#5 Dil Se: Top 100 Bollywood Albums, Film Companion
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Movie Details of Dil Se

Music: AR Rahman

Lyrics: Gulzar

Label: Venus

Director: Mani Ratnam

After Roja became a national sensation, two more of AR Rahman’s soundtracks for Mani Ratnam got dubbed into Hindi, and the lyrics were often iffy. It was in 1998 that Ratnam decided to rectify that, by bringing another legend into the fold, Gulzar. And the team could not have got off to a better start than with this stunner of a soundtrack! While the songs were all romance-themed, there was also a level of intensity about them, presumably in keeping with the dark theme of the movie itself. Rahman’s refreshing arrangement featured his usual star instrumentalists (Keith Peters on bass, Sivamani on percussion, Seenu on plucked strings, Naveen on flute etc), but also international musicians like Guy Pratt and John Themis. And the director, with Santosh Sivan’s spectacular cinematography on his side, gave each song the best visuals, shot across some of the prettiest locations in India. The song that became most popular was of course Chaiyya Chaiyya, as much for the composition (Gulzar based the lines on Baba Bulleh Shah’s devotional piece Thaiyya Thaiyya) as for the video shot atop a train.

Best Song of Dil Se: The soundtrack’s most intense, and my favourite, is the Middle-Eastern flavoured Satrangi Re. AR Rahman has always been brilliant with sufi songs, and this one sits right up there on that list. Gulzar’s fabulous exploration of the seven stages of love is delivered by Sonu Nigam in his most soulful style (with Kavita Krishnamurthy adding a touch of eeriness via her humming), and the composer’s orchestration was highlighted by the flamenco guitar (John Themis) and the accordion/harmonium (presumably by AR Rahman himself). 

The Dil Se Playlist:

  1. Chaiyya Chaiyya (Singers: Sukhwinder Singh, Sapna Awasthi)
  2. Jiya Jale (Singers: Lata Mangeshkar, M.G. Sreekumar | Additional Lyrics: Gireesh Puthencherry)
  3. Dil Se Re (Singers: AR Rahman, Anuradha, Anupama)
  4. Ae Ajnabi (Singers: Udit Narayan, Mahalaxmi Iyer)
  5. Thayya Thayya (Singer: Sukhwinder Singh)
  6. Satrangi Re (Singers: Sonu Nigam, Kavita Krishnamurthy)

Listen to the entire album of Dil Se here:

(With contributions by Praveen VR, co-founder of musicaloud.com)

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