Friday, April 17, 2009

The Good ol' Music Videos

First Published on Passion4Cinema

There was a flurry of pop songs and music videos during the 90's and some of them were really great . The thing that surprised me was the production standards that were maintained in those videos which were much higher than the movies of those times . Some of them had a nice story to tell and it worked fine with the music . There was no lack of creativity and they could be considered as nice short films . So I went down my memory lane and tried to recall some of those music videos that were both creative and visually interesting . Here's a list of them (in no specific order) ...

Vande Matram (A.R. Rehman) : This video produced by Bharatbala productions celebrating the 50th anniversary of Indian Independence did more for Rehman than what his film scores before together could do . This video gained him immense popularity and he became a known face from Music Industry which was a rarity in those days . I remember vividly that Sony Entertainment Television (SET) was the only channel where you could catch it initially and they ran it at full length several times a day . The song was great anyways but what added to its phenomenon was the video directed by Ganpathy Bharat (AKA Bharat Bala) who showed the spirit of India in a splendid way . Rajasthan never looked so beautiful as it did in this video and production standards were way high than the movies of those days . The huge Tricolor in the video made us feel more proud of the nation we live in . I was personally fascinated with the Helicopter shot of the flag and people running towards the flag . This video left everybody saying "Maa Tujhe Salaam" .

O sanam (Lucky Ali): This was the first of many Lucky Ali videos that feature on this list . Probably the first video ever to be shot in the exotic locales of Egypt around the Pyramids . I have no idea who directed lucky ali's videos but all of them had a great concept that very well matched with the songs and Lucky Ali's persona . This video also had Lucky's first wife in it who looked very beautiful . The video had an element of mystery and probably Egypt was the best location for this . This video became immensely popular and ran on MTV's charts for 60 weeks .
Lucky Ali also got popular and his different style of singing and video became an instant hit .

Dekha Hai Aise Bhi (Lucky Ali): If O Sanam captured the mystique of Egypt , the video of Dekha Hai Aise Bhi captured the life of America in it . Lucky Ali is a wanderer by nature and this was quite evident in this video . The concept in this one again was a bit different and had a nice little story in it . The video tried to show the two different shades of women in it . Lucky always featured himself in his videos and in my opinion nobody else could have done justice to the videos apart from him . There is always an element of sadness and loneliness in his videos which makes them very different from usual stuff and also leaves a lasting impression .

Aur Ahista kije Baatein (Pankaj Udhas): A very beautiful song and had nice simple video which added to the beauty of the song . The video was based on the famous short story of O. Henry , "The Gift of Magi" , that we all have read in our school days . It featured Sameera Reddy and a foreigner along with her . The video was pretty simple but what worked was the chemistry between Sameera and that guy and made this romantic song even more romantic . Sameera looked really beautiful and got a lot of attention . The beauty of the video lies in its simplicity and its story which very well matched with the song .

Aankhon Mein Tera hi Chehra (Aryans) : This video captured the innocence of first crush really well . This one released alongside my first crush so came very close to my heart in those days . Hrishita became my dream girl and her smile killed me . The whole concept here was also beautiful and Shahid very well enacted it . Shahid looked good as a nervous young kid who falls for the girl next door . And Hrishita was the perfect girl next door . The whole sequence where he buys a nighty for her from the lingerie section was very funny and also cute in a way . The video not only reminds us of first crush but also of first heart break very well . Aryans got lost somewhere but their video is an all time classic .

Duba Duba Rehta Hun (Silk Route) : This is probably the only music video to be shot entirely under water . I couldn't quite figure out the concept but still loved its novelty . The video was shot really beautifully and the images of the car under water are still strong in my head . The silk route also got drowned after this hit song and never came back with a hit . Overall , the video was more beautiful than the song and had a very different concept . Whoever the Director was needed to be applauded for daring to go under water with this crazy concept .

Made in India (Alisha Chinoy) : Well this is the reason why music videos came into existence in India and I had to mention it . For the first time , India got a Sexy and beautiful female singer who also sung very well . If she proved an eye candy for the guys , the video also had Milind Soman flaunting his body for the girls . The video released when "Made In India" tag was considered to be a substandard . Alisha's dream of becoming an Indian Madonna got some ground through this video and she became quite popular . Most of her other videos were good but none became as popular as this one .

Maaeri (Euphoria) : This song from the second album of Euphoria is one my favourites and it also has one of the best videos . I am not sure but I think Pradeep Sarkar (of Parineeta) directed this video and he did a fine job with it . Pradeep has a thing for trains and this video very beautifully captured the spirit of Indian Railways . The Railway Journey is one of the most beautiful ways to experience the real India and Railway stations always provide with some beautiful scenes from life . The video also had a nice story to tell with Palash and Rimi Sen in the lead . This was probably the first break for Rimi Sen and she looked good along with Palash . There's a girl towards the end of this video , Sonal Sehgal , who I really adore and soon she would also be seen on screen along with John Abraham in Nagesh Kukunoor's Aashaiyen . Overall , both the song and the video are great and one of my all time favourites .

Ghar Aaja Soniya (Shazia Manzoor) : I am not sure how many of you remember this one but this was a beautiful song in my opinion and had a really sentimental video . The whole story of the video was fabulous and touches your heart . Our heart goes out for the beautiful girl in this video who is dumb and deaf and loves her husband very much . Shrabani Mukherji who is also cousin of Rani Mukherjee played the girl and she did a great job . Sameer Soni was her husband in the video and he also acted well . The music of this song had a haunting feel to it and Shurobi Saigal who directed the video captured that feel well in the video . This video , though a sad one , still is one of the all time best . Strangely, despite such a beautiful song neither of the associated people made it big in the glamour world .

Dil Kya Kare (Instant Karma): Though this was a remixed version of old hit song but still it is not of the "Kaanta Laga" league and had some standard . This one sung by Shaan had a beautifully shot video which made a nice use of still photography too . The video was one of its kind and the level of production was again quite high . The cinematography of this video was a real visual treat and it became an instant hit . Both the models in this video were great looking and added to the beauty of the video . The music was by Shankar Ehsaan Loy and they really did a fabulous job in remixing yet preserving the originality of the song .

Ir Bir Fatte (Amitabh Bachchan) : The song didn't make much of a sense but as a young kid I loved the song and so did my fellow friends . I remember trying to memorise the song because of its fun lyrics . Though it was a disaster , the video still was interesting enough to be mentioned here . Amitabh tried to show some of his moves in this video along with the kids . Shot mostly in Black and White it still looked good and was a fun video for me as a kid . I tried to find this video on internet but couldn't get it .

Anjani Rahon Mein (Luck Ali) : Another of Lucky Ali's great videos , this one captures his journey back home and shows the beauty of India . This video is like "Mini Swades" and tries to show the real India and how people of India value love more than anything . The whole concept here also was great but the cinematography wasn't as good as it was in his previous videos . The Director should have shown India in a more beautiful way . Still , what mattered was the concept and that part was good . The video aimed at projecting the love for our nation and that came across quite well . I miss Lucky Ali and his videos , don't know when he plans to make another one of these .

These are some of the videos that I could recall and there were several others by Raageshwari , Asha Bhosle , Jagjit Singh and Sonu Nigam etc. which were also good . I really miss these videos and now the whole Pop scene is empty . We now only get to see and hear film music . These videos were nice little stories and also gave singer a chance to show what he/she feels . The music companies are not interested in dong this any more when they are making such huge profits with film music . I can say that I was lucky to grow in a period when pop music was at its high and got to see such beautiful videos while growing .

There's a good chance that I might have missed some in this list so do tell me ...