An item song is a masala song which is deliberately inserted in a typical Bollywood masala movie with the intention that the item song alone can make a movie super hit should it takes a nosedive after release. some of the movies are super hit just because of item songs alone.
Item songs are also an excuse for filmmaker to get away with censor’s sharp scissors. Bollywood film makers are like politicians and they make movie to fire up public’s fantasies and they have been quite successful in doing this.
Most of the item songs also have hidden dual meanings in the lyrics and often they land in hot waters.
Items songs have become so popular that they have create a new breed of singers known as item singers. Signers like Sunidhi Chauhan and Ila Arun are some of those item singers who are more pipular for their item songs rather than their playback songs.
Here is my list of top 10 item songs. While selecting these 10 items songs I’ve taken a number of parameters into consideration such as lyrics (most important), sensuality, acting, choreography and camera movements.
Movie: Khalnayak (1993)
Director: Subhash Ghai
Item girl: Madhuri Dixit
Other Stars: Sanjay Dutt as Khalnayak
Music: Laxmikant Pyarelal
Singers: Ila Arun, Alka Yagnik and Vinod Rathod
Choreographer: Saroj Khan
This remains my most favorite item song and probably will remain the most favorite item song in the future as well given the fact that the quality of recent item songs have declined. Choli Ke Peeche kya hai was the most popular item song which has captivate the general public throughout the India. In North India you couldn’t cross a single street without avoiding it’s tune. Choli Ke Peeche played in every nook & corner, dhabas, homes, trucks, buses, cars and autos.
Choli Ke Peeche Kya Hai item song is also the most controversial item song in Bollywwod. Due to the dual meaning of the song it was banned on Air India and you couldn’t listen it on radios those days when Television was not so popular. I personally know many people who bought cassette players just to listen this song. Alka Yagnik’s sweet voice and Laxmikant Pyarelal’s music spells their magic on any listener.
What I like most in this item song is the lyrics, music, sensual dance by Madhuri Dixit and most of all the camera work. In most of modern item songs cameramen’s adreline goes high and they start moving cameras like maniac. In Choli Ke Peeche Kya hai the camermen remained patient and he has done marvellous job in capturing the true essence of a true dance.
No matter how many times you watch or listen this song you always remain captivated till the end. Hats off to all those people who have been involved in creating this masterpiece. If there was any hall of fame for item numbers in Bollywood then Choli Ke Peeche Kya hai woul doccupy the top position.
Movie: Sholay (1975)
Item Girl: Helen
Other Stars: Jalal Agha (Banjo Player)
Director: Ramesh Sippy
Music & Singer: R. D. Burman
Bollywood’s all time super hit movie Sholay was famous for it’s dialog, superb acting, comedy and drama. Mehbooba O Mehbooba song acts as catalysis in it’s popularity. Most of people might not agree with the fact that Mehbooba O Mehbooba was an item song as in their view item songs are more or less a recent craze and didn’t exist in 70s and 80s. For me Mehbooba O Mehbooba is an item song and also one of the best. Mehbooba O Mehbooba is also the most remixed item song.
Helen (Helen Jairag Richardson), the Anglo-Indian dancing queen of Bollywood, is at the best of her dance performance in this song. Helens was undoubtedly the best dancing girl in the Bollywood and she remains the only dancing girl in Bollywood movie. She was in the Bollywood movies to dance and less to act. Most of modern days actresses also double up as item girls.
Mehbooba O Mehbooba has melodious music and a strange but equally item song like voice which keeps us hooked to this song.
And don’t be surprised to know that it is R. D. Burman himself whose gave voice to this song.
Czech hottie Yana Gupta descends from the heaven on Bull to seduce the Hoi polloi of UP and Bihar through her skinny cloths and sensual moves. A fast paced foreplay of well choreographed dance sequence turns into an ejaculation of self satisfaction.
Yana Gupta came from no where in the Bollywood as an item girl in this item song, performed her best and disappeared into the oblivion. Babuji Dheere Chalo was Yana Gupta’s best one night stand which will go down in Bollywood history as the best ever performance of any (pure) foreign girl in Bollywood.
This item song is also one of the most controversial erotic dance moves.
Music, dance sequence, choreography, lyrics all at it’s best and so does Yana Gupta.
Item Girl: Malaika Arora
Other Stars: Salman Khan, Sonu Sood
Singers: Mamta Sharma, Aishwarya,
Lyrics & Music: Lalit Pandit