10 Bollywood Covers That Might Be Better Than The Originals
Viraj Mahajan · September 17, 2018 · 4 Minute Read
Whatever your view on Bollywood covers are, one thing is for sure — lots of young people today are discovering classic hits through these new renditions. The unique takes on old hits, blended with evergreen lyrics, have breathed new life into longstanding Bollywood tracks.
This new generation of stars is displaying its talent on social media, and they definitely deserve a spot on your playlist. Get lost in your own world with this dose of awesome Hindi song covers.
“Mere Rashke Qamar” by Siddharth Slathia
Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan‘s “Mere Rashke Qamar” is one of those songs that has been recreated by many singers in recent years, but the cover done by Siddharth Slathia is one of the finest. The reverb-bathed vocals smoothly take listeners into a swirl of romanticism by retaining the hypnotic feel of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan. Slathia’s voice creates the ambient sensuality in this track and it’s hard to stop listening to it on loop.
“Waada Raha Sanam – Recreated” by Sreerama Chandra Mynampati and Simantinee Roy
The original version of this romantic ode was a promise of love, first featured in the 1992 Akshay Kumar starrer, Khiladi. The original song was composed by Jatin-Lalit, and sung by Abhijeet and Alka Yagnik. While the original song has a relaxing vibe, the cover by Sreerama Chandra Mynampati and Simantinee Roy provides a more rhythmic tone.
“Tu Aashiqui Hai – Unwind Version” by Ash King
The melodious song was the first by talented singer KK for the critically acclaimed 2003 Bollywood film, Jhankaar Beats. The recreated version of “Tu Aashiqui Hai” by Ash King starts with modern, enigmatic beats, and his husky and lonesome voice against the background score works effectively for the song’s core.
“Lag Ja Gale” by Sanam Puri
The legendary singer Lata Mangeshkar first sang “Lag Ja Gale Se Phir” in 1964 for the film Woh Kaun Thi. Almost instantly, it became one of the biggest solo hits of all time! To recreate the same magic was actually difficult for Sanam Puri, but he has done a commendable job. Puri’s “Lag Ja Gale” starts with an electric guitar and his deep voice truly depicts his dedication and admiration for the original. His voice and the background score merge the sounds of old school music with modern techno.
“Mere Mehboob Qayamat Hogi” by Sanam Puri
To truly understand the mastery of Kishore Kumar’s voice, one has to hear his “Mere Mehboob Qayamat Hogi,” composed by Laxmikant-Pyarelal. The use of Indian classical instruments was truly admirable in Kumar’s original song, which he sang for Mr. X in Bombay. Over the years, many have attempted to recreate the magic, but it is Sanam Puri who has managed to come closest. Unlike other covers, Puri’s “Mere Mehboob Qayamat Hogi” starts with a fast electronic beat. The pain of not being with the person you love echoes in his voice. The cover has a rock feel to it, but it retains the sincerity and respect for the original version.
“Nahin Nahin Abhi Nahin – Unwind Version” by Ash King and Jonita Gandhi
This romantic ode is about intimacy and desire, and was originally sung by Kishore Kumar and Asha Bhosle to music composed by R.D. Burman. While Kumar and Bhosle’s original was a huge hit, Ash King and Jonita Gandhi tried to go even bigger. King’s voice complements the sensuous voice of Gandhi. The key to creating a perfect cover is the arrangement of all the instruments and the vocals, and with “Nahin Nahin Abhi Nahin – Unwind Version,” both Ash King and Jonita Gandhi have achieved it.
“Jab Koi Baat Bigad Jaye – Cover Song” by Gurnazar Chattha
Originally sung by Kumar Sanu and Sadhana Sargam, “Jab Koi Baat Bigad Jaye” is one of the finest romantic songs of the ’90s. The song was, in fact, a cover of “500 Miles“, and Kumar Sanu and Sadhana Sargam breathed magic in every note. Most recently, a smooth and rhythmic cover of “Jab Koi Baat Bigad Jaye” has been created by Gurnazar Chattha. The song starts with Punjabi lyrics and it instantly hits the right chords when Gurnazar starts to sing the Hindi verses. With the signature sounds of hushed guitar plucking and Gurnazar’s easy voice, this could easily become one of your favorite covers.
“Yaar Bina Chain Kahan Re – Unwind Version” by Shashaa Tirupati
Bappi Lahiri composed and sung “Yaar Bina Chain Kanha Ray” for Anil Kapoor’s family drama film, Saaheb. There have been several covers of this catchy number, but most of them failed to create the magic of Shashaa Tirupati. Her rendition never feels gimmicky, and at the same time, feels right at home at a party!
“Ek Ladki Bheegi Bhaagi Si” by Aqeel Ali and Meiyang Chang
Kishore Kumar’s “Ek Ladki Bheegi Bhagi Si” is a fun, lighthearted song about romance. The cover by DJ Aqeel and Meiyang Chang takes it to a whole new level. Their approach (singing the song with a little squeaky vocal) has paid off brilliantly. If you still haven’t heard of the track, do hear it once — I guarantee it’ll end up in your playlist.
“Dil Se Re – Reprised Version” by Siddharth Slathia
A.R. Rahman sang and composed “Dil Se Re” for Shah Rukh Khan starrer Dil Se. Over the years, the song has achieved a cult status and to even try to recreate the magic seemed impossible. But Siddarth Slathia has done it remarkably. The cover by Slathia is tense with a grey tone to it. The brightness of Slathia’s approach underlies the true emotions of a person who is madly in love. With his smooth voice, Slathia is emoting and imploring his listeners with a bundle of emotions.
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