It was 20 years ago (yesterday, actually) in 1998 when an Indian romantic thriller called Dil Se was released. Directed by Mani Ratnam and with music by the still-new AR Rahman, this one starred Shah Rukh Khan, Manisha Koirala and Preity Zinta. The film was made in Hindi (Dil Se), Tamil (Uyire) and Telugu (Premato) and won awards galore even as its music grabbed headlines and took over top positions on the charts. The soundtrack had six songs and brought together some interesting sounds and artistes.
Ae ajnabi sung by Udit Narayan and Mahalakshmi Iyer was a beautifully poignant love ballad with some intense notes.
Dil se re included bass guitar played by Guy Pratt, guitarist for Pink Floyd,
while Jiya jale had a more heavy beat and was comparatively joyous. But it was Chaiyya chaiyya, based on Urdu poetry and Sufi music that made the most noise and continues to be a favourite. It came in various avatars and was used internationally as well, in the film Inside Man, in the musical Bombay Dreams and on the TV shows Smith and CSI Miami.
Take a dekho at a few versions of the ever-popular number…
- Chaiyya chaiyya (Hindi)
- Thaiyya thaiyya (Tamil)
- Chaka cheya cheya (Telugu)
- Thayya thayya (Hindi – from AR Rahman’s Musical Melodies app)
Which is your favourite? Do tell us!