Last year in the month of March, I published a Hindi film song list of my favourite trios, that is songs sung by three singers. I restricted myself to the 70s as I wished to publish a separate list of trios from the Hindi films of the 90s and thereafter. The wish however skipped my mind for a long time. But as usual I had a rough long list, which I immediately processed to come up with the final list of songs. The list goes well into the 2000s as well. And one song is from the late 80s as well.

The trios enchant me no end! I find it always thrilling to listen to a trio. Three different voices, with different textures, different ranges come together to create a beautiful song. Of course, it’s not a usual affair with Hindi films. On most of the occasions, the film has a love triangle, or rarely more than one pair of the main lead. If you look at the list, it’s not a surprise that many of the songs are from YashRaj banner, who have an inclination to a Love triangle. The songs on the list have different moods and situations, a few are happy, a few melancholic! In some of the songs all the three characters are together, in a few they are at different places. Some songs are sung at a party, a few are stage dance performances. In all, it’s a mixed bouquet of songs.

I’m sure the list will be nostalgic for the readers of my generation.
Without a further ado, let’s listen and watch the melodies.

1. Jiye To Jiye Kaise – Saajan (1991) Kumar Sanu, S P Balasubramaniam & Anuradha Paudwal / Nadeem Shravan – Sameer
What can I say about this song! The song didn’t appear as a single song in the movie. Kumar Sanu’s part picturised on Sanjay Dutt appears separately while the other two verses are in a single song. All the characters are not at a single place. But the reason for their despair is the same. It’s sung with apt expressions and the orchestration is superb. Would we ever forget the amazing saxophone piece in the third interlude?
The song surely deserves to top the list of trios from the 90s. One of the most melodious sad songs of the 90s. Nadeem Shravan were at the peak of their career and all of the songs from the movie Saajan were roaringly popular. In that non-internet era, audio cassettes were the only easily available and affordable means of listening to Hindi film songs. All the three main leads were also at the top with Madhuri Dixit looking at her best.

2. Aaina Hai Mera Chehra – Aaina (1991) Lata Mangeshkar, Asha Bhosle & Suresh Wadkar / Dilip Sen-Sameer Sen – Sameer
I mainly remember this song as the last song of the Mangeshkar sisters sung together. Though I like the song, its picturisation is melodramatic. I wonder if anyone can really do it at a party. The film revolves around the relationship between two sisters, and the tensions that follow when the elder sister dumps her fiancé. Asha Bhosle sings for Amrita Singh and Lata Mangeshkar for Juhi Chawla, all the ladies doing the job perfectly well. Amrita Singh’s performance in a negative role was highly appreciated, so was Juhi’s. The love triangle was a bit complex if I remember correctly.

3. Gajar Ne Kiya Hai Ishara – Tridev (1989) Alka Yagnik, Sadhana Sargam & Sapna Mukherjee / Kalyanji Anandji – Anand Bakshi
Heroines dancing at the villain’s den was a common scenario in Hindi films and this one’s is a perfect example! The late 70s and the entire 80s used to have these kinds of unrealistic villains. A get-together of bad boys at his den used to enjoy these songs. In this one, we see Amarish Puri, Dalip Tahil, Rajesh Vivek and a few other familiar faces whom I couldn’t recognise. There’s a lot of filmy style dhishum dhishum during the interludes, when the heroes escape from police custody after a fight with the policemen. It’s been more than 30 years, and the song still resonates in my mind. The tune is good and all the singers do their jobs well. I appreciate the fact that the voice chosen for a character in the beginning of the song remains the same throughout. Usually such minute details are overlooked. Sadhana Sargam sings for Madhuri Dixit, Alka Yagnik for Sangeeta Bijlani and Sapna Mukherjee for Sonam. (By the way, has anyone heard of the whereabouts of the last two ladies). As far as the dance is concerned, Madhuri Dixit obviously wins as the most elegant and graceful dancer among all three. Sonam just manages to pull it off somehow.

4. Lagi Lagi Hai Yeh – Yeh Dillagi (1994) Lata Mangeshkar, Udit Narayan & Abhijit / Dilip Sen Sameer Sen – Sameer
Yet another party song, but not a poignant one! All the characters are together at a party in the hero’s house and singing it joyously. They are referring to one another, sometimes directly, sometimes tangentially. The song reminds me of the similar song from Sangam three decades earlier, Lata Mangeshkar being a common factor in both the songs. Abhijit sings for Saif, Udit Narayan for Akshay Kumar. Reema Lagoo is furious at the thought of accepting her driver’s daughter as her daughter in law, while both of her sons are head over heels in love with the girl.
The film mainly helped Kajol establish herself as an excellent actress, while Akshay Kumar also tried his hand successfully as a romantic hero.

5. Koi Mil Gaya – Kuchh Kuchh Hota Hai (1998) Udit Narayan, Alka Yagnik & Kavita Krishnamurthy / Jatin Lalit – Sameer
Let’s watch Kajol, Shah Rukh Khan and Rani Mukherjee performing at the college festival. Kavita Krishnamurthy sings for Rani while Alka Yagnik for Kajol. The song and dance performance is supposed to be a spontaneous one after one of the performances gets canceled and someone needs to replace it. Look at the cinematic liberty, all sing without a rehearsal, they dance as well while singing which is practically not possible, they play electric guitar without electricity etc etc. Obviously we always overlook these points and enjoy the song. The film also had another trio picturised on Salman Khan, Kajol and Reema Lagoo.

6. Yeh Pyar Kya Hai – Gupt (1997) Kumar Sanu, Alka Yagnik & Kavita Krishnamurthy / Viju Shah – Anand Bakshi
A stage dance performance by Kajol, Manisha Koirala and Bobby Deol. Very enjoyable song, look at the facial expressions of the leading ladies as they happen to cross each other while dancing. A lot of things need to be ignored to enjoy the song, but that’s okay. Alka Yagnik sings for Kajol while Kavita Krishnamurthy sings for Manisha Koirala.

7. Makhna – Bade Miyan Chhote Miyan (1998) Amit Kumar, Udit Narayan & Alka Yagnik / Viju Shah – Sameer
Madhuri Dixit played a cameo in this movie and the song was very popular back then. The movie was also popular, though I was never a fan of Govinda movies. Govinda and Amitabh Bachchan play Madhuri Dixit fans who dream of her. They sing the song in their dreams. I guess, Amit Kumar sang for Amitabh after a long time. The song has a very catchy beat and in general it’s quite easy on the ears. Dance by all three is also enjoyable.

Leaving the 90s behind, I move forward to the noughties. Melody still found a place in the majority of the songs of the early noughties. As the decade progressed to its end, the western beats took over and noisy songs started getting predominant. The playback singers of the 90s were still very much active and popular, though newer generations of playback singers also slowly found their way into Hindi films.

8. Resham Si Hain Ye Hawain Sanam – Mere Yaar Ki Shadi Hai (2002) Sonu Nigam, Alka Yagnik & Udit Narayan / Jeet Preetam – Javed Akhtar
The film was successful, and so were the songs. This lilting melody has a dreamy romantic touch to it. The couple, Jimmy Shergill and Tulip Joshi are enjoying each other’s company, while Uday Chopra is daydreaming about his future with her. The song is so beautifully romantic, without a loud orchestration and noisy aura. Sonu Nigam expresses the romance so well with his silky soft voice, with equally good support by Udit Narayan and Alka Yagnik. The dance steps are so cute and so well executed by Jimmy Shergill. In all, one of the best romantic songs of the early 2000s.

9. Dil Hai Tumhaara – Dil Hai Tumhaara (2002) Udit Narayan, Alka Yagnik & Kumar Sanu / Nadeem Shravan – Sameer
I’ve been a huge fan of this song ever since I heard it. The opening music is so energetic and bears a signature of Nadeem Shravan. Udit Narayan sings for Jimmy Shergill, Kumar Sanu for Arjun Rampal. Their voices suit the heroes so well. The entire song is full of enthusiasm and romantic mood. Picturisation of the song is also good, mainly the last half with Arjun Rampal. The routine office activities and meetings are in the background, while the couple does romantic daydreaming. The film had yet another trio by the same singers and both the songs were very popular.

10. Ishq Mein Jab Jee Ghabraya – Dil Ka Rishta (2003) Alka Yagnik, Kumar Sanu & Sapna Awasthi / Nadeem Shravan – Sameer
Song picturised at a party, with Aishwarya Rai and Arjun Rampal as the lead pair. There’s an unknown dancer who lip syncs to Sapna Awasthi’s voice. It feels almost heavenly when Alka Yagnik enters the song after the initial 2 minutes or so. This of course should be taken as a criticism of Sapna Awasthi’s unconventional voice, which has a unique texture.
All the songs from the movie were very popular and continue to be. The title track of the movie was also a trio.

11. Saiyan Ji Baiyan Chhudake – Masti (2004) Sneha pant, Gayatri Iyer & Meghna Oberoi / Anand Raj Anand – Sameer
While Masti was fun to watch, the songs were also good. This female trio was a bit overshadowed by other songs of the movie, though it was fun watching it and the hookstep was catchy too. The song is picturised at a hotel where all the three couples are enjoying Vivek Oberoi’s birthday party. The ladies get drunk, at least they pretend to, and sing the catchy song. I couldn’t differentiate the three voices and couldn’t form a pairing between the voice and the performing character. Nevertheless the song is definitely fun to watch.

12. Aaj Ki Raat Hona Hai Kya – Don (2007) Sonu Nigam, Alisha Chinoy & Mahalaxmi Iyer / Shankar Ehsan Loy – Javed Akhtar
The climax song of Don was extremely popular and surely deserved to be. The song has a catchy tune and infectious rhythm that makes you tap your feet as you listen to it. Alisha Chinoy sings for Priyanka Chopra and Mahalaxmi Iyer for Isha Koppikar. If you carefully watch the entire first verse (from 02:05 to 02.54) is a single shot. Very good rendition by all the singers. Look at the activities that take place in the background including a murder by poisoning.
The unexpected twist added by Farhan Akhtar to the original story was genius. While the other songs of the original Don were remade in the new movie, this one was a new addition.

I end my list with the song. I know you are now nostalgic and must have thought of a few songs to add. Please add your favourites from the 90s and 2000s.

Disclaimer –
Mehfil Mein Meri, claims no credit for any image, screenshots or songs posted on this site. Images on this blog are posted to make the text interesting. The images and screenshots are the copyright of their original owners. The song links are shared from YouTube, only for the listening convenience of music lovers. The copyright of these songs rests with the respective owners, producers and music companies.

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