Endless flow of bhang, lots of colours, peppy music and frenzied dancing – no one does it like Bollywood – Neha Malude talks about five Holi songs we love and why.
Nothing compares to a hot afternoon of being drenched in colours and water, dancing to filmy songs. Here’s a list of our favourites.
Holi ke din from Sholay
Who doesn’t love the Dharmendra-Hema jodi? Even Garam Dharam’s dancing skills (or lack thereof) can’t beat the fun factor of this song. And what makes the song even more special is that the couple was not yet romantically involved but Dharmendra had already started hitting on Hema Malini – coincidentally reflected in the lyrics ‘jare ja deewane tu, holi ke bahane tu chhed na mujhe besaram’.
It is said that he even bribed the spot boys to ruin the shot so that they could get more retakes together. We love this song for the lovelorn Amitabh Bachchan too but it is Dharam and Hema who steal the show whose bubbly personalities perfectly match with the peppy music and beats.
Tan rang l0 from Kohinoor
We love the Meena Kumari who isn’t grief stricken but a chirpy young princess playing holi with her friends. And who better to give her company than a swashbuckling prince, Dilip Kumar? The beauty of the song lies in its simplicity – the lyrics are humble and the music characteristically folk but the underlying message is beautiful – let in hope and let go of differences. And despite being a black and white song, you can still see the colour and the joy. One of our favourites for sure.
Hori khele Raghubira from Baghban
One of the more recent Holi songs in Bollywood, Hori khele is a song we love for the swanky Big B and the ever graceful Hema Malini. Despite the lyrics, ‘Tanik sharam nahin aaye dekhe naahin apni umariyaa, Ho saath baras mein ishq ladaaye,’ the sprightly duo showed everyone that you don’t have to be young to rock a Holi song, just youthful.
The song has been sung in Awadhi, a dialect from Uttar Pradesh lends it a playful folksy character. And Mr. Bachchan’s inimitable dance style and impish expressions not to mention his distinctive singing voice make for a fun filled song to dance on.
Rang barse from Silsila
You couldn’t possibly think we’d miss this! This is the Holi song without which a holi party would be colourless. This one’s quite a departure from the naughty mood in Hori khele to the flirty, almost lewd tones of Rang barse. The lyrics are rife with innuendos but that and the music is what makes this one a class apart and our absolute favourite.
‘Bela chameli ka sej bhichhaya, soye gauri ka yaar, balam tarse, rang barse!’ is just one such line from the song and would you believe who wrote it – Big B’s father and the revered poet, Harivansh Rai Bachchan. And to top it all off, there’s the crack-a-tastic chemistry between Big B and Rekha, what’s not to love? Rang barse is pure desi fun at its best and will forever remain a favourite.
Let’s play holi from Waqt
No, don’t cringe! Loving this song comes with terms and conditions. You must be down at least six or seven (read ten) glasses of bhang and willing to look silly. Granted, Anu Malik should be banned from flitting anywhere close to a recording studio but you’ll learn to forgive him and maybe even love him a little bit once you’re adequately high. Remember ‘unchi hai building, lift teri band hai’?
This one’s so bad it’s good, you know?
While all these Holi songs are good, make sure your list includes all the latest hits, item numbers and Bollywood mixes. As the bhang works its magic you are going to need more than just lyrics about rang and pyaar. If you are looking for some fun ideas for your Holi party, we’ve got some suggestions… as always!