tears. Only when I watched the song I realized what the hero wanted. A quasi-vampire trick of quaffing the tears; all the time I thought he wanted to drink wine off her eyes!

Sample this one from “Arth”, Raj Kiran singing about Shabana’ eyes, “Jhuki, Jhuki si nazar..” in the wonderful voice of Jagjit Singh. Mahesh Bhatt’s intense biopic has Shabana lowering her gaze as the camera carresses her eyes gently. And those eyes – and some wonderful acting- won her quite a few best actress awards.

Ankhiyan bhool gayein hai sona, jab sey kiya hai jadoo tona”. In this this Geeta Dutt number from “Goonj Uthi Shenai” the heroine narrates the loss of sleep of after her beloved has cast his spell on them. How bad it must be, a small jadoo-tona and you are fixed for good!

Playful Eyes:

The romantic meeting of eyes is nothing less than a conflict of romantic proportions, Hindi poets have called this meeting a ladai. Nainon ka ladna! And there are bound to be violent repercussions to a conflict; fireworks going up, the heart feeling the pangs. Like Dilip Kumar announces to the villagers his love for Vaijayanti Mala in “Ganga Jamuna”: “Nain lad jaihein”. In his quaint Bhojpuri he says, “Manawa mein kasak hoibey kari” etc etc.

The Sufi mystic Amir Khusro’s immortal qawalli from the 16th century  has been sung by virtually all the singers worth their salts. Some in movies, some outside it. But the enduring charm of the song remains. And the song has “Chhap tilak sab chheeni rey, mosey, naina milai ke” is one of the top favourites. In this song Amir Khusro describes his devotion and love for Hazrat Nizamuddin saying he (Khusro) has lost all his worldly symbols after his eyes met the eyes of his guru the great H. Nizamuddin. So much so that Khusro beseeches the crow (kaaga), hell -bent on feasting on his flesh, to spare his two eyes as the eyes hold the vision of his master, the great Hazrat H. I love this one- not only for the references to the eyes- but also to this classic line: “Prem bati ka madwa pilaikey, matwari kar deeni rey, mosey naina milaikey”; “You have served me the intoxicating extracts of the herb of love and I now go insane…”

Romancing Eyes:

This title song from the film “Aankhon, aankhon mein” presents to the listener an interesting divergence of interests of the man and the woman. (Mars and Venus theory; another clinching proof). They are both in a barn-like place and the woman, Rakhee, is dressed only in a man’s shirt, a few sizes too long for her. One can guess it has rained, the girl has got all wet, and she has to change in dry clothing. And the hero, Rakesh Roshan, offers her his shirt. Hormones may have been raging, but all what the hero wants to do is to engage in an eye-to-eye chat. The heroine is perhaps a little sleepy and she wants to sleep- in his arms. I do not know what happened at the end of the song, the possibilities are endless…!

The exchange of glances between members of the opposite sex is enough to engender life-enhancing properties as Dev Anand tells Shakila in CID: “Aankhon hi aankhon mein isharaa ho gaya, baithey- baithey jeeny ka sahara ho gaya.” Afterall, as the title song of this Amitabh-Jaya starrer goes: “Pyaar ko chahiye bas ek nazar”. Hence the plea by Biswajeet to Waheeda in this 1960’s classic Hemant Kumar song from “Bees Saal Baad”: “Zara nazaron sey keh do ji, nishaana chook na jayein”. Stay on target, you eyes!

Sad Eyes:

This marvelous melancholic song from Mukesh song from Anil Dhawan’s “Annadata” (1972): “Nayana hamaarey, saanjh sakaarey”. Eyes see dreams, but is it possible that they would ever realize them all?” goes this soulful number.

Eyes can beat the best of Indian monsoons if provoked by sundry circumstances (Mehbooba’s, “Merey naina saawan-bhadon”), though the mind still remain unquenched (…phir bhi mera man pyaasa..”). In the mind-numbing film from the early 70’s, “Geet”, this one from the equally mind-numbing non-actors, Rajendra Kumar and Mala Sinha. “Terey naina kion bhar aaye..” I do not remember much of the movie except that among the multiple twists and turns in the movie, Rajendra Kumar has a bad accident which shows up as a neatly pasted Band Aid on his forehead and a forgotten memory. It is music which had united the couple and I guess that is what would have united them in the end and cleared all the plotted cobwebs. Never mind the movie, it did have some great songs. And tearful eyes have a practical problem, they cannot accomodate sleep: “Do nainon mein aansoon bharey hain, nindiya kasey samaye…? Very well expressed in Gulzar’s words in the movie “Khushboo”.

The good guys among you all must be wondering if the eyes have nothing else to do but to stoke romantic fervours among impressionable members of the opposite sex. No way, sirs. Did you know that the eyes could symbolize patriotic zeal as well? Read on…

Patriotic Eyes:

Us mulk ki sarhad ko koi chhoo nahin sakta, jis mulk ki sarhad ki nigehban hain aankhein”, that is the clarion call from the war movie, “Aankhein”. How can someone invade the borders of a nation which has a very vigilant set of eyes at her borders? Very true!

It is said that Lata Mangeshkar sang this song at a function just after India’s defeat to China in the messy 1962 war. This defeat had devastated the aging Nehru. The mix of his age, the defeat and the voice of Lata moved him to tears. This song has been the staple of all radio and TV programs ever since, on National holidays like 15th August, 2nd October and 26th January. If you have not guessed it so far, the song is none other than “Ai merey watan key logon..”. To be true- Nehru I am not- but this song has never failed to move me, whenever I listen to it. Lata Mangeshkar is wrong when she says, “zara aankh mein bhar lo paani”.

One does not need to infuse paani, tears happen.

xxx

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Chanda o chanda

March 20, 2010

Mankind, ever since it came into being, has always held the moon in great fascination. That orb- or crescent, depending on the time of the month- of celestial light has always had its beholders awe-struck. Many-a-phenomena has been attributed to the moon; right from the ocean tides to the loss of sanity of humans (lunacy. Remember?). Many-a-calendar has been based on the moon (lunar year). Festivals are dictated by the phases of the moon. Some fall on Poornima, some on Amasvaya while the rest fall on days in between (e.g tritiya, ekadashi). There have been Chandravanshi dynasties. The moon has been the source of thousands of names: Chandrima, Chandradeo, Poornima, Chandraprakash. Many-a-lullaby has been sung by mothers coaxing their children to sleep: “Chanda Mama door ke…”, “Chanda mama se pyaaara tera mama”. Ever since 1969, man has also been travelling to the moon trying to figure out its mysteries. Remember Apollo 11? However, this post is not on lessons in astronomy, but on a lot more interesting area; the Hindi cinema.

Hindi cinema, or any cinema for that matter, uses multiple devices to make points. Maybe I will discuss the stock ones in another post of mine. One wildly popular one is the moon, chand, chandrama. That singularly potent symbol of romance and the pitfalls of it. Chand describes the lover’s beauty, sets up the stage for a romantic rendezvous and if the lover does not respond, or worse still the rendezvous does not happen, chand is resorted to for advice, support and sympathy.

The hero often likens his beloved to the moon. In similies or metaphors. That Guru Datt classic: “Chaudhavin ka chand ho” from the eponymous film where the hero cannot decide whether the radiance of her visage resembles that of the moon (chand) or the sun (aftaab). This one can fully understand, the beloved in consideration being the lovely Waheeda Rehman. If you have seen the movie, you will recollect that the song starts with a close-up of the full moon. But what about Mala Sinha in “Himalaya Ki Gode Mein”? Manoj Kumar serenades her wishing his beloved was as lovely as the moon: “Chand si mehbooba ho meri”. Manoj Kumar “acting” as only he can and Mala S. acting as only she can complete with the coquettish biting of her little finger, attempting to blush. Then there is this rambunctious Shammi Kapoor dancing around in a shikara in the hit movie “Kashmir Ki Kali”. He is clear that Sharmila Tagore, his beloved, has a moon-like face and with golden tresses to boot. “Yeh chand sa roshan chehra, zulfon ka rang sunehra”. To emphasize that they are indeed in Kashmir- and on Dal lake- he even likens her eyes to a lake: “Ye jheel si gehri aankhein…”. With his active gestures, there is never a dull moment with Shammi K around. Compared to this vigorous chand song, this one from “Saawan Ko Aaney Do” sounds really tame: “Chand jaisey mukhdey pey bindiya sitara…”, says an impoverished-looking Arun Govil to the preening Zarina Wahaab.

Sometimes chand even serves as an advisor, a sounding board. Like Sanjay “Abdullah” Khan asking the moon whether it has seen someone as beautiful as his lover. “Mainey poochha chand sey, ki dekha hai kahin…”. The beloved being Zeenat A. (And to amply clarify the question the director+set designer duo even place a crescent moon “hanging” in the sky which you can see through the window.) Chand, of course, does not reply. Zeenat does, though, through her coy gestures. She agrees with her hero!

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Sometimes the moon is compared to the lover’s beauty and is found wanting in comparison. The moon, then, has two option: either to feel shy (“Husn sey chand bhi sharmaya hai”) of Saira Rehman’s beauty, or sigh regretting its inferior looks: “Chand ahein bharega, phool dil thaam lengey…..”. That is Mala Sinha again! She is the one in focus while another Kumar serenades her- Raj Kumar!! I’m sure the Kumar’s have a thing about the seductive charms of Mala S. Samjhey Jaani??

Chandrama served as a reference point for the lover’s beauty and it is also instrumental in building up the atmosphere for a romantic rendezvous.

The sublime “Aadha hai chandrama, raat aadhi..” from Navrang built up this urge to an altogether different level. Never mind that the hero has an idiotic look on his face as he beseeches his beloved to complete their romantic chat, he did not want it to be truncated half-way. The heroine, Sandhya, is more interested in wiggling her hips and balancing that impossible seven pots arrangement on her head as the hero laments the slippage of midnight into day.

Decades later, Sanjeev Kumar gets a bit more physical and lassoes his beloved Shabana Azmi into joining him behind the local church where he has placed the chand he has stolen from the skies. Church, you wonder…? Well, this  movie is based in Goa and we have the great Sanjeev Kumar in Goan costume, complete with shorts encasing his ample posterior and a beach shirt.

Things were rather subtle in Chori Chori where Raj Kapoor and Nargis both agreed that they should both meet up in the sweet shadow of the moonlight, “Aa ja sanam madhur chandni mein ham..” That Lata/ Manna duet is an all time classic. As is the great romantic film filched from “The Roman Holiday”. Or was that “It happened one Night”?

In 1952, in the movie “Jaal”, Dev Anand beseeches his beloved on the beaches of Goa (complete with palm trees): “Yeh raat, yeh chandni phir kahaan..”. Never mind he was wearing a rather odd piece of clothing on these beaches… a full sweater!

Or even the song from the comparatively recent film: “Chand chhupa badal mein..” .

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If the hero had no guts to proposition, he would summon the moon to do the needful. As in this song from Shart: “Dekho who chand chhup key karta hai kya ishatey..”. The female understands and she reciprocates: Perhaps it says I am yours (“hum ho gaye tumhaarey..”). Some enthusiastic- and rather non-creative lovers- even liken themselves to the moon and the moonlight. “Mein tera chand, tu meri chandani..”. Or even the more modern “Chand mera dil, chandni ho tum” from the late 70’s movie Ham kissisey Kam Nahin. And some expressive ones say: “Chandni chand sey hoti hai, sitaron sey nahin….” Just in case you did not know that only the moon caused moonlight, never the stars.

Chand is also summoned to heighten the feeling of frustration of the lovers. Like the appeal of “Na yeh chand hoga na taarey rahengey”. Or “Chand phir nikalaa, magar tum naa aaye”. Or the intense- and incendiary- “Terey bina aag yeh chandni, tu aa aa jaa.” Dev Anand appealing to Waheeda “Khoya khoya chand, khula aasman..”. Or that last song ever of Mukesh from the film Mukti, “Suhaani chandni raatein, hamein soney nahin detein” sung by the bearded Shashi Kapoor punching the piano in a restaurant.

Chand also serves as the last resort of the loser, one who has lost it all in the game of romance. The ulitimate loser song is from Chandralekha: “Mainey chand aur sitaraaon ki tamanna kit hi…” The protagonist goes on to lament that while he sought the brightness of the moon and the stars, he got nothing but the darkness of nights (.. mujhko raaton ki siyahi ke siwa kuchh na mila..”)

Chand is sometimes summoned as a witness- an arbitrator really- to pronounce its judgement on the moony lovers. Like in this evergreen Hemant Kumar composition from “Miss Mary” sung by Rafi and Lata: “Oh raat key musafir, chanda zara bata dey; mera kasoor kya hai, yeh faisla suna dey..”.

xxxx

When I was kid, I was taken to a show put up by USIS (United States Information Service- does it exist now?) where we saw a piece of a moon rock placed in an elaborate display case. As we exited, we were given a button which said “I saw the moon rock”. We were hyper-excited then and wore the button for the next few weeks. Now that I think of it, I realize that in Hindi cinema, the moon always rocks!

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I must acknowledge the contribution of my friends Anshu Tandon and Sanjeev Roy who provided me lists of chand songs. And my thanks to Atul who celebrates in his blog his love for Hindi songs; go check it out: http://atulsongaday.wordpress.com/


A Bird’s-Eye View of Hindi Cinema

December 5, 2009

Hindi film songs are an ornithologist’s delight. Or shall we say a Hindi film is heavily dependant on birds.  Whatever it is, we can rest assured that no Hindi film is complete without the mandatory bird song. The song could range from joyous to melancholic, from love/reunion to separation, from the profound to the bizarre. The bird-songs span a spectrum of emotions, a range of situations in life.

Like, for example, the must-have situations of joy and sorrow between lovers in a movie. The ecstasy of togetherness and the woe of separation.  The birds tell it all.

But before that, we shall explore the aviation fixation in childhood. From the joyous “Chun, chun, chun-kar aayi chidiya” from Md Rafi in Jab Dilli Door Nahin to the melancholic “Naani teri teri morni ko mor le gaye” a song from the old film Masoom sung by Ranu Mukherjee, the daughter of Hemant Mukherjee.  That cute little kid prancing around in her frock hoping that the “choron wala dibba” of the train shows up in the jail. And that the corpulent thanedaar punishes the thieves appropriately.

The bird songs really take flight when romance blooms. Like in the teenagers’ crush: “Kabootar, jaa, jaa, jaa” from the Salman/Bhagyashree starrer super-super hit, Maine Pyaar Kiya. The kabootar (pigeon) being the purveyor of messages between the besotted lovers. Or when the lovers meet and sing together: “Koel boli, duniya doli” in Sargam. Never mind if only Rishi Kapoor is able to sing, Jaya Prada can too, on celluloid. So what if she is physiologically unable to considering she is mute and deaf and able only to respond to her lover’s dafli in real life. While this song exhults in the koel boli, this one likens the lover’s voice to a koel’s, “Koel si teri boli” from the Anil Kapoor, Madhuri Dikshit starrer, Beta. The lovers here are slightly more grown up. Madhuri D. in a pink lehenga and Anil K. in his white dhoti. Rural ornithology, what say?

It is not that only koels and kabootars symbolize love, other species too contribute their humble mites.

A key specimen participating in the romancing process is the sparrow, aka Maina, aka muniya. Sapney’s “Ik bagiya mein rahti hai ek maina”. Ooh, la, la, laa! Which brings us to more of the sparrows. Some with the tota (parrot) as well. Like “Tota-maina ki kahani toh purani, purani ho gayi” from Shashi Kapoor and Shabana starrer, Fakeera. (Yes, Shabana sang bird songs as well!) The maina is also called muniya in common-speak. Says Raj Kapoor’s Hiraman to Waheeda Rehman’s Hirabai, “Mahua key sab ras moh liya liya rey, pinjarey waali muniya.” in Teesri Kasam. How entrancing! The sparrow spiriting away all the juices from the flowers of the mahua tree.

By the way, the mor is not too far behind in these joyous moments. “Morni baga mein bole adhi raat ko” from Lamhe. The rather macho “Tu jungle ki morni main baagan da mor” (Raja Saab). Or Dharmendra’s and Hema’s duet in Pratigya: “ Morni re morni”.

(Talking about mor’s, here is one more, in a different vein though. I am reminded of an Ajit joke. Warning: This is an old joke so all those who have heard it earlier, excuse me, please. Ok? Here goes:

Ajit, goes on a hunting trip with his henchman Raabert (Robert) when he hears a rustle behind a thick bush. Ajit pulls the trigger and silences whatever rustling behind. He then goes behind the bush to check the rustler he has silenced and emerges from the bushes triumphantly. A smile on his face. Robert enquires anxiously, “Kya tha boss?”. Ajit replies, “Mor tha, ab woh “no-more” hai! Khatam ho gaya!”)

Even the very generic panchhi is a great romantic bird. Chori Chori’s playful “Panchhi banoon udti phiroon mast gagan mein”, Bandini’s soulful “Oh panchhi pyaare” and the reflective “ Do panchhi, do tinkey” from Tapasya.

And this nadir of Hindi film music from the 80’s, Bappi Lahiri’s abominable “Bol ri Kabootari, gootar-goon.”

After the romance follows the longing.  “Pankh hotey to udd aati rey , rasiya o balamaa”, Rishi Kapoor in Zehreela Insaan reminiscing his loved one with “O hansini, meri  hansini”, complete with “merey armanon key, pankh lagakey, kahaan udd chali”. Or naughty one sung by Rafi and Asha in Nau do Gyarah, “So jaa nindiya ki bela hai, aa ja panchhi akela hai.” What better expression of longing, and, more importantly, desire! The searing “Pankh hotey toh udd ati rey, rasiya, o balamaa”, from Sehra, or the nostalgic “Ek tha gul, aur ek thi bulbul, donon chaman mein rehtey the” from Shashi Kapoor-Nanda starre Jab Jab Phool Khile.

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After longing, can sadness be far behind? Like the Ganga Jamuna’s classic separation song “Do hanson ka joda, bichhad gayo rey”. (It so happened that a few years after this movie was released the Congress party underwent its first split and each of the new entities had to take on a new symbol, very distinct from the original “pair of oxen” symbol (bailon ka joda). The opposition parties had a field day taking a dig at this by creatiing the ditty “Do bailon ka joda bichhad gayo rey”.)

Or the songs based on our friend, the ubiquitous panchhi: “Pinjre Ke panchhi re tera dard na jane koi” from Nag Mani, Bhabhi’s haunting “Chal ud jaa re panchhi ke ab yeh des hua begana”, and my personal favourite from Toote Khilone, That very uncommon Kishore Kumar song, “Nanha sa panchhi re tu bahut bada pinjara tera”. Or “Jaa rey, ja rey udd ja oh panchhi”, from Maya. Kailesh Kher broke through into stardom with this bird classic “Toota, toota, ek parinda” from the rather recent film Waisa bhi hota hai.

Lest you assume that the birds are employed only for the romantic stuff, let me hasten to add that they serve other diverse aspects as well. Like sheer naughtiness.  Ab Dilli Doo Nahin’s “ Chun Chun Karti Aayi Chidiya”. “Cheel cheel chillakar,seeti bajaye” from the Kishore classic Half Ticket and the utterly raunchy “Rakhna apni murgi sambhal, yeh murga hai deewana”. Sung by, of all the people, Amitabh Bachchan, in Jadugar. Don’t you dare translate this song into English!

The birds signal patriotism too. Like “Ham panchhi ek daal ke” from the eponymous film for kids. To the 15th August/26th January/2nd October staple of Vividh Bharati, “Jahaan daal-daal pey soney-ki-chidiya karti hain basera” from Sikander-e-Azam.

Or philosophical sentiments masquerading as entertainment: “Naach meri bulbul toh paisa milega” sung by Rajesh Khanna in Roti to the inebriated Johnny Walker in MadhumatiJangal mein mor nacha kisi ne na dekha”.

Even a riddle. Mera Naam Joker’s “Teetar key do aage teetar, teetar ke do peechhey teetar. Bolo, bolo, kitney teetar?”.

You must be wondering how the Hindi film industry missed the ubiquitous crow, seen in every village and town. Not that the crows are considered auspicious or romantic. And that is precisely how the Hindi films have treated them. Sample these. “Jhooth boley, kauva katey” from Bobby and “Kauwa chaley hans ki chaal” from Around the World.

Kauas have nothing to crow about as far as Hindi films are concerned!

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Acknowledgement: A big thank you to the following gentlemen for suggesting songs for this piece, Ashutosh Ojha (Chennai), Piyush Desai (California, USA), Sanjeev Kumar Roy (somewhere else in California, USA) and Anshu Tandon (Lucknow). Birds of the same feather flock together, you know!