What's With The New Trend Of Bollywood Using Old Songs To Promote New Movies?
Posted On 16th February, 2017 @ 20:56 pm by Debanjan Dhar

Because old is gold...

Remixing old classics has always been a trend in the Indian music industry and nobody is particularly complaining about it. Picking up an old song that was recorded decades before digital recording came into existence, and giving it a more contemporary arrangement is a welcome experiment. Not that it’s anything new. Vishal-Shekhar used the 1977 chartbuster, Bachna Ae Haseeno in 2008, and did it a pretty good job at that. Sometimes Bollywood have done a good job and sometimes they have been epic fails.

However, looking at the recent trend of using re-hashed classics to promote new movies, it seems like CBFC isn’t allowing new movies to release unless they take up an old song and mess around with it. With the studios owning complete rights to the songs, there’s nobody stopping them either. Even if they don’t have the rights, it doesn’t take long for them to pull a few strings and get the job done. Wish they pulled a few guitar strings instead and came up with something original, at least in some cases.

2016 alone has seen too many old classics been re-packaged as a marketing strategy. Let’s take a look at them.


1.   Ae Zindagi Gale Lagale – Dear Zindagi



A brilliant composition by Illiyaraja, the song was scene on the silver screen once again after 33 years. While Amit TrIvedi and Arijit Singh are stalwarts in their own rights, something about the reprised version of the evergreen song didn’t really click with the audience. The alt-rock arrangement to Ae Zindagi Gale Lagale failed to make its presence felt, so much so that internet didn’t even get a chance to rant about their disappointment.


2.  Teri Fariyad – Tum Bin 2




Teri Fariyad, a soul-wrenching Ghazal sung by late Jagjit Singh and composed by Nihkil Vinay was originally an OST of Tum Bin 2’s prequel, Tum Bin. This time, the song was reprised by Ankit Tiwari who managed to keep the essence of the song intact with his trademark minimalistic sensibilities of approaching a song’s arrangement. Rekha Bharadwaj’s voice worked like magic in the new version and the decision to go with Jagjit Singh’s voice for the male part was indeed a masterstroke.


3.   Aise Na Mujhe Tum Dekho – Wajah Tum Ho




One of the many hits from the studio of the legendary R.D Burman, Aise Na Mujhe Tum Dekho was sung by the Kishore Kumar and written by Anand Bakshi. Meet Bros’ re-imagination of the song fell short of originality (yes, the irony of expecting originality in a remixed song) and sounded just like any other synthetic Bollywood number. If that wasn’t enough to ruin one of the best classics ever, the sleaze fest of a music video that went with it was the last nail on the song’s coffin.


4.  Kaala Chasma – Baar Baar Dekho




Badshah did fairly well reprising this 2005 pop hit, keeping the arrangement peppy, not messing with the infectious tumbi intro and introducing his own little rap section to the song. In fact, thanks to this version of the song, a lot of us were reminded of this fine little tune of Amar Arshi’s Bhangra pop hit, Tenu Kaala Chasma Jajta Ve, an indie-pop number almost forgotten otherwise. Also, it would hard to deny the fact that reprised version did take care of some of the sloppy mixing that was present in the original version.


5.  Aaj Jaane Ki Zid Na Karo – Ae Dil Hai Mushkil



Who could have ever imagined this heavenly Nazm could be ever re-created as a trap number? Well, something about it just worked for the millennials, and we have absolutely no complaints with this amazingly innovative remix of the legendary song. Only Shilpa Rao could have pulled off this brave attempt envisioned by music director Pritam, and the Amitabh Bhattacharya’s verses, recited as shayari in the song just made it even more exquisite.


6.  Gumnaam Hai Koi – 1920 London




The thing about remix of this cult song by Lata Mangeshkar is that we’re confused AF if it’s good or not. Jubin Nautiyal’s section of the song, which is not a part of the original sounds good enough and then, Antara Mitra too, scores fairly well while singing the chorus which is basically the chorus from the original song. However, something sounds off about marrying the two songs together and music directors Kaushik-Akash could have just gone with Nautiyal’s part as a separate song.


7.  Humma Humma – OK Jaanu




Badshah might have done a good job reprising Kaal Chasma but he should have just left this classic by A.R Rahman alone. The moment it dropped, it was welcomed by flak all over the internet and this version turned out to be a big ‘No’. And all the negative publicity that OK Jaanu got because of the song couldn’t really help the movie from sinking at the Box Office either.


8.  Laila o Laila – Raees



Ram Samapth’s arrangement, Javed Akhtar’s additional lyrics, Sunny Leone and SRK in the video – the best ingredients were put together to make this remix. It still failed. An all-time classic by Kalyanji-Anandji, Laila O Laila has always been a cabaret anthem, and much like Humma Humma, the audience didn’t take the watered down version of their favourite song very well.


And 2017 seems to carry forward the trend as well. Here’s yet another classic, Hare Krishna Hare Ram from Bhool Bhulaiya getting a make-over in a yet-to-be released movie, Commando 2. Good or bad, we leave it to your judgement.














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