ASHA BHOSLE has inspired different generations of singers around the world, with her talent, songs and allround awesomeness. With that in mind, Eastern Eye got British singers to select their favourite Asha Bhosle song from the many thousands she recorded.
Hemina Shah: I’ve always been a big Asha Bhosle fan and have grown up singing her songs. My favourite has got to be Yeh Mera Dil Yaar Ka Deewana. Every time I sing this song at any of my shows, the crowd always love it. What’s special about this song is that three generations love it including my parents and kids, as it’s also been re-released in the movie Don, starring Shah Rukh Khan.
Shama Shah: I have favourites from each decade she has been singing so had to really think about this. It boiled down to, which of her songs would I listen to at any time of the day or night? That is why I chose Saathi Re Bhool Na Jaana Mera Pyaar from Kotwal Saab. When I first heard this song, I literally had goosebumps. I listened to it on repeat. This composition by Ravindra Jain is not the easiest to sing. It requires more than technical ability or a pretty voice. It requires the singer to dive deep into the listener’s heart. Asha ji was certainly the perfect choice and took the composition to even higher heights.
Sonia Panesar: This was challenging as so many of her songs are embedded in my brain since childhood and are all favorites in their own right. There was something very energising and empowering in the way that Asha ji sang Kahin Aga Lage from Taal and how it came across visually. Maybe because Aishwarya was shown as the rising artist through this song – a dream that many of us vocalists would have at some point in our lives. Asha ji’s modern approach in her vocals comes across as strong yet sweet, sexy and soft. Simply amazing.
Mona Singh: Chham Chham Nachdi Phiran has to be my favorite song sung by Asha Bhosle and my father Channi Singh. This song holds a special place in my heart as I recorded backing vocals on it and got to meet my idol Asha ji. This first of its kind song had a Bollywood icon collaborating with a bhangra legend. The graceful singing, melodious composition, beautiful lyrics and mesmerizing music make this an evergreen classic. I can listen to this on repeat.
Swati Natekar: Although it’s hard to choose one song of the most versatile singer Asha Bhosle ji, from her Hindi/ Bollywood repertoire, one of my favourites I would say is Saathi Re Bhool Na Jaana Mera Pyaar from Kotwal Saab due to the complexity of this raga based melody, which she has performed skilfully and at the same time, with ease. For the same reason, another song I’m absolutely crazy about is her duet with Manna Dey, Re Man Sur Mein Ga from Lal Patthar.
Parry Mad: Asha ji’s playful rendition in Radha Kaise Na Jale from Lagaan, uses all the experience and inner youth in her voice to tell the story that many of us can relate to.
Abira Shah: One of my all times favourite songs of her is Ang Lag Ja Balma from movie Mera Naam Joker. Asha ji’s expressions in this song, of seduction, romance, sadness and longing for love, were immaculate. It is not possible to convey all these feelings in one song. Hence the reason why I love this song.
Rekha: It’s super hard to choose my favourite Asha ji song as she’s an icon and every song is a masterpiece. One of these masterpieces is Karoon Na Yaad Magar, from Ghulam Ali’s ghazal album Meraj E Ghazal. Beautiful lyrics by Ahmad Faraz and composed by Ghulam Ali Saab. The ghazal genre is complex and all about the poetry which makes this love song so pleasing to the ear. The combination of Asha ji’s intricate vocal acrobatics and the use of raag Kaushik Dhvani is a beautiful and highly complicated piece of listening.
Zaheer Abbas Khan: My favourite song of Asha ji’s is In Aankhon ki Masti Main from Umrao Jaan. Asha ji is usually credited for her cabaret song, but in this song, she shows her command over classical and semi classical music too. Her beautiful voice alongside this composition of Khayyam saab truly shows the versatility in her voice.
Anj Chauhan: Saathi Re from Kotwaal Saab. A beautiful Ravindra Jain composition in which the melody reflects the turmoil of what the song is about. Lots of twists and unexpected turns to the melody. One of the most technically difficult vocally challenging songs that Asha ji has sung, so flawlessly, with such ease. Delicate and clever vocal artistry oozing with heightened emotion of estranged lovers.