With the kind of technology (and money) available, Sheher Ki Ladki could have been so much better!
Innocently, I clicked the link to the remix called Sheher Ki Ladki...
It belongs to the film Khandaani Shafakhana and the original song is from the 1996 film titled Rakshak.
I am certain that the rapper-singer Badshah and others had good intentions – make us move, make the film popular, make money. I believe he has succeeded as people want to dance in clubs, and not reflect on a song’s qualities. Still, I feel the makers could have put in some more effort – both in the audio and the video department – to make it an equal to the other remixes in this list. In fact, here are 5 remixes that are older than this one, and perhaps do better in terms of quality. The list has a Bhojpuri – African number, an old Hindi remix, an Iranian – Pakistan/Indian song, a European – American adaptation, and an American – Hong Kong crossover.
Enjoy, I know you will.
1. Chat Deni Maar Deli (2019)
This original Bhojpuri song by singer/politician Manoj Tiwari is quite popular on social media. As is the minimalist remix by Nigerian singer Samuel Singh. Despite the effort he makes in getting the words right, the song is marked by clarity and simplicity. No needless drum beats or over-the-top screechy vocals. You may or may not like the genre of Electronic Dance Music (EDM) but you won’t mind the softness of this song. He gives the song a flavour that is different from Manoj’s original, unlike the Sheher Ki Ladki remake.
2. Kya Surat Hai (1999)
A remix that features people that look – Indian. They are your everyday people – and not people that behave like American models. No screechy vocals, and lyrics that can be understood easily (mostly). And the model, with her little makeup and a simple dress, looks better than anybody in Sheher Ki Ladki. The video features a story and the camera moves well. There are no needless interludes with heavy drum beats. However, lovers of the original by Kishore Kumar (song: zaroorat hai) panned it when it released. I wonder what they would say about remixes these days.
3. Hawa Hawa (1989)
This popular Pakistani number, also remade in India, owes its origins to an Iranian number that’s fantastic. Listen to the original. It features the singer Kourosh Yaghmaei standing and singing. And looking like he doesn’t want to be in the video. Listen to the guitar pieces and the musical arrangement. It’s very modern for its time and you’d love to listen to it even today. Pay attention – the original is from 1974. This is the time they didn’t have fancy equipment. Yet, they made soulful music.
4. Love of my Life (1999)
This one is the work of the popular artists Santana and Dave Matthews. It’s also used as a wedding song by couples that like soft and romantic numbers. The ‘hook’ of the song – the theme tune – is taken from an 1883 Johannes Brahms symphony, who was a noted composer from Germany. Lovers of Brahms were annoyed that Santana and Dave didn’t credit Brahms, but were also appreciative of how well they used the theme, and that the song is elegant! Western music teachers use this to teach how a song can be modern and groovy without being noisy. Lyrics you can sing aloud and a music you can hum – in any season.
5. Dream Person (1994)
Never mind the language (Cantonese). This is probably one of the most well-liked remixes – at least for lovers of Asian and artistic cinema. It became prominent owing to the efforts of noted American filmmaker Quentin Tarantino who loved the movie, Chungking Express, so much that he “just started crying”. This song from the movie is originally done by the band, The Cranberries. Surely, they didn’t mind the attention and love it brought them. A repetitive yet soft arrangement, melodious, and sung so well (the singer is the lead actor of the film). This song, actually, softens the original song. Perhaps this is a lesson for Indian remix makers! The remix doesn’t have to be louder than the original. It’s a remix, not a construction factory.