Holi ! The great Indian festival of colours ! The great Indian festival of forgiveness and burning all the ills in the pious fire. With the splash of colours, old grudges and resentments in the hearts are washed out. Besides, male-female hearts start getting exchanged with the play of dry and wet colours because these colours signify love.
Bollywood has presented several quality songs for this festival. I am sharing some of them according to my subjective choice :
- Aaj Na Chhodenge Bas Humjoli, Khelenge Hum Holi (Kati Patang – 1970) : This memorable song is my numero uno Holi song featuring Rajesh Khanna and Asha Parekh performing on the voices of Kishore Kumar and Lata Mangeshkar whose touching lyric has been penned by Anand Bakshi and composition is of Pancham Da (R.D. Burman). It’s a blend of frolic and gloom in the hearts of the hero and the heroine respectively leaving an indelible imprint on the heart of this reviewer.
- Holi Aaee Re Kanhaai, Rang Chhalke, Suna De Zara Baansuri (Mother India – 1957) : A great Holi song reflecting Indian devotional tradition linking Holi to Lord Krishna. Penned by Shakeel Badayuni, composed by Naushad, sung by Shamshaad Begum and picturized on Kumkum, Azra and others.
- Arre Ja Re Hat Natkhat, Na Chhed Mora Ghoonghat (Navrang – 1959) : A classic Holi song linked to the mythological spectacle of Krishna and Raadha. Penned by Bharat Vyas and composed by C. Ramachandra, this song has been sung by Asha Bhosle and Chitalkar (C. Ramachandra himself) for Sandhya and Mahipaal.
- Holi Ke Din Dil Khil Jaate Hain (Sholay – 1975) : This immensely popular song of the biggest hit in the history of Indian cinema was sung by Lata and Kishore for Hema Malini and Dharmendra. R.D. Burman has composed Anand Bakshi’s lyric.
- Holi Aaee Re Aaee Re Aaee Re, Holi Aaee Re (Holi Aaee Re – 1970) : An underrated Holi song which I personally like very much. The movie starts with this song itself and the Holi scene only lays the foundation of the entire story. Sung by Lata, Mahendra Kapoor and Usha Khanna and picturized on Mala Sinha, Prakash Thaapa and others, this song got composed by Kalyanji Anandji with the lyric being of Indeevar.
- Tann Rang Lo Ji Aaj Mann Rang Lo (Kohinoor – 1960) : A beautiful Holi song sung by Lata and Mohammad Rafi for Meena Kumari, Dilip Kumar and others with the lyric being of Shakeel Badayuni and the composition being of Naushad.
- Aali Re Aali Re Holi (Zakhmee – 1975) : A very touching Holi song with the grief of the protagonist being interwoven with the frolic of Holi encompassing the others. This song is the title track of the movie also. Kishore Kumar and chorus have sung it for Sunil Dutt and others. Bappi Lahiri has composed the meaningful lyric of Gauhar Kanpuri.
- Piya Sang Khelo Hori (Phaagun – 1973) : A heart-winning Holi song sung by Lata for Waheeda Rehman. Sachin Da (S.D. Burman) has composed the lyric of Majrooh Sultaanpuri.
- Mal De Gulaal Mohe (Kaamchor – 1982) : A beautiful Holi duet of Lata and Kishore sung for Jaya Pradha and Rakesh Roshan (and also for Suresh Oberai and Neeta Mehta). Indeevar’s lyric has been composed by Rajesh Roshan.
- Daiya Re Daiya Re Main To Hui Dang Holi Mein (Pyar Ke Raahi – 1982) : A highly underrated Holi song which is melodious, foot-tapping and sensual at the same time. Penned by S.H. Bihari and composed by Aziz Naaza, this lovely Holi song has been sung by Anuradha Paudwaal for Shobha who has delivered a heart-conquering dance performance on it.
In addition to the above, the following Holi songs are also worth remembering :
- Gaao Kabeer, Udaao Abeer (Jwaar Bhaata – 1944) : A long forgotten very old Holi song sung and composed by Anil Biswas and written by Narendra Sharma.
- Khelo Rang Hamaare Sang (Aan – 1952) : A song sung by Shamshaad Begum and Lata for Nimmi (Dilip Kumar, Nadira etc. also in the scene). whose words have been come from the pen of Shakeel Badayuni for the composition of Naushad.
- Mat Maaro Shyam Pichkaari (Durgesh Nandini – 1956) : Lata’s beautiful Holi song for Beena Rai (singing for Pradeep Kumar) which Rajinder Krishan has written for the tune made by Hemant Kumar.
- Aai Aai Re Holi (Aabroo – 1968) : Asha-Manna Dey duet sung for Vimi and Deepak Kumar. Sonik-Omi have composed the lyric of G.S. Rawal.
- Neela Peela Hara Gulaabi Kachcha Pakka Rang (Aap Beeti – 1976) : A Holi song sung by Lata, Usha, Kishore, Mahendra Kapoor, Manna Dey, Amit Kumar, Anuradha Paudwal etc. Laxmikant Pyarelaal have composed Anand Bakshi’s lyric and it’s been picturized on Hema Malini, Shashi Kapoor and others.
- Maaro Bhar Bhar Kar Pichkaari (Dhanwaan – 1981) : A Holi song sung by Kishore Kumar and Usha Mangeshkar for Rakesh Roshan and Reena Roy. Saahir’s colourful lyric has been composed by Pandit Hridaynath Mangeshkar.
- Rang Barse Bheege Chunarwaali Rang Barse (Silsila – 1981) : Amitabh Bachchan’s immensely popular Holi song created by his father, the legendary Hindi poet – Harivansh Rai Bachchan. Shiv-Hari have composed it and Amitabh has performed on it alongwith Rekha, Jaya Bhaduri (Bachchan), Sanjeev Kumar etc.
- Bhaagi Re Bhaagi Re Brij Baala, Kaanha Ne Pakda, Rang Daala (Rajput – 1982) : A nice Holi song sung by Asha, Mahendra Kapoor and Dhiraj Kaur for Dharmendra, Hema Malini, Vinod Khanna, Ranjeeta and others. Anand Bakshi’s lyric has been composed by Laxmikant Pyarelaal.
- Holi Mein Haule Haule Dil Dole (Insaan – 1982) : A Holi song sung by Rafi, Asha and Shailendra Singh for Jeetendra, Jayshree T., Reena Roy, Vinod Khanna etc. Lyric is of Anand Bakshi and composition is of Laxmikant Pyarelaal.
- O Meri Pehle Hi Tang Thi Choli (Souten – 1983) : A Holi song of Kishore and Lata sung for Rajesh Khanna and Tina Munim. Usha Khanna has composed Saawan Kumar’s lyric.
- Holi Aaee, Holi Aaee, Dekho Holi Aaee Re (Mashaal – 1984) : Sung by Kishore, Lata, Mahendra Kapoor and chorus for Dilip Kumar, Waheeda Rehman, Anil Kapoor, Rati Agnihotri and others; this song contains the lyric of Jaaved Akhtar which has been composed by Hridaynath Mangeshkar.
- Saat Rang Mein Khel Rahi Hai Dilwaalon Ki Toli (Aakhir Kyon – 1985) : Rajesh Roshan has composed Indeevar’s lyric whereas Rakesh Roshan, Smita Patil and Tina Munim have performed on the voices of Amit Kumar and Anuradha Paudwal.
- Ang Se Ang Lagaana Sajan Mujhe Aise Rang Lagaana (Darr – 1993) : A beautiful Holi song sung by Alka Yagnik and Vinod Rathod for Tanvi Aazmi and Anupam Kher (Juhi Chawla and Sunny Deol are also there). Anand Bakshi’s lyric has been composed by Shiv-Hari.
- Rang Di Rang Di Preet Ne Rang Di Baali Umar Kori Kori (Dhanwaan – 1993) : Manisha Koirala, Karisma Kapoor, Ajay Devgan and others have performed on the voices of Kavita Krishnamurthy and Nitin Mukesh. Sameer’s lyric has been strung in the melody of Anand Milind.
- Soni Soni Ankhiyon Waali (Mohabbatein – 2000) : Jatin Lalit have prepared the tune for Anand Bakshi’s lyric. Ishaan, Jaspinder Narula, Manohar Shetty, Sonali Bhatawadekar, Udit Narayan, Shweta Pandit, Udbhav, Preeta Mazumdar etc. have sung it for Shah Rukh Khan and many other actors of the movie.
- Hori Khele Raghuveera (Baaghbaan – 2003) : Amitabh Bachchan, Udit Narayan and Alka Yagnik have sung this popular Holi song picturized on Amitabh, Hema Malini and others. Aadesh Shrivastava has composed Sameer’s lyric.
- Dekho Aaee Holi, Rang Laaee Holi (Mangal Pandey – The Rising – 2005) : Aamir Khan, Chinmayee, Madhushree, Srinivas, Udit Narayan etc. have sung it for Aamir Khan, Rani Mukherjee and others. Javed Akhat’s lyric has been composed by A.R. Rehman.
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