Having provided the music for numerous hit Salman Khan films, starting with Pyaar Kiya To Darna Kya in 1998 and progressing through Tere Naam (2003), Mujhse Shaadi Karogi (2004), Partner (2007) and Wanted (2009), musical director duo Sajid and Wajid prove their metal once again with Dabangg.
Bollywood actor turned producer Arbaaz Khan (sibling of superstar Salman) couldn’t have wished for a better soundtrack for his debut film. Thanks to the composer brothers he’s been handed a sizzling selection of songs that can only elevate the popularity of his home production.
An example of contemporary Bollywood music at its best, all the essential ingredients are present and correct. Show-stopping item number: check. Romantic duets: check. Catchy theme tune: check. Intoxicated ditty: check. The only thing missing is a traditional ‘sad song’. But as an out-and-out masala entertainer for the masses there’s no need for teary tracks.
Things get off to a flying start with Tere Mast Mast Do Nain, written by guest lyricist Faaiz Anwaar – it easily qualifies as one of 2010’s top love songs, and might be the best track of Sajid-Wajid’s musical career to date. Rahat Fateh Ali Khan’s tender vocals draw you in from the first line as he voyages through a man’s amorous awakening. Two other versions of this song, a duet with Shreya Ghoshal and a remix, are equally captivating.
Lalit Pandit is guest composer and lyricist of Munni Badnaam, a rousing item number aimed at raising the rafters. Its rustic UP-Bihar setting and evocative vocals from newcomers Mamta Sharma and Aishwarya make this a sure-fire dancefloor hit. Reminiscent of the hugely popular Beedi Jalaile Le from Omkara (2006), this will be remembered for years to come.
Jalees Sherwani’s simple lyrics to Chori Kiya Re Jiya complement the soothing melody and make this second love song instantly appealing. Its gentle pace is at contrast to Hud Hud Dabangg which bursts with male bravado and fearlessness in line with the film’s meaning: it translates as “fearless”. The gifted Sukhwinder Singh puts all his power behind this number along with Wajid, who also appears alongside Master Salim and Shabab Sabri in Humka Peeni Hai. Sounding suitably lubricated, the trio inject energy into this drunken song celebrating brotherhood and merriment.
But the real surprise comes with Dabangg Theme, a novelty track featuring swaggering dialogue by Salman Khan. Done in a ‘spaghetti eastern’ style, this is golden stuff.