Watching a popular reality talent show on one of the popular show I can't help but think about the evolution of lyrics over the years.
"Dekha Jo Tujhe Yaar Dil Mein Baji Guitar" (Once I saw you, a guitar started playing in my heart) would definitely raise the hackles of purists but the lyrics seem to resonate with the gen-x as does “Aati Kya Khandala”. I get very emotional when I listen to Md. Rafi’s “Yaad Na Jaaye” from “Dil Ek Mandir” (1963). The song goes “Man Mein Basi Yeh Muhrat, Lekin Miti Na Mitaaye, Kehne Ko Hein Voh Paraaye” (Her image is instilled in my heart, try as I might I cannot erase the image, and she is not even supposed to be mine, supposedly belongs to someone else) . Makes me very nostalgic, makes me think back about the person I had in my life and still continues to hold a very special place in my heart. Then comes the slightly faster “Om Shanti Om” from “Karz” (1980). Kishore Da sang “woh na kahenge to khudkashi bhi kar jaaoonga main yaaron” (If she says ‘no’ I will kill myself) and then he whispers “ woh haan kahenge to bhi khushi se mar jaaonga main yaaron” (If she says ‘yes’, even then I would die of ecstasy).
A lot of songs nowadays get away with a catchy tune, rocking music, amazing vocals or just by the performance of a superstar with little attention to lyrics. While some might not grudge the lack of meaningful lyrics, I think they form the basis of a song. Its very unfortunate the lyrics and vocals often get lost in the din of musical instruments. Don’t get me wrong, obviously music is an integral part of the song, but the lyrics should be such that it can be attractive without the vocals and the music. Similarly the vocals should be able to carry the song on its own without the music in the background (the music is the foreground in most songs nowadays)
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