Ten of my favourite songs of waiting

The idea for this post came to my mind when I’d finished writing up my review of Anirudha Bhattacharjee and Balaji Vittal’s Gaata Rahe Mera Dil: 50 Classic Hindi Film Songs. For me, one of the songs that was conspicuous by its absence from this enjoyable book was Tum pukaar lo, from Khamoshi. I love that song so much that I posted a Youtube link for it on Facebook—and found a lot of love for it among other friends and family members. A brief discussion with a friend, and we both agreed that it was one of those iconic songs of waiting. Out of that thread arose this idea: a compilation of good songs that are all about waiting.

Waiting, of course, can be of different types, and for different things. It can be a patient wait, for something one knows is coming one’s way. It can be restless, dominated by an urge to do something to alleviate one’s own suffering. Or the restlessness can be one of hopelessness, of knowing that one waits for something that can never come to be.

Aaja re main toh kabse khadi is paar, from Madhumati

One may wait for a much-longed for event to happen. One can wait for news. For friends, relatives. And, much more frequently in Hindi cinema, where romance is such an important element of most plots, for the beloved.

Ten songs, therefore, that evoke that waiting. I do not impose any restrictions on this for myself, other than the most basic ones (the film in question must be from before the 70s, and it should be a film I’ve seen). It is not necessary that the lyrics should mention words like intezaar or prateeksha (not that I’ve heard the latter in any lyrics, as far as I remember). And the wait could be for anyone, anything.

Here goes, then, in no particular order, though all my absolutely favourite songs of this theme are at the top of the list.

1. Tum pukaar lo (Khamoshi, 1969): What better song to start with, than the one which sparked off the idea for this post? Dharmendra, as Dev, the now-cured mental patient whom his nurse Radha has fallen in love with, looks out of the balcony of his hospital room and sings a song of yearning, of longing for the one he loves. There is nothing about this song I do not love. Waheeda Rehman’s expression, one of utter desolation as she tries to come to terms with the truth. Dharmendra’s slow but restless pacing. The music, soft and melodious and full of yearning. Hemant’s voice. Muktasar si baat hai: tum se pyaar hai, tumhaara intezaar hai. All of it—music, Gulzar’s lyrics, the voice, the picturization—comes together to create a song that’s memorable in its epitomization of intezaar.

Tum pukaar lo, from Khamoshi

2. Koi door se aawaaz de chale aao (Sahib Bibi aur Ghulam, 1962): When I think of Tum pukaar lo, the female equivalent of the song that immediately comes to mind is this one, because it conjures up the same ache, the same desire. It gives me, as Tum pukaar lo does, the same gooseflesh. The situation here is very different, though, from the one in Khamoshi. Unlike the lover who waits impatiently for the woman he knows he’s going to be marrying soon, this is a neglected wife who waits, with dwindling hope (does she even have any hope now, actually?) for the husband who has never been hers.

Koi door se aawaaz de, from Sahib, Biwi aur Ghulam

3. Shaam-e-gham ki kasam (Footpath, 1953): Another hauntingly beautiful song about waiting for someone to come. Shaam-e-gham ki kasam is, to my mind, rather like Tum pukaar lo, though (since there is no heartbroken Waheeda Rehman here), that element of pain is missing. But the restrained beauty of the music (Khayyam, in this case), the yearning in the lyrics—Chain kaisa jo pehloo mein tu hi nahin, maar dale na dard-e-judaai kahin—and Talat’s soulful, dulcet voice: all very much in the same tone as Tum pukaar lo. Even the picturization: the evening, the curtains being blown about by the breeze, the man walking slowly along (down the stairs instead of on a balcony, but still: you can sense the restlessness in Dilip Kumar’s body language).

Footpath_Shaam-e-ghamkiKasam

4. Suhaani raat dhal chuki na jaane tum kab aaoge (Dulari, 1949): Dulaari, in classic 40s cinema style, was one song after another. Despite the combination of Shakeel Badayuni as lyricist and Naushad as music director (with Ghulam Mohammad as his assistant—a partnership that created some of the most memorable music in Hindi cinema)—several of Dulaari’s songs are forgettable. This is one of the exceptions.

A young lover, waiting for the girl he has fallen in love with at first sight, begins by pacing around impatiently as he waits for her to arrive. Then, slowly, as time passes, despondency sets in. Is she not coming? Are her promises of fidelity all false? As he strums on his mandolin, he mourns the wasting of this beautiful night, the wasting of the starlight and the perfumed air: without her, none of this is of any use to him. Will she come? When? Lovely lyrics, lovely music—and Rafi at his broodingly beautiful best.

Dulari_SuhaaniRaatDhalChuki

5. Yeh hawa yeh fiza hai udaas jaise mera dil (Gumraah, 1963): And, yet another hero waiting for his beloved. But, with a difference: the love here is illicit. The woman (Mala Sinha) whom Sunil Dutt’s character waits for, was once his sweetheart but is now another man’s wife. There is little restlessness here, but a great deal of pain: the ache of longing and of desire, and also the ache of knowing that this meeting—no matter how romantic—will bring no lasting relief. Because they can never be together. I love the echo effect in this song, as well as Mahendra Kapoor’s rendition of it (have you noticed? All the male songs I’ve listed so far have been sung by different people). And I like the way the picturization shifts, to show both people: the one who is waiting impatiently, as well as the one who finds herself caught in a dilemma.

Yeh hawa, yeh fiza, from Gumraah

6. Intezaar aur abhi aur abhi (Chaar Dil Chaar Raahein, 1959): And, for a change, a song that is more layered than the ones that have gone before. On its surface—if you don’t know the context—this is another song of an anguished soul (in this case, a woman) waiting for the arrival of a lover. The lyrics (by Sahir) move, as the song progresses, from a relative confidence that the lover will come, to a restlessness at his delay, to—eventually—the sad realization, as morning dawns, that the waiting has come to nothing.

Where this song differs from the others is in the second ‘waiting’ of the song, because the singer actually is waiting—for the dawn, and for the end of her night-long employment as lullaby-singer to the insomniac nawab played by Anwar Hussain. He has commanded her, a singing woman, to sing through the night so that he may be able to sleep; and until morning comes, she must sing on… she must wait for the dawn, or for the nawab’s permission to stop.

Another of those brilliant combinations of great lyrics, music (Anil Biswas) and rendition (Lata).

ChaarDilChaarRaahein_IntezaarAurAbhiAurAbhi

7. Aayega aanewaala (Mahal, 1949): And how could I leave out this song, one of my favourites from the 40s? Aayega aanewaala embodies waiting: not a restless waiting, not a ‘will-he-won’t-he come’ waiting, but a rather more patient waiting, secure in the belief that the person the singer waits for—has waited for all these years—will come. He has to come; whether or not he will come is not within his power. Destiny will bring them together.

Khemchand Prakash’s music and Lata’s voice are hauntingly beautiful in this song (Lata is especially sublime in the aalaap), and the slow sure striking of the clock somehow adds to the atmosphere: the passage of time, the feeling of expectancy.

Aayega aanewaala, from Mahal - composed by Khemchand Prakash

8. Humre gaon koi aayega (Professor, 1962): In a change of mood from all the other songs listed in this post, a peppy, upbeat song about waiting for someone who will be along shortly. Kalpana and Praveen Choudhary, as two orphaned sisters whose tyrannical aunt is their guardian, escape her eagle eye for a while to sing and dance in an impromptu celebration of life, along with a bunch of village friends. And what do they sing about? The love that will come into their lives, for whom they’re waiting: surely he will come, he is just around the bend. Neena (Kalpana), at least, doesn’t know that he is literally just around the corner. I love the folksy tune of this song, and the fact that most of the dancers actually seem to be locals, not imports from Bombay.

Humre gaaon koi aayega, from Professor

9. Hum intezaar karenge tera qayamat tak (Bahu Begum, 1967): The better-known version of this song is the happy version, which begins in a garden and where the waiting for the beloved ends in the midst of the song itself. This version, later in the film, however, wins for me as a ‘song of waiting’, because there’s something so painfully anguished, so despairing about this waiting. Pradeep Kumar plays a man who thinks (as does just about everybody else) that the woman he loves has married another—but he will still go on loving her, waiting for her to come. Waiting for his death, if that will be an excuse to bring her to his side: Yeh zindagi tere kadmon mein daal jaayenge/Tujhi ko teri aamaanat sambhaal jaayenge/Hamaara aalam-e-rukhsat ho/Aur tu aaye. Sahir at his best, yet again.

BahuBegum_HumIntezaarKarenge

10. Aaja ke intezaar mein jaane ko hai bahaar bhi (Halaku, 1956): And, to end, another song which actually has the word ‘intezaar’ as part of its lyrics. A restless lover (as in Footpath, Dulari, Gumraah, Khamoshi… the list is endless) waits for his beloved to come to him. Ajit, as the beloved of the girl who (later in the film) has the misfortune to attract the covetous eye of none other than Halaku (Hulagu Khan, in history), finds himself waiting for his sweetheart to arrive. Will she come, won’t she? There is that familiar refrain too, of an emotion expressed in other songs of waiting: the romantic atmosphere, the beauty of this time and this place, are fleeting. Will she come before it’s gone, or will he sit here, agonizing and unable to enjoy any of it on his own?

Aaja ke intezaar mein, from Halaku

Which other songs would you add to this list?

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78 thoughts on “Ten of my favourite songs of waiting

  1. This is insane! i was just listening to ‘Tum pukar lo’ and your blog update popped up. I love, love the song and the movie, ‘Khamoshi’, is simply brilliant. Even though there is so much anguish in the song, I still find it so soothing. I don’t know if it’s Hemant Kumar’s voice or the music. Or maybe because I love the film that makes the song so, so special (I actually cannot reiterate how much I love ‘Khamoshi’ :-P). But I must say, I can loop on this song endlessly. I can’t think of any ‘intezar’ songs right now (the only one that came to me was ‘Hum intezar karenge’ but you included that in your list). But when I do, I will come back :-)

    • Heh. That is a coincidence, indeed! And I echo (if you already haven’t figured that out) the love for Tum pukaar lo. Such an absolutely lovely song – and I can pretty much listen to it in a loop, too.

      Incidentally, talking of Khamoshi and Tum pukaar lo, this is as good an opportunity as any for me to bung in the Bengali equivalent from Deep Jwele Jaai, the film (made by Asit Sen too) from which he remade – almost to the frame – Khamoshi. Hemant again, and singing another absolutely haunting song. Ei raat tomaar-amaar (the tune of which is probably familiar to you):

      • That’s director Asit Sen himself playing the role Dharmendra played in Khamoshi. Surprisingly Hemant Kumar did not use exactly the same tune for the Hindi version he used this tune in Kohraa in the song yeh nain dare dare

        • Yes. I’ve reviewed Deep Jwele Jaai too, so I knew that bit. As well as the fact that this same tune was reused as Yeh nayan dare-dare (though I personally feel that Ei raat tomaar-amaar is far better than Yeh nayan dare-dare).

      • Oh yes! I was once talking with my friend about ‘Khamoshi’ and she told me about the original- ‘Deep Jwele Jaai’- and according to her, Suchitra Sen was miles ahead of Waheeda Rehman in the acting department, especially in the last shot where she says, ‘I can’t act’. I haven’t seen the Bengali version so cannot say much; personally Waheeda Rehman, especially in the black and white movies avatar, has always managed to move me with her acting. But, I see that Youtube has a version of ‘Deep Jwele Jaai’ with English subtitles- not the ideal way to watch a film, but I think I will give it a try.
        I really enjoyed ‘Kohra’ and ‘Yeh nayan…’ is hauntingly beautiful, even with someone like Biswajeet, who I am not particularly fond of. I felt that the movie captured the thrilling feel of the novel ‘Rebecca’ quite well, even with all the Indian movie masala and melodrama.

        • I think the presence of Biswajeet – not one of my favourites (except possibly in Biwi aur Makaan) – somewhat dampened my enjoyment of Kohraa, but I liked Waheeda Rehman and Lalita Pawar a lot. And the atmosphere.

          Do try and see Deep Jwele Jaai, even if only on Youtube. The differences with Khamoshi are subtle enough to be almost missed if you don’t see the films close together, but I think they make the Bengali film a more poignant one.

  2. Intezar! Lovely theme and lovely songs! But I have guests at home, a house to be put together after a month of painting work, flooring work, etc., so I have to wait till after everyone leaves, to sit and enjoy the songs. Your description of the wait, especially with the songs in Khamoshi and Sahib Bibi aur Ghulam, is so … what shall I say? I can feel the longing and the pain. I will return later.

  3. Songs of waiting are the best!
    Love all the songs, which you’ve posted, particularly the first two and the last but second.
    My favourite is, kahin karti hogi woh mera intezar from Phir Kab Milogi

    it is from 1974, but definitely has a feeling of 60s to it.

    Another one, which is definetly not 50s or 60s song is
    kisi nazar ko tera intezar aaj bhi hai from Aitbaar

    The MD is Bappi Lahiri!

    Not a big favourite of mine, but qualify it does
    aa jaa re pardesi from Madhumati

    A big fav of mine is tu kahaan from Tere Ghar Ke Samne

    I find this one to be very sweet
    aa jaa re mere pyar ke raahi from Oonche Log

    I think that is enough of hogging space in the comments section.

    A small request: A playlist would be great

  4. What a wonderful idea! Great post indeed! I will come back later for more comments but for now, I would just add my few personal favorites on this topic:

    1. Kabhi na kabhi kahin na kahin from Sharabi- Rafi, Madan Mohan lyrics by Rajendra Krishan

    2. Kiska Rasta dekhe from Joshila- Kishore, RDB, lyrics by Sahir..

    3. Woh subah kabhi to aayegi from Phir Subah Hogi- Mukesh/Asha, Khayyam lyrics by Sahir..

    I will be back!

    • Thank you, Ashish, both for the appreciation and for the songs! Lovely ones, all three of them. I especially, especially love Woh subah kabhi toh aayegi – I never considered myself much of a Mukesh fan, but that song converted me. He’s so restrained and controlled, and the music and lyrics are both brilliant.

      • Ditton – About Mukesh. There are some handful songs where he is just amazing..

        Here’s one from the movie Teri Talash Main. There’s a little trivia about this song that I would like to add. Sapan-Jagmohan were the music directors and this was supposed to be the muhurt song but Asha was so sick that she couldn’t come. The producer and Sapna-Jagmohan went to her house because it was critical for them. They saw a doctor was leaving Asha’s house. Reluctantly they asked and Asha, though sick, came to the studio and sang this beautiful song. After hearing the song, producer decided to change the name of the movie to Teri Talash main which was supposed to be something else..

        I love this haunted melody and I think it fits the bill for this theme..

        Lyrics – Naqsh Lyalpuri

    • Didn’t have time earlier to go back to your fabulous list. Your list (specially the top) and the descriptions makes this list so wonderful. My personal favorite are “Suhani Raat Dhal Chuki” along with Koi Door se awaaz de, and tum pukar lo… I can just keep listening to hours on end..

      Apologies for doing this in piece meal.. Here’s a couple more that might be debatable if they fit the theme or not..

      1. Din Dhal Jaaye Hai (Guide – Rafi/SD Burman/Shailendra) – I think Dev is clearly waiting for Waheeda (long term wait)

      2. Mere Sapnon Ki Raani (Aradhana – Kishore/Rafi/Anand Bakshi) – Rajesh can see Sharmila but is still waiting (short term wait) :)

      3. Ka Karoon Sajni Aaye Na Balam (Swami – Yesudas/Rajesh Roshan/Lyrics by Amit Khanna)

      I prefer the Bade Ghulam Ali Khan version. I believe there are many versions of this thumri sung by variety of artists..

      • Arre, there’s no need to apologize at all, Ashish! Piecemeal is absolutely fine, and even more easily forgiven because you offer up three lovely songs. I like all of them a lot (though Din dhal jaaye is probably my favourite of the three).

  5. Love Love the theme and list!
    Waiting to see what further gems the comments will throw up…

    Punjabi songs seem to be chock-a-block with waiting

    Adding ny usual slightly off-topic stuff. The first is not really about waiting as such but the second line must be one of the most powerful similis of waiting “kabran udeek deeyan mainu, jiyon putran nun mavaan”

    For an extremely cheerful waiting song, Shamshad Begum is brilliant in this old Punjabi number

    • It won’t surprise you, I think, that I’d heard neither Sikher dopeher nor Batti baal ke before. What good songs (and how different from each other)! Thank you, Bawa.

  6. Thanks a lot for this lovely list DO! Love the songs from Khamoshi, Tum pukaar lo…Hemant Kumar, Gulzar and magic. Listening to words like Mukhatsar (Teri Meri Kahani) and Dafattan (Delhi 6) in films of recent years reminds me of Gulzar’s word play.

    Super like to your list as well Harvey, you’ve mentioned 2 of my all time favourite songs – Maane ne mera dil deewana, and Kahin karti hogi. Also, Kisi nazar ko is wistfully beautiful! Aaja re has a haunting quality that I like, so will probably be in my list.

    Few more songs on my list would be, for chirpiness: Jiya beqaraar hai (Barsaat), Aaja aayi bahar sil (Rajkumar); for melancholy: Aa bhi jaa (Teesri Kasam).

    Mera dil ye pukaar aaja (Nagin) and Akele hain chale aao (Raaz) would be honorable mentions.

  7. Wonderful list Madhu didi! I liked all the songs especially Shaam e gham ki kasam. Here are some of my favorites.
    Baithi hoon teri yaad ka lekar ke sahaara from Village Girl (1945).

    Tu kaunsi badli mein mere chaand hain aaja from Khandaan (1943).

    Udaasiyon mein nazar kho gayi chale aao from Fareb (1953).

    Aaj ki raat badi shokh from Nai umar ki nai fasal (1965). Female version

    Raina beeti jaaye from Amar Prem (1972).

    Thank you so much for all the songs didi! They’re very very nice.

    • I am so impressed, Rahul, that at your age – I think you must be the youngest person to be currently frequenting my blog – you are the one who comes up with the oldest and possibly the most obscure songs that fit the theme! When I was your age, I probably knew only about a dozen songs from before 1950.Even now, the only songs I was familiar with were the last two. Udaasiyon mein nazar sounded very familiar, but I couldn’t tell whether that was because I’d heard it before (I don’t think I have) or whether I’ve heard something very similar. Lovely song.

  8. My favourite ghazal on intezar has to be this famous one by FAIZ, and the version I like best is this very old and beautiful one by Mme Noor Jehan

  9. I won’t hog anymore of the comments but I love this classical rendition on the theme of waiting – also because it was such a brilliant TV programme.

    • When I first saw the title of that video (Kab aaoge tum aao didn’t ring a bell), I thought I had never come across this before. Then that bit about Sab tan khaaiyo aur chun-chun khaaiyo maans made me sit up – but when the actual song began, I realized I hadn’t heard it after all. Very good rendition indeed, Bawa. Thank you, that’s lovely.

  10. Very interesting theme for a post, and the songs you have chosen are most appropriate! When I tried to think of more songs in this genre, I found it a bit difficult because, as you have said, ‘waiting’ comes in many hues, and ‘waiting’ songs do not necessarily have keywords like ‘intezar’ in them. Here are a few (the first two have already been mentioned by Ashish but I’m repeating them since I like them very much):
    One of the most poignant ‘waiting’ songs. The anguish of a man who is yearning for any human love, not just romantic love.
    “Kabhi na kabhi kahin na kahin” from Sharabi

    Waiting and hoping for a better tomorrow (achche din!)
    “Woh subah kabhi toh aayegi” from Phir Subah Hogi

    A funny ‘waiting’ song. Not having seen the movie, I’m not sure who Johnny Walker is waiting for – but presumably for some passer-by to get ensnared into his net!

    This one is an Asha Bhosle treat, with a gorgeous Sadhana to boot. It is more about pleasurable anticipation than waiting. The twist is that Raaj Kumar misreads the situation and thinks Sadhana is waiting for him!
    “Kaun aaya ke nigahon mein chamak” from Waqt

    These two songs (both featuring Shammi Kapoor) are in a sub-category of ‘waiting’ – wherein our hero is waiting for the right woman to enter his life and fire up his romantic passions!
    “Jawaniya yeh mast mast” from Tumsa Nahin Dekha

    “Kisi na kisi se kabhi na kabhi” from Kashmir ki Kali

    • I love all the songs you’ve posted! Zara ruk jaa I’ve heard before, but wasn’t so completely familiar with as to be able to relate to it without listening to it all over again (he seems to be waiting for customers – that “teri service karein hum?”). What great songs, all of them – especially Woh subah kabhi toh aayegi and Kaun aaya ke nigaahon mein. Those two are my favourites.

      While Kisi na kisise and Jawaaniyaan yeh mast-mast fit the waiting theme perfectly, I think they also fall into a subcategory of their own – waiting for someone one has never even seen, or waiting for ‘love’ so to say. I don’t know if it was you, or someone else, who once suggested that to me as a theme. I have it noted down somewhere, but haven’t been able to find ten songs for it yet. I must do that sometime.

  11. What a treasure of wonderful songs. I was listening to “hum intezar karenge” just a while ago and noticed how well Asha’s voice suited Meena Kumari, sounds as if she is singing herself. If I was to make such a list, I would start with “gum pukar lo” also. Sahib bib aur gulam would be next, it is so haunting ! All the songs you have chosen are so well liked and some from the comments too. From later songs, I do like “kiss nazar ko Tera” that is mentioned by harvypam. I remember a 80s song where the mother is waiting for her son to come home for Diwali. I will have to search for it.
    Will be back when I think of some nice ones as you have already listed the cream of the crop.

    • Thank you so much, Neeru! I’m glad you liked this list. When I started compiling it, the first couple of songs were the ones that sprang immediately to mind – and then, as I progressed, I realized too how many more good songs were all about waiting. And, as readers have suggested, there are so many more too…

  12. Chand phir nikala, magar tum na aaye

    This one is a Punjabi qwali by Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan
    Akhiyan udeek Diyan, dil vaajan Maria, aaja pardesia, wastayi pyaar da

    • Ooh, I love Chaand phir niklaa; it used to be one of my very favourite songs as a teenager. How could I have forgotten this one?!

      The Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan one was new to me. A good song (though, since my Punjabi is so limited, I probably wouldn’t have realized it was a song about waiting until I listened further). He was such a fine singer.

  13. Lovely list. Wonder if you could have 20 songs instead of 10. The Professor song is the one adds variety to the list. Probably the fun song among the list. Thanks for this list. I will continue my Waiting for your next post

    • Even 20 would probably end up being too few! That happens with some themes – philosophical songs, for instance – and there’s no dearth of great songs that would fit. I like to restrict myself to just what I consider my favourites. :-) But it’s always good to see readers coming up with other fabulous songs that I’ve either forgotten or never heard before.

  14. The raw voice of Zohrabai Ambalewali in Aankhon Mein Intezaar (Caravan, 1944)

    Don’t think I had heard this song, but it’s lovely!
    I digress, but read this past week on Mubarak Begum and absolutely agree about the raw rich female voices http://epaperbeta.timesofindia.com/Article.aspx?eid=31806&articlexml=Mubarak-Begum-was-born-before-her-time-she-28072016012032

    I will add one more song on anticipation – Dheere dheere machal (Anupama)

    Came across this song, haven’t heard the name of the movie or the song, but was quite surprised to see Farida Jalal do a Raat-akeli-hai type song (Dev Anand, Mahal) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q12AjI_T7Q0
    Nothing special about the song though!

    Thanks again for the post DO, have discovered some amazing songs :)

    • I hadn’t heard Aankhon mein intezaar ki duniya liye hue before – what a lovely song. And I completely agree about the ‘raw richness’ of voices like Zohrabai Ambalewali’s, Mubarak Begum’s, and Shamshad Begum’s – there’s something so earthy and memorable about them.

      I like Dheere-dheere machal a lot too, and Aaiye aapka thha humein intezaar. Mahal started off promisingly, with the suspense building up well, but it had tons of plot holes that made it fizzle out. I reviewed it some time back:

      https://madhulikaliddle.com/2015/08/07/mahal-1969/

  15. Tu chupi hai Karan from Navrang

    Baithe Hain reh Guzar par, dil ka Diya jalaye

    It’s fascinating how much the songs of khamoshi are popular. I really liked the Bengali version you posted. I still remember the vividh bharti Sunday program that showcased new movies with the film story in short and it’s songs. We were on our way to Srinagar and I was hoping the movie would be in some theater so I could persuade my parents to watch. Wasn’t there :(
    I do like Intezar aur abhi, aur abhi aur abhi a lot too.

    • I like Tu chhupi hai kahaan; nice song. And even though I’ve seen Chaalees Din (admittedly years ago, when I was a kid), I’d forgotten Baithe hain rehguzar par. Beautiful.

      What I especially admire about Khamoshi (rather, its music) is that there are only three songs, and all three are brilliant. It’s as if the music department have channelized their energies into making three unforgettable songs, instead of writing, composing and singing 10 or 12 songs that one doesn’t remember half an hour after finishing the film.

  16. A great list which includes my all time favourites from Khamoshi and Dulari!

    One may consider including the following:
    1. Arzoo: Bedardi baalma, tujhko mera man yaad karta hai…
    2. Ijazat : Khaali haath shaam aayi hai….
    3. Chhoti si baat: Na jaane kyun, hota hai ye zindagi ke saath….

    The title song of Rajnigandha could also qualify, but it touches upon the theme of ‘waiting’ in a subtle and indirect manner.

    • Thank you! I am not especially fond of Bedardi baalma (it sounds a little too shrill and weepy to me, but it’s not a bad song). Love Chhoti si baat – so very beautiful, and the lyrics are so profound. I remember actually paying attention to them only when I was in my early twenties, and realizing just how intense they were.

      Khaali haath shaam aayi hai is so sad – I don’t recall having heard that before (but that’s maybe because I never got around to watching Ijaazat, and somehow the songs I’ve heard from the film are the others, not this one). Beautiful.

  17. Brilliant list as always ! I cannot agree more with your comment about the songs from Khamoshi, Only three songs, but the mood of the film is so perfectly distilled in them. Excellent songs in the comments too. Here’s my addition, Iqbal Bano sings for Yasmin from the early 1950s film “Murad” . Lyrics by the great Qateel Shifai.

    • What a beautiful song. I hadn’t heard Ho chuka intezaar sone de before, but just listening to it gives me gooseflesh. The name of Iqbal Bano always reminds me of another fabulous song of hers that (though it’s non-filmi) also somewhat fits the theme. An ache and a longing for someone to come, though I don’t know if it would fall into the category of ‘waiting’, or of just missing someone terribly and realizing that he is not going to come anyway.

      Ranjish hi sahi:

    • A couple of others have also mentioned Jiya beqaraar hai, but Raat-raat bhar jaag-jaagkar was ‘new’, so to say. :-) Nice song; I’d heard it but had forgotten about it. Thanks.

  18. There are two songs that I really like though I do not know whether they fit here but there is an element of waiting though there is a sense of despair they are
    Nagri nagri dware dware from Mother India and o jaanewale ho sake to lautke aana from Bandini

    • I’ve been wondering about Lo aa gayi unki yaad, woh nahi aaye (Do Badan). Guess more in sense of despair than waiting list…

      • Yes. In fact, when I was thinking of songs for this post, I also, in parallel, began thinking of songs that are not so much about waiting as about missing someone desperately. Where there’s no hope – or no chance – that the person will come, so there’s no question of waiting. This would fit perfectly into that, I think.

    • Yes, I think both are more despairing than waiting. I think, too, that O jaanewaale ho sake toh lautke aana fits into yet another category: songs addressed to people who are going. And there are a fair number of those, sufficient enough for a post!

  19. Coming so late to this post! :( What a lovely set of songs, Madhu, and lovely write-ups to each. For a change, all we have in common is one song – Suhani raat dhal chuki and the screenshot from Madhumati. :) Can’t get enough bandwidth to read the comments, so that will have to wait.

    • Thank you, Anu! And would you believe it, I’d completely forgotten you’d done this post too (and with the same name!), until someone referred to it in the comments. I was so relieved to find that my list wasn’t a completely copy of yours (which did surprise me, to be honest).

  20. Another song of waiting … she is waiting for springtime to come into her life (metaphorically):
    “Bahaaron mera jeevan” from Aakhri Khat

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