Since times immemorial, Indians have been great patrons of art, literature and music. And, why not? There have been so many bright stars, who have illuminated the name of India worldwide. One such living legend is our very own Allah Rakha Rahman aka A.R. Rahman. Aimed at paying a musical tribute to AR Rahman, this list will try to point out those beautiful and melodious Hindi songs that have made Rahman so much endearing to us! Thanks to the innumerable melodious renderings by Rahman, we could list only a chosen few till the year 2000.
13. Dil Hai Chota sa, Choti Si Asha
This song is from the Mani Ratnam classic, Roja, which marked the maestro musician’s entry into Bollywood. Sung by newcomer Minmini, Rahman struck the golden card with this beautiful number that is all about a person’s innate desire to be free and happy!
12. Hamma Hamma
A bold and great song from Rahman-Ratnam’s kitty, Hamma Hamma’s Hindi version was sung by Rahman himself along with Swarnalatha and Remo Fernandes. You may not be a fan of contemporary songs, but you cannot bring yourself to dislike this number either!
11. Tu Hi Re
Sung by Hariharan and Kavitha Krishnamurthy, Tu Hi Re is the ultimate song that defines love in this nascent state. This is one such song, which even the best of adjectives fail to define.
10. Yaai Re Yaai Re
With a kind of musical interface that was almost new, if not totally new, to the Indian music circuit, Rahman struck the trump card with the songs of Rangeela. And, as far as this particular song is concerned, we bet you won’t be able to sit quietly without tapping your feet to the tunes of the song when you even think of it.
A wacky song sung by Shweta Shetty and Rahman, the rhythm and the mix of the song Aiaiyo surpassed all the other songs that the Hindi film had heard so far. After the initial successes in Bollywood, Rangeela finally brought him all the laurels, and finally established him as astar.
8. Kahin Aag Lage
Sung by legendary singer Asha Bhonsle, the song from Subhash Ghai’s film Taal brings with itself all the pent-up emotions of the soul. It’s a brilliant song which is quite different from the rest discussed so far to understand which you yourself need to listen to it!
7. Beat of Passion
This is the thematic music of Taal. With Sivamani in the percussion and Rahman to guide him, do you think this instrumental delight could have ever failed? Nah—never we say!
6. Jumbalika Jumbalika
If you think “item songs” couldn’t be fun (and, not “fun”) and rhythmic, then you’ve got to listen to this song from Thakshak, sung by Alisha Chinoy and Shankar Mahadevan! Watch the video here, you’re gonna love it!
5. Que Sera Sera
Literary translated, the song means, “what will be, will be”, and no one but Rahman could have done justice to this song! The rhythm and beats along with Madhuri and Prabhu Deva’s powerful twists and turns, make this song an endearing one!
4. Dheeme Dheeme Gaun
Those who criticized Rahman on not being able to produce music that was “Indian” in its appeal were all tight-lipped forever after the release of this song. And, once again, Rahman struck the trump card! The song is from the film Zubeidaa and was sung by Alka Yagnik.
3. Urvashi Urvashi
Here comes the one of the most bold and wacky songs of Bollywood ever. Had it not been from Rahman’s kitty, we wonder whether the song could do without inviting the harsh glare of the censor board.
2. Rut Aa Gai Re
This song has an innate earthy and rustic charm that we have seldom found on other film songs. No, it’s not overtly patriotic or a love song but somehow it makes us fall in love with ourselves as well as with our loved ones all over again! Featured in 1947 Earth, this is one of the best by Rahman.
1. Dil Se….
From the film Dil Se and sung by Rahman himself, if we had to select the best song composed by Rahman in his entire life, this had to be it!