Valentine’s Day! Love songs? Jaane bhi do yaaro

Love songs on Valentine’s Day have become a cliché. Why not list songs that connect with people who are done and dusted with love or simply not interested in it.

By Mayur Lookhar

Anniversaries, birthdays, festivals, historical, events. In India, we have songs for every occasion.  Although it is another imported culture, Valentine’s Day is perhaps the most cheered day in modern, presumably more urban India.

Not that India needed a Valentine’s Day to celebrate love. After all, with a population of over 1.3 billion and a cinema that is largely built on telling romantic stories, we don’t need any Saint Valentine to tell us how to love, or make love. Nevertheless, like many western influences, some good, some bad, India has taken to Valentine’s Day like bee to honey. Of course, the week before Valentine’s Day is great for business too.

This lovey-dovey feeling during Valentine’s week has its charm but also a sell-by date, certainly for single and aging beings like your truly.  We’re not giving any gyan, but the youth should definitely experience the euphoria of Valentine’s week.

Not all stories end up in love on 14 February, there are heartbreaks too. Perhaps, most courting ends up in disappointment. We have no stats to back that presumption.

Each Valentine’s Day, music plays a vital role in wooing your beloved. And so, every year, we have writers, journalists, radio stations, TV channels, digital apps curating love songs for the occasion. This writer has done his fair bit on this blog, and other portals before. And so, if not all, we’ve covered most love songs in our V-day song listicle over the years.  So, this year we thought of doing something disruptive.

Rather than celebrate love, how about list tracks that reek of heart-break, anger, ONS, unrequited love, vengeance. Unfortunately, quite few of them reflect male anger, ego. The feminists are happy to label such men as misogynist. There is anger among female voices too. Let’s say when you hear these songs, you’ll experience a range of emotions.

Kya Hua Tera Vaada – Hum Kisise Kam Naheen [1977]

Ah, the golden era of Hindi film music was all about celebrating love. However, in this Nasir Hussain-directed romantic musical, there was one song that struck a deep chord with all those who felt betrayed in love. This Majrooh Sultanpuri and R.D, Burman composition was all about questioning the beloved, hey what happened to those promises?

Om Shanti Om – Karz [1980]

There is no bigger disease than love, and it is incurable. Better to take the path of spirituality, and chant Om Shanti Om as Monty Oberoi [Rishi Kapoor] did in the Om Shanti Om song from the reincarnation drama Karz [1980].

Ek Haseena Thi – Karz [1980]

Deceit, greed, murder in the garb of love. Subhash Ghai’s protagonist had a shot at revenge in Karz [1980], but there is no reincarnation in the real world.  The Neeraj Grovers of the world will testify from heaven. Karz made some fear Simi Grewal.

Piya Aaye Na – Aashiqui 2 [2013]

It’s not the refusal that breaks a person, but the hope that kills it. Don’t keep waiting for that person ain’t coming. Yours truly will testify to it. Piya Aaye Na by Irshad Kamil in Aashiqui 2, ah, an eyeopener for the one-side love stories.

Tanhayee – Dil Chahta Hai [2001]

What’s more dangerous? Love or hope of finding love? Hope gives rise to expectations and when the efforts yield no result, all that left is tanhayee [loneliness].  Once again, it’s the heartbroken man crying. Dil Chahta Hai [2001] saw Akash [Aamir Khan] bear a crestfallen look after falling out with Shalini [Preity Zinta]. That hurt was felt through the powerful tone of Sonu Nigam. Akash though would eventually find love, but in the real world, most tend to find only tanhayee.

Tadap Tadap – Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam [1996]

The despondency was writ large on Salman Khan’s face in the Tadap Tadap track where Sameer [Khan] kept asking what wrong did he do to be destroyed in love. K. K’s soulful, heartfelt tone moved many Sameers across the globe. Ah, it’s painful.

Achcha Sila Diya Tune Mere Pyar Ka – Attaullah Khan

Ahh! Not just in Pakistan, but this ballad from Attaullah Khan became the love cry for the forlorn souls in India too. Ah the 80s, 90s were full of such misogynist songs where the men acted like cry babies blaming it all on the women.  Well, the song was recreated by Gulshan Kumar in the Bollywood film Bewafaa Sanam [1995]. That translated to disloyal love.

Pyaar Karke Pachtaya – Pyaar Ke Side Effects [2006]

If you thought courting is a battle, well marriage is akin to a war. Rahul Bose and Maliika Sherawat discovered the Pyaar Ke Side Effects [2006] in the the late Labh Jajua and Pritam’s desi hiphop song.

Ishq Kabhi Kariyo Na – Musafir [2004]

Don’t fall in love, many died in it. Sunidhi Chauhan, a female, spelled out it clearly in the Ishq Kabhi Kariyo Na song from Musafir [2004]. Do we need to add more?

Pyar Mujh Se Jo Kiya Tumne – Saath Saath [1982]

Well, more than women, it’s men who carry the unrequited love stories. How to ward off possessive lovers?, The late Jagjit Singh gave us the answer in the Pyaar Mujh Se Jo Kiya Tume ghazal from Saath Saath [1982].  Red alert! You’ll get only suffering if you fall in love with me.

I Hate Luv Storys [2010] title track

For close to the best part of the century, Hindi cinema glorified true love as bond between two pious hearts. That myth though was challenged in the new millennium with the title track of I Luv Hate Storys where Imran Khan makes it amply clear that he doesn’t mind a fling, fun [ONS] but strictly no to a relationship because he hates love stories.

Naina Thag Lenge – Omkara [2006]

The perils of love underlined beautifully in Gulzar’s lyrics and the romantic [ironical] tone of Rahat Fateh Ali Khan. Don’t succumb to the lure of the eyes.

Tum To Thehre Pardesi – Altaf Raja

Well, the words of Gulzar might be too poetic, classy, but years ago, Altaf Raja explained it in the simplest of words to the masses. Don’t fall in love with someone who would never reciprocate the same feeling for you. The Tum To There Pardesi qawwali-style single was a rage in 1997. It turned Altaf Raja into an overnight star. Well, it’s songs like these that perhaps remind us why such tracks are called ‘Single’.

Looop Lapeta [2022] title track

This was no tale of breakup, despair, but the plight of Savi [Taapsee Pannu] showed us how a woman should never date an immature, impulsive boyfriend like Satya [Tahir Raj Bhasin].  In such a situation, the poor girl ends cleaning the shit by her beau. The words Iski Jaan Ka briefly scares you for they sound similar to popular desi cuss words. If you understand the song in the context of the film, this Looop Lapeta title track is a great way to unleash the rage within you.  Credit to lyricist, composer Mayank Mehra and his co-composer Sidhant Mago, who joined Jay Anand in the vocals.

Badla – Blackmail [2018]

What does a man do when he spots his wife cheating on him?  The ugly thoughts, vengeance does creep into one’s mind. Dev Kaushal [late Irrfan Khan] harbored revenge. The Badla rap aptly gave us an insight into the troubled mind of Dev.

F**k Love – Zoraan, Alost [2019]

Sexist to the core, this random YouTube discovery track spells out the anger of a shattered heart. Whilst one is unlikely to be amused by the key lyrics, especially calling out the woman for having multiple affairs, but the singer also adds that he respects women but not this one.

Jaa Chudail – Delhi Belly [2011]

Arguably the most sexist, misogynist track of all time in Bollywood. Many men would loath talking about this song in the presence of their spouse/ girlfriend. Married or bachelor, the general reaction to a man being dumped often gives rises to rage and profane thoughts.  Many were shocked that this misogynist track came from an Aamir khan production. Writer Akshat Verma is credited for the hook lyrics, presumably Jaa Chudail. The rest of the below-the-belt lyrics had a jaw dropping reaction not just from the bride and her family, but also the audience. Thankfully, ‘One India, two India’ professor Veer Das’ character was only day dreaming.

Strictly an A rated song, but the rock music and the drama in the song certainly had all loser heartbroken Male Chauvinist Pigs cheering this madness. If you’ve suffered a heartbreak, infidelity recently, then this is the song that should be ringing silently in your mind.

The Break Up song – Ae Dil Hai Mushkil

A break-up and most men turn cry babies, hit to alcohol and some even curse the women. Well, the fairer sex, though, are better equipped to handle a break-up. DJ Anushka Sharma urged women to be stone-cold, put on make-up, go to parlour, shun all the rona-dhona [crying] and simply move on in life.  The Break-Up song was lyricist Amitabh Bhattacharya’s atonement for the Jaa Chudail track.

My Baby Shot me down – Kill Bill [2003]

Given what happened to her, there was no way Beatrix Kiddo [Uma Thurman] could have swept all that torture under the carpet.  She took her revenge against the man whom she once loved dearly. He had turned her wedding into a hell. Nancy Sinatra’s Bang Bang track was a grim reality of what transpired with Quentin Tarantino’s protagonist in Kill Bill Vol.1 [2003].

Hum Toh Bhai Jaise Hai Waise Rahenge – Veer-Zara [2004]

Anxiety, curiosity, sleepless nights, nervous, poetry, flattery, dates, coffee. Ah, just avoid all that by simply enjoying your singlehood. Zaara [Preity Zinta] and the late Lata Mangeshkar spelled it out so beautifully in the Hum Toh Bhai Jaise Hai Waise Rahenge track from Veer-Zaara [2004]. The song simply translates to ‘I’m better off the way I am – single.’

Single Rehne De – Simran [2017]

Preity Zinta had fine poetry by Javed Akhtar, but when it comes to Kangana Ranaut, there is no running around the bush. Single Rehne De [Let me be single], Kangana Ranaut shouted it loud in this rollicking Shalmali Kholgade song in and as Simran [2017].  This could easily be a modern day singlehood anthem especially for women.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s