Why do we get sad? Because we were happy. It’s necessary to be happy in order to get sad. Or is the other way round?
The character of Swini Khara, Sexy, spelled it out perfectly in R. Balki’s film Cheeni Kum: “khush tha isliye sad hai na? (You were happy that’s why you’re sad now, right) So, be happy sad. Don’t be sad sad.
And this is exactly what this listicle sets out to do – 11 Bollywood songs that have depressing lyrics that can mellow you down if read in isolation but they are sung so happily that they turn your frown upside down. So here are 11 sad Bollywood songs that make you happy:
- Bhaag DK Bose: How about when your dad declares you a mistake? When you are too unlucky to prove him wrong? Of course, you pick up your electric guitar and scream your lungs out, “Daddy mujhse bola, tu galti hai meri!” That’s Ram Sampath for you, singing Bhag DK Bose from Delhi Belly.
- He’s Such A Loser: We’ve all had rainy days. And we’ve all seen that one guy who always has a dark cloud above his head. We empathise with him, we also make fun of him! But if you’re Sajid Khan, you make a song out of his panauti state of affairs!
3. Emotional Atyachar: Ever heard of begaani shaadi me abdullah deewana? In this case, it is begaani shaadi me ex-boyfriend deewana. The Barjatyas must have been appalled to see Dev D as it actually has a wedding song with sad lyrics! And the occasion isn’t even Bidaai. It’s baarat time! Trumpets, drums and pure unadulterated frustration.
4. Ghani Bawri: A similar case is this Kangana Ranaut song from Tanu Weds Manu Returns. She’s dancing to the tunes of the death knell of her lost love during his second wedding. Bawri (insane), indeed!
- Ajeeb Daastan Hai Ye: Another song that celebrates (or at least sounds like it celebrates) lost love is this melodious one from Dil Apna Aur Preet Parai (1960). It is arguably one of the first Hindi songs that convey mixed feelings.
- Badra Bahar: While this movie Queen was all about celebrating falling out of love, this song is an account of the protagonist Rani’s lost childhood. Her notions of a rosy “world out there” fizzle out as soon as she starts adulting. But the upbeat music of the song never lets the listeners realize that she is not exactly happy while they sing along in merriment.
- Ala Barfi: The mother dies immediately after giving birth to a deaf and mute boy. Tragic! But not for Mohit Chauhan, as you can literally imagine him making faces when he sings, “radio on hua. Amma off hui. Toota har sapna!” Insult to injury is the following line, “Munna mute hi aasu bahaye!” Facepalm!
- Om Shanti Om: If there was ever a Dard-e-Disco, it was this Rishi Kapoor song from Karz. A heartbroken lover advising his fellowmen not to indulge in the disease known as love. Yes, through a disco song! Wakao!
- Heer Toh Badi Sad Hai: In order to adhere to the theme of the film Tamasha, i.e., to deviate from the template of conventionalism, AR Rahman took this sad song to an extreme end. Imagine Punjabi folk dancers popping up on the screen and doing bhangra as soon as you frown. “Loo me jaana mushqil hai” because this was a tough one to digest. But such a fun number to dance on!
- Pappu Can’t Dance Saala: Another dance number by Rahman, this song from Jaane Tu ya Jaane Na is anti-climactic to say the least. It profiles a hypothetical character Pappu who has all the riches and the degrees but it all boils down to the fact that Pappu can’t dance, saala!
- Tujhse Naaraz Nahi Zindagi: If you think you’ve come across some hatke songs so far, wait till you listen to the last one. As they say of Arundhati Roy’s novel God of Small Things that it is a sad story told very happily, the same goes with this gem of a song from Shekhar Kapur’s Masoom. A child finds sorrow in the pettiest of trivialities and joy in the darkest hour. This psychology is what the song revolves around. While it forebodes the struggles that are in store for a child when he grows up, it also brings a smile to your face owing to the sheer innocence with which it is sung.
Sad songs do make you dance, they do make you happy. Moreover, they are harbingers of hope that the spring is not far away. So the next time you feel low, Hey Jude! Take a sad song and make it happier!