What Happens When Golden Oldies Are Remixed & Sung Again; Singers Tell

The Falguni Pathak vs. Neha Kakkar spat over the remake of the former’s iconic Maine Payal Hai Chhankai song has rekindled the controversy over remixes and remakes of the golden oldies. Talking of remixes takes one’s memory back to perhaps among the first ones in this genre Kaliyon Ka Chaman… and Kanta Laga…. Ever since then, the trend has become more of a rule than an exception. It is difficult to count such tracks on the fingertips. Needless to say that it pains the heart to see such gems being crucified.

Falguni Pathak: Maine Payal Hai Chhankai 

Singer Neha Kakkar recently came in for a lot of flak for her presentation of O Sajna, the remix of Falguni Pathak’s Maine Payal Hai Chhankai. The new version features Dhanashree Verma, Priyank Sharma, and of course, Neha herself. Neha added new lyrics to the song but got trolled nevertheless. Falguni’s reaction came pretty late. “I got to know vs the remixed version three-four days back. The first reaction was not good. I was like, mujhe bas ulti aani baaki thi, aisa ho gaya tha.”


Alka Yagnik: Tip Tip Barsa Paani 

Mohra‘s song, Tip Tip Barsa Paani could not recreate the magic when Music composer Tanishk Bagchi remixed it for the 2021 film, Sooryavanshi even though it was sung by the original singers, Udit Narayan and Alka Yagnik. Here’s what Alka Yagnik said, “What can I say? I am thoroughly disgusted. They are tampering with all the evergreens and popular songs…ruining them. It is just so shameful. Our past hit songs are being remixed to suit bar lounges and clubs, for young people to dance to. Achhe original tunes banaa nahi paatey hain. Therefore already superhit songs ko bigaadte hain, aur phir kehtey hain ki hit ho gaya! Arey woh toh pehle se hi hit tha, tabhi toh aapne choose kiya hai!” She couldn’t have put it more succinctly. The singer actually nailed it with her statement.


Usha Mangeshkar: O Mungada Mungada 

Who can forget this absolutely riveting number from Inkar and Helen’s lithe movements in the dance?  It was recreated in Total Dhamaal featuring Sonakshi Sinha. Speaking to Deccan Chronicle, veteran singer Usha Mangeshkar said, “Our songs (the songs sung by the Mangeshkar sisters Lata, Asha and Usha) were created after a great deal of thought and they were done with sensitivity and care. To rip them off in this arbitrary manner is not correct.”


Amar Arshi: Kala Chashma

Even this relatively new number of this generation was not spared. The culprit. Neha Kakkar again. It was originally sung by Punjabi singer Amar Arshi in 2016 and sung again by Neha Kakkar, Badshah and others for the movie Bar Bar Dekho. In an interview with Livemint, Arshi said, “I don’t think most of these people making dance videos to this song know that I sang it. For all the buzz this song has generated in recent weeks, I haven’t made any monetary gains from it. I can’t understand contracts written in English. I knew little about royalty as a concept back then. Further, I didn’t think the song will become this big.”


AR Rahman: Masakali 

Even the maestro was not spared! Singers Sachet Tandon and Tulsi Kumar remixed the Delhi 6 as Masakali 2.0 for Marjaavaan featuring Sidharth Malhotra and Tara Sutaria. AR Rahman made no bones about criticising the remix on Twitter and asked fans to enjoy the original. In an interview with Filmfare, Masakali singer Mohit Chauhan said,  “I know Rahman sir has tweeted about it and even Prasoon (Joshi) sir showed his disapproval. I believe that music is something that connects with the soul. An artiste creates music out of thin air…If somebody wants to take that song and make something else out of it, then the original creator of that particular piece of music needs to be consulted or permission must be taken from that person.”

Remo Fernandes: Humma Humma 

Singers Jubin Nautiyal and Shashaa Tirupati along with rapper Badshah recreated Humma Humma, the classic track from the film Bombay, in the 2017 movie Ok Jaanu. Featuring Aditya Roy Kapur and Shraddha Kapoor, the remix was named as The Humma Song. In an interview with Bollywood Hungama, Remo Fernandes said, “There is nothing wrong in doing new versions of existing songs, as long as one brings something new to the table. It could be something plus, or at least something different. This version of Humma Humma, I’m afraid, brings neither. It is but a pale, insipid version of the original. Vocally, instrumentally and arrangements-wise, it seems to have been a hurried, uninspired job.”


Shaan: Dus Bahane 

Even popular singers Vishal Dadlani and Shekhar Ravjiani have done it. They recreated Dus Bahane 2.0 in the film, Baaghi 3 although they retained the originals of Shaan, KK, and Tulsi Kumar. The song had originally featured in the movie, Dus. In an interview with BollywoodLife, Shaan called it “premature” to bring the song back. “I’m happy that my voice is still on the song because most recreations have new voices. So, people forget the original singers and imagine the new voices. That could have happened, but I am very glad the producers decided to retain mine and KK’s voices, and the song will now remain ours forever.”

“I think it makes good business sense for music companies. The song has a recall value, the song has been lost at some point. You know that people like the song. They consider that the generation is changing every 8 years. This song though (Dus Bahane) was just about 14-15 years old. It’s not even a generation old. Most people know the original anyway. I think it was a little too premature to bring the song back. But, like I said, there wasn’t much change. So, it’s a win-win for everyone.”

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