Bollywood lyrics are becoming more gut-wrenching- picking up themes from contemporary realities, chorus leading contemporary Indian musicians Piyush Mishra, Swanand Kirkire and Rahul Ram.
The trio jammed at the India Habitat Centre in New Delhi on the World Environment Day June 5 during Yamunotsav, a two-day green festival supported by Oxfam and the American Centre.
The numbers they sang were mostly from “Gulal”- a movie about contemporary India by Anurag Kashyap- where the three worked together on the score.
The numbers were dark, poetic, rugged, laced heavily with classical notes, speaking of death, destruction and urban angst - and essentially Indian that Kirkire described as the new face of Bollywood music.
The story of “Gulal”, which also stars Piyush Mishra, is woven around the the song, “Yeh Duniya Agar Mil Bhi Jaaye To Kya Hai” from the Guru Dutt movie “Pyasa” by poet-lyricist Sadhir Ludhwanyi.
“I think Bollywood lyrics has changed over the years. The events that are happening around are creeping into Bollywood playback music. Its more earthy now unike even a decade ago when lyirics were more poetic and emotional,” said Swanand, who is working on “Pa”, a movie by ad whiz R. Balkikrishnan of “Cheeni Kum” fame. The movie stars Amitabh Bachchan as his real life son Abhisekh Bachchan's son .
“Do you really think its changing – don't they compose the same songs all the time,” laughed Piyush Mishra, who is just back from US and plans to take it easy for the next few months because of ill-health.
“I compose songs and write whenever and wherever I feel like – even on the streets. They are real,” Piyush said a little later.
Recalling the making of the iconic song, “Ruk ja re Bande” from the movie “Black Friday” made after the Mumbai riots in 2004, Rahul Ram said Piyush wrote it outside their studio in Carol Bagh.
“Piyush just wrote the first line and it was approved by Anurag Kashyap,” said Rahul, who is compiling material on “English words” used in Bollywood songs. And the way it rips apart the soul of the music.