Monday, February 21, 2011

Coming Soon: DEOL DHAMAKA!!!!

The Bolly Blogosphere is gearing up for our next fun project ... DEOL DHAMAKA! For the entire month of March, we're going to be celebrating our favorite Jats ...

The devastatingly handsome Gharam Dharam himself ...

The shy and sweet but awesomely badass action hero Sunny ...

The sensitive, floppy-haired hero Bobby ...

The lovely but sadly failed heroine Esha ...

and the enigmatic, debonair cousin Abhay ...

So BollyBloggers, Podcasters, and friends, if you'd like to share your love for one of the Deols, or simply have a favorite song, scene, film or memory - we'd love for you to participate! I'll be collecting links on my Delicious account, so if you have a tribute please do send me the link via email, on twitter, or on here.

Some of the fabulous participants:

and more!

We'd love to have you join in the fun and explore the deeper meanings behind Dharam's smoulder, Sunny's all-powerful STOMP, Bobby's hair toss, Abhay's dimpled grin, and Esha's ... uh ... well I'm sure there's SOMETHING.

So please do stop by in March to experience DEOL DHAMAKA!

Monday, February 14, 2011

My Favorite 'Jodi' songs - Valentine's Day Special!

Happy Valentine's Day everyone! Now I'm not really the Valentine's Day type, personally. I don't really care for flowers (because I have a black thumb and when they're all dead and gross and decaying I'm the one that has to clean them up), I really have no business eating chocolate with hips this size, and my husband and I don't really do gifts. All the red and pink and hearts everywhere makes me gag more than say "awww" ... but I AM a romantic. It's just that my idea of romance is song and dance routines with coordinated background dancers, worldwide locales and multiple costume changes. Damn you Bollywood!

Anyway, over the years there have always been certain Bollywood pairings that had such incredible chemistry together that you were drawn into their love story. Some had real-life romances, some just had strong friendships, but either way their pairing worked their way into our consciousness.

Yesterday my friends at Dhoonya Dance posted on facebook asking about everyone's favorite Bollywood couples ... the most obvious answer was of course SRK and Kajol ... but I got to thinking about the best DANCE songs featuring these various couples ... and what song would be the best DANCE song to represent their 'jodi' ... let's imagine that I was choreographing a medley featuring Bollywood Couples. Here are the song/dance numbers I would choose to represent each pairing:

1. Yeh Ladki Hai Ya Shola (Silsila) - Amitabh Bachchan and Rekha
An obvious favorite pairing of many, because of their incredible chemistry on-screen as well as the rumoured off-screen affair between them. This song always stuck in my memory because of how he was immediately entranced by Rekha's dancing and couldn't help but burst into song. There's a bit of antagonism as well as attraction here ... a bit elementary school perhaps. But the ending of this song when he pulls her in and her braid wraps neatly around his neck? Magic!

2. Zindagi Hai Khel (Seeta aur Geeta) - Dharmendra and Hema Malini
Ahhh ... The Most Handsome Man in the World and Dream Girl. Whatta couple. Sure, there's more than a little moral discomfort at the fact that he was already married when they fell in love, but it appears that for Dharamji the second time was a charm. They had quite a few wonderful movies together, including some of my favorites like Dream Girl, Sholay, Ali Baba aur 40 Chor and Jugnu ... but somehow when it comes to dancing, "Zindagi Hai Khel" captures the spirit of excitement and fun that I imagine sparked their romance.

3. Humne Tumko Dekha (Khel Khel Mein) - Rishi Kapoor and Neetu Singh
These two are just the cutest couple of all time. I just recently saw them together in the 2010 film Do Dooni Char and they are STILL so adorable together. Here they are in Khel Khel Mein, adorably youthful and clearly in harmony with each other. "Ek Mein Aur Ek Tu" may be the more popular song from this film, but I always loved this one.

4. Jai Jai Shiv Shankar (Aap Ki Kasam) - Rajesh Khanna and Mumtaz
Yes I know most people would say that it's blasphemy to not name Rajesh Khanna and Sharmila Tagore as your favorite jodi ... but I loved RK and Mumtaz's songs together. And well ... dancing isn't quite Rajesh's forte is it? So being under the influence in this song probably helps things a bit. I love his sky blue pant suit. And I just love Mumtaz, period.

5. Nainon Mein Sapna (Himmatwala) - Sridevi and Jeetendra
Obviously I am a huge Sridevi fan, and became one during the Sri + Jeetu era. And I think this song is ICONIC ... the matkas and feather dusters are just icing on the cake that is Sridevi + Jeetendra choreography. How can you listen to this song and not want to dance?

6. Aap Ko Dekh Ke (Kishen Kanhaiya) - Madhuri Dixit and Anil Kapoor
I love love love these two together ... it reminds me of the 90s and movies like this Tezaab, Ram Lakhan, Beta and this one. They are both so lively, so timeless and fun together. I think this is one of the best Bollywood dance songs out there ... it's unfortunate that it's mostly forgotten by people. I still love it though, and I love Madhuri + Anil!

7. Disco Dandiya (Love Love Love) - Aamir Khan and Juhi Chawla
There is something SO sweet and innocent about these two together. Everyone fell in love with them as a pair in Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak, and they were also paired together in Tum Mere Ho, Aatank Hi Aatank, Daulat Ki Jung, Hum Hai Rahi Pyar Ke and Ishq. The magic was never quite the same as QSQT, but to this date when I think of Aamir I think of Juhi. And hey, who doesn't love Disco Dandiya?

8. Ude Jab Jab Zulfen (Naya Daur) - Dilip Kumar and Vyjayanthimala
Ok, I know it's supposed to be Dilip Kumar and Madhubala, but I honestly thought their dynamic always seemed tragic, while Kishore Kumar and Madhubala had that lighthearted fun that I enjoy (granted, both situations turned our tragic in the end). But I loved Dilip Kumar and Vyjayanthi on-screen together - particularly in Madhumati, but also in Naya Daur. And I think this is one of the loveliest 'old is gold' dance songs out there.

9. Pehle Pehle Pyar Ki (Ilzaam) - Govinda and Neelam
 Govinda and Neelam represent the 80s youth and the disco generation. I love them together! They're both great dancers and were super cute. Ok, if nothing else, the video is worth watching for Chi Chi's teeny tiny shorts in the 1st music interlude.

10. Mehndi Laga Ke Rakhna (DDLJ) - Shah Rukh Khan and Kajol
Ok I give in to the mass hysteria. Though I'm not a rabid fan of either SRK or Kajol, I will give that they definitely have great chemistry on-screen ... probably owing to the fact that they are great friends and are really comfortable with each other. And though I was never as crazy about DDLJ as everyone else was, there is a certain EPIC-ness about this song. So it deserves a place on the list, for sure.

So there's my Bollywood Jodis dance medley ... who are your favorite jodis and what are your favorite songs featuring them? Let me know!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Worst. Songs. EVER. - 90s Edition

I have a lot of favorite songs. A LOT. I have a tendency to get obsessed with a particular song and abuse the repeat button listening to it over and over. But that is going to be a different post ...

This post is to celebrate songs from Bollywood films that I thought were simply too awful to exist. I used to say that I wanted to come out with an album of all our favorite "worst" songs ... ones that had singers who got overexcited, who wavered too much with the melody, or had a dragging, painful rhythm to it.

Obviously enjoyment of music is subjective and one might actually enjoy these songs ... if you do, then I definitely don't mean to insult in any way. I also have a great appreciation for rustic voices and that is never my reasoning for disliking a song. These are songs that I found to have limited or no musical value or have potential but the vocals have a negative impact. Or that I just found plain ridiculous. I must disclaimer that I skipped over a large number of Govinda songs because they would have just overpowered the whole list. Plus I kind of love Govinda.

So here we go:

Bollystalgia's WORST SONGS EVER! List - 90s Edition:

1. Kahe To Se Sajna - Maine Pyar Kiya (1989)

I love the MPK soundtrack. Like, LOVE LOVE LOVE it. Even the rip-off songs, like Aate Jaate Hanste Gaate (I Just Called to Say I Love You) and Mere Rang Mein Rangnewali (Final Countdown). Even Kabootar Jaa. ESPECIALLY the Antakshari. But this song just grates on my nerves. Partially because I feel like the singer goes OFF several times (she also sang the Babul number from HAHK), and also because Bhagyashree is so freaking annoying in this song (I never loved her like everyone else, I actually thought she was a pretty bad actress). She totally overdoes every shot. So this song has been on my craplist ever since I was 14 years old.

2. Saajan O Saajan - Baaghi (1990)

 Another soundtrack I loved. Another song I hated. What was up with this singer? Must have been the Producer's sister-in-law or something. A young girl trapped in a brothel, waiting for her lover to save her ... the music could have been really sweet, sad and touching. Instead we get this. Thank god they didn't make Nagma lipsynch this mess.

3. Prem Hai Deepak Raag - Sahibaan (1993)

I don't even know what to say about this song, except that my sister did an amazing imitation of it when we were teenagers. I mean Afroz Bano is a beautiful classical singer ... his thumris are amazing. And then they make him sing this. What a waste of talent ...  then again, the movie was pretty damn awful too. Such a shame because Madhuri looked super cute in all the promos.

4. Pehle Pyar Ka Pehla Ghum - Papa Kehte Hai

Kavita Krishnamurthy has a very unique voice. You can always tell when she's rendering the vocals. There are songs of hers that I love (like 'Pyar Hua Chupke Se' from 1942: A Love Story) and then there's this. First of all its horribly high and screechy (I suppose to sound "young" to match 8-year-old Mayuri Kango here), and secondly ... Mayuri Kango, who was miserably bad in Papa Kehte Hai, a remake of My Father, the Hero. Mayuri, Katherine Heigl you are not.

5. Kaat ke Ungli - First Love Letter (1991)

 Do I need to explain? I mean the blood, close-ups of Vivek Mushran, the lyrics ... poor SPB. I can't believe they made him sing this. And someone tell Vivek that writing someone's name does not make a Love Letter. One of my other favorite worst songs is from this movie too ... 'Badrare Barsore'.

6. Meri Maa Ne Lagadi Solah Button - Darr (1993)

Ok, I love Juhi Chawla. Seriously I adore her. And I loved this movie, despite the extreme creepiness of it. I loved how SRK started his career. But this song is a travesty. It is a pathetic wannabe of 'Mere Hathon Mein Nau Nau Chudiyan' from Chandni.

7. Hum Apne Gham Ko - The Gentleman

This is an example of a potentially good song gone wrong. The music is pretty but Alka Yagnik's vocals are wavering all over the place, it's like they tried to make her do too much and ended up ruining the song. I must say that I'm still in awe that 'Roop Suhana Lagta Hai' from this movie was a hit, because I thought it sounded awful compared to the Tamil lyrics of the original. A lot of times when ARR's songs are dubbed over to Hindi, they try to cram too many words into each line and the songs end up sounding dumb when they are fantastic in Tamil (i.e. Telephone Mani Pol from Indian vs. Telephone Dhun Mein from Hindustani). But this song (thankfully) was not in the tamil original - the tamil version had the absolutely gorgeous 'En Veetu Thottathil' - one of my favorite ARR songs ever. Instead the Hindi version had this. I hate to pick on two of Juhi's movies, so I'll say that the song is saved by gratuitous beauty shots of her. Also Chiranjeevi + Juhi is a strange, strange pairing to me.

8. Ruk Ruk Ruk - Vijaypath

Ok just forget about Tabu's jeans. This song is terrible. It is SO stupid. I can't even believe this was a hit. What is wrong with people? My favorite thing about this song is when it was used in the tamil movie Avvai Shanmugi.

9. Ki Ki Ki Mohabbat Ki - Saudagar

Ew. This song is just awful. Saudagar was one of those soundtracks that everyone loved and I was like  huh? This is one of the worst songs in it though. I can even handle 'ILU ILU' and 'Imli Ka Boota', but this 'Ki Ki Ki' 'Ji Haan Ji Mohabbat Ki Ki Ki' is just so irritating. Manisha Koirala and Vivek Mushran's horrible acting doesn't help either.

10. ABCD - Hum Saath Saath Hai

Ok I LOVE this movie. Yeah, I know. But I just love to laugh at its ridiculousness. It's so over the top cheesy and unintentionally hilarious. But I can't defend this song. Even adorable Neelam can't save this song. And even worse is the fact that there is a wannabe version of this song in existence. I dare you to watch this video. You'll be humming this nonsense to yourself for the rest of the day.

Obviously there are MANY, MANY more awful songs of the 90s, but these were the ones that came to the top of my head when I was thinking of songs I couldn't stand. I hope you will share your favorite worst songs too - I'd love to hear them!