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

Chal chhainyya chhainyya chhainyya chhainyya

Posted on: January 6, 2022


This article is written by nahm, a fellow enthusiast of Hindi movie music and a regular contributor to this blog. This article is meant to be posted in atulsongaday.me. If this article appears in other sites without the knowledge and consent of the web administrator of atulsongaday.me, then it is piracy of the copyright content of atulsongaday.me and is a punishable offence under the existing laws.

Blog Day :

4920 Post No. : 16750

55th birthday of A. R. Rehman
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A. R. Rehman – The musician of 21st century – 1
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Out beyond ideas of wrong doing and right doing, there is a field. I will meet you there. – Rumi

Some years ago, I received a Whatsapp forward featuring a sketch with Rumi’s character, in a 21st century setting. This requires careful description, so you all please be patient with me.

There he was, 13th century persian poet and philosopher, Jalaludding Rumi, turban and all, sitting on one end of a small primitive boat. A boat that fits in a New York apartment’s living room. Guess who is doing the honors of ‘Chappu chalauing’ at the other end of the boat? It was Chandler, of ‘Friends’ fame. Imagine a boat on the floor of a city living room, at one end Chandler is roving the boat and Rumi is sitting on the other end. The caption with it, also in 21st century English, read “When you are looking for a Roomie and misspell it!”

Ha Ha Ha Ha. If no one is laughing, I have only myself to blame for thinking of Rumi. “ham wahan hain jahan se ham ko bhi kuchh hamaari khabar nahi aati”

I have been exposed to some episodes of ‘Friends’, so identifying Chandler was the easy bit in the caricature. I could connect, the word “Roomie” to Rumi after some deliberation, but never having seen Rumi, or his picture or sketch, I was wondering who is the peasant in the boat. And what is a boat doing in the living room? It transpired that Rumi had arrived in his boat in response to the ad posted by Chandler for a roomie, as he misspelt it as Rumi. Since in Rumi’s time the preferred mode of transport was a boat, Persia is sure to have been full of rivers. Or canals, like Venice.

But I quite liked the idea of a boat in the living room. I did contemplate, on a real-life boat, the size of a two-three seater sofa, which was available for sale in a handicraft shop in Alleppy, Kerela. I could not figure out a way of transporting it to Mumbai, so had to drop the idea. I have a few embellished display size boats, but it is not the same. Now, after writing all this, I am thinking I should make another attempt at it.

At least a boat is doable, but imagine if someone is fond of trains, how will they get them in the living room. Trains are good for travelling, they take you from Point A to Point B, that is their usefulness. I have seen a train on the dining table with tracks and all, for movement of serving dishes, somewhere in a museum, probably. Now that is nice idea, if the kitchen is next of the dining section, a train can be made and for variety, a tunnel or two can added in the landscape. My imagination is running away with me.

I have finally arrived at the destination point, i. e. a train song. An iconic song for our generation of movie goers. A sufiana song written by Gulzar and composed by A. R. Rehman for Dil Se(1998). Singers are Sukhwinder Singh and Sapna Awasthi. There is a lot of trivia available here about this song. There is this page too, which states that this song and video was at 9th position in the poll for top 10 all time songs, for which people from 55 countries voted. This poll was conducted by BBC world service.

The original composition of a solo by Sukhwinder Singh titled “Thaiyya thaiya” is also part of the movie’s song track, though it was not used in the film. The song begin with the lines “Eid aayi mera yaar nayi aaya”, but it is actually based on Bulle Shah’s “Tere ishq nachaya kar thhaiya thhaiya”. The version is mostly in Punjabi, with the same tune. So, I thought maybe that should be treated as a separate song.

These films songs are among the best of A. R. Rehman, Gulzar and Lata Mangeshkar. And they will be the best of Udit Narayan & Mahalaxmi Iyer(Aye Ajnabi), Sonu Nigam & Kavita Krishnamurthy(tu hi tu satragi re), Sukhwinder Singh and Sapna Awasthi(Chhaiyya chhaiyya).

The song becomes iconic due to its picturization of a group of dancers, with Shah Rukh Khan and Malaika Arora, dancing atop a running train. It is shot in location of Ooty. This is also the best of Farah Khan’s choreography. This is among the first few outdoorsy songs I shortlisted for posting in the blog.

Gulzar sahab is talking of ‘Jannat’ and ‘Firdaus’, which means Paradise. ‘Gulposh is invisible, kaayenaat is universe, Taaveez is talisman, ‘aayat’ is sentence/verse(scholars say ‘aayat’ in the quranic context are niether sentence nor verse, it is an entirely different unit of deliverance) of Al-Quran which are in Arabic. What Gulzar sahab may mean in this line ‘mera naghma wahi mera kalma wahi’, is that ishq as a philosophy is my song, my first and last word.

wo yaar hai jo khushboo ki tarah
jis ki zubaan urdu ki tarah

The first thought the word ‘Urdu’ invokes in the minds of Urdudaan as well as non-urdudaan, is its sweetness (Shireen) and cultured-ness(muhazzib). These two things ‘shireeni’ and ‘tehzeeb’ go hand in hand and are two sides of the same coin. This literally means, the object of ishq is anything that has flagrant aura and talks speaks and sings with a sweetness. Fragrance is a thing which is also pure, clean and invisible. Sincerity and unpretentiousness, plus a sweet way of conduct and speech is:

Meri shaam raat
Meri kaayenaat

Shaam is a time of relaxation and liesure and raat is for resting. ‘Kaayenaat’ is my ‘universe of abundance’. So there goes, if the object of my ishq is, the highest ideals of sincerity and good conduct, then it will be my contentment and happiness for which sky in the limit. Is this the salvation and moksh in this life?

Saare ishq ki chhaaon chale chhainyya chhainya
Paaon jannat chale chale chal chhainyya chhainyya

And

Jin ke sar ho ishq ki chhaaon
Paaon ke neeche jannat hogi

They both mean the same, that those who live under the shade of such an ishq, heaven/paradise is theirs.

Remembering Jalaluddin Rumi and his philosophy is eventually justified by Gulzar sahab’s this master piece. Maybe the quote is the wrong one, the correct one is this:

“There is no salvation for the soul but to fall in love. Only lovers can escape out of these two worlds.” – Rumi

I have been thinking for sometime now that there so many iconic songs composed by ARR, that a garland or a necklace of these gems can be made. So I have chosen myself to do this series. The first episode is this song, starting on the birthday of ARR. I have done a few posts of his songs in the blog earlier for songs of ‘lagan’ ‘zubieda’ ‘sapney’ etc. This is by far an ambitious series for me to undertake, as it is very difficult to fit theses gems in a particular form to complete a cohesive design of the necklace. I will play by the ear, and God willing try to complete this series in 2022.

Video:

Audio:

Song-Chal Chhainyya chhainyya chhainyya chhainyya (Dil Se) (1998) Singers-Sukhwinder Singh, Sapna Awasthi, Lyrics-Gulzar, MD-A R Rahman
Both

Lyrics

Jin ke sar ho oo
ishq ki chhaaon
Paaon ke neeche jannat hogi ee ee
jin ke sar ho ishq ki chhaaon

chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
hhainyya chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya

saare ishq ki chhaaon chale
chhainyya chhainyya
saare ishq ki chhaaon chale
chhainyya
paaon jannat chale
chal chhainyya chhainyya
paaon jannat chale
chal chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya

wo yaar hai jo khushboo ki tarah
jis ki zubaan urdu ki tarah
meri shaam raat
meri kayenaat
wo yaar mera
sainyya sainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya

chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya aa

gulposh kabhi
itraayen kahin
mehke to nazar aa jaaye kahin een
gulposh kabhi
itraayen kahin
mehke to nazar aa jaaye kahin
taaweez banaa ke pehnu usse
aayat ki tarah mil jaaye kahin
taaweez banaa ke pehnu usse
aayat ki tarah mil jaaye kahin
gulposh kabhi
itraaye kahin
mehke to nazar aa jaaye kahin
taaweez banaa ke pehnu usse
aayat ki tarah mil jaaye kahin

wo yaar hai jo imaan ki tarah
mera naghma wahi mera kalma wohi
mera naghma naghma
mera kalma kalma
mera naghma naghma
mera kalma kalma
mera naghma naghma
mera kalma kalma
mera naghma naghma
mera kalma kalma

yaar misaal-e-aas chale
paaon ke tale firdaus chale
kabhi daal daal
kabhi paat paat
main hawaa pe dhoondoon
uss ke nishaan
saare ishq ki chhaaon chale
chhainyya chhainyya
saare ishq ki chhaaon chale
chhainyya
paaon jannat chale
chal chhainyya chhainyya
paaon jannat chale
chal chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya

main uss ke roop ka shaidaayi
wo dhoop chhaaon se harjaayi
wo shokh hai rang badaltaa hai
main rang roop ka saudaayi
main rang roop ka saudaayi

Jin ke sar ho oo
ishq ki chhaaon
Paaon ke neeche jannat hogi ee ee
jin ke sar ho ishq ki chhaaon
Jin ke sar ho oo
ishq ki chhaaon
Paaon ke neeche jannat hogi ee ee
jin ke sar ho ishq ki chhaaon
shaam raat
meri kayenaat
wo yaar mera
sainyya sainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya aa

saare ishq ki chhaaon chale
chhainyya chhainyya
saare ishq ki chhaaon chale
chhainyya
paaon jannat chale
chal chhainyya chhainyya
paaon jannat chale
chal chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya

wo yaar hai jo khushboo ki tarah
wo jis ki zubaan urdu ki tarah
meri shaam raat
meri kayenaat
wo yaar mera
sainyya sainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya

chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya
chal chhainyya chhainyya
chhainyya chhainyya

2 Responses to "Chal chhainyya chhainyya chhainyya chhainyya"

Dear Nahm ji,

It is surprising how such a popular song has not been covered by anyone so far. Perhaps it was waiting for you to write such an excellent essay about this song. Since we share common interest in this area, you may not object to my including a few details which may not be known to all and in any case will just add to the story about the Original Song.

As most of us know, the opening words of that song are believed to have been uttered by BULLEH SHAH (1680-1757) on being reunited with his estranged Guru, SHAH INAYAT QADRI (1643-1728). The story goes that Shah Inayat had expelled Bulleh Shah from his hermitage for a silly mistake committed by the latter. In order to win over his Guru, who loved dancing, Bulleh Shah spent several years among the KANJARS, learning their art, and one fine day, presented himself, dressed as a beautiful woman in front of his Guru and rendered the now famous song ” Tere Ishq nachaya kar key thaiyaa thaiyaa “.

Here is a version from across the Border :

[ The accompanying visuals are of the Jama Masjid of Lahore and the largest mosque in Asia – the Faisal Mosque of Islamabad. The mukhda of the tune has been adopted into the Pakistan National Anthem ].

There is another version from the Pakistani Film NOORAN (1957), a Superhit Movie made by JUHI CHAWLA’s Maternal Uncle JC ANAND, who chose to stay back in Pakistan :

The story does not end there. As expected, the Guru saw through the disguise and the make up and recognised his long lost disciple. He forgave Bulleh Shah and embraced him. That is when Bulleh is said to have uttered the words

“Ni Main Yaar manaa ni, chahe log boliyan bole…”

These opening lines inspired another Poet, several hundred years later, who was writing for a song to be used in a Film. That Film was “DAAG”, the first Film from the Yash Chopra stable, released in 1973. The Song writer was Punjabi speaking SAHIR LUDHIANVI.

We did not get a proper explanation about why “THAIYYA THAIYYA” was replaced by “CHHAIYA CHHAIYA”?

With warm regards

PARTHA CHANDA

Like

The same composition in punjabi with the original mukhda is also in the films soundtrack album.

This the excerpt from the wikipedia page about the change of lyrics:
The lyrics of “Chaiyya Chaiyya” are based on the Sufi folk song “Thaiyya Thaiyya” with lyrics by poet Bulleh Shah.[4] Singer Sukhwinder Singh originally suggested the song to A.R. Rahman who was looking for a Punjabi devotional song to include on the soundtrack of Dil Se… Gulzar subsequently rewrote the lyrics and changed the name to “Chaiyya Chaiyya”.

It is not clear why the lyrics were changed completely, where as the mukhda of the Bulle shah is suitable for a dance song. What I can say is that Gulzar came up with a sufiana poem that is modernized in sufi philosophy, which the new generation can also relate to. I am not able to fully comprehend the punjabi in the various versions, so not in a position to comment upon the content of original. What is clear that it was always meant to be a dance song, so the different lyrics helped to balance the mesmerizing quality of the dance, where the song tune and words become irrelevant. Here is an example of Bulle Shah’s song performance:

There is also this Abida Parveen rendition:

Thanks for sharing the ‘qissa’ of Bulle shah in relation to this song. I have heard it recently, quite a few months after I originally wrote the post.

Thanks and regards.

Like

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