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Atul’s Song A Day- A choice collection of Hindi Film & Non-Film Songs

Ae bekhabari dil ko deewaanaa banaa denaa

Posted on: September 12, 2011


This article is written by Sudhir, a fellow enthusiast of Hindi movie music and a regular contributor to this blog.

The more one reads about the life of Saigal Saab, and the memories recounted by those who have been associated with him, the more one is struck by the singular quality of simplicity and humility. And maybe that is what made his art so pure, and so fascinating. Whether it is the exuberance of the ‘Hatt Gayee Lo Kaari Ghataa. . .’ (Lagan, 1941), or the pathos of ‘Gham Diye Mustaqil. . .’ (Shahjehaan, 1946), or the heightened expectations of a lover in ‘Kaise Katey Ratiyaan . . .’ (Lagan, 1941) or the melancholy sound of ‘So Jaa Raajkumari. . .’ (Zindagi, 1940) as the theme of reunion with a dying beloved, the rendition of the song and expressions of the emotional content is simply flawless.

There was a time when simply his name on a film’s poster was enough to bring the audience into the cinema halls in droves. And in an era when the music industry was still a fledgling, his records would sell in hundred thousands. For a lesser mortal, it would have been the end of journey weighed under the twin burdens of status and arrogance. But not so with Saigal Saab. He would rarely talk about his own work, he would almost never go to see his own films. If someone praised his singing, he would remark in Punjabi, “Kehra sher maaryaa ai. Geet ee gaayaa ai naa, chhadd yaar” (I have not shot a tiger, I have just sung a song, forget it my friend).

Madan Puri, a close friend, recalls that he never really looked after his most important asset, his throat and his voice. He was fond of pickles and spices, fried pakoras, and always preferred iced water. What an antithesis to other practitioners of this art, who would be diligently looking after the health of their throat and vocal chords. Madan Puri would affectionately call him ‘bawa’, which in Punjabi means, a small child, a simpleton. A voice that was not trained with any formalism of a teacher, he decided to become a student, after he was acclaimed as a master singer himself. And the teacher that he bowed to, Ustaad Faiyaaz Khan Baroda-waale, publicly acclaimed that he himself could never think of being able to sing like Saigal. All one can conjecture is, that at the heights where Saigal Saab visited in the pursuit of perfect art, there is a brush with, and a witnessing of the reality, of divinity. A person such as one who has had this encounter, would be loath to the praises, or the triumphs of this world – the greatness of the soul can never be told.

The total number of recordings of ghazal sung by Saigal Saab, that are currently available, is 37. Of these, 11 ghazals are from various films and 26 ghazals are non-film recordings. Looking at the distribution of ghazals by their authors, it appears that Saigal Saab has a very great preference for two poets, One is Ghalib, and the second is Seemaab Akbarabaadi. The ghazals from Seemaab, rendered by him, are eight in number. Only Ghalib has more ghazals (just one more) rendered by him. It is but obvious that Seemaab Akbarabaadi has been great favorite with Saigal Saab.

This write up celebrates the eighth ghazal of ‘Seemaab’, sung by Saigal Saab, being posted on this blog. And once again, going through the verses, the experience with the play of words, and the taut construction of the phrases, brimming with the theme that the poet is attempting to express – the experience is simply marvelous. The futility of life and the material world, and the recognition of the power of love; the reading of the verses is an inspiring experience, and then listening to these verses in the voice of Saigal Saab – the transformation to a different world is almost complete.

ae bekhabari dil ko deewaanaa banaa denaa
har saans ki hasti se begaanaah banaa denaa

I fancy that my state of un-aware-ness, and dissociation from reality, may be so overpowering that it may even disconnect me from the existence of my being, from the reality of each and every breath of life.

In some ways, this awareness of being, of being alive, and being able to draw a breath, is an uninspiring, a tedious, and in some ways, a depressing enterprise. The poet wishes for an overpowering and obsessive sentiment of un-awareness, that may dissociate him from the dreary realities of existence.

This is not an easy state to be in, or to achieve, for the most difficult awareness to let go is the awareness of the act of breathing. The only state of mind in the entire human experience when such a thing is possible – either one is drunk enough to be out of senses, and yet be in senses. Or it is the state of ‘samadhi’ (meditative inertness).

bekhabari = un-aware-ness, un-guarded-ness, carelessness, in-attention; also, a dissociation from reality
dil = heart
ko = to, unto
dewaanaa = obsessed, mad (in love), passionate; also, someone abnormal, who does not behave normally
banaa denaa = make, construct, formulate, build
har = every
saans = breath
ki = of
hasti = existence, being, entity
se = from
begaanaah = stranger, one who is estranged, distant, not connected; also unrelated, not mine

tootaa huaa dil shamma-e-butkhaanaa banaa denaa
jab raat dhaley saqi paimaanaa banaa denaa

My heart, that is now a damaged vessel, is of little use for me anymore. Make a lamp from it, and may it be used for illuminating a temple. And when the night is done with, make a drinking cup from it to partake wine.

tootaa hua = broken
dil = heart
shamma = lamp, candle
butkhaanaa = an abode of statues, a temple
shamma-e-butkhaanaa = the lamp in a temple
banaa denaa = make, construct, formulate, build
jab = when
raat = night
dhaley = ends, is done with
saqi = bearer of wine
paimaanaa = cup of wine

purshor ghataa’on ka mamnoon na honay do
tum ko bhi to aataa hai deewaanaa banaa denaa

You know the craft of making someone obsessed. The why-fore should the noisy clouds of rain get the accolades and gratitude.

The peacocks are ecstatic when they see the clouds; the cloud and rain also stir a lover’s heart. But o my beloved, when you have the ability to make a heart obsessed with your thoughts, then why should the clouds get the credit for, or get known for this.

purshor = loud, noisy
ghataa’on = clouds
ka = of
mamnoon = obliged, grateful, indebted
na = no, not
hona = to be
na honay do = do not allow to happen or occur
tum ko = you
bhi = also, too
to = (preposition)
aanaa = to come, to know
aataa hai = know, to be aware of
deewaanaa =obsessed
banaa denaa = make, construct, formulate, build

khud kissa-e-gham apnaa kotaah kiyaa mein ne
duniya ne bahut chaahaa afsaanaa banaa denaa

The people of this world tried hard to make a legend of my life’s story; but my own design I shared very little of my tale of personal sorrows.

Another implication – the poet is cautioning not to be too liberal in sharing your tale of woes with all and sundry. The people will take no time to make a story of it, which is not a good thing always. Better that you share little and share prudently.

khud = self, myself
kissa = story, narrative
gham = sadness, sorrow, anguish
kissa-e-gham = a tale of sadness
apnaa = mine, my own
kotaah = short, brief, less
kiyaa = did
main ne = I, myself
duniya = world, society, people of the society
ne = (preposition)
bahut = in large measure
chaahaa = wanted, desired, tried to
afsaanaa = story, tale, narrative
banaa denaa = make, construct, formulate, build

‘seemaab’ yehi jaane garmi-e-mohabbat hai
insaan ko hum-anjaam-e-parwaanaah banaa denaa

Know that the truth of life is in the warmth of love and affection; may it be so that every human being is smitten by the same obsession (of love and devotion) that guides the moth (parwaanaah) to the flame, the world would be so much better for that.

The poet is emphatic that the understanding of the truth of life is in understanding the emotion of love. It is this devotion that drives the moth (parwaanaa) to the flame. If such devotion and love becomes the guiding force in the life of all humans, this world would be a much better place to live.

‘seemaab’ = poet’s signature, takhallus
yehi = this very, only this
jaane = knows
garmi = warmth, heat, passion
mohabbat = love, affection, adoration, devotion
garmi-e-mohabbat hai = is the warmth of affection, is the passions of love
insaan = human being
ko = (preposition)
anjaam = end result, conclusion, end
hum-anjaam = having the same end result
parwaanaah = the moth that comes to the flame; lover; the one who is devoted
banaa denaa = make, construct, formulate, build


Song-Ae bekhabari dil ko deewaanaa banaa denaa (Saigal NFS)(1940) Singer-K L Saigal,Lyrics-Seemaab Akbarabadi

Lyrics

haaye
ae bekhabari dil ko deewaanaa banaa denaa
ae bekhabari dil ko deewaanaa banaa denaa
har saans ki hasti se begaanaah banaa denaa
har saans ki hasti se begaanaah banaa denaa
har saans ki hasti se begaanaah banaa denaa

tootaa huaa dil shamma-e-butkhaanaa banaa denaa
tootaa huaa dil shamma-e-butkhaanaa banaa denaa
jab raat dhaley saaqi paimaanaa banaa denaa
jab raat dhaley saaqi paimaanaa banaa denaa

purshor ghataa’on ka mamnoon na honay do
purshor ghataa’on ka mamnoon na honay do
tum ko bhi to aataa hai deewaanaa banaa denaa
tum ko bhi to aataa hai deewaanaa banaa denaa

tamheed-e-kharaabi ki taqmeel kharaabi hai
heyyy
tamheed-e-kharaabi ki taqmeel kharaabi hai
ik but’ ka banaanaa hai
ik but’ ka banaanaa hai butkhaanaa banaa denaa
ik but’ ka banaanaa hai butkhaanaa banaa denaa

khud kissa-e-gham apnaa kotaah kiyaa maine
heyyyy
khud kissa-e-gham apnaa kotaah kiyaa maine
duniya ne bahut chaahaa afsaanaa banaa denaa
duniya ne bahut chaahaa afsaanaa banaa denaa

heyyyy
‘seemaab’ yehi jaane garmi-e-mohabbat hai
insaan ko hum-anjaam-e-parwaanaah banaa denaa
insaan ko hum-anjaam-e-parwaanaah banaa denaa

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3 Responses to "Ae bekhabari dil ko deewaanaa banaa denaa"

Ek Lajawaab Aur Nayaab ghazal hai Sehgal saheb ki, Rohit K Pandit

Most likely you have skipped the couplet ” tamheed-e -kharabi ki taqmeel kharabi hai ‘” and its meanings. could you please oblige. Thanks.

Pundir ji,

Oops and sincere apologies for this oversight. I will update this write up within a day or so.

Thanks for catching the mistake.

Rgds
Sudhir

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This blog discusses Bollywood songs of yesteryears. Every song has a brief description, followed by a video link, and complete lyrics of the song.

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